Apostolic training for an indigenous ministry?

Estates practitioner and priest, Joe Hasler offers some thoughts around training local people for God’s mission in extracts from his poem below. The whole reflection can be downloaded at the end of this post.

Bristol Estate

Apostolic means ‘Go to’

or ‘being sent’.

An Apostle meaning

‘one sent on a mission’.

  •     We have had the decade for evangelism,
  • a pre-occupation with leadership,
  • and now the emphasis on discipleship.

I hope this means

the direction is getting closer

to listening

to the people on the ground.

 

An important message I have heard in all this is,

“Do we want a ‘Come to’ church

or a ‘Go to’ church.”

Is it desirable to move from maintenance to mission?


So how do the trainers

and their institutions

model God’s mission

in the way we do training?

We have been trying to address these issues in the Northern Ark Mission Initiative in North Bristol.

The pilot period has come to the end of its initial three years.

Some things could have been done better

but we ask

‘Why do people from local council built housing estate congregations in Bristol come forward into growing ministry teams?”

38 people from 4 out of 6 parishes have stepped out so far;

with some to become licensed readers (6),

and some to become ordained priests (3).

Making ministry training

in a mission model

must be one of the driving forces.

But for all the things

we might have done better

here are four things we did well.

  1. Take the training to the people.
  2. Go in twos. (THE INTERVENTIONISTS)
  3. Forming learning communities in the culture.
  4. Practise what we want to preach.

The experience is that the trainers model a ‘go to’ approach

and learning is integrated

with activity in mission.


The beginning

and the end

is in becoming a more self-sufficient congregation

that is more dependent on God.

 

Indigenous is not isolationist.

It is making a stronger contribution to a bigger whole.

But local interventions

can bring the confidence

to let this, happen.

 

I think this is mainly

because the trainers,

no matter how good they are,

‘go to’.

The result is of a local congregation that naturally goes to the wider world and church.

This is what has been modelled in their training.


(More information about the initiative can be found at www.joehasler.co.uk   then find  other stuff and click on drop down menu for northern ark publications.)

To download the whole reflection click Apostolic Training for Ministry and New Pathways

New Resources from Jesus Shaped People

Many of you will already be aware of the work of Jesus Shaped People, helping people to become focussed on mission and service. They have a new course called Stay Alert to the Spirit.

There are intergenerational materials for both on and off line, or a mix of both. For more information you can get in touch with Dawn or Brendon at JSP.

HOPE at Christmas

If you are looking for resources for the run up to Christmas, look no further. Thanks to generous sponsorship, estate practitioners can order this year’s Christmas HOPE magazine free-of-charge.

Why not distribute them door-to-door or via food bank parcels? If you use the code ESTATE20 you will just have to pay postage. Pick them up here.

Church Plant Interview Series starting Thursday 17th Sept

Church of England Logo

The Church of England Strategic Development Funding supports projects which make a significant difference to the mission of its diocese.

They are hosting a series of Zoom interviews with some of the practitioners from Strategic Development Funding projects on Thursday lunchtimes throughout September and October. The first of these is on Thursday 17th September at 12.30pm and will be a conversation with Rob Fowler about his experiences of leading a church plant in Whitleigh, in Plymouth. Whitleigh is an estate parish and Rob’s experiences will include the highlights and challenges of working on an estate.

To register to watch live, where you’ll be able to submit questions, please click here:

https://zoom.us/webinar/register/4515996685509/WN_xi_vMkdCT7SDQffZSEQBKQ

The session will be recorded to watch afterwards. Some of the future conversations will also be with estate parish ministers and we can share the information if you are interested.

Faith Pictures – a fresh way to talk about things that matter

Faith Pictures

If you are looking for a gentle, humorous and light-hearted course to run with a small church group we think you will like Faith Pictures.

This 6 week has been designed by the Church Army. You can find out more about it on https://www.churcharmy.org/Groups/266913/Church_Army/ms/Faith_Pictures/Faith_Pictures.aspx

The idea of the course is to help Christians talk to our friends, neighbours and anyone we know about what we believe. There are a couple of short introductory videos on the website which explain a bit about the course.

Resources are free to download though you will need to sign up to access the next 5 sessions.

Whilst it is not possible to meet as groups in church at the moment or in each others’ homes, it would be possible to share this course on the internet if you can access Zoom or a similar on-line platform for sharing.

Residential Conferences return for Leading your Church into Growth

Leading Your Church Into Growth

Government guidelines and restrictions remain firmly in place whilst COVID-19 is with us for our safety.

As restrictions ease the organisers of Leading your Church onto Growth look forward to being able to offer residential conferences again in October and November. Conferences will be hosted by the Christian Conference Trust (CCT) who will ensure that the conferences will adhere to the current safety guidelines.

