Tuesday, December 13, 2005

YMExchange Boards

Well, there's been quite a few stinks of late. First, people were taking us to task in blogs for raising some money to fund my (part-time) position with Emergent. Then others got really bent out of shape about my quote in a press release about a meeting with rabbis. In the midst of all that, I was informed by a friend that I was getting thrown under the bus in a new youth ministry bulletin board [UPDATE: Not everyone at YMX was out to get me, just a couple people]. Its owner was nice enough to let me in to the board, and I've made a few posts to defend my good name. The latest, an attempt to respond to comments about the "confusion and tension" surrounding the emerging church, is below:

I'm well aware that there is lots of confusion out there about the emerging church. It's funny, in one comment someone will say, "I know exactly what the EC is, cuz I've seen it all before; it's just like the Jesus People/Pentecostals/baptists/fill-in-the-blank." Then the next comment will say, "What are you guys? No one knows what you are, so how can we join you or protest you?"

I will say that I fall right in between on this. On the one hand, of course, what we're about is not at all new. Paul, Benedict, Francis, Martin, John, and many others through the ages have attempted to reform the church -- that is, to make the church better.

On the other hand, I hope that what we're doing is also new, in some respects. At one level, Martin Luther and John Calvin didn't have to worry about blogs, they had to worry about the Pope's army. We have new challenges today. At a deeper level, I believe that the emerging church is attempting to develop a doctrine of the church that has never before been seen -- I call it a "relational ecclesiology," and I'm going to write my PhD dissertation in defense of it.

Part of the new theories of relationality (in many fields of study) is that there is going to be tension. It's unavoidable. In fact, it's like the Internet -- there is an Internet out there, but there is no place where you can find it. There is no there there. The Internet is the relationship between computers and servers -- the thing is the relationship.

If you follow my argument, there are "emerging churches" out there that you can find, but no one of them is the perfect epitome of emergence. And there is an Emerging Church out there, but you can't find it. Emergent, the organization I am a part of, is one of the bigger servers in the system. Not the only one, not the best one, just one that happens, right now, to have some influence.

So, in short, I don't deny that there is confusion about just what the EC is, nor do I want to lessen that tension. That tension is good. When we lose it, the emergence will be over.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are comparing your “relational ecclesiology” to the internet in that there is no internet there, but it is still there. Likewise, I assume there is no church there, but the church is the relationship between its members. This “relational ecclesiology” then is an absurd statement; it is redundant. Isn’t all good ecclesiology relational? Isn’t the church, in it’s very essence relational? If the trinity is pure relationship between three person’s, yet one, isn’t the church, then, pure relationship between multiple persons, yet one? Plurality united is what I think Rahner called it. How is “relational ecclesiology” new? Saying “Relational theology” is as absurd as saying “divine God” or “relational trinity” or “round circle” or “self giving agape” I don’t see your relational ecclesiology any different. What is new I ask? What is new?

11:17 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

maybe our "ecclesiology" hasn't been all that relational...hence the reform/emergence of a relational ecclesiology. As a person who used to loathe the church, I understand this and appreciate it.

11:26 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


You couldn't pay me enough to be you. You are the right man for this job but holy crap, what a job.

11:28 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with anonymous. Just because previous ecclesiology hasn't been all that relational doesn't make tonies new relational ecclesiology new...I agree with the first poster ... it looks like re-packageing to me

11:44 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking of what is and isn't "Emergent," a friend of mine got me hooked on this blog:

It is all about defining emergent. Check it out...It's funny and very intelligent. I think Stormin Normin is some kind of obscure genius.

1:17 PM  
Blogger Mike said...

Maybe I've got the minority opinion, but I really like the whole "relational ecclesiology" thing. I've never thought about it that way before.

I don't think that it's redundant at all. I've always thought of the church as people. Saying that church is the relationship shared by people is like saying that church is greater than the sum of its parts.

A thought about "quite a few stinks": Tony, I've enjoyed your writing for some time now. My wife is working her way through The Sacred Way, and she loves it. When I've seen you in person (Youth Specialties), though, you sometimes seem to be on the defensive. Do you think that could be contributing to these "stinks"? No offense intended.

1:28 PM  
Blogger Fajita said...

This relational stuff is super important. When a person identifies with another person based upon agreement in propositions and ideology, then there is no real need to actually know each other. We share a theology and avoid each other - believing that we are doing the opposite. We can pretend to be in relationship without ever being vulnerable with each other.

I think what is just happening and "emergnet" people are recognizing is a cultural reality that agreement (theological, political etc) is no good as a replacement for real friendship.

