Drew Ditzel asked me, along with a number of other bloggers (see below), to participate in a project he is doing for his class on emerging models of church at Columbia Seminary. Drew wants us to write about emerging churches and how they are dealing with leadership – mainly through giving everyone a voice, downplaying the role of pastor (or having none at all), and encouraging equality in terms of leadership roles among all members of the church, no matter how old or what gender. And then of course, what does all this have to do with seminary students?
In an email Drew sees some of the possible problems:
…find some Emerging ideas about church, leadership, and being a pastor so refreshing. But they freak me out just about as much…This idea of a church body participating as producers in worship…[and] that church happens around dinner where seminary degrees and humorous sermon antidotes seem a bit out of place.
Here I want to address the question in three ways, culturally, biblically and then through the lens of the Quaker church.