Mosaic pastor to students: Unleash creativity
MBC-sponsored event draws postmoderns
By Kristen Holland
March 7, 2006
HOLTS SUMMIT – The first-floor sanctuary of Union Hill Baptist Church, Holts Summit, was filled with college students from around the state Feb. 18 at the annual Missouri Baptist Convention (MBC) Leadership Development Conference (LDC).
The conference began Feb. 17 with Alex McManus, global liaison for the Mosaic Church Alliance, Los Angeles, speaking at the opening session.
“I think he’s amazing and I think he is very wise,” said Kate Carlson, student at Truman State University. “I know the point of this weekend is to encourage us as leaders to pursue culture and he has a lot of great ideas.”
Throughout the weekend, McManus challenged the college students to be “cultural architects” during his three sessions.
“We’re sitting on a genetic deposit of creativity,” he said. “Everywhere you go, you create something. The kinds of people who invented things are like the people sitting in this room.”
McManus defines cultural architecture as “the art and science of creating a Kingdom-oriented culture as opposed to a traditional or church culture.”
During the Saturday morning session, he shared a music video from his band doSul with the students. The band and its ministry is a real-life example of how his creative thinking became a powerful worldwide ministry.
“We had a guy from German MTV (Music Television) come and ask to run our video over there,” McManus said.
McManus and his music ministry doSul may be found at www.myspace.com/dosul and w ww.dosul.com.
He describes the Mosaic Church as an “alternative rock culture.”
“There is such a power of conformity in our churches,” he said. “If the Holy Spirit is so creative why does every church have the same structure? There are so many possibilities out there.”
His ministry with Mosaic seems to have few boundaries as it expands from within the church walls to a daily Web blog at www.alexmcmanus.org to an associate professorship in Bethel Seminary’s doctor of ministry in Entrepreneurial Leadership program. This program, based in Minneapolis, is taught half online and half as a personal lecture. He also holds a master of divinity degree from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary and a bachelor’s degree in Spanish. Founder of the International Mentoring Network
(w ww.internationalmentoringnetwork.com) , he also teaches in the masters program at Golden Gate Baptist Theological Seminary, Mill Valley, Calif.
McManus is married to Adrian, a Brazilian singer/performer, and they have three children, Lucas, Erica and Michael.
The Mosaic Church takes a non-conformist approach to ministry. Members have even created their own language for the structural approach of the church leadership.
“In many ways, what we are doing is out of the ordinary,” McManus said. “But it’s not undoable. We’ve chosen to take a different course in how we do things.”
Voxtropolis.com, a blogging community, is among McManus’s current projects. He described this new blog as a mix between MySpace.com and Xanga.com. While the blog is currently still in beta form, there are currently 284 members taking part in the community. McManus said that Voxtropolis is a practical way for anyone to join in the ministry that he is a part of.
“The unleashing of creativity isn’t geographically limited,” McManus said. “That’s one of the things that are different between the modern and the postmodern era. In the postmodern era, especially as it relates to the Web, you can have the coolest Web site and the hottest music, story telling or film making and be in Froglevel, Virginia.”
He said that all movements are slanted towards the doers of the culture.
“Are they late-adapting, low-risk-taking church-culture people, or are they high-risk-taking entrepreneurial churches?” he asked.
McManus said he really appreciated the leadership team at the LDC and its ministry. He believes the LDC program is good for the young adults as they are, in fact, the existing leaders of our culture.
“Every adult has to choose who the final say in their decision making is,” McManus said. “Jesus Christ will lead a movement to reclaim western culture, with or without your parents and with our without the institution of church, so you just have to decide in the end who the bottom line in your life is. Is it Jesus Christ and the Scriptures or is it some form of Christianity?”