When theology overrides friendship, we fail as followers of Jesus. Friendship first - the theology is obvious after that.

Jesus captured this idea with how he "trained" the apostles. He didn't have a discipleship plan so much as he had friendships. His followers became more like him not because they memorized his sayings when he wasn't there, but rather because they got to hang out together, serve together, question together, fish together, eat together, laugh together and so on.

Show me where this kind of relational life is happening uncluttered with theologically-biased filth.

1:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with eat-a-fajita:
She/he (?) writes: "Show me where this kind of relational life is happening uncluttered with theologically-biased filth"

Yes, show us? Is it possible? Is emergent any more relational than the Catholic Church? or any other church? How do you know? On what evidence do you assume to know what you know? You can't really, that is the point.

Do you think any other ecclesiology will disagree with "relational ecclesiology"? Do you think those with other ecclesiologies will say “no, we don’t want relationship here, we are all about the people – persons, that is.” WAKE UP! Can one be a person without a relationship? No man is an island (Thomas Merton). A self is a self only when that self is in relation to other selves. This is classic Kierkegaard:

“But what is the self? The self is a relation that relates itself to itself or is the relation's relating itself to itself in the relation; the self is not the relation but is the relation's relating itself to itself. A human being is a synthesis of the infinite and the finite, of the temporal and the eternal, of freedom and necessity, in short, a synthesis. A synthesis is a relation between two. Considered in this way a human being is still not a self.... In the relation between two, the relation is the third as a negative unity, and the two relate to the relation and in the relation to the relation; thus under the qualification of the psychical the relation between the psychical and the physical is a relation. If, however, the relation relates itself to itself, this relation is the positive third, and this is the self “(p. 13 – Sickness unto death).

I agree with the previous posters: repackaged theology. Well-said. You can change the words but not the content. Dress it up all you want in ‘post-modern’ “evangelical” “conservative” “protestant” language, but a rose smell just as sweet by any other name.

Thus, all ecclesiology is fundamentally about relation, therefore it is all “relational” because the church is that which makes God (Father-Son-Holy Ghost) present who is (esse) fundamentally a relationship!

1:50 PM  
Blogger Gregg Koskela said...

I find it funny that some are dismissing your whole dissertation in a comment on a blog post that contained approximately 4 sentences on what it's about.

Could we at least make the assumption that if Tony had time in another venue, he just might possibly have more to say about an idea that he will now give years of his life to write about?

1:57 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Tony, thank you for your love and passion for the Church. You and many others have helped my faith mature in a very large way.

After being a part of the emerging conversation for the last 4 years it seems to me an obvious move towards relational ecclesiology. Though I agree with some that this idea has been around sense God Himself (herself). But as we all know even though the relational ecclesiology is the heart of God (Trinity) we have seen very little of it here with in the human heart.

I appreciate your theological ideas and encourage you to continue. Please don't get pissed at those who love to start trouble. I have a sense they fell helpless because their ecclesiology has stopped working (if it ever did).

I thank God for people like you and Doug. Keep up the thinking and good luck with the classes.

Steven White

2:27 PM  
Blogger Kevin said...


Feel free to fight back on the YM exchange boards!

I really don't understand the problem - if you 'get' the Emergent church - great - but let's not get bent out of shape when the ultimate intention of ALL of us (I hope) is to 'make and teach new disciples'... (loosest of loose paraphrases of the Great Commission).

... now I might call out anyone who disagrees with that. I might even call them a heretic.

Realistically - all we're arguing about is the best way to do it.

2:33 PM  
Blogger Kyle said...

I am still convinced that you are the pope and not a bishop. Good stuff.

2:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Realistically - all we're arguing about is the best way to do it."

No, I think we are all agreeing on the WAY to do it, but disagreeing on WHAT we call it"

2:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

" I am still convinced that you are the pope and not a bishop. Good stuff."

Yes, the pope of emergent. I thought emergent was anti-clerical and against ordination and papacy and all that?

God bless

2:48 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I have a sense they fell helpless because their ecclesiology has stopped working (if it ever did)."

But all these ecclesiologies are the same! So you are criticizing your own ecclesiology.

Please, enought of the flowery language and tell me how "relational ecclesiology" is THEOLOGICALLY different than any other?

2:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What are the YM exchange boards?

Cleveland, OH

2:54 PM  
Blogger Adam McLane said...

Since Jim asked... YM Exchange is a new site that does a lot more than just house conversation attacking Tony Jones. :)

We're a group of youth ministry folks who used to be a part of the YS forums (which shut down back in June) and have landed ay a new place you can find at http://www.ymexchange.com

One of the values I have as the board owner is that if someone is getting slashed, attacked, or even just critiqued... I'm going to challenge board members to invite that person so we can have fair and honest dialogue.

