Choosing Missional and Attractional
Can a church be both attractional and missional?
We recognize the dynamic tension between missional and attractional. We believe that God enlivens church as institution, but church as movement is both our biblical origin and our prophetic future.
Here’s what we’ve learned as an attractional church that has embraced our missional-incarnational impulse.
First, we’ve learned that some of the values implicit within the “come and see” model have to be jettisoned for us to seize the vision of church as movement.
What needs to change? Let me be brutally honest.
For years, the weekend services have been the organizing factor of attractional churches. We’ve seen the unintended consequences of that at Granger, and it has broken our hearts.
Too many equate evangelism with an invite to a service where a pastor can “do the work” for you. By 2016, we hope our weekend will no longer be a gathering of people who mostly see themselves as simply “going to church.”
Instead, we hope it will be the large gathering of hundreds of little platoons of people—groups of 20 to 50—who are doing life together all week, being the church in their neighborhood, workplace and community through a missional community. By 2016, our new organizing factor will be these small, reproducing missional communities.
Does that mean the weekend services will diminish or become optional? No way.
In our view, that would be the opposite of missional. We’re still radically committed to an attractional approach on the weekend.
These vibrant gatherings fulfill a unique role of celebration, vision-casting and building momentum for the movement. We see the weekend as the gathering space for the scattered church, inviting their friends who are far from God into an incredibly attractional environment.