Relaymedia

The Age of House Churches

Dec 16, 2002 01:32 PM EST

Reverend Jeff Burns of Raleigh is now deconstructing his formerly traditional church into house churches. The attendance dropped from 175 to 100 members, and Burns looks forward for his salary to be eliminated.

Inspired by a woman who gave him a copy of Wolfgang Simson’s Houses that Change the World, Burns changed his mind frame from traditional churches to viewing house churches as the paradigm God is restoring to his church.

Through house churches, many diverse meetings and services can come about. The pastors of each house church would take Burn’s messages and make discussions, sort of like a Bible study and fellowship. Each church will have its own style.

Burns sold the Christ Community Church to a Presbyterian congregation and is now gathering the community about only once a month. Recently Christ Community held its first monthly Family Reunion Celebration. "It may be two hours, it may be four hours,” said Burns, “we'll have worship. It's more of a celebration time. We like to hear testimonies of what God has done that month in the house churches. Other house churches are welcome to come. And then I teach.”

The role for Burns is now undergoing a transition to house churches. Burns said, "My role is more apostolic. I will by no means be the only one. There will be emerging apostolic people. I will function more as the pastor to the pastors of the house churches."

So far, Burns is just as busy as he was a few months ago. "The difference is before I was focusing so much on counseling, directional meetings, and just greasing the wheel to keep the machine running. I was drowning. And now I am focusing on equipping the house pastors, developing a five-fold team and basically being there in whatever capacity we're needed for right now."

By Tony C.