So please don't label YMX as an attack site to Emergent... far from it! In fact, come visit us and check it out for yourself!

3:44 PM  
Blogger Amy (ArtsyBookishGal) said...

Come on,Tony! Some of us are very happy to see you at YMX and are discussing Emergence, not trying to dirty your good name. Btw, anonymous posters are cowards....but that's just my opinion and does not necessarily reflect the view of Tony Jones or the Emergent Convention.

4:42 PM  
Blogger Josh E said...

Ealier today I was listening to some of the conversations and looking at some of the notes from the past conversation at PTS. One of the things that Brian said at the faculty seminar is that when you attack fundamentalist Christians, they are energized by it. While I think Brian is correct, one might suggest that this is true of just about any institution or way of life that one is proposing is in need of reform. I totally understand what you are going through. It is hard sharing a prophetic word especially at the beginning of such a movement. Adam and I (and others) face the same kind of thing here at PTS. Just know that you have friends that are behind you in this.

And to your idea about a relational ecclesiology, I think that this is the way to go as well and definitely worthy of being your doctoral thesis. After being a part of Young Life (to which I certainly did not ascribe to all the theological beliefs of the organization nor like all the practices), I “discovered” that the key to ministry was the relationships. Without the relationships there is no ministry. I know that is a bold statement. The biggest problem that Young Life and other similar organizations face is the inability to get their students to make the leap from YL Club/campaigners to a church. So to develop a relational methodology of ministry in an ecclesial framework is the next step in the right direction to bridging the gap between “conversion” and “discipleship” that YL and other Christian ministries (in or out of the church) experience.

I think that it is ignorant of some of these bloggers who want to jump all over you for suggesting that there is a need for a new ecclesiology. It is also probably a reflection of positive experiences for these bloggers in their respective church communities. I would venture a guess that many of the people that feel like Emergent is off-base and has nothing to offer. My guess is that they might come from communities that practice a deep relational ecclesiology, embody many of the emerging church values, and don’t see any problems in the church because their experience of church is so localized and individualistic. All of this would add up to feeling very attacked and would be put on the defensive by the emerging conversation.

I know that most of this is not new to you. But I offer this as an encouragement and as a reminder that you are not alone in this journey.

Journeying hard,

5:50 PM  
Blogger Fajita said...

I think one of the many Anon comments claimed to agree with me and then refuted my point. Not sure what to make of it.

Yes, I want to see "where this kind of relational life is happening uncluttered with theologically-biased filth," and that is what I think "emergent" types are trying to do. Relational authority (if that is what you want to call it) trumps denominational authority.

People seem to either stand for something in such a way that is exclusive or stand for so little in the name of inclusion, but have nothing into which inclusion is possible.

Either way, the denomination (institution) is overvalued and overly central. Whether rigidly followed or obsessively avoided, it is stil the central operating principle.

Relational ecclesiology seems to decentralize the instituion. So, in a sense this is not new because dethroning the institution is not a new concept, but it is new because all historical efforts to do something "like" this were eventually institutionalized. Who's really dethroning (not eliminating, just detroning) the institution right now? The church that is emerging is doing it. House Churches are doing it (in many of their forms). It is hard for a denomination to do it and still be within the denomination.

Tony, keep on. Heck, I'm even thinking about donating to the cause.

6:22 PM  
Blogger Jon said...

Wow. So I'll definetely be praying for you guys. Judging from the critics who have "emerged" on here in just one day, it must be difficult.

I do think it's funny that certain annonymous's take lines from different people's comments and then offer their incredibly...um...enlightening?....critiques. (That was sarcasim by the way.

I hope they do it to my post.

6:34 PM  
Blogger jeff said...

Thanks for posting this, Tony. I have been fairly outspoken regarding the apparent, inherent dangers of your mobilization. Yet, every time you defend your position, I say to myself, "I like that guy!"

When you refer to "relational ecclesiology", I kind-of chuckle... not at the phrase, but at the application-- particularly on the internet.

Your internet critics have absolutely no relationship with you, myself included. I have argued many times that the 'blogosphere' is a difficult place to create true relationship. But its a great place to gripe and complain.

Sorry if I griped too much. I hold you in very high regard. Keep up the good work!


7:01 PM  
Blogger mark said...

To the owner of YMX,
Can I get an invitation to that blog? I'd be interested to read what's being said.

To Tony,
You alreay know this, but I'm going to tell you anyway.
You are doing a good job. There are a lot of people who have already locked you, Emergent and the emerging church in a box. Trying to work your way out of that box is far harder than it was to get into it. These folks have already catagorized you and everything you say from this point forward will be seen through that tainted lens. Dust your feet off and move along.

