CHURCH GUESTS 101 & Don’t Say That – Say This! Revitalize a church with the words you speak. Here is a list of things not to say when you want to connect with your visitors.

by Bob Whitesel D.Min., Ph.D., Church Revitalizer Magazine, 4/27/21.

Learn more about the changes needed in your hospitality ministries in the course, Church Guests 101 part of ChurchLeadership.university on uDemy.

When leading a church it is very easy to miscommunicate your intentions. It usually happens because you’re concerned about pressing organizational needs as well as the needs of the believers you shepherd. Subsequently, we often use phrases that appear to prioritize the needs of the saints over the needs of the non-churchgoer.

I’m going to show you how this happens in your greetings, your announcements and even your church vision statements … and what you should say instead.  

Jesus’ message of compassion for the not-yet-believer.

Jesus emphasized the importance of meeting the needs of those who don’t yet have a personal relationship with him. The “parable of the sheep” (Matthew 18:10-14) where the shepherd leaves the 99 to retrieve the one lost lamb, visualizes this. And in his actions, Jesus demonstrated a deep concern for the wellbeing of not-yet-believers (Mark 1:33-34, Luke 5:1-11). Mark records a poignant image of this when the crowds followed Jesus and his disciples to the seashore. Jesus saw their desperate needs and Mark noted: “So they went away by themselves in a boat to a solitary place. But many who saw them leaving recognized them and ran on foot from all the towns and got there ahead of them. When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.” (Mark 6:32-34).

Your message for the not-yet-believer.

Many times those first messages a visitor receives will inadvertently push them away, rather than draw them in. This is because when welcoming church visitors, leaders use phrases often tainted by the concerns of the congregation. Church leaders are worried about church finances, not having enough volunteers or reaching a new culture of people. And, this comes out accidentally, but clearly in your welcome. The result is often an unintended pushback by church guests.

I don’t believe that most churches are intentionally putting the church family’s needs over the needs of non-churchgoers. It’s only that we spend so much time every week deliberating on the church’s internal needs that this colors the things we say. And though we intend to reach out to newcomers and help them experience a new life and growth in Christ, we often share those concerns in a way that communicates the organization is more important than the people who need Christ.

What is the most important type of church growth?

Donald McGavran, the Fuller Theological Seminary professor credited with founding the study of church growth, said there were three types of church growth – but only one was desirable. 

Biological growth:  This is a church that grows because families within the church are expanding. 

Transfer growth: These are people who are moving into the area and transferring their attendance or membership. In my research I believe this may be the largest contributor to church growth in America. Often we find growing churches in growing suburbs. The growth is often fueled by transfer growth, not by new believers. McGavran said that this type of growth means, “The increase of certain congregations at the expense of others… But transfer growth will never extend the church, for unavoidably many are lost along the way.” Transfer growth grows one church at the expense of other churches.

Conversion growth: The third type of growth is what McGavran calls conversion growth. This is a church that is growing because people are being spiritually transformed from their former lives and embarking upon a new Christ-centered journey. McGavran stated, “The third kind is conversion growth, in which those outside the church come to rest their faith intelligently on Jesus Christ and are baptized and added to the Lord in his church. This is the only kind of growth by which the good news of salvation can spread to all segments of American society and to earth’s remotest bounds.”

3 categories of crises that push people to want to change their lives.

Researchers (using the Holmes-Rahe Social Readjustment Scale) have found that people who are interested in changing their lives are usually motivated by a combination of three categories of crises. 

Concern about death and the afterlife. The first crises that drive people to seek to change their lives is a concern about death and dying or a loved one’s death. They have questions about eternity and heaven. They wonder if their loved one went to heaven and who will help them with their grieving. Churches can meet these needs in part by preaching/teaching on the afterlife and offering grief share ministries.

Family or marital difficulties. A second area that drives people to want to change their lives is marital or family difficulties including marriage problems, child-rearing difficulties, divorce, adultery, etc.. Many times they feel inadequate or a failure due to such difficulties. They come to the church seeking to change their life and to be a more adept and competent person. Little wonder that child-rearing classes, marriage enrichment seminars and divorce care have been helpful (and popular) programs in our churches. 

Concern about illness: The third category that pushes people to change their lives is illness they are experiencing or someone they know is experiencing.  They have questions about healing, helping others and improving their outlook on life.  Need-meeting congregations have embraced prayer ministries, counseling programs and support groups for those who are suffering.

