The emergent church movement

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Stellenbosch University, Department of Systematic Theology and Ecclesiology
Something about the word “missional” has captured the imagination of many Christians in Western societies and beyond. The term, though relatively new as a description of the church, is now used widely across confessional traditions and within both “Emergent” and “Missional” Church movements. The employment of the term “missional” includes the superficial along with the profound, the culturally captive alongside the richly biblical. At its best, the word “missional” describes not a specific activity of the church, but the very identity and vocation of the church as it takes up its role in God’s story in the context of its culture, and participates in his mission. This article will engage the Emergent Church movement and summarize its contributions toward the development of the missional identity and vocation of the church in the West. In the next article, the Missional Church movement will be engaged and its contributions toward the development of a missional identity and vocation for the church in the West will be summarized.
Publication of this article was funded by the Stellenbosch University Open Access Fund.
The original publication is available at
Missional Church, Mission -- Theory, Church
Sheridan, T. M. & Hendriks, H. J. 2013. The Emergent Church movement. Nederduitse Gereformeerde Teologiese Tydskrif, 53(3&4):312-323, doi:10.5952/53-3&4-271.