There are also those in the emerging church conversation who are either cynics or in a cynical time of their lives. Don't take their stuff personally, they are reacting to the pain someone else before you caused. You just get to feel a bit of it.

Then there are those who want you to keep working and moving forward. We trust you. We are not energized by conflict... at least not anymore... we are already living this alternative ecclesiology with you.

Sorry you are the target of some brothers and sisters who are in desperate need of a hobby.

To the people posting on here who so quickly write Tony's idea as absurd... Absurd would be to think he stated his entire complete doctrinal position in a single post. Absurd would be to refute a single metaphor, that wasn't actually as an arguement but as a report.

Are you smoking what you are selling? Don't be so quick to conclusions.

7:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The question is: “Is Tony smoking what he is selling?” He is writing a dissertation on the emergent church and he doesn’t belong to one nor is a member of one??? That’s odd? It seems to me that one would, at least, want a “relationship” with the EC before writing a dissertation on it.

It’s funny how emergent folks get pissy when they think everyone is putting them in a box yet by claiming that others are putting them in a box, they themselves are putting their critics in a box … round and round we go … just admit we are all putting others “in a box” a certain point…

Josh E is perceptive. I like what he writes. I agree, that those who claim that “relational ecclesiology” is not new are those within churches were it indeed is not new. Then why is it wrong to criticize that which is false: i.e. it isn’t new. It may be NEW to evangelical Protestants and God Bless Tony for bringing it to them, but call it what it is, instead of claiming it a NEW thing. Josh E it is ignorant of who to suggest that it is ignorant of critics to want to safe guard their ecclesiology by defending it against those who want to prostitute it. Why is that something to be ashamed of? It is admirable. And it is cowardly of you to criticize those….yeah yeah, call be a coward for being anonymous, we’ve all heard it before. I do not belong to the Blog with a registered name…My name Chuck from Portland

6:49 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Did you know that the head chief over there in Iran is claiming the holocaust didn’t occur and he wants to wipe Israel off the map and you clowns are talking about “relational ecclesiology”?

7:01 AM  
Blogger metafiz said...

to anon. above:

i hope you're walking the way you're talking. i hope you don't have any theological conversations with anyone. i hope you don't talk about books you have read with anyone. i hope you don't discuss sports or hobbies with anyone. i hope every word out of your mouth is about the situation with iran.

- metafiz

ps - tony, come on over to the ym exchange sometime. not everyone bashes you. we need (or maybe i need) more "minority" opinions over there...
besides, it's fun.

7:10 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

how do you italisize comments on here?

7:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If I may, I can vouch for Tony smoking what he's selling as I see him nearly every Sunday night at the emerging church we both attend--the same emerging church where he preaches from time to time, where he has lots of friends, where his kids play with mine, where he contributes financially, where he is living a relational ecclesiology.

7:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

what emerging church is that you speak of? Solomons Porch, because I know Doug does not consider that an emerging/ent church

8:09 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

someone told me tony and family attned colonial church of edina? True/false?

-snake eyes

8:11 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I just checked out the website that the prev. anon. poster recommended:

The guy is a bit out there but I must say he does bring up good points. And he does provide strong evidence for his claims, unlike some anon. posters here. He claims that the term "emergent church" was used in 1981 by a catholic" and seems to strike the same cord as some of the critics here do. I.E. Emergent is not new, but just prostituted theology in differnt packagaing but with the same/new name? I dunno...this whole thing confuses me at a certain point

I'm gonna go watch some football

God bless and go rockets!

9:59 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Believe it or not, Doug does not define all things for all people, even all people at Solomon's Porch. Ergo, if I think of it as an emerging church and I see Tony Jones there every Sunday, then in my book, Tony Jones is indeed part of an emerging church.

12:57 PM  
Blogger Gerrard Fess said...

One of the hardest thing for people to come to grasp with is the whole idea of emerging or not emerging.

(Like the silly quote, "Isn't postmodernism just a trend"? - which I did on a dare from Len Evans and the looks I got from Mr. Jones)

That is the whole point. People like to think they are right. Have their theology all figured out. The problem is we're changing, theology is changing, and sometimes (Most times) definitions change.

Those who criticize (In the negative sense) the whole idea of the emerging Church like to have it all figured out. Have the cake and eat it too. The problem is the cake isn't here.

The honest criticism of the emergent movement is that of theological prepositions, direction, and that of good conversation.

The Big ISSUE seems not to be all the critics but are we willing to BE CHURCH, or play CHURCH.

