Mission can be a big word. It can mean different things to different people. Mission is the essence of the church – it is what drives the church on from one generation to another and tells the great story of God’s love.
But where do we start in mission? This can be a big challenge even when we are ready and willing we’re not always sure where to begin.
A few years ago the Baptist Union of Wales offered the ‘Mustard Grain’ resource to churches to encourage them to look purposefully at their context and to plan strategically towards a mission agenda.
The ‘Mustard Grain’ material is still available and for those churches that wish to undertake this whole approach to understand their mission. However it was felt that we needed to break down this process into bitesize chunks to create a ‘Tool Box’ of resources. The idea being that we offer a menu of six topics or themes to churches to pick one or more as building blocks for mission within the church context.
The six topics suggested at the moment are:-
1. Open the Door – preparing to welcome new people into the church.
– Welcoming others: more than a handshake and a hymn book.
– Publicity and Communications in a modern age
– Raising the profile of the church in our community.
2. Changing Worship – exploring new ways of worshipping together.
– Experimenting with worship: different styles
– Worship as encounter
– Worship for a younger generation:
3. Understanding our Community – everyday church for everyday people.
– Where is our mission field?
– Who are our community and do we really now them and them us?
– Creative ideas to reach beyond the church into the community.
4. Reaching out to Families – focusing on a younger generation.
– How to reach out to families and help them to stay
– What is ‘Messy Church’ and how could we run it?
– How to start children and young peoples work and keep going.
5. We are the Church – who is the church today?
– What kind of people are we to be?
– What are the essentials of being church?
– Is there a future for our church, what hope do we have?
6. Confident Christianity – sure of what you believe?
– What is our message today?
– What is the Gospel in simple words we can understand?
– How to try and answer the big questions?
– Talking naturally about faith without being weird!
Important: The hope is that these sessions can be offered to a group of churches or an Association. Please talk to your Association or group of churches to gather interest.
Finally – we know there are no easy or quick answers to mission. Resources can only go so far but the principles being raised here will hopefully open up discussion and encourage churches towards a greater vision for mission. It is our small steps forward that can lead to greater confidence.
The first step is always to pray and be open to where God is leading us.
If you would like to talk about any of the above further please contact Rev Simeon Baker or Menna Machreth using the contact information below.
Rev Simeon Baker – Director of Misison Tel: 01267 610344 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Menna Machreth – Missions Co-ordinator Tel: 07973 820580 Email: email@example.com