Because these three major categories cause people to want to change their lives, we must welcome guests and greet them in a way that shows we know they have needs and we are here to meet them.

THE LIST: Don’t Say That – Say This!

To help understand how to communicate your true intentions (of meeting the needs of others) I have created a list I call: “Don’t Say That – Say This!” Consider each statement and then notice how one better communicates your true intentions.

Don’t Say That: “I’m glad you are here” or “We are glad you are here.”

Say This: “How can I help you?” “How can we help you?”

Why: When you say, “I’m glad you are here,” it is usually a true statement. You are glad that they are present. You see their potential to encounter Christ and become a committed part of the faith community. But what they hear is a statement focused upon you and the believers, it’s not about helping them, but it’s about us being happy. Remember, people often come to a church because they have needs and crises in their lives. And healthy church growth comes from people’s lives being transformed for the better through the community of faith and the power of the Holy Spirit. 

Don’t Say That: “We want to tell you about the church.”

Say This: “We want to know how we can help you.”

Why: The purpose is not to tell them about the church, but for them to tell us about their needs. Though it is helpful to offer information on the history and theological perspective of the church, guests are usually not ready to learn about this unless they are engaged in transfer growth. Most guests want to let you know why they came to church and what they’re looking for.

Don’t Say That: “I love being in the house of God.”

Say This: “God is here and he wants to connect with you (or help you, or fulfill your life).

Why:  As Christians who are growing in our faith journey, we often talk about our growing enthusiasm as we know God better. But for people who are just beginning their journey of discovery about God’s love, we may seem too far ahead of them to lead them forward and be a relevant leader. Though you love being in God’s house, re-phrase that statement in the context of God‘s presence being there and that he wants to connect with them.

Don’t Say That: “We have a gift for you.”

Say This: “We would like to know how we can help you. So please visit one of our guest services booths so we can help.”

Why: Even though you want to show your gratitude, an appreciation gift can inadvertently create a sense of this-for-that at best, and manipulation at worst. In the leadership world we call this transactional leadership. You give something in order to get something. A person gives 40 hours or more a week at their job and they get a salary. If a better job comes along, they might leave because their motivation is based upon a transaction: giving their time in order to get money. Can you see how a gift might be perceived as a lure to sign a card or visit a booth can feel transactional? One former student of mine offered a $100 gift card to be drawn from the names of newcomers who visited each month. I know him and his generosity is exceptional (they have a region-wide food pantry in their smallish church). But the message he was sending was not helpful to the newcomers. Instead tell them you want to know about their needs and see if we can help meet them.

Don’t Say That: “I don’t know.”

Say This: “Let me find out.”

Why: Many people have heard about the art of hospitality practiced by the Walt Disney organization. Part of their Disney hospitality is to never say, “I don’t know,” and instead to respond along the lines of, “Let me find out for you,” or “That is a good question. I will find out.” This takes the emphasis off of the lack of knowledge of the hospitality person. And instead it puts the emphasis upon the hospitality person’s desire to help the newcomer find an answer to the problem.

Don’t Say That: Our mission statement is Belong – Begin – Become

Say This: Our mission statement is Begin – Become – Belong

Why: “Belong – Begin – Become” is focused on how the organization sees the newcomers journey. The organization expects a commitment, to which the organization will respond with tools and community for the newcomer to become a new person. But look at this from the newcomer’s perspective. They want to know more about you first. Unless they are transfer growth, they are not ready to “belong” in their initial step. Rather, starting this mission statement with “begin” reminds new travelers that there is a process in getting to know one another, experiencing the community of faith and encountering Christ. One of my former professors, John Wimber, described this relationship as dating. When a person first learns about the Good News, your relationship with them is similar to dating. There is no commitment, but you’re getting to know one another. The next stage of the relationship is engagement, and that’s where a new believer begins to give of themselves and the church responds by giving back even more. Finally, marriage serves as Wimber’s metaphor for when a person is ready to make a commitment to both Christ and the church. So, check your mission statement. Even run it by people who are not churchgoers. Look closely and you may find that its focus is on inspiring churchgoers rather than informing those who are just beginning their journey with Christ

Don’t Say That: “You’re welcome.”

Say This: “I am happy I was able to help.”

Why: Of course if you’ve helped people at your church they will be appreciative. They will usually say, “Thank you.” And the most common reply is to say, “You’re welcome.” But that has become so overused that it’s almost like adding a period to a sentence, rather than opening up to converse further. Instead it’s better to say, “I am happy I was able to help you.” That lets them know that you derive your happiness in part because of your ability to help them. Though it may be focused on your happiness, that happiness is based upon your ability to help others.

