Why Mosaics?

Why Mosaics? Rethinking Future of Church during the Holy Week

Mosaics provides a unique opportunity to create a “proximity space” where Christians and non-Christians can interact meaningfully with each other (Alan Hirsch, The Forgotten Ways: Reactivating the Missional Church). Mosaics reaches out people through hospitality, enabling Davis Community Church to more fully meet, live with and know its neighbors.  Since the original word for hospitality – “philoxenia” — literally means the ‘love of strangers,’ Christians were (and are!) called to an attitude of welcome not only to other believers, but also to those who are `outsiders.’

Mosaics is more than simply a new nonprofit; it is a “proximity space” where ministry can be carried out as we seek to engage the wider community of Davis and surrounding cities. Mosaics is a new expression of Christianity that responds to changing culture in dynamic ways.

Mosaics provides 8 language classes on Saturdays

Dr. Diana Butler Bass says in her book, Grounded: Finding God in the World-A Spiritual Revolution, “When the Bible is read from the perspective of divine nearness, it becomes clear that most prophets, poets, and preachers are particularly worried about religious institutions and practices that perpetuate the gap between God and humanity, making the divine unapproachable or cordoned off behind cadres of priestly mediators, whose interest is in exercising their own power as brokers of salvation. The biblical narrative is that of a God who comes close, compelled by a burning desire to make heaven on earth and occupy human hearts.”

Religion always entails the “3B’s” of believing, behaving, and belonging. Over the centuries, Christianity has engaged the 3B’s in different ways, with different interrogators and emphases. For the last 300 years or so, the questions were asked as follows:

1) What do I believe? (What does my church say I should think about God?)

2) How should I behave? (What are the rules my church asks me to follow?)

3) Who am I? (What does it mean to be a faithful church member?)

But the questions have changed. Contemporary people care less about what to believe than how they might believe; less about rules for behavior than in what they should do with their lives; and less about church membership than in whose company they find themselves. The questions have become:

1) How do I believe? (How do I understand faith that seems to conflict with science and pluralism?)

2) What should I do? (How do my actions make a difference in the world?)

3) Whose am I? (How do my relationships shape my self-understanding?)

Mosaics Halloween & Harvest Festival

The foci of religion have not changed–believing, behaving, and belonging still matter. But the ways in which people engage each area have undergone a revolution.”

Dr. Bass also contends that we need to reverse the three B’s to move the “church as institution” to “religion as spiritual faith.”

Believing: creed and dogma
Behaving: rules and techniques
Belonging: being part of community
Belonging: being part of community
Behaving: rules and techniques
Believing: creed and dogma

Dr. Bass says, “We no longer live isolated behind boundaries of ethnicity, race, or religion. We are connected in global community. We search the Internet for answers; we ask our Buddhist or Hindu neighbors; we read our own sacred texts and the texts of others; we listen to preachers from the world’s religions. Answers are no longer confined to the opinions of a local priest, mullah, rabbi, or guru. The answers depend on us figuring this out together. This shift in religious consciousness is a worldwide phenomenon, a sort of divine web in which we are tangled.” 

Lord’s Supper at Mosaics

Mosaics seeks to move the “church as institution” to “religion as spiritual faith,” placing an emphasis on creating a culture of belonging and knowing one another deeply first. As Dr. Bass so eloquently puts it, “Christianity did not begin with a confession. It began with an invitation into friendship, into creating a new community, into forming relationships based on love and service.” 

Mosaics is grounded in the theology that God is with us (Immanuel). As many Gen X-Y-Zers are away from institutionalized churches, there are also great spiritual awakening (counter-movement) of seeking God among new generations. Mosaics are planted to provide places to belong, to practice “common good” in meaningful ways, and places to invite (and/or to encounter with) God in many innovated ways, interwoven with cross-cultural dynamic activities, which are available to anyone, especially Mosaics who are heart-broken and lost in this world, freely without any restrictions.

Mosaics continues to restore the koinonia of the early 1st century movement (Acts 2:42-47), encounter (paga) with God in a daily basis to share everything in common, praising God and enjoying the favor of all the people, which is the authentic agape fellowship instructed by our Lord Jesus Christ. In the new era of paradigm shift, Mosaics will truly be an exciting movement for the church of future.

