change

Responding to Racial Injustice: Practical Ways to Engage with Positive Change

Dear children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth.
--1 John 3:18

Many of us want to do our part in promoting God’s unity and justice for all people, but it may be hard to know what to do. Through this page we hope to offer concrete ways to make a difference. Please check back often—we will be adding new suggestions and opportunities as we get them.

Xenos to Transition to a New Name

 
Xenos elders are excited to announce that our church will be changing its name to Dwell. This was first announced at the annual Vision & Stewardship meeting on 2/7/2020.

Our church began in 1970, when a group of college students founded a Bible study called Fish House Fellowship at a home in the Ohio State University campus area. Since then, we have evolved into a dynamic network of house churches centered on mainstream evangelical theology but often bucking against modern church traditions. Our attendance now exceeds 5,000, and our ministry has expanded to include three schools, an internationally renowned summer conference, medical and community development work around the globe, and more.

We adopted the name Xenos in 1982. Xenos is an ancient Greek word for “stranger” or “alien.” It was intended as a conversation-starter and a way to emphasize that Heaven, not Earth, is a Christian’s true home. But explaining the meaning behind the name succinctly has proven difficult. It sounds weird and off-putting to the modern ear.  The name has become a distraction to some hearing the good news about Jesus Christ and the Bible’s offer of salvation as a free gift. We have been exploring the possibility of changing our name for many years. Now, in our 50th year, with a new generation of elders in place, the time feels right for a change.

This name change does not represent any kind of mission drift. It’s actually at the core of our mission to remove unnecessary barriers to people’s spiritual interest. 

Helping People & Home Groups through Change

Introduction

Christian living is all about change. Have you seen a character fault in someone, a sin, that you wish you could help them with? For individual Christians, God is in the business of changing our actions, attitudes, emotional responses, and even our motives into conformity with Christ (Rom. 8:29). He also simultaneously changes our lifestyles to reflect his value and priority on the importance of leading non-Christians to a relationship with Christ and helping younger Christians to grow in the ways just described.

How to View Change in the Church

In 1992 and 1993 Dwell underwent massive structural change instituted by the elders in response to an array of problems confronting the church. Their task force spent more than six months studying and re-thinking organization of the church before delivering their recommendations. When they rolled out their new plan the church went into an uproar that eventually ended in a large division. Dennis McCallum, then senior pastor, wrote this essay to answer challenges to the new agenda.

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