Rose Madrid-Swetman

— Random Thoughts, Stories of Life, and Questions about the Journey —

April 22, 2008

Rob Bell at a Kingdom Party

Rob Bell (though he was a huge part of it) was not the only reason last Tuesday evening was such a great time. Person after person that I have talked with have commented that this is the way church ought to be. Walking in the door there were smiling faces, tables of food, wine flowing, great live music. Right away you knew you were entering a party and you were welcome. People were hanging out, lots of laughter, lots of conversations around the room. Over the next half an hour the space filled.

Jim Henderson master creator of all things OTM is brilliantly skilled at creating great spiritual conversations. He knows how to network people (from very different backgrounds and ideologies) and bring them together. He asked Rob Bell to talk about his new book, Jesus Wants to Save Christians (Zondervan) coming out in Fall 2008 Everyone there loved his talk, so much to think about.

Rob and I had talked about the conversation we would have about women in leadership. I was excited for this conversation because I knew how Rob had courageously led his own church through the change of an all male leadership structure to include women on every level of leadership.

Another surprise hit of the evening was Andy Himes’ monologue about his growing up in the South in the 60’s and the injustice that surrounded him, even in the church. It caused him to lose his faith as he saw blacks repeatedly mistreated. It was powerful.

It was all so good, I wish we would have had more time to hear more from Doug Pagitt, Todd Hunter and Sunil Sardar. Sunil Sardar is the founder of Truth Seekers, an organization dedicated to end caste in India. Did that register? Ending caste…please pray for Sunil and Truth Seekers.

We, Vineyard Community Church say thank you to all who came and participated. Everyone made it a great happening.


  1. Thanks so much for hosting this (and your discussion time with Rob too..). I brought a friend of mine who asked me what to expect with regards to format. My answer kind of surprised me.. I said, “Well, Todd and Sunil and Rob and Doug are all interesting, and it’s at VCC. That sold me.”. 🙂

    I had a great time!

    Comment by Pat — April 23, 2008 @ 2:54 pm

  2. Have you listened to his audio files under the ‘Jesus Wants to Save Christians’ heading? They used to be available through iTunes I believe, roughly a year ago. I’d recommend that you do a careful listen… with an open mind, to hear Rob getting angry at those believers who preach a faithful Gospel message. He also takes a stab at the doctrine of Hell, leaving most of us wondering is such a place like Hell exists. Perhaps Hell is merely a place here on her where people are being neglected by their fellow man and where orphans and widows sit in shelters and nursing homes.

    So I wonder if Rob will ever get to the topic of an actual Hell, as he eluded to in his messages…. or might this offend those who dare search for a biblically defined truth and prevent him from making millions of dollars off the blind sheep being lead astray in his congregation. God help us all!

    Comment by Wayne N — April 24, 2008 @ 5:47 pm

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