The whole Emergent Church seems to be a CALL to BE, rather than this Business as usual bit.

12:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If I think of Solomon’s porch a Catholic Church and I see Rabbi Smith there every Sunday, then in my book, is Rabbi Smith indeed part of an emerging church? Or does one evaluate these claims?

Guam (isn’t that a country),
You write, “The whole Emergent Church seems to be a CALL to BE, rather than this Business as usual bit.” But aren’t all churches a CALL to BE? What is so special about emergent? It seems to me that it is those in emergent who want to have everything figured out? Right? Now you are going to tell me the way it is right?

1:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Carla, If I think of Solomon’s porch as a Masonic Temple and I see Iman Yusaf there every Sunday, then in my book, is Yusaf indeed part of an Masonic temple?

If I think of Solomon’s porch as a Satanic Cult and I see Doug Pagitt there every Sunday, then in my book, is Doug Pafitt indeed part of an satanic cult? I say no. Why do think he is a satanist? I think he is a good guy

1:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Yes, it does. Of course you would need to be part of Solomon's Porch to make those determinations, so please join us some Sunday--or a bunch of Sundays and Tuesdays and Wednesdays and Fridays so you are truly able to say you are "part" of our community--and decide for yourself: emerging church, Masonic Temple, Catholic Church, Satanic Cult. And bring Rabbi Smith and Iman Yusaf along!

2:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd love to. Thanks! Where is Solomons porch or the sunday brunch. Rabbi Smith will be delighted. He actually converted to Judaism when he was 21 years old for he figured Jesus was a JEw and and Christianity has lost too much of the Jewsish tradition. Actually, he said he considered himself a JEwish Christian for awhile, you know, that of the high logos christology of the Johannine community, but after awhile decided it was against his understanding of the what the messiah is/was supposed to be. I'll see if he is free. Where and when shall we meet you...thanks!

- Miguel
St. Paul, MN

6:19 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Miguel and Co.

solomonsporch.com has all the details. See you and the Rabbi soon!

6:35 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I checked out the website. It seems as though there is no church but it is a church...that is, there is not church building. Is this what tony was talking about when he compared the church to the internet, i.e. it is there but it is not there? Then how do the people of solomons port congregate? Do they e-congregate? Is it e-church? That doesn't sound to 'relational' to me...but, hey, whatever works for you young hipsters in the e-church, emergeing church...i for one still like to do it the way my grandparents did, we actually got and be in relationship with one another instead of chatting online. Call me old fashion but I am all about real concrete relationships, not hip cups of java and chatting on the internet with my "church buddies" online at some over expensive coffee shop

i've gotta go serve the homeless now...i am using the state's computer down here at the shelter, if they see me they might give me a speaking too

shanti shanti shanti

6:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

and another thing: if you guys don't meet at the church, then how are you an your fellow church goers any more in 'relation' than you and I here on the ethernet?

6:44 AM  
Blogger mark said...


if I might give you a suggestion.
I thought your question was very good. "How do you congregate?" What a great question. If more people asked questions like this about emergent there would be a discussion that might be more benefitial. The questions doesn't appear to be loaded, but a true inquiry.
Here's the suggestion. (and the web is sometimes not conducive to this... so I understand why you did this)
After you asked your questions, you made a big leap in an assumption. Assumptions kill conversations. Assumptions lead to misleading conclusions.
Your assumption was..."solomon's porch must be an e-church" then you talked about it for several more sentances.

It might be helpful, if you asked a question. then waited... (again this is hard on the internet)

hear the answer. then if it's not clear. ask another question.

make sense?
thanks for asking the question!


7:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

mark riddle,

in defense of Miguel,

thank you so much of teacher of the world for spelling out for me the myth that is 'conversation.' Thanks for laying out for me the art of inquiry and giving me the basic rules for conversation, inquiry and reflection in such a non-asinine way. You must be some kind of professor or something. Perhaps a philosopher like Socrates? Do you have PhD in conversation studies?

