Pastor Adam Ericksen hasn’t shied away from tackling delicate political subjects – and his technique is paying off. (Clackamas United Church of Christ / Fb)

The Clackamas United Church of Christ in Milwaukee, Oregon has managed to unite Muslims, African Individuals, the LGBT group, and lots of extra teams in its quest to construct up a dwindling congregation. The magic ingredient: eye-catching and uplifting messages on its roadside signal.

Pastor Rev. Adam
Ericksen hasn’t shied away from tackling delicate political subjects. “Our
transgender siblings have heartbeats,” he posted on Could 21, difficult Alabama’s
anti-abortion invoice and displaying his church’s help for LGBTQ rights in a single
fell swoop.

The progressive (and a few would argue, provocative) spiritual messages have been persistently going viral. Indicators equivalent to “God loves you simply the best way she made you” are shared broadly on Fb and different social media platforms.

Individuals discovering
the church for the primary time by their posts usually reply with their very own
constructive feedback. “Wow some impactful, loving church indicators for as soon as! I like it
and thanks!” wrote one. “God bless you. That is the type of therapeutic,
restorative work church buildings have to be centered on,” posted one other.

This tactic has confirmed profitable largely as a result of the signal may be modified to handle related present occasions. Upon studying that the choice to incorporate a well-known black abolitionist on the nation’s foreign money had been delayed, Ericksen once more took to the marquee: “Harriet Tubman deserves to be on the $20. Finish White Supremacy.” That easy response to racial division in his group made a convert out of 1 specific Fb person. “I like this, and I’m an atheist! That is what faith everywhere in the world ought to be like.”

Bucking the Development

A latest publish on the church’s Fb web page illustrates each their
willingness to wade into controversial subjects and to go towards the prevailing
beliefs of many traditional-leaning religion communities:

Whereas the pastor advised CNN these posts had been meant to consolation and reclaim these
teams historically alienated by a harder, extra conservative Christianity, the
impact of his marquee messages has prolonged past merely doubling Sunday

“We’ve gotten lots of of messages, together with from transgender
individuals who say they want that they had a church like this of their space. Individuals are
thirsty to know they’re beloved. In each space there are pockets thirsting for
this message of radical inclusion.”

A Nice Awokening

After all, not each Clackamas United Church of Christ signal message has been universally accepted. Some fellow members of the religion group allege that Pastor Ericksen’s teachings are “unbiblical” and “blasphemy.” Different critics allege that he’s simply virtue-signaling and pandering to a progressive viewers in an effort to increase attendance.

Nonetheless, the pastor has clearly discovered a profitable area of interest selling
this “woke” model of Christianity to fellow progressive thinkers. And the
sheer quantity of engagement on his viral Fb posts don’t lie – many smaller
congregations would kill for publicity like that. Plus, it’s translating to actual
success on the bottom, with attendance numbers leaping dramatically.  

What do you assume? Will the way forward for faith be centered round viral messaging and constructing massive tents?  Ought to extra church buildings embrace attention-grabbing indicators as a approach to attract individuals into the pews?