John Alan Turner

Speaker, Author, Mentor, Coach, Facilitator

Attractional Church

We covered this territory back in March of 2007 when I was reading a book called The Shaping of Things to Come: Innovation and Mission for the 21st Century Church by Michael Frost and Alan Hirsch. It's come up again in light of our recent conversation. Plus, we've added so many new readers to this blog in the last two-and-a-half years, it might be beneficial to revisit topics like this every so often. JamesBrett has been hinting around this thought, but let's go ahead and state it explicitly. There is a movement among church leaders towards a more incarnational approach to ministry and away from an attractional model of ministry. In other words, these leaders believe we ought to do less "inviting" and more "investing" -- less "come and see" more "go and do" evangelism.

At least, I think that's what the whole attractional vs. incarnational thing comes down to. Am I missing something.

Let's start with this question: Why is attractional so bad?

Well, perhaps we should try to arrive at a definition of “attractional” for those who haven’t read Frost & Hirsch’s book. So, okay…two questions:

1. What is an attractional model of church? Did my description above get it right, or did I miss something?

2. Why is that model so bad?