YouTube video chat with Peter Rollins

I got up this morning at 4:00 AM!peter-rollins1

Well, OK, since I got up to watch Peter Rollins do a live video chat, and he’s all about creating a space where people can be honest, let me be honest and say I missed the very beginning of the chat because I actually rolled out of bed at 4:10 AM

The video chat was via YouTube and was entitled “Want to Start Something in Your Town”.   In it Peter brought together 7 people who are seeking to start a new “thing” outside of the traditional church structure or are looking for a degree of transformation within the traditional structure.  The rest of us watched their interaction live.

Peter Rollins has had some experience in creating Christian collectives in non-traditional surroundings.  By sharing some of his experiences he has been an inspiration to many of us who are asking a lot of questions… and finding out that alone will make you suspect.

There was a good cross section among the seven participants.  Some were pastors of churches, others had left the traditional church altogether.  However they all seemed to share a desire to see a space created where lives can be genuinely transformed.

I jotted down a few notes during the chat.  Some things that stood out were:

* One Pastor wanted Pete’s advice on how to be honest with his congregation when really they don’t want honesty.  Another pastor chimed in that he slowly increased his authenticity to his people over the course of a year showing them it was OK NOT to have all the answers.

– I think its a sad state of affairs when we in the church are so used to feigned enthusiasm, insincere concern, and non-existent transparency that pastors and church leaders being open and honest creates such a shock to the system.  People in church are destabilized and paralyzed in their faith because of honesty and authenticity.  One participant added that when her pastor became more open and honest, about half the church left.  As Peter would say, it’s OK for the people to doubt, but if the pastor doubts, the system crashes because we’ve gotten the system to believe for us! 

*  Peter mentioned that although his books tend to have a lot of theory in them he wanted the video chat to be a time where the theory can be worked out in practice.  He elaborated on a couple of the events they do at their IKON groups in Belfast and New York including The Last Supper (where they invite a local community leaders of diverse viewpoints to dinner) and The Omega Course (where they invite people to leave toxic Christianity).

* I think that’s what that’s what attracts many of us to people like Peter Rollins is the feeling that he inspires that we are all doing this together.  That we are not alone.  Even though we may be in different parts of the world we are all asking the same questions.  Pete mentioned that people drive 13 hours to visit there Ikon meeting in New York.  He admits they can read his blog, see him on You Tube, listen to online teachings; just about everything he has to say is available free somewhere.  Why drive 13 hours?

His answer is because people really want to be with other people who are seeking God and asking the same questions.  It’s why I got up on a Monday morning at the start of a work week at 4:00 AM to catch a live video chat with an Irishman from Belfast.

It reminds me that I’m not alone.


  • Connie

    You most certainly are not alone, Steve. And it was because of your honesty and authenticity that I returned to God.through my respect for Jesus Christ.

    • Steve

      That has to be one of the most encouraging words I have received Connie. Thanks for making my day!

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