Here is hint: next time you tell someone how to ask question and not to make assumtptions, heed your own advice and don't assume that the rest of the world is dumb and doesnt know what the hell they are talking about - you sound like an idiot yourself

what a joke

8:03 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I hope the Web site wasn't confusing--we moved to a different location after the building we met in for three years was sold. We are about to move again since our arrangement with the church we share a space with now was only for six months. We are fortunate to have good relationships with the other churches here in Minneapolis and have had the opportunity to share space with a few different kinds of groups--the Presbyterians (I don't think I spelled that right) and the Charismatic African-American church who also use the space we use right now, the Hispanic congregation that meets in the mornings at the former Methodist church we're moving into next month, and Bluer, another church that is part of the emergent conversation. So yes, we do meet physically on Sunday nights, as well as on Tuesdays for a Bible discussion group, Wednesdays for a community dinner, Friday for a small group, Saturday mornings for tutoring kids who don't speak English, etc. We are not really all that "cyber" in our communication since we see one another quite a bit. I imagine there are other communities that are limited to virtual community, but Solomon's Porch is not one of them. We are, I believe and it's just my opinion, a very good example of what Tony is talking about when he speaks of relational ecclesiology. We come together with various faith stories and experiences, but it is our commitment to being in relationship with each other--differences and all--that makes us a community. We are trying to work out our faith together with the recognition that none of us can do it on our own.

This community has been a tremendous blessing to me and my family, as well as to the many, many hurting, jaded, searching, troubled, doubting, restless people who have chosen to make SP their community. For the sake of your brothers and sisters in Christ, it would be nice if you could refrain from mocking something God is using to draw people closer to himself. Even if you want to keep it up, we'd still love to have you join us--Sunday nights, 5:30 p.m. 35th and Aldrich, south Minneapolis.

9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

About Solomons Port, "Carla writesm "We come together with various faith stories and experiences, but it is our commitment to being in relationship with each other--differences and all--that makes us a community. We are trying to work out our faith together with the recognition that none of us can do it on our own."

Do not all churches do this? How is this any different that any other ecclesiology? Are there any other churches that Solomon's Port is in communion with? In this sense is Tony like a Bishop who helps keep the emergent churchs "in conversation" with one another? Arn't all churches a part of the emergent conversaiton? If not, then what does it take to be a part of the conversation? Who defines the rules for conversation? Why are there rules for conversation? Is that really conversation any more? Or is it more of a lecture?

9:39 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who is mocking who here? I am asking questions about your Church so me and Rabbi Smith and the Imam can join in the ecumencial inter-faith festivities...but if you keep mocking us then we are likely not to come...so where is the new church going to be...you said you are moving again.

9:41 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I am making no attempt to mock you and I apologize if it seems as though I am. I don't know how much more concrete I can be than to give you the street corner where you can find us (35th and Aldrich). We are in the process of making plans to move to the former Hobart Methodist Church on the corner of 46th and Blaisdell in early February. (I would give you the exact date, but we don't know that yet--we're still in conversation with the Methodist folks about the specifics.) Take 35W south to the 46th street exit, take a right at the top of the ramp and go west for two blocks.

I would love to keep responding to what I'm fairly certain are disingenuous questions, but I need to work now. I'm sure you have plenty to do as well.

9:53 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Carla, where do you work?

10:06 AM  
Blogger mark said...


if my comments were condesending I apologize. It was not my intent. Please forgive me.

there is no need to defend miguel. he seems quite able to do so himself. There was no attack intended. Just an attempt (perhaps a poor one) at trying to engage in dialogue and a description of what friends of mine hear when comments are made. Don't be an asshole. I know the "body of Christ" has to have one... but I'm guessing you are a better man than that.

carla, sorry if my comment was interupting or confusing the conversation you were having with Miguel.

So while Miguel and Carla talk and seem to be connecting, I'm going to step out.

12:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who the heck is mark? An why is using cus words in conjuction with Jesus' body? That doesnt seem called for. Let's keep this on a professional level.

And please Mark, I think it's great that Miguel and Carla have hit if off here in cyperspace. Isn't that what a blog is for - "relationships" - ???

So why are you discouraging them? It seem that they are having a great convo...lay off

12:53 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah Mark - lay off the potty talk. There is no need to call each other names, especially a swear word like the one you pulled out. I agree with James, let's keep this on a professional level.

12:54 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This theoblogy site is too junior high for me
-people calling each other assholes
-people setting up dates with each other
-people yelling at each other

I'm off to all of the adult (not x-rated) blogs.

You kids can keep bickering here and talking about junior high theology if you want

Peace to all

12:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

just to clarify, the previous comment was from a different Carla, not me.

2:09 PM  
Blogger master of pain said...

hey tony I have gotten crucified by the kind folk over at ymexchange on another form of that board, so I know the feeling. there are some great people there, but there are alos some serious blow hards. glad you had a chance to defend yourself. hope life is good.

4:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Let me translate for Liam. "Blowhard" means "people that disagree with me, have good reasons for why they disagree with me, and are willing to tell me they disagree with me."

All in good fun, Liam. -- XX

7:09 PM  
Blogger Derek said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:14 PM  
Blogger Adam McLane said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

7:15 PM  
Blogger Nick said...


