The current installment of the COEC began meeting in 2007.

We are currently on a "break," for no particular reason, and many little reasons - mostly pertaining to life circumstances. If anyone is interested in calling a meeting, feel free to post on the blog, join the google group (see link below) and send an email, or contact either Nancy (nancykj10@yahoo.com) or Jesse (schroeder.jesse@gmail.com) for more information.

To receive cohort emails, join our Google group.


"Emergent Faith"

This is just a general question/thought/pondering I've had the last few days.

"What does an emergent faith look like?"

What might it look like? What is my emergent faith? What is our emergent faith?

We have spent several years talking together about our hurts, our doubts, our uncertainties, our questions. We also share our hopes and dreams. We share a lot of love together. I wonder what it would look like for us to share more of our faith together.

So, just an open-ended question: What is your emergent faith? What are the different aspects of it? What do you do? What do you have faith in?


Party Saturday, No Discussion Sunday

This Saturday will be a going away party for Zack and Eve at 1270 Courtland Ave. 6:30pm, and everyone is welcome to come even if you've never come to a cohort thing it would be a good time for you to meet people.

It was mentioned over the e-mail list that it might be good to postpone the heaven/hell discussion that was planned for this Sunday. It looks like it's no longer on the calendar so I'm assuming it is postponed. If you aren't on the e-mail list make sure you sign up here: http://groups.google.com/group/columbus-emergent?lnk=srg
There hasn't been a planning meeting in a while, and so it seems the meetings have been a bit chaotic recently. If you have something you'd like to do feel free to just plan it, post about it and add it to the calendar. Don't be scared to take some leadership, people will show up. If you need help posting to the calendar or blog or help planning a meeting send an e-mail to the e-mail group: columbus-emergent at googlegroups dot com (after you've joined with the above link). Sorry for all the recent changes and cancellations.


Celebration this Sunday

Hi everyone, as you can probably tell from the calendar, I have volunteered to lead a Celebration of the Faithful this Sunday at the Zack/Eve/Nick mansion (1270 Courtland Ave.). As usual when I lead we will be singing some odd things, and trying in some way to reconnect with our faithful brethren from the past millennium. I'm excited about it. I want to try to start as closely to 5:00 as possible to allow plenty of time.

We will also be doing a pot luck dinner after the service. Please comment what food you want to bring.

Anyone is welcome, even if you have never been to a cohort event before. We love new friends!




Zack and Eve were not able to make it back into town from visiting Cleveland. Therefore, we have changed the location to Chris and Julia's house. 216 E. 9th Ave. Parking is on the street. Call 557-5768 for questions.


I miss everyone!
It's been two Sundays of not seeing our friends in the cohort, and Kellye and I miss seeing you guys! As I think about the cohort, my heart really longs to just connect with everyone this week in some meaningful way. So here is an idea....

Let's come up with some questions. They can be simple, vague, funny, serious, spiritual or otherwise. For example: "What do you love most about God?" "What is one experience you have had in the past few months that you will try to remember forever?" "What are you most afraid of right now?" Etc...

I have an idea of how to arrange these questions in a format that we will all take time to reflect and answer silently. Perhaps in a "stations" like setup, or maybe by passing the questions around the room in a circle. I'll work on it....

But basically, we'll write down our answers, and we'll all read everyone else's answers, and then we'll just connect. We'll share. We'll ask follow up questions. We'll pray for each other. We'll sing some songs together. We'll share communion. I think it'd be nice.

So - This Sunday (Aug. 15) - Zack/Eve/Nick's house (1270 Courtland Ave.) - 6:30pm - Eat dinner beforehand, but we'll have Guatemalan coffee and a dessert to share -

If you think of a question you'd like to ask, post it in the comments section. I'll prepare the format. Let's come together Sunday evening planning to connect, share, and spend some quality spiritual time together.


A Shockingly Premature Book Review

I just picked up a copy of God is Not One: The Eight Rival Religions that Run the World and Why their Differences Matter by Stephen Prothero at the local library. It was published just a couple months ago. I have only read the introduction thus far, but already I am fascinated by this book. I will likely want to do a discussion on it at some point, so I thought I would go ahead and post this if anybody else wanted to read it and maybe plan one with me in a month or two.

In this book Prothero attacks that notion at that all religion are the same, or that all religions lead to the same God. This is simply not true, he writes, because all of the religions address different problems, use different methods to solve those problems, and follow different examples. By ignoring these differences, as is so common in secular and even most religious societies, out of a desire for peace we are only promoting ignorance and disrespecting the religions themselves. He rightfully sees religion as one of the primary motivators of human actions and to ignore or purposefully misunderstand them makes it impossible to understand the world or address global issues.

Here is a long sample of his writing, taken from the introduction, that I found illuminating:

There is a long tradition of Christian thinkers assuming that salvation is the goal of all religions and then arguing that only Christians can achieve this goal. Huston Smith, who grew up in China as a child of Methodist missionaries, rejected this argument but not its guiding assumption. “To claim salvation as the monopoly of any one religion,” he wrote, “is like claiming that God can be found in this room and not the next.” It might seem to be an admirable act of empathy to assert that Confucians and Buddhists can be saved. But this statement is confused to the core, since salvation is not something that either Confucians or Buddhists seek. Salvation is a Christian goal, and when Christians speak of it, they are speaking of being saved from sin. But Confucians and Buddhists do not believe in sin, so it makes no sense for them to be saved from it. And while Muslims and Jews do speak of sin of a sort, neither Islam or Judaism describes salvation from sin as its aim. When a jailer asks the apostle Paul, “What must I do to be saved?” he is asking not a generic human question but a specifically Christian one. So while it may seem to be an act of generosity to state the Confucians and Buddhists and Muslims and Jews can also be saved, this statement is actually an act of obfuscation. Only Christians seek salvation.

After the introduction he has a chapter discussion on each of the eight most important religions trying to dissect the differences between them. They are, in the order he ranked them as most influential in the world right now, Islam, Christianity, Confucianism, Hinduism, Buddhism, Yoruba, Judaism, Daoism, and Atheism.

It seems like this will be a fascinating book, so if you are interested pick up a copy at the store or library (I had to wait a month after ordering it from Columbus Public because it was just published). I will post some more thoughts once I have read more of it. Finally, I heard about this book on the Colbert Report in June. Here is the interview if you want to find out more. It is pretty funny.
The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Stephen Prothero
Colbert Report Full Episodes2010 ElectionFox News


Jesse and Kellye in Guatemala

Just a reminder that Jesse and Kellye are in Guatemala right now with a group of students doing a short term mission trip. A lot of you have sent them donations and materials to help make this trip happen. From Jesse's updates it sounds like their short time there has already made a big impact on the students, and they've gotten a lot of work done! If you are a pray-er keep their team in your prayers because these trips can be really challenging, but also very life-changing for the students.

Also unrelated. I'm planning on going to the U2charist this Sunday at the Dublin Irish Festival. If anyone else is planning on going, and would like to carpool let me know in the comments.