centered set

In the Company of Others


In this fifth and final teaching in our “Reconstructing Faith” series, Leah considers the benefits and challenges to navigating faith with others in spiritual community. Kim D. also shares some of her story regarding deconstructing and reconstructing faith alongside others, beginning at minute 5:30.

Listen to the teaching below or check out Leah’s notes here.

Why Jesus?

This image depicts one way we might consider the practice of faith, described in this teaching.

This image depicts one way we might consider the practice of faith, described in this teaching.

In this first teaching in the "Back to Basics" series, Leah considers a question pretty fundamental to Christianity: why Jesus? What's the big deal? She examines some of the traditional answers Christians have offered and their weaknesses, and opens up a conversation about another possible approach, including a review of the Blue Ocean model of Centered Set.

Read the notes here or listen to the recording below.

Jonny Leano: Addressing Identity in a Centered-Set Church

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"Hawaii is a racially diverse place. Former Governor of Hawaii Linda Lingle says that Hawaii is a place where the “racial and ethnic lines are often blurred or deemed irrelevant.” In other words, Hawaii focuses on racial diversity at the center. And racial diversity in Hawaii is a great source of pride that distinguishes us from the mainland.

"But for me, Hawaii was not a racially diverse paradise. I am part of a growing population of immigrant Filipinos in Hawaii, and as of 2010, Filipinos surpassed Japanese to become the second-largest racial group in Hawaii, just behind Caucasians.

"Yet I still felt racism and xenophobia growing up. I was teased for being Filipino. I also witnessed how neighborhoods were segregated based on race and class. And this was confusing. I thought that fellow Hawaiians celebrated our different racial identities… but sometimes I felt that Filipinos were the exception…"

This week, Jonny Leano shared with us his experiences growing up as a Filipino citizen in Hawai’i--and later participating in predominantly white churches in America. Listen in (or read his notes) for more on how we can become a spiritual community that allows people to live out their full identities and share their unequal experiences of race and class—yet still maintain a focus on Jesus as the one who brings us together.