Thursday, February 17, 2011

McDonalds and Missional

If you walk into a McDonalds in Austria at breakfast time, you have the opportunity to order a sandwich on pumpkin seed bread. Eat at one in Great Britain, and you will be consuming fewer calories and eating healthier items, even though they are the same basic sandwiches you can buy in the States. Across Europe, McDonalds tends to taste better and be healthier than the original.

The reason for that lies primarily in the fact that McDonalds has a commitment (in Europe at least) to using local produce to make their product. The local commitment also extends to special menu items that give the restaurants there a unique flavor in spite of the international reach of the chain.

In the world of churches and church planting, a lot could be learned from McDonalds. Instead of the overly pragmatic tendency to try to duplicate one community’s success everywhere in the world—or worse, the attempt to actually franchise a local church and duplicate it worldwide—church planters need to recognize the cultural variety that God intended the Church to possess.

There are certain truths and qualities that identify the Church everywhere in the world. The biblical requirements for Church. Beyond that, every culture has different things that it brings to the idea of community. It is important for that to be a part of the community that is Church.

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