Tuesday, February 28, 2006

The Hartford Seminary just released a wide-ranging survey includes data on the many attributes that together define the nature and impact of megachurches in our society. Collectively, the results debunk 11 of the most common beliefs about megachurches, namely:

MYTH #1: All megachurches are alike. REALITY: They differ in growth rates, size and emphasis.

MYTH #2: All megachurches are equally good at being big. REALITY: Some clearly understand how to function as a large institution, but others flounder.

MYTH #3: There is an over-emphasis on money in the megachurches. REALITY: The data disputes this.

MYTH #4: Megachurches exist for spectator worship and are not serious about Christianity. REALITY: Megachurches generally have high spiritual expectations and serious orthodox beliefs.

MYTH #5: Megachurches are not deeply involved in social ministry. REALITY: Considerable ministry is taking place at and through these churches.

MYTH #6: All megachurches are pawns of or powerbrokers to George Bush and the Republican Party. REALITY: The vast majority of megachurches are not politically active.

MYTH #7: All megachurches have huge sanctuaries and enormous campuses. REALITY: Megachurches make widespread use of multiple worship services over several days, multiple venues and even multiple campuses.

MYTH #8: All megachurches are nondenominational. REALITY: The vast majority belong to some denomination.

MYTH #9: All megachurches are homogeneous congregations with little diversity. REALITY: A large and growing number are multi-ethnic and intentionally so.

MYTH #10: Megachurches grow primarily because of great programming. REALITY: Megachurches grow because excited attendees tell their friends.

MYTH #11: The megachurch phenomenon is on the decline. REALITY: The data suggests that many more megachurches are on the way.

Many people, however, hold to a belief that size does matter, inferring that something must be wrong if a church is growing. Case in point is a recent post on 'Slice of Laodicea'. Click here to read post. I want to know from your experience: do people look more or less favorably on a large church, and why is there animosity towards big churches?

Friday, February 24, 2006

Apparently, due to an issue with a server, some of you received the crossroads e-mail about 40 times this morning. I'm sorry this happened. Please let me know if you're one of the people affected by this via e-mail at jonbrooks@oakcreekag.org. Thanks!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Disco fever!

Check out the disco ball that we won last night at Chuck E Cheese! This little baby only cost 1,000 tickets! Everyone pooled their tickets together, totaling over 1,500, and decided to bless the ministry of Crossroads with this disco ball and 15 glow in the dark hangings for the ceiling. So come and check out the new and improved crossroads next week.

Tuesday, February 21, 2006

I was priviledged to spend this past weekend with the Crossroads leadership team in Chicago, where we prayed and strategized for this upcoming year. Many great ideas were discussed, but what really struck me is the heart and passion these individuals have for this ministry! Excuse me for getting excited, but some truly great days will be ahead as we each do our part to reach out and welcome the new people God continues to bring us.

As I wrote in the last e-mail, I believe this Wednesday will be the biggest Crossroads yet! I ran into a friend from high school last week, and have invited him tomorrow. Don't even think about missing tomorrow night, and make sure to bring someone with you! I'll never ask you to do something that I'm unwilling to do myself. I can't wait to see you tomorrow!

News Items:

Good Samaritan: I admit it. On Thursday night a couple of guys from crossroads and myself were doing donuts in the icy parking lot at Miller Park. It was 11 p.m., and we got stuck by the brat haus! Amazingly, only 1 minute later, two young people came by and helped push the car out. I won't tell you who was driving, but their car looks like this!

Talking sex at church: A church in Indiana has come under attack in some circles because of a series they are currently doing about sex. Read more about the controversy and their defense here. I'm all for trying new ways for reaching the lost, and clearly the enemy has used the area of sexuality to destroy many lives. It's time for the church to take it back. Perhaps some of you would like to leave a comment on their blog also and voice your opinion.

Thursday, February 16, 2006

Are you a young married couple or recently engaged? Then you're invited to join in the fun Friday, February 24 as we launch Crossroads: Couples Edition! Hosted at the home of Jeff & Brittnia Pappendorf, you'll enjoy great food, games, and a time of sharing with each other! We know your relationship will be strenghened and infused with excitement, so we look forward to seeing you Friday at 7 p.m.! Crossroads: Couples Edition will meet every 4th Friday of the month.

For more information, contact Jeff & Brittnia at 414-604-1592 or jeffandbrit@sbcglobal.net

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Hear ye, hear ye...

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentines Day!

Make plans tonight to go the Rainforest Cafe with the crew from Crossroads! If you've never been Rainforest before, now is your chance. Good food and great atmosphere make every meal an adventure! Have I sold you? See you at 6 p.m. tonight in the south parking lot!

Friday, February 10, 2006

Chris Tomlin at Oak Creek

Here's some pictures from the Chris Tomlin concert last Friday, February 3.
Ryan Banks (right) makes sure that nobody tips over the rigging for the lights, but manages to still have a good time. A lot of people from Crossroads helped make this event possible.
Chris Tomlin leads us in 'Holy is the Lord'
Louis Giglio gave a great astronomy lesson, illustrating God's amazing love in light of how big He is and how small we are.
One of the more interesting moments of the night came as Matt Redmond led worship. In the backdrop we watched as a woman began painting on the screens. I had no idea what she was making, and originally thought it was a horse.
Here's what the picture became.

Sunday, February 05, 2006

What a weekend!

This is one of the most fun weekends I've had in a while. Chris Tomlin and guests gave us an incredible worship experience Friday night. And Saturday, it was a blast seeing Crossroads go downhill-via snowboards, tubes, and ski's. And today was brunch, Di Carlo's 2 hours later, and baptism service tonight. I'd like to hear from you. Any thoughts on Friday's concert or the ski trip Saturday? You guys rock! I'll be in Phoenix this week until Friday.

Take care,