How do the next generation relate to the older generation?

Andrew has sparked off a fascinating discussion on Sola Panel.

One especially sharp comment came from ex-Hobartian Stu White:

Establishments that have been built upon strong prophetic ministries face three options:

1. Rediscover their prophetic voice by dealing -in a costructively critical way- with a current and significant blindspot that genuinely hinders the life and mission of the church.

2. Keep sounding prophetic without actually having anything to be prophetic about. In which case, criticism is no longer constructive but destructive and negative.

3. Make a transtition from prophetic voice to gracious etsablishment. At this point, the establishment becomes a sounding board, a prayerful encouragement, and a grounded resource for the church it transformed and the new prophetic voice wherever and whenever it may arise.

I think the unease of the next generation is largely because some of the establishments we have, and still do, love who were even a prophetic voice that we benefitted from, are currently hovering around option 2.

I think every Christian movement should assume it must transition to option 3 at some stage. I hope this generation of Christians who rightly recognise the form of church needs a serious refresh, graciously makes the transition themselves when their work is done.

Well put, Stu. I, for one, would love to have the MTS-Matthias movement become a gracious establishment. We desperately need their experience, theological brilliance and shared desire for theologically-rigorous missionary pragmatism.