Well, the first session was entitled “Culture: Where is It, Where is It Going, and What We Can Do About It.” It was presented by Darren Whitehead, the Student Impact director at Willow. Student Impact is the Senior High ministry of Willow.
Darren had a number of very interesting things to say about culture. One of the things that stood out was when he was talking about his experience going to a Ukrainian funeral. He did not understand a word of what was being said and what was being done; it was all in Ukrainian! He stated that many immigrant families experience something called “culture freeze.” He went on to say that these families immigrate and try to preserve their culture. When they return to their country of origin years later, they find that the culture in their homeland has shifted yet they have not. Darren mentioned that too many times the church suffers from cultural freeze. We get so us-centric and the rest of the world around us shifts while we do not, and people come to church and feel like they are walking in on a couple making out; it is awkward and you don’t want to be there 🙂
All in all, Darren had a lot of great things to say.