Don’t Say That: “Come back soon (or next Sunday).”

Say This: “This week, think about ways we can help you.”

Why: As we’ve seen above we want to leave the message, and especially with our parting words, that we are here to help.

Now, make your own list!

This list is not mechanical phraseology to be memorized or anemically repeated. Instead this list is designed to remind leaders how our intentions can be miscommunicated due to the words we use.

Rather than memorize this, do these three things.

1. Re-read the list often and add more phrases to it. Create an ever-expanding list of things you don’t want to say and things you should be saying to better communicate your heart. And, you can join together as a ministry team and create a ministry team list. At your meetings add an agenda item to add to your list and ask people for their suggestions.

2. Re-write and edit the short paragraphs that explain each of your list items. Help someone who is reading your list for the first time to understand why one phrase is preferable over the other.

3. Resist shaming or criticizing others who say the wrong thing. Everyone goes through cycles where their own pressing needs cloud what they want to say. After years of doing this I still catch myself saying things because it’s customary or because my own needs are driving my attention. Have grace in the way you encourage one another. Don’t criticize or tease those who speak out of their needs rather than the needs of others. Rather, use this exercise and your expanding list as a reminder about how to keep the needs of others first.

SHARING THE GOOD NEWS & Univ. of Illinois researcher finds the best person to share it is a friend, who listens.

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: Flavil Yeakley, a colleague and former PhD graduate of the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, studied factors that contribute to people accepting Christ as their Lord and Savior.  Not surprisingly, he found that a friend, who listens is the most effective carrier of the Good News. He also found that sharing the Good News follows a “process” model. For more on this see the review by Dr. Kwasi Kena of my book, Review of “Spiritual Waypoints: Helping Others Navigate the Journey”.

Here are Dr. Yeakley’s words:

NEED MEETING & How the Holmes-Rahe Scale Gets Small Groups & Teams Involved In Need-meeting

by Bob Whitesel Ph.D., 7/6/15.

Did you know that you can create outreach-orientated small groups and teams that will not only get more volunteers involved, but also meet the needs of those outside of the congregation?  I call these “need-based small groups and teams.”

Below is a chart that ranks a list of crises that lead people to want to change their life (based on the Holmes-Rahe Scale of Social Readjustment and the work of Flavil Yeakley at the University of Illinois on how a type of social readjustment is often spiritual transformation, see the citation below).

The crises in column one nearer the top are more likely to result in personal transformation.  God may have created us this way so that when calamity strikes people will seek Him.

CureForCommonChurchTake a look a the chart and decide to re-focus your small groups and teams to meet some of the more pressing needs.

Remember, people are going through crises everyday and most are seeking a transformation … and only Christ in my opinion can give the truly deep and long-lasting change they seek.

Whitesel B. (2012) Cure for the Common Church: God’s Plan to Restore Church Health. Indianapolis: Wesleyan Publishing House.  Here is the footnote and citation from that book: “The Holmes and Rahe Readjustment Scale is a comparison of the degree to which different crises affect stress in people’s lives.  Flavil Yeakley’s Ph.D. research at the University of Illinois uncovered that many times such crises drive people to religion (and to visit churches) in search of answers, help and solace (Flavil R. Yeakley, Dissertation Presented to the Faculty of the School of Communication [Champaign, IL: University of Illinois, 1976].)  Yeakley’s research has been summarized by Elmer Towns in  A Practical Encyclopedia of Evangelism and Church Growth (Ventura, CA: Regal Books, 1995), pp. 209-210.  One implication of Yeakley’s research is that churches should focus more on offering ministry that helps people deal with crises in their life.”

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Figure 8.2 Crises and Need-meeting Ministries

Crisis

that foster a desire for change

(most serve at the top)

Questions

being asked

Need-meeting

ministries

1.     Death of a spouse ·  Did they go to heaven?

·  What will I do now?

·  Grief-recovery group/course

·  Course/study on refocusing life

2.     Divorce ·  How did my behavior contribute? ·  Divorce recovery group/course
3.     Marital separation ·  Can I prevent divorce? ·  Course/group on marriage
4.     Jail term ·  What will others say?

·  Who will help with my behavior?

