Postmodern Pilgrims: First Century Passion for the 21st Century Church

Leonard Sweet, Author
Leonard Sweet, Author B&H Publishing Group $19.99 (224p) ISBN 978-0-8054-2137-8
Reviewed on: 07/17/2000
Release date: 07/01/2000
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Sweet, dean of Drew University's School of Theology and author of A Cup of Coffee at the Soul Cafe, AquaChurch and Faithquakes, among other titles, presents a myriad of modern phenomena and dares the Christian Church to be as appealing. He cites the Internet, e-mail, music and media as prime resources that our culture has taken advantage of to provide mind, soul and spirit connections. Shame on the Church, says Sweet, since it should be offering a higher measure of love, acceptance and genuine care than these quick fixes. What congregations fail to realize, he writes, is that postmoderns aren't so much interested in a ""me, me, me"" mentality as they are driven to participate and experience every area of life. Sweet uses the acronym ""E-P-I-C"" (Experientially, Participatory, Image-Driven, Connected) to define how our postmodern society functions. Specifically, Sweet offers practical steps for achieving optimal, effective connection with those outside the faith. First, Christians must ""put the salve in salvation"" by reaching out in love and healing. They must then master ""the complex art of simple living"" by decentralizing; recapture the gift of story-telling, which imparts continuity and community; and get moving through acts of service and social transformation. Despite his clear step-by-step approach, Sweet has amassed so many facts and quotes that the text is severely disjointed. Even scholars may find this weighty compilation of data difficult to digest. (July)
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