Tag Archives: Third Place

Engaging Third Places

The Missional Church – Part 3: Living Missional Principles

Luke 10:1-12


Isolation is a word that describes the kind of lives many people are living today. More and more people are spending less and less time with others.


Third places

Third places are represented by public places of common ground where people enjoy the company of others.


  1. What examples of increased isolation do you see or have you experienced in the lives of people? Are things really that different from 10 or 20 years ago?
  2. What might be examples of third places in our community?


Ray Oldenburg’s 1989 book:

The Great Good Place: Cafes, Coffee Shops, Community Centers, Beauty Parlors, General Stores, Bars, Hangouts, and How They Get You Through The Day

(find Ray Oldenburg’s books at the Hennepin County Library here)

8 Characteristics 3rd Places Share:

  • Neutral Ground
  • Act as a Leveler
  • Conversation Is the Main Activity
  • Accessible and Accommodating
  • There are Regulars
  • Low Profile
  • Mood is Playful
  • A Home Away from Home



“Typical” Third Places

coffee houses, cafes, pubs, etc.


“Atypical” Third Places?

Missional Living Homework:

  1. This week discover at least 3 “typical” third places in your community and three “atypical” third places. What would you have to do for each third place to become a daily or weekly rhythm in your life?
  2. Pick at least one third place to enter into and spend at least 1 hour observing. Take note of conversations. What do you notice about the people? What is the vibe of the place? How does this third place bring life and vitality to the community? Where do you hear God at work in the conversation? How might you join him?