·  Inclusion route for ex-offenders

·  Addiction recovery groups

5.     Family member death                                                                                                           

(see death of a spouse above)

6.     Personal injury /illness ·  How will I pay my bills?

·  Can God heal me?

·  Who will help me through this?

·  Benevolence program

·  Parish-nurse program

·  Prayer/healing opportunities

7.     Marriage ·  Are we truly compatible?

·  What kind of social environment will keep my marriage strong?

·  Newly married group/course

·  Marriage enrichment groups

·  Marital counseling ministry

8.     Fired from work ·  How can I find a new job?

·  How will I pay the bills?

·  Who will help me w/ new skills?

·  Resume writing course

·  Job-placement counseling

·  Benevolence program

9.     Marital reconciliation (see divorce & separation above)
10.  Retirement ·  What does God has in store for me?

·  Does my life still matter?

·  What should I do with my time?

·  Second-career programs that help retirees enter the ministry.

·  Mentoring programs comprised of seniors.

11.  Change in family member’s health ·  Why does God allow suffering?

·  How can I help a sufferer?

·  Is there a purpose in suffering?

·  Course/group on problem of pain.

·  Course/group on grief recovery.

12.  Pregnancy ·  Who will help raise my child?

·  Is abortion ethical?

·  Support for new mothers

·  Adoption options

13.  Sex difficulties ·  Am I unattractive to my spouse?

(see divorce & separation above)

·  Course/group on self-image

(see divorce & separation above)

14.  Addition to family (see pregnancy above)
15.  Business readjustment ·  Can I support my family?

·  How will I stretch my budget?

·  Job skill training

·  Course/group on finances

16.  Financial status change (see business readjustment above)
17.  Death of close friend (see death of a spouse above)
18.  Number of marital arguments changes (see divorce & separation above)
19.  Mortgage or loan over $75,000 ·  How will I pay for this?

·  Is this good stewardship?

·  Budget planning class/course

·  Financial seminar/course

20.  Foreclosure of mortgage or loan (see $75k + mortgage or loan above)
21.  Change in work responsibilities ·  How do I get along w/ a new boss?

·  How do I take on these new responsibilities?

·  Mentoring by those w/ good business relationships

·  Course/study on ethical decision making

22.  Son or daughter leaving home ·  What will I do with my time?

·  How will my child do?

·  Ministries for empty-nesters

·  Small groups for empty-nesters

23.  Trouble with In-laws See divorce & separation above
24.  Outstanding personal achievement ·  Will this success change me?

·  What are my obligations to God?

·  What platform does this give me?

·  Group/course on servant leadership

·  Christian ethics in business

25.  Spouse starts work ·  How will we raise our kids?

·  Will we still spend time together?

·  2-wage earner Course/group

·  (see divorce & separation above)

Save

SPIRITUAL TRANSFORMATION & Research Shows Crises Lead to a Need for Transformation

By Bob Whitesel Ph.D., 9/30/11.

Excerpted with permission from Cure for the Common Church: God’s Plan to Restore Church Health (2012) pp. 146-149.CureForCommonChurch

Researchers[i] have long understood that people usually seek change in their life while going through a crisis.[ii] Figure 8.2 shows how different crises create varying degrees of a need to change.[iii] The more severe crises (listed toward the top of the left column) create more motivation to change. Therefore, to help people change, an uncommon congregation will seek to first understand what crises a person is going through and what change she or he needs.[iv]

The middle column of Figure 8.2 offers questions they may be asking and in the right column are suggestions for meeting their needs. But, this scale is not a definite list of need-based miniseries, but rather a guide toward helping Christians find and meet the spiritual newness a person craves.

Figure 8.2 Crises and Need-meeting Ministries

Crisis

that foster a desire for change

(most serve at the top)

Questions

being asked

Need-meeting

ministries

1.     Death of a spouse ·  Did they go to heaven?

·  What will I do now?

·  Grief-recovery group/course

·  Course/study on refocusing life

2.     Divorce ·  How did my behavior contribute? ·  Divorce recovery group/course
3.     Marital separation ·  Can I prevent divorce? ·  Course/group on marriage
4.     Jail term ·  What will others say?

·  Who will help with my behavior?

·  Inclusion route for ex-offenders

·  Addiction recovery groups

5.     Family member death                                                                                                           

(see death of a spoue above)

6.     Personal injury /illness ·  How will I pay my bills?

·  Can God heal me?

·  Who will help me through this?

·  Benevolence program

·  Parish-nurse program

·  Prayer/healing opportunities

7.     Marriage ·  Are we truly compatible?

·  What kind of social environment will keep my marriage strong?