Mosaics Community Drum Circle

A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. – John 13:34

Pastor Stephen Moon

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Davis Mosaics : Shaping a Christianity for the 21st Century

Davis Mosaics : Shaping a Christianity for the 21st Century

by Dr. Chris Neufeld-Erdman, Senior Pastor, Davis Community Church

Rev. Dr. Chris Neufeld-Erdman and Rev. Dr. Stephen Moon of Davis Mosaics at Davis Community Church

A short meditation on the need for spiritual communities like Davis Mosaics and how these kinds of innovative adventures express God’s unfolding dream for Christianity and for the wellbeing of the world.

There are signs all around us that the church of the future will be a hybrid space, a true “commons,” for people of all walks of life—a threshold community that brings together the spiritual and the material, the religious and the non-religious in ways that complement each other rather than compete with each other. The church, as a center for spiritual formation, human transformation, and compassionate engagement, sustains fruitful ways of life, makes us all more open, more generous, more courageous, and makes the world more beautiful, sustainable, resilient, and capable of honoring the sacredness that’s all around us.

We are living in unprecedented times.  With rising oceans and increasing human tensions, our planet and all we hold dear is in peril.  Though there have been crises throughout human history, we now inhabit a time in which the very future of our species and the planet, itself, is in question. Throughout the world, the realities of greed, oppression, hatred and violence have distorted and deformed the natural world and brought untold suffering to the human community. Such pain might lead to despair, but we have reasons for hope.  Human beings may have hastened the peril, but we also have the power to heal and shape a just and more peace-filled future.

Amidst the systemic injustices and brokenness a new way of being is rising, a way that embodies Christ’s way transformation, healing, and reconciliation for the 21st century.  The world’s religious and spiritual traditions, despite past failings, nevertheless embody the emerging dream of God’s and offer humanity see for a sustainable future.  The sacred texts, rituals, symbols, practices, and transformative powers of religious communities have the capacity to awaken the human heart, stir spiritual and intellectual awakening, and kindle a communal imagination that can contribute to the wellbeing of the world. 

This is a threshold time, and it’s high time Christians, energetically and innovatively, claim our divine calling—rising to the challenge, rejecting despair and fatalism—and truly seek the well-being of the planet.

Toward this end, Davis Mosaics, and Pastor Stephen Moon, build bridges, innovate lavishly, meet practical needs, and work cooperatively on behalf of God’s dream for the world’s wellbeing.  Its habits of radical hospitality, conscious and intentional pluralism, and the sacramentalism of its way of life—low-bar religiosity and high-bar community—all centered around table fellowship and fostering the common good are a witness to the pathway exemplified by the early Christians who moved souls from belonging into behavioral shifts and lastly toward beliefs. 

In an age of disaffiliation and non-affiliation with religious institutions, Davis Mosaics, is charting the pathway into the future of Christianity—deeply embodied and incarnational, post-doctrinal, inclusive, artistic and aesthetic, and sacramental in the truest sense of the world—the gathered people as a sign of God’s dream (or intention) for the world.  

The Rev. Dr. Chris Neufeld-Erdman
Davis Community Church

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Partnership with San Francisco Theological Seminary

Partnership with San Francisco Theological Seminary

Kathy and I want to share with everyone the results of our visit to San Francisco Theological Seminary (SFTS) on Thursday, April 4, 2019.  We met with Jim McDonald, President, and Jana Childers, Dean.

We explained the history of Mosaics, its successes and challenges. We then focused on the future of Davis Mosaics, the work we are doing to cut expenses, to seek sponsors, grants, and the uncertainty of funding from Sacramento Presbytery. 

Jim McDonald could sit still no longer and proclaimed “You need to be part of us (SFTS) and the Center for Innovation!” He then explained how with the consolidation of SFTS with the University of the Redlands they are preparing for a large capital campaign for the future. He wants Davis Mosaics to be a part of that campaign. The campaign will launch this coming fall or winter.

Kathy and I were asked to come back to SFTS soon to meet again with Jim McDonald, and with Floyd Thompkins the VP of Innovation, and Walter Collins the VP of Advancement.  We are to prepare a 5-year plan and budget to grow and expand the ministry as a part of the future of SFTS/University of the Redlands.

Kathy and I are so excited to vision forward again. We thank Rev. Dr. Chris Neufeld-Erdman of Davis Community Church for encouraging us to go to SFTS and for all his ongoing support for Davis Mosaics. Our hope is to get bridge funding from the presbytery and/or other Presbyterian churches to help us move to this new future with SFTS.

Thanks be to God that is leading us!

Pastor Stephen

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Mosaics Spring Schedule

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