Off-topic question here, but I was wondering how your meeting went today in Louisville. I'd love to here any thoughts about it.

7:19 PM  
Blogger Derek said...

"hey tony I have gotten crucified by the kind folk over at ymexchange on another form of that board, so I know the feeling. there are some great people there, but there are alos some serious blow hards. glad you had a chance to defend yourself. hope life is good."

For Liam's (and anyone else's FYI), YMX is NOT associated in any way with that "other form" of the board. It is a completely different setup, and we do not claim any affiliation whatsoever with that board.

**The following represents my personal thoughts, and are not endorsed by other YMX staff members**

And since I was present when you were "crucified" on that board, I suggest you also include the information about the borderline racist comments and generalizations you made, along with the opinions you hold which you presented as sociological "fact."

THOSE are the factors which resulted in your being "crucified" on that board. I would like to suggest that you do not confuse your actions with Tony Jones', who at least stepped up and has come to share with us at YMX.

If you have a problem with whatever was said to you on another site, then address it with the individual, but it is patently unfair for you to associate YMX with your issues from said other site.

7:25 PM  
Blogger Derek said...

And by the way, Tony.......I do respect what you have done by coming to YMX. I may not agree with a lot of what you say, but I can respect it.

7:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

derek, nick, liam and PA:

who the heck are you four? Where did you come from? Are emergent folk? Do you think tonies' 'relational ecclesiology' is a BS prostituted ecclesiology repackaging of traditional ecclesiology and is in NO WAY theologically different than any other? We'd all appreciate your thoughts on this.

And Liam, seeing how you are a friendly neighbor that hails from the south...do you know miguel? and if you do can you hook him up on a coffee (irish coffee) date with our gal pal carla here?

Also, are you guys for or agains tht war in iraq? Do you think bush lied and people died? Do you think the United States should bomb the hell out of the middle east? I'm not sure either is entirely accurat. But I do know that Michal Moore is a loser. How's by you?

8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hola mis frends Miguel y Liam. Le granicé. Y pienso también que el ecclesiology de Tony es un asunto del bullshit para escribir un disseration de PhD pero le deseo el mejor y puedo dios bendecirlo en su viaje. Para nosotros todos los asuntos del bullshit de la necesidad para conseguir nuestro PhD. Estoy en la misma piscina de la diversión. Iré gozo de mis tamales, tacos y senorites. Chou

8:40 PM  
Blogger Adam McLane said...

smitty, funny comments. I'm sorry that I got dragged into this!

Am I emergent? Am I this or that? I don't like to be labeled as anything else but a child of God. Man, I'm just a youth dude who is laughing at the fact that this blog get's what... 60+ comments to a post named after a site I run but really about this new eccesiology. What do I think about Tony's thought... I dunno... when he publishes it I'll check it out and then I'll let you know!

For the record... I have commented here before my site ever got mentioned... and I can't tell you how long I've had it on my blogreader. So yeah. Thanks for the laugh smitty.

8:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hola mi hermana joven Pedero. Tengo gusto de mucho de lo que usted escribe. Sin embargo, no soy seguro que usted la teología es enteramente exacta. Tiene usted comprobado le contra concordancia fuerte o el comentario de la biblia del ancla. Soy seguro que marrón de Raymond (erudito del scripture) o el marrón de Peter (experto en St. Augustine) puede tener una cosa o dos a decir sobre el ecclessiology ' emparentado ' de Tony Jones con respecto sus pros y contra. ¿Qué usted piensa? Soy de América latina y soy un católico. Sabemos tan el ecclesiology y yo verdaderos pensamos que Tony está empaquetando nuestra teología de nuevo católica en la lengua protestante. Pero pienso que la prostitute es demasiado fuerte de una palabra.

8:46 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


you mean to tell me that you came up with the witty "theoblogy"? How did you do it? I mean did you have a think tank work on it for a few years and finally come up with "theoblogy"? SHEER GENIUS!

PA - you don't like labels eh? Are you from Mexico like our other two friends here pedro y hermando? I would label them mexians, but not dirty mexicans, or mexican'ts. In fact, they are quite erudite and eloqent in their lovely language. And they say some good things, think you not or no?

8:50 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

our gal pal Carla writes, "Tony,
You couldn't pay me enough to be you. You are the right man for this job but holy crap, what a job. "

Carla, why do you write this? Do you not like Tony? Do you agree or disagree with the first comment posted on this thread? Was your comment in response to the first comment (the one from anonymous)? I've read your witty posts here and sense that you are a cut above the rest here on the blog circut and now I seek to know deeper why you write what you write. So why did you respond in the manner you did in your very first comment to this post?