·  Newly married group/course

·  Marriage enrichment groups

·  Marital counseling ministry

8.     Fired from work ·  How can I find a new job?

·  How will I pay the bills?

·  Who will help me w/ new skills?

·  Resume writing course

·  Job-placement counseling

·  Benevolence program

9.     Marital reconciliation (see divorce & separation above)
10.  Retirement ·  What does God has in store for me?

·  Does my life still matter?

·  What should I do with my time?

·  Second-career programs that help retirees enter the ministry.

·  Mentoring programs comprised of seniors.

11.  Change in family member’s health ·  Why does God allow suffering?

·  How can I help a sufferer?

·  Is there a purpose in suffering?

·  Course/group on problem of pain.

·  Course/group on grief recovery.

12.  Pregnancy ·  Who will help raise my child?

·  Is abortion ethical?

·  Support for new mothers

·  Adoption options

13.  Sex difficulties ·  Am I unattractive to my spouse?

(see divorce & separation above)

·  Course/group on self-image

(see divorce & separation above)

14.  Addition to family (see pregnancy above)
15.  Business readjustment ·  Can I support my family?

·  How will I stretch my budget?

·  Job skill training

·  Course/group on finances

16.  Financial status change (see business readjustment above)
17.  Death of close friend (see death of a spouse above)
18.  Number of marital arguments changes (see divorce & separation above)
19.  Mortgage or loan over $75,000 ·  How will I pay for this?

·  Is this good stewardship?

·  Budget planning class/course

·  Financial seminar/course

20.  Foreclosure of mortgage or loan (see $75k + mortgage or loan above)
21.  Change in work responsibilities ·  How do I get along w/ a new boss?

·  How do I take on these new responsibilities?

·  Mentoring by those w/ good business relationships

·  Course/study on ethical decision making

22.  Son or daughter leaving home ·  What will I do with my time?

·  How will my child do?

·  Ministries for empty-nesters

·  Small groups for empty-nesters

23.  Trouble with In-laws See divorce & separation above
24.  Outstanding personal achievement ·  Will this success change me?

·  What are my obligations to God?

·  What platform does this give me?

·  Group/course on servant leadership

·  Christian ethics in business

25.  Spouse starts work ·  How will we raise our kids?

·  Will we still spend time together?

·  2-wage earner Course/group

·  (see divorce & separation above)

Such crises, which send the spiritual traveler seeking change, can overwhelm the traveler and the a navigator, unless both consider that God may have a purpose in the crisis. God often uses such difficulties to get our attention about the importance of renewing our relationship with him. Here is how Paul describes it:

“Distress that drives us to God does that. It turns us around. It gets us back in the way of salvation. We never regret that kind of pain. But those who let distress drive them away from God are full of regrets, end up on a deathbed of regrets.” 2 Cor. 7:10 (MSG)

Footnotes:

[i] This adaption of the Holmes and Rahe Readjustment Scale with the explanation of how varying crises affect a craving for spiritual transformation is based upon Flavil Yeakley’s Ph.D. research at the University of Illinois (Flavil R. Yeakley, Dissertation Presented to the Faculty of the School of Communication [Champaign, IL: University of Illinois, 1976]). Flavil Yeakley’s dissertation is now available online here > http://www.pureheartvision.org/resources/docs/yeakley/Persuasion%20in%20Religious%20Conversion_Doctors%20of%20Philosophy%20Thesis.pdf

[ii] Usually people are seeking an explanation for the change (such as when a loved one dies) or they are seeking a sense of stability (as when going through a divorce, or a child leaving for college).

[iii] Researchers Holmes and Rahe listed these crisis in their order of severity (with the most severe at the top of their list). See T. H. Holmes and R. H. Rahe, “The Social Readjustment Rating Scale,” Journal of Psychosomatic Research (Waltham, MA: Elsevier, 1967), Vo. 11, pp. 213-218. It is interesting to note that some research on seminary students involved in ministry found that while a score over 300 is considered “critically high,” that the average score for seminarians was 348 (Gary L. Harbaugh and Evan Rogers, “Pastoral Burnout: A View from the Seminary” The Journal of Pastoral Care, [Decatur, GA: 1984], Vol XXXVIII, No. 2, p. 102). This tells us that seminarians also have high levels of stress, that while most may not lead to a new spiritual transformation, many of these stressors may lead to physical transformation such as leaving the ministry, severing personal relationships, or changing churches/denominations. Today’s seminary must be familiar with the consequence of these stressors, and thus seminaries should offer courses, small groups, etc. to help seminarians deal with increased stressors while in seminary.