If you are interested in finding more please visit https://www.leadingyourchurchintogrowth.org.uk/

More about Leading your Church into Growth

The purpose of LYCiG is encourage and equip local churches to grow spiritually and in numbers. People on the team come from all kinds of churches from urban to rural, high, low, evangelical, Catholic all with a desire to lead more people to Jesus.

Robin Gamble leads the team and gives a very practical, friendly and warm welcome to conferences. You can find out more about the organisation here

Follow LYCiG on Facebook to access free up-to-date resources and to meet members of the team.

HOPE for all – Estates Magazine

CHECK THIS OUT! HOPE for all magazine full of helpful articles, encourages stories and all the cost of postage! Watch the clip below to find out more.

To claim your free copies go to https://hopetogether.org.uk/Shop/Products/500233/Hope_Together/Magazines/Hope_for_All.aspx    use the code ESTATES2020.

New ‘Mission on the Margins’ Training

StHild_011_A5 Leaflet_MISSION ON THE MARGINS

I am pleased to let you know about a new Mission on the Margins Practitioner track. Urban Life have been developing this with St Hild and we will commence accepting students in September.

Mission on the Margins is designed for people who are involved in mission and ministry in marginal contexts and with marginalised communities. We offer a wide range of modules and a flexibility that enables participants to discover the best learning path for them. Participants can be accredited at MA, postgraduate and graduate level or you can follow a non-accredited path. Modules are taught through a mixture of online seminars, further reading and in person sessions at St Hild’s Sheffield and Mirfield centres. I’ve attached a flyer that gives you more information or you can visit www.sthild.org/practitioner-tracks.

We believe that the training we are offering will enable participants to engage in learning that will increase their understanding of their practice. If you have any questions, then please feel free to ask.

 

Kids Matter – Working with Estate Churches

Kids Matter has a vision to see every child in need raised in a strong family. We engage local churches to use relational, evidence informed programmes to equip parents and carers in the community who are facing disadvantages with confidence, competence and community enabling their children to thrive. Everything we do is focused on the country’s vulnerable children. We train peer facilitators from churches and they provide ongoing support and supervision to run the programme, help churches connect with new families and to support churches to continue to build relationships with families who have been on the programme.
The parenting groups are small with no more than 4 – 8 parents. The atmosphere is informal, it is always sitting around a table together over coffee, tea and pastries, working together with user-friendly and evidence-informed booklets, all led by the trained peer facilitator from the local church. The programme has been adapted so that it can run via group video calls, along with the facilitator training which is also available online. Even though currently we can’t all sit around a table with tea and coffee we still very much encourage our facilitators to create a warm hospitable atmosphere through zoom, one facilitator even delivered biscuits to each of the participants homes beforehand

You can find out all about kids matter here (www.kidsmatter.org) where you will also find free resources that you can use with families.

Here are few comments on the impact of Kids Matter parenting programmes.

‘These weeks have been a real journey for our family, my 4 year old now says ‘I love you mummy’, he never used to do that before.’

‘It’s helped me massively to realise it’s ok to feel overwhelmed sometimes. Talking to others and realising I am not alone’

‘I realised the importance of eating together as a family we never did that when I was growing up and I felt like my mum didn’t know me.’

‘Kids Matter has proved to be an excellent way to help churches engage with families and caregivers, particularly in areas where family life is a struggle. I would recommend any church looking to ­nd ways to connect with parents in their parish to explore Kids Matter.’ Rt Revd Dr Graham Tomlin. Bishop of Kensington

Join us ONLINE for Multiply: 2020 Church Planting Conference

Join us ONLINE for Multiply: 2020 Church Planting Conference

 

We’re excited that Multiply: 2020 Church Planting Conference is moving online on Thursday 25 June.

We are seizing the opportunity to gather to explore the possibilities and challenges of multiplying disciples, churches and networks in this new reality. We are bringing together movement leaders and speakers from England and further afield, as well as testimonies from church planters who are breaking new ground.

Date:
Thursday 25 June

Timings:
Morning main sessions

Afternoon interactive options

(more details to follow)

Format:
Join us online to hear movement leaders andspeakers presented on YouTube and via Zoom, along with seminars and stories from church planters.

We are creating an online experience to equip, stimulate and inspire you for the next season of ministry. Learning together, we will explore turning increased online attendance into discipleship, growth and multiplying churches.

More details to follow on speakers, interactive seminars and making the most of our time together.

Book on now to get the early bird rate.

With every blessing and prayers for you and your families at this time,

Bishop Ric and the Gregory Centre for Church Multiplication

Book tickets

Multiply: 2020 Church Planting Conference
Online Tickets

Early bird: £20
(ends midnight of 30/04/2020)

Full price: £25

Group ticket for team of 10: £75

Ordinand/Student: £10