Emerge, submerge?

Do a quick Google search on “emerging church” and you’ll find more content and less information than you can hope for what is broadly called postmodern Christianity. As a jaundiced observer, it seems mainly to do with guys with van Dykes in their twenties (or thirties, passing for twenties) with a penchant for illegible grey block typefaces and using gerunds. (I get the terrible feeling in fifty years they’ll all be at a God-rave called Squinting.)

Philosophically, I get the PoMo thing. I especially get the Ancient-Future worship thing. What I don’t get is the awful high school feelings of not being cool enough to be a part of their little shin-dig. (Enough of a feeling that I actually looked at my high school yearbook with my partner last night. He identifed the class pick for “best performer” as the current Seymour (male lead) for Little Shop of Horrors on Broadway. Who knew high school picks could be so correct?)

Esthetically, I’m not so sure. It seems a little precious. A bit too hipper-than-thou. I was going to make a “Queer Eye for the Jesus Guy” comment, and perhaps my complaint is true of the Emerging crowd and the stars of the Bravo series: it is all too conspicuous for my taste.

Hmm. The question is: Is that better or worse than the liberal-mainline way (with its Mighty Wind esthetic and labor union-like culture) – or is there a third way?

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