Listen up everyone, Caral is nobody's fool.

8:56 PM  
Blogger Nick said...

Smitty said:

<--- derek, nick, liam and PA:
who the heck are you four? Where did you come from? Are emergent folk? Do you think tonies' 'relational ecclesiology' is a BS prostituted ecclesiology repackaging of traditional ecclesiology and is in NO WAY theologically different than any other? We'd all appreciate your thoughts on this.--->
I'm not sure where you're coming from here. My name is Nick. I came from Kentucky though. I'm not part of Emergent (C). I don't know much of anything about Tony's relational ecclesiology, maybe after her writes his dissertation I will.

So... where are .. you from? I can't answer for the other three guys you addressed with me. Maybe it's because we're talking on-line, but I'm still a little confused why you questioned me along with some guys I don't know in this way.

10:27 PM  
Blogger master of pain said...

Hey xx,
actually my term for blowhard are those who refuse to actually give someone a chance and just attack them for no reason. i would certainly not say that about everyone who disagrees with me at all. however, there are a few. here is a GREAT example
>>>>And since I was present when you were "crucified" on that board, I suggest you also include the information about the borderline racist comments and generalizations you made, along with the opinions you hold which you presented as sociological "fact."

THOSE are the factors which resulted in your being "crucified" on that board. I would like to suggest that you do not confuse your actions with Tony Jones', who at least stepped up and has come to share with us at YMX.<<<<<<

this is an awesome example since it is patently dishonest and unfair. lets rexamine what actually happened. specifically derek, rather then actually discuss what i was saying felt the need to attack my character and be smirch me as a racist. hilarious really. now derek is one of the people who runs ymx. so when I say some people there are blowhards, i am in fact thinking of him and some others. now my comments to tony derek were because I have seen you and others there be very unfair to emergent. and you can dissassociate yourself from the wannabeys boards all you want, but it is YOU. YOU personally. are you two people now? so I was telling my friend tony not worry, and commending him for defending himself. thas great. I defended myself agisnt you for ten pages, and no matter what i presented to you, rather then discuss the ideas you attacked me personally. so i give up on you and any board you represent, even if some of my fave people on the net post there. Now if you would like to reopen our discussion of critical race theory and white abolitonism, that would be great. but until you are willing to listen and not merely attack, I am not interested. as far as xx and others who disagreed with me , feel free to contact me for more discussion. but I won't post on a board run by derek unless he is willing to respect opinions he doesn't like or even understand. word.

9:18 AM  
Blogger Derek said...

Funny, I've seen plenty of opinions posted on YMX so far that I don't agree with. Funny, I don't quite "get" Emergent, but started an entire section on YMX to discuss it. Funny, you say I attacked you when you were the one who basically labelled me as a sellout to my race.

Whichever. Thanks for contacting me personally to take up this issue.

12:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

LOL, sorry Liam. I didn't mean to open up Pandora's box with that. --XX

1:06 PM  
Blogger master of pain said...

>>>>Funny, I've seen plenty of opinions posted on YMX so far that I don't agree with. Funny, I don't quite "get" Emergent, but started an entire section on YMX to discuss it. Funny, you say I attacked you when you were the one who basically labelled me as a sellout to my race.

Whichever. Thanks for contacting me personally to take up this issue.<<<<<

why did I need to contact you personally? I made comment to tony on his blog. I didn't mention you till you came at me. and again you write something untrue in order to attack me. if you want to critique me, fine. but please don't twist things. like I said, if you wanna discuss, lets rock it. but the reality is YOu took offense to my comment, and made it public. and now that I am defending myself, both here and on my own blog, you are getting irate. Now i do in fact sincerely apologize for the comment on my blog. that was harsh. but for my comment here? come on. sorry to open this can fo worms. i guess I will just not comment on any of my friends blogs ever again. that would solve it right? wanna discuss our argument and clarify all these things that aren't true? lets do it. if not, then I will peace out and let you be in charge of the internet.

9:40 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Who the hell are derek and liam? What losers? I think they may be secretly attracked to one another. I can sense the tension. I think they are maybe 9 years old at the way they come at one another.

I thought we were talking about relational ecclesiology here?

Carla, have you gone on a date yet with Miguel?

2:16 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


9:31 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Really boys, I think that's between Miguel and me, don't you?

6:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Miel de Carla, hola mi bebé dulce Carla. Déjeme vino y cénele en la travesía de la barca como nosotros con todo habas, arroz y pollo con queso. Será un partido zesty agradable. Bandito1 se invita por supuesto. ¿Qué a usted dicen?

10:55 AM  

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