Our church culture has been changing. Carey Nieuwhof, a minister, consultant, and podcaster, tells us the culture of church is changing for several reasons:
In our program we are shifting from an education model to a faith formation one. As we shift, we will more fully live into our mission of spiritual formation: that is, nurturing and promoting spiritual identity, discovering and articulating a belief system, understanding covenant and community, and living our faith in the world. Our new model includes traditional curriculum, many ways to worship together, abundant resources about our religion, more ways to connect, and an emphasis on Unitarian Universalist identity. So now we have new questions: Are lives being changed? Are we growing Unitarian Universalists and thus Unitarian Universalism? Can people talk about what it means to be a Unitarian Universalist?
To counter the cultural challenges that face congregations and to offer to the world that so needs a religion such as ours a source of grounding, we must take our Unitarian Universalist faith seriously. We must offer people resources and support in their spiritual formation. We must learn to talk about who we are. We have something great to offer: inclusivity, diversity, interconnectedness, love, and hope. The world needs a faith such as ours. And so do we.