Church 

How is a church on mission organised?

I’ve long been helped, inspired and encouraged by the teaching of Jeff Vanderstelt. I must have saved about 30 articles that I went through yesterday as I thought through being a church on mission. Although I’ve already collected a guide to missional communities (purpose, reasons, rhythms and marks) I think there is so much good material here worth considering. So here are some key questions and answers to this particular way of building and being church. What is a missional community? Missional communities are actually a response to a different question. What does it…

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Reviews 

Book Review: Saturate

Making disciples has always been the mission of the church yet today it sometimes seems as if we have a discipleship crisis. A number of factors have given rise to this – churches that treat members as consumers or worse customers, Christians that seem unchanged by their conversion or overwhelmed by modern life and all this set against the backdrop of a dramatic loss of faith in traditionally Christian societies. By contrast in other parts of the world, the church is not only growing but positively booming as disciples make disciples in…

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Book review: Multiplying missional leaders

Over the past few years I’ve read an increasing number of books from the ‘missional’ tribe of the church. The latest is Multiplying Missional Leaders by Mike Breen. The raising up of leaders is a constant issue for most church leaders that I’ve ever met (myself included) and so most are always willing to read and engage with new ideas on how to do that. There’s the usual dissatisfaction with the rate of progress and development of the current crop. But no need to fear, Mike Breen to the rescue. All you…

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Church 

Painting pictures

We’ve had a number of discussions amongst our team about how one ‘does’ church? It’s a tricky question to answer because it’s often not the right question. What we mean of course is ‘what do we do?’ and perhaps more accurately ‘what do our meetings look like?’ As I’ve reflected on that I was reminded that how the church gathers, and what the church does when it gathers paints a picture for people of what the church is and then from there to who God is. The church is the…

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What church looks like for us right now

This is how Sunday mornings look like for us right now. We invite friends over around 10:30 and we have ‘fika’ – cakes and coffee and the kids play, then at some unfixed point we gather altogether and sing a few songs together. All the children are currently four years old and under and can vary from just our two kids to as many as eight. We pick well-known songs from the internet (in either English or Swedish) and sing three or four. Then we tell a Bible story with…

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Church 

Moltmann on the mission and the future of the church

This will be my last post off the back of reading The Open Church by Jurgen Moltmann. I wanted to just take a brief look at some of the similarities between Moltmann’s proposals from way back in 1978 and I guess what can be called the missional church movement of today. It’s in his final chapter that Moltmann begins to outline his thoughts that would transform stolid, national, declining and dying denominational life into something more vibrant, living and messianic; and by messianic he means caught up in the life and…

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Book Review: The Open Church

I picked up this book because it had a chapter called ‘The Feast of Freedom’ and I’m currently focusing much of my reading around The Lord’s Supper. It’s the first time I’d read Moltmann since graduating from Nottingham in 1996; and that, if this book is anything to go, has been a mistake. Published in 1978 as a result of a lecture tour in North America, this is a vibrant, compelling, dynamite book. Subtitled ‘Invitation to a messianic life-style’ it seems like a prophetic call for what we know as…

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Church 

The hard graft of church planting

I’ve been enjoying reading John Stevens blog. He is the national director of FIEC but is also on the frontline planting a church in Market Harborough. In this post he writes about one ordinary Sunday in the life of the church plant. We were low on numbers yesterday, which was discouraging. A number of couples were away for the weekend, so we were at least 6 key adults and 3 children down and very few of the “fringe” attenders were with us. It makes a real difference to a small church. It can…

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