With congregations declining in size across Canada, churches have to think outside the pew as they seek to remain faithful to their mission and ministry. Although “courageous innovation” was one of the vision priorities of the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada set out by the National Church Council two-and-a-half years ago, creative thinking has been a mainstay of many churches across the country for years.
Courageous innovation is designed to accomplish a number of things. These include addressing systemic change, encouraging experimentation, interacting in an innovative way with the community, acknowledging anxiety, displaying flexibility in sharing, deploying financial resources and evaluating barriers to innovation.
The March issue of Canada Lutheran takes a look at five separate initiatives from across the country of ways that courageous innovation has been happening. With stops in Brokenhead, Edmonton, Saskatoon, Waterloo and Victoria, writer Geoff Kirbyson takes a deeper look at what it means to experience church outside of the sanctuary.