A Period of Liminality: Learning to Move Forward

 “Liminality!” This is a truly interesting term. It describes the confusion and sometimes disorientation that happens when people are passing through a state of transition.  Think of a young person as he/she moves from being a child completely dependent on his/her parents. Not quite an adult; no longer a child. The confusion that brings on can be described as a period of liminality. There is confusion. There is disorientation. There is a search for how to belong and now to move forward.

The church and denomination in which we grew up in finds itself in such a situation. The church used to represent the best in society. The adage, “Build it and they will come,” describes the only thing that churches needed to do to get people to fill the pews. Now society has changed.

The mores and values in society have changed. “Build it and they will come,” no longer works.

Liminality! We are living through a time of disorienting and confusing transition for many congregations. This is causing many of them to shut down in record numbers.

This transition time is when a partnership like the one with Faith–Grand Prairie and Our Redeemer–Irving can be a blessing: the sharing of people and resources. The purpose is to assist both congregations not only to survive, but to thrive in a period of liminality.

Pastors Juan Zamora and Harry Smith serve both churches. They have engaged the task of not only serving God’s people in those congregations, but also have committed to developing strategies and activities that will help connect the community to these congregations. Everything from soccer to after-school children’s programs and more have been started at FLC in order to reach into the community and connect them to the congregation.

“Liminality” is being taken on and the prayer is that both ORLC and Faith can thrive in this time of transition that is challenging so many congregations. We ask for your prayers for these efforts as the Gospel is advanced and the darkness is challenged and “liminality” is turned on its head by power of the Holy Spirit.

To God alone be all the glory!