A few months ago, as I shared the vision for Downtown Faith with a local pastor, he was reminded of a gathering he had heard about called Pub Theology. It was a unique way to engage people in discussions about life and faith.
I’m not a really a beer drinker. I can’t get past the smell. But I saw the value of gathering a discussion group at a place like a pub. Conversations happen here. It’s disarming to the irreligious. People like beer. And ultimately this allowed us an opportunity to live our vision for church long before we were ready to launch a church.
Our First Experience
This past Monday night we hosted our first ever Pub Theology DTLV at Banger Brewery on Fremont Street. It’s a really great, small brewery that crafts it’s own beer and has special “guest” beers on tap. It was the ideal location. They agreed to let us try this idea of talking about God while drinking beer, but they weren’t sure how it was going to go.
I was right there with them. I had no idea what to expect.
So, I posted a few flyers and set up a Facebook event. I told friends, invited coworkers, and encouraged our team to be there and invite. I really expected a few people, 8-12 at the most. I also expected our first event to be predominately people who viewed life and faith the way we do.
I was wrong. We had a great mix of people, personalities, and religious/irreligious views. Oh, and we had 18 people around five bar tables, divided into two groups, discussing life and faith. It was awesome.
Each group had it’s own dynamic. One group laughed a lot more while the other seemed to be deeply engaged in serious discussion. There were pastors and atheists at the same table talking about meaningful things in healthy ways. It was more than I had ever imagined and most people wanted to know when the next one would be happening!
The Future of Pub Theology DTLV
Also, our vision for church downtown looks a lot like what we experienced at this event. We want all people with any perspective to feel like they belong in our environments, discussing life and faith.