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Slow Church Discussion: Week One

Welcome to Rabbit Room Book Group. We’re so very glad that you’re here. Before we get started, some housekeeping:

  1. For the next three Tuesdays we’ll post a few initial questions from the week’s reading. Please be generous with your comments. We all have something to offer, and your willingness to share may give someone else the courage/inspiration to step into the conversation.

  2. Additional questions may be posted in the Rabbit Room forum. If you’re not sure how to register in the forum and receive notifications and updates, you can find some guidance here.

  3. If you haven’t read the Slow Church yet, don’t let that prevent you from joining the conversation. The quotes we’ve chosen to share are valuable on their own merit. Consider them fodder for personal reflection. Incorporate the ideas and questions into your daily routine of quiet time, journaling, or conversation over coffee with friends. Then buy the book and dig deeper. Our hope is that this reading group is the beginning of an ongoing dialogue to be continued and lived out in your local community.

Now that we’ve taken care of the details, let’s get started.

Slow Church Week 1 – First Course: Ethics

Given the last few weeks’ headlines, I can think of no better place to start than this:

“…The most important factor we should consider in making the choices that give shape to our lives is not ‘Will it cause pain and suffering?’ but rather ‘Will it move us in the direction of the common good?’” (p.90)

Question 1: Why is the question relevant? How have you seen the desire to avoid pain and suffering trump the desire make choices on behalf of the common good? In your community? In your own life? Give a practical example.

“Slow Church takes the long view, examining all action and reaction by the messianic light of the last day. Paradoxically, taking the long view allows us to be truly attentive to the details of the here and now. It all matters.” (p.24)

Question 2: How does “taking the long view” impact how we live today? Give a (non-church-related) example from your own life.

“We learn patience by immersion, journeying faithfully alongside those who are suffering.” (p. 87)

Question 3: When have you witnessed patience and community borne out of journeying alongside one (or many) during their suffering?

*Note of interest (at least to me). As I was reading the story of the fire across from the church on Christmas Eve, I realized the church referenced was the church in which I grew up. I was in college at the time, but the incident has indeed marked the community twenty-five years later.


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