[iv] Flavil Yeakley discovered that crises as defined in the Holmes-Rahe Scale often send people to religion in search of assistance in meeting these emerging personal problems (Flavil R. Yeakley, Dissertation Presented to the Faculty of the School of Communication [Champaign, IL: University of Illinois, 1976]).

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ASSIMILATION & What Young People Are Saying About Its Negative Connotation

by Bob Whitesel, 5/21/15.

In a recent post I discussed how the word “assimilation” can mean something positive to older generations but also something negative to younger generations. This, it is often confusing when churches use it to denote their newcomer ministries.

To younger generation assimilation carries a negative connotation of giving up your personal cultural tastes and preferences. But to older generations it is a term which connotes positive characteristics of “blending in” with a dominant culture.

Subsequently, because assimilation can be misconstrued by people of different ages it is best not to use to describe our newcomer ministry.

In hopes of discovering an alternative term, I asked my students for suggestions. Here are two interesting postings from students about the term assimilation.

Student A: “Being 26 years old, I am kind of between generations. Plus I do youth ministry, so a lot of times I still get to feel like I’m a kid. When I hear assimilation, I feel that same uneasiness. From a church standpoint, when I think of assimilated drones, I think of legalism. I think of those in the church who have become cronies of the “rules and regulations” of the church, but have completely lost touch with the relationships. Much like the Pharisees, and much like the Borg, they all work with one mindset, and it just happens to be incorrect. I hate Star Trek, but I remember the episode where they tried to turn Patrick Steward into a Borg, and his struggle to escape. Having grown up in this culture, I am totally cool with being connected and in relationship, but pleeeaaasssee dont’ assimilate me!”

And then Student B said (Church name is a pseudonym) :

“Thank you, thank you!  I have been saying the same thing since the mid-90s.  In fact, I first heard the term ‘assimilation’ in this context while I was helping plant a church … while I was in my undergraduate program.  The executive pastor, Chuck, spent a great deal of time developing a program for assimilation, and it always had an ominous sound to me because of my fondness for Star Trek.

In fact, I took a downloaded portrait of a borg, cropped Chuck’s face onto the borg’s body (complete with facial hardware!) and put the following caption underneath it:  ‘We are Greenhill Church.  Resistance is futile.  You will be assimilated.’ Of course, I never showed that to anyone except another intern…’ 🙂 ”

Now, what comes to mind when you hear the term assimilation? And have you ever thought about how it is perceived by others? Now that you know about these dual and opposite meanings, what will you do?

ASSIMILATION & Maybe Christians Should Use an Alternative Term?

by Bob Whitesel, 5/21/15.

I believe it is critically and spiritually important to connect newcomers with our congregations. When discussing this topic with students the word “assimilation” sometimes comes up. This is, in fact, a word I have used for years to refer to the process of helping newcomers fit into our life of a fellowship and to embark upon their discipleship journey.

However a recent student noted that to young people today “assimilation” has a negative connotation. Here is her quote: “I’m a Star Trek fan and all I can think of when I hear that is the Borg insisting that every other life form they meet be forcefully altered into another drone for their collective, not even able to think on their own anymore but forced to do whatever the Borg wanted.”

That is almost exactly what a interviewee in a Phoenix focus group of young Gen-Xers said to me. Thus, I have been utilizing the word “connection” or “connecting.” It has a techie feel to it, and may be the Millennial generation equivalent of the Boomer “networking.”

The student who was the Star Trek fan even attached a picture of the Borg with her posting (I guess to scare Boomers). I downloaded the picture and tried to post it, but it assimilated, I mean connected, to my PC … but my Macintosh is doing fine :-)>

Here is what the student was talking about 😉
Click on this link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AyenRCJ_4Ww

GRIEF & Making Room for Grief Within the Church

Commentary by Dr. Whitesel: “The Holmes-Rahe Scale tells us that a major reason many people visit a church is because they are trying to cope with grief. Yet, I have found few churches ready and equipped to deal with this need. Read this article for important ideas about how churches can meet the needs of those who are coming to our churches in search of help through their grieving process.”

Read more at … http://www.huffingtonpost.com/lexi-behrndt/making-room-for-grief-within-the-church-_b_7286748.html