FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
What is the Antioch Podcast?
The Antioch Podcast’s tagline is “Learning to Lead in the Multiethnic Church”, which is a great way to summarize the topics our podcast covers. This is a podcast of conversations, and pre-recorded messages about:
- Leadership in Multi-ethnic Churches – There are unique aspects to leading in multi-ethnic churches, as well as some aspects of leading which would also be common to mono-ethnic churches.
- Multi-Ethnic Congregational Life – Discipleship and relationships are the heart of every congregation, and in multi-ethnic congregations, cultural and racial factors can make the unity of the church body more complex to attain. We cannot truly worship as one body when the members are wary of one another, so these topics have special relevancy to having a healthy, multi-ethnic congregation.
- Racial Reconciliation and Anti-Racism Work in Multi-Ethnic Churches – Healthy multi-ethnic churches know how to both talk about racism and celebrate their diversity. When one or the other doesn’t happen, the body suffers. Because issues of justice are so central to any discussions relating to race, ethnicity, or culture, we would be remiss to avoid talking about these culturally thorny issues. We believe that like a good marriage, learning to talk about differences brings us closer together, not farther apart. Our choice to stay together and have these difficult conversations as a multi-ethnic body is one evidence of the power of the gospel.
Who is on the podcast?
The Antioch Podcasts are audio recordings of three different kinds of content:
- Topical Discussions with our Multi-ethnic cast. A circle of regular “cast members” comprised of anti-racist leaders from the Madison Church campuses regularly gather around the microphones to discuss topics related to leadership. You might want to think of these as “One Topic: Many Speakers.”
- Interviews With Guest Experts. We also record interviews with various writers, thinkers, theologians and worship leaders from both inside and outside of Madison Church, whose thoughts, ideas, and wisdom has relevance with leaders in ethnically diverse congregations. You may think of these interviews as “One Speaker: Many Topics.”
- Curated Sermons and Speeches. We also share recordings given in various settings which touch on leadership in multi-ethnic contexts, multi-ethnic church life, racial reconciliation, or anti-racism work. These curated presentations are remixed with the Antioch sound into pieces of content-rich audio art.
Who is your target audience for the podcast?
Anyone who strives to become a better leader in a multiethnic church. Anyone interested in multiethnic church life would hopefully find these podcasts to be relevant, stimulating, and perhaps even entertaining at times!
Why have a podcast for leaders in ethnically diverse congregations? Isn’t leadership the same everywhere?
Every congregation certainly is unique, and knowing your congregation is an important part of tailoring worship designs to help each congregation uniquely experience and understand God more fully. However, many mono-ethnic congregations have shared understandings about what “excellence” is because of their shared cultural values. For example, in multi-ethnic congregations, there are not as many shared cultural norms around appropriate use of time, volume of music, style of music, language of worship, ways of making decisions, interaction styles with authority figures, conflict resolution, what “following the Holy Spirit” means, uses of prayer, disclosure of personal information, and history of interactions with dominant ethnic groups … among others. Because there is not a common standard of excellence, leaders in diverse church settings need to develop skill sets that goes beyond what any leadership conference or training does when it comes from a mono-ethnic viewpoint. To return to our example, most of the materials available on worship do so from a white-normative viewpoint, which is not generally applicable in a multi-ethnic setting. If these kinds of conversations are new for you, listen to a number of episodes before jumping to conclusions, becoming defensive, or leaving potentially divisive feedback. Listening is a primary leadership skill in multi-ethnic contexts, and we ask that any listener walk in this aesthetic of humility and grace.