Church Basement Roadshow - San Francisco edition

I've never been to a revival. Or a camp meeting. Not in the traditional sense of either of those.

I'm not sure I'd want to.

But I have met the three people who are going to speak/sing/act silly at Dolores Park Church in San Francisco on June 19, 2008.

I have also read (some of) their books. I can affirm that they are funny and smart and occasionally outrageous. And I'm going. So come on down.

I dare you to resist the altar call.

(Will there be an altar call? I've never been to one of those before either. Hmmm.)

Here's more about the event:

A biodiesel-fueled RV loaded with three of the most outspoken emergent church leaders and authors will crisscross the country this summer in “The Church Basement Roadshow: A Rollin’ Gospel Revival.” The tour featuring Tony Jones, Doug Pagitt and Mark Scandrette will hit thirty-two cities across the U.S., with a message that combines old time revival flair with a 21st century gospel. They’ll preach, sing and sell healing balm in church basements from San Diego to New York.

Jones, author of The New Christians: Dispatches from the Emergent Frontier; Pagitt, author of A Christianity Worth Believing; and Scandrette, author of Soul Graffiti: Making a Life in the Way of Jesus, are part of the emergent movement, a decade-old phenomenon of pastors, missionaries, artists, theologians, authors and “regular people” who are rethinking church and Christianity for a globalized world. Controversial for their “nothing is too sacred to be questioned” doctrine, Jones, Pagitt, and Scandrette have acquired many fans and critics based on their writings.

“This summer will be a defining time,” says Pagitt, “As we take our invitation of hope and good news to people around the country. We’re preaching a fresh way of life and faith – one that is in rhythm with the life of God.”

Taking a page out of the Billy Sunday playbook, the authors will spread the emergent message of a generous, hope-filled Christian faith in the style and cadence of the tent revival preachers of a hundred years ago. They plan to have fun with it, wearing frock suits and selling “healing balm,” but the goal is, as in the revivals of yore, to preach the good news.

“This will be unlike any book tour people have seen,” said Jones. “We’ll be barnstorming the country, shaking the rafters with our ancient-future message of hope.”

“People will laugh and sing,” Scandrette added, “But they’ll also be challenged to join the Jesus Revolution.”

[I heard a rumor that they're not officially selling their books; they're going to sell bottles of snake oil, each of which comes with a book.)

The Church Basement Roadshow has already attracted the attention of major sponsors, including Jossey-Bass/A Wiley Imprint, beliefnet.com, Compassion International, Restoring Eden/Creation Care Fund, International Bible Society, Zondervan/TNIV, Wesley Seminary, christianbook.com, Emergent Village, and BidForGreen.

Full information on the Church Basement Roadshow, including tour dates, can be found at www.churchbasementroadshow.com.

About the Authors/Performers
Tony Jones is the national coordinator of Emergent Village (www.emergentvillage.org), and a doctoral fellow in practical theology at Princeton Theological Seminary. He is the author of many books, including The New Christians: Dispatches from the Emergent Frontier and The Sacred Way: Spiritual Practices for Everyday Life, and he is a sought after speaker and consultant in the areas of emerging church, postmodernism, and Christian spirituality. Tony lives with his wife, Julie, and their three children in Edina, Minnesota.

Doug Pagitt is the founder of the network that became Emergent Village, and he is the founder and pastor of Solomon’s Porch, regularly recognized as one of the most innovative churches in the world. Doug speaks across the country and internationally about missional Christianity and church leadership, and he has appeared on ABC, CNN, PBS, NPR, and in the New York Times. He has written, co-written, and co-edited many books, including Church ReImagined and Body Prayer. His forthcoming book from Jossey-Bass is titled, A Christianity Worth Believing: Hope-filled, Open-armed, Alive-and-well Faith for the Left Out, Left Behind, and Let Down in Us All. Doug lives in Minnesota with his wife, Shelley, and their four children.

Mark Scandrette is the executive director and cofounder of ReIMAGINE, a center for spiritual formation in San Francisco that sponsors city-based learning initiatives, peer learning groups, and the Jesus Dojo, a year-long intensive formation process inspired by the life and teachings of Jesus. Mark is a founding member of SEVEN, a monastic community working as advocates for holistic and integrative Christian spirituality. He is a recognized speaker and poet, and his innovative thoughts on Christian spiritual formation have gained him much acclaim. He also serves on the coordinating group of Emergent Village. Mark, his wife, Lisa, and their three children live in the Mission District of San Francisco. In 2007, Jossey-Bass published his first book, Soul Graffiti: Making a Life in the Way of Jesus.

I know, this is the less Quakerly end of the emerging church phenomenon. But I'm still going. Leave me a comment or send me an email (at the address in my profile) if you're thinking of coming. Maybe we can carpool or eat together or something. I don't know what time it is yet, arrgh, so I don't have the babysitter lined up yet, but that's another factor.

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Blogger Liz Opp said...

If nothing else, it sounds like you may get a taste of the revivals that eventually led to the split among American Friends!

Liz Opp, The Good Raised Up

5/30/2008 3:57 PM  
Blogger cubbie said...

i maybe want to go.

5/30/2008 11:29 PM  
Blogger Bill Samuel said...

Note that this is actually part of a roadshow so you can catch this at a number of other locations over the summer. These are creative people who have thought deeply about the Christian faith and can offer insights in a way that opens you up to hearing Christ speak, not that closes your mind. I hope many Friends - from various parts of the Quaker tradition - will attend these events.

They will probably not seem quite as outrageous in our culture as early Friends did in theirs, but like the early Friends for their time I think they are a fresh breeze of the Spirit for our time.

6/01/2008 9:23 PM  

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