So, my church started a farmer’s market, and its changed us…its changed our entire practice of “Sharing our building” Its changed how we see the community and how we do community.
Confession: I went to hatch-a-thon at Princeton and I did not feel awesome. Which might have been augmented by the fact I was on meds for Bronchitus…but also I just knew my idea wasn’t that revolutionary
In fact I sat on my application for a long time, because the whole idea of what we are doing does not communicate well
It feels lame
and looks less like discipleship than other programs
Its a problem.
(plus I would love to be a cool minister doing arts, feeding massive amounts of poor or providing much need relationships to kids…so I’m jealous there)
My church is normal, except we see ourselves as being guided to the local community by God
But I think the problem is in the language, the translation of the idea rather than the idea itself.
The query I go during my presentation at hatch-a-thon was “How is this different from just being a nice landlord” I didn’t have an answer then and I don’t have one now.
But as I look at a bazillion grant applications I need to work on (ok more like 3 or 4). I know that this is my next step.
There is something about being a community IN community with other Communities that is super missional. And I know we don’t have formal “Bible Study” but we do have playgroup where we talk about faith practices with parents. We don’t have a prayer time at the Farmer’s Market, but we do have a table with chairs where people can sit and get to know the church and what it is we do within the community.
Our most recent new members said they had a game plan for their first foray into the farmer’s market:
get in, get out, avoid the sales pitch about attending church, don’t be surprised when it happens–but try to miss it
They said, the sales pitch never came, they began to get to know us and what we do…and we had info about our service, but we never pushed it on them.
Irony: they never would have come to church if we had been too aggressive.
I’m still discerning how Christ is working through a seemingly secular Farmer’s Market, but I see God already at work in the community…we are just hooking into the kingdom that is already being built.
Now to work on translating this to discipleship language…..