Rethinking "Church" (Dr. Gerardo Oudri)

This week on the video podcast Advent Next, our discussion revolves around ecclesiology, which in Christian theology, is the study of the church and its origins, practices, and relationship to the outside world.

Questions that ecclesiology helps us to answer are what is the role of the church in the world, who belongs to the church and can salvation take place outside of a person’s relationship to the institution?

On this episode, we are discussing Adventist Ecclesiology with Dr. Gerardo Oudri, who holds his DMin from Fuller Theological Seminary and is currently pursuing his Ph.D. in Ecclesiology from Andrews University.

The fundamental question comes down to “what is the church?” Is it the building, the traditions, and liturgy? Is it the people, or is it the theology that binds a community together? Research has shown, and simple observation concurs, that young people are leaving the “church” or opting out of participation in church in North America. However, in searching for satisfactory answers to the question of “why is this happening,” it is essential for us to have a grasp upon what is the “church,” and this is where ecclesiology can help. By distinguishing between tradition and what exactly constitutes the essential ingredients of a church, we can begin to create spaces of worship and interaction that are relevant and adaptable to different cultures and generations.

In the exploration of the question of “how can we distill the essential elements of the church to make it adaptable to varied contexts?” we have invited Dr. Gerardo Oudri to share his thoughts.

In this week’s discussion of ecclesiology, we are laying the foundation for next week’s table talk in which we look at a more precise or even broader view of what makes up a church. We’re excited to open up this forum as we explore the mission of the body of Christ and how restoring the image of God in humanity is not always something that can be measured in the number of converts a church may gain. If “mission” can be defined with broader outcomes in mind, then we just might be ready to do church in a different way.

Once again, we’re delighted you joined us today, whatever platform you are listening on be sure to comment, like and subscribe. See you next week!

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