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The post-evangelicals take their next step forward

Key Points:

  • The post-evangelical movement represents Christians distancing themselves from traditional evangelical cultures and beliefs, focusing instead on a more inclusive and flexible approach to Christianity.
  • The Post-Evangelical Collective (PEC) held a significant national gathering, emphasizing inclusive leadership and addressing modern spiritual challenges through innovative church practices.
  • The gathering included a “re-frocking” ceremony for leaders who had been ousted from their previous evangelical positions, symbolizing a rededication to ministry under the new movement’s ideals.

The post-evangelical movement in the United States is gaining structure and momentum, particularly evidenced by the recent large national gathering of the Post-Evangelical Collective (PEC) in Raleigh, North Carolina. This group, comprised mainly of individuals who have departed from traditional evangelical Christianity, is not abandoning their faith but redefining it to include more progressive values and inclusive practices.

The movement has attracted those disillusioned by the association of traditional evangelicalism with political and social conservatism, including contentious issues like LGBTQ inclusion. This has led to many, especially younger leaders, being ostracized from their evangelical communities. The national gathering addressed these challenges and offered a platform for developing new approaches to ministry that resonate with contemporary societal values and needs.

The event also featured a significant ceremony where individuals who had lost their ministerial positions due to their progressive stances were symbolically reinstated. This act underscored the collective’s commitment to a compassionate and inclusive Christian practice that diverges significantly from its evangelical roots. Such actions highlight the post-evangelical’s dedication to remaining vibrant and relevant in today’s cultural landscape.

Baptist News Global reports:

History may well record that April 16-17, 2024, marked a breakthrough moment in the emergence of an organized post-evangelical Christian movement in the United States.

It certainly felt like a breakthrough to this participant-observer, as I had the privilege of attending the third and by far the largest national gathering of the Post-Evangelical Collective last week. Stuffing 300 people into Church on Morgan in downtown Raleigh, N.C., a space surely designed for about 200, the national meeting went a long way toward defining who at least this group of post-evangelicals is becoming.


The most moving experience of the whole event, for me at least, took place in the last session. It was a ‘re-frocking’ experience for those who had been stripped of their ordination credentials. Deploying the text from John 21 where Jesus reinstates Peter to ministry, each participant was asked to reaffirm their love for Jesus and, implicitly, their commitment to Christian ministry. There were few dry eyes when senior figures at the meeting gathered around and laid hands on these young leaders as they were essentially re-commissioned for ministry. PEC is not a denomination, and this was not ordination, but it sure felt like it at that moment.

Read the full article.

Themes Pros Cons
Inclusivity Promotes a welcoming environment for diverse backgrounds and beliefs. May alienate traditionalists who feel the core values are being compromised.
Modernization Adapts Christian practices to better suit contemporary societal needs. Risks diluting doctrinal integrity to appeal to broader audiences.
Community Building Fosters a sense of community and support among disenfranchised Christians. Potential for creating divisions within the wider Christian community.

Questions to Consider:

  1. How does the post-evangelical movement challenge traditional notions of evangelical Christianity?
  2. In what ways can inclusivity strengthen a religious community, and what are the potential drawbacks?
  3. How important is it for religious movements to adapt to societal changes, and what risks does this adaptation pose?

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