Students at Trinity have been studying the Emerging Church over the past few weeks and I have had a few conversations about my involvement in it. I came across this useful roundup of the changes in the US-based Emergent conversation on the Emergentvillage blog at the end of 2010. It will help give a sense of the state of play from the USA. However, there needs to be a bit of a health-warning in that it reflects that particular Emergent conversation which is US-focussed, and should not be taken as reflecting the huge diversity of things happening over the world.
What is interesting is that the culturally “cool” aspect of the phenomenon (Apple Macs, designer-glasses, over-heated theoretical theology being spoken by bright, middle-class young – mostly – men) has been rejected and most folks have moved on. Emergent brought some very interesting, creative people together for a while and my hope is that these interesting, creative people are continuing to do great things for the mission of God, but under no common label. Labels don’t matter, but what we do does. It’s good to see that the thing has become less tribal and more diverse. It’s also good to see that interesting things continue to happen which are bringing Christian faith and community to life in new ways for new times. That’s necessary, and it’s always encouraging to see it when it’s happening.