For the past two years, I have had the honor of serving as president of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA (NCC), the first Lutheran and the youngest woman to serve in this role.
My presidency came at a time of unprecedented change for U.S. churches. While evangelical, Pentecostal and ethnic churches report significant growth, many of the council’s member churches have been in steady decline over the past few decades. At the same time, globalization and the digital revolution are pushing the boundaries of institutional life.
Many churches, like other institutions, are turning away from top-down approaches and embracing their roles as that of convener. This shift acknowledges the reality that young adults are increasingly suspicious of organized religion.
In short, my presidency has been a time of NCC member churches asking important questions about their future. Without a doubt, seeking unity in Christ holds renewed purpose in today’s multireligious society where people of other faiths and no faith are our neighbors, co-workers, family and friends. A compelling Christian witness that promotes God’s justice, peace and the healing of the world is very much needed in an era of competing voices and visions.
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© 2014 Augsburg Fortress, Publishers