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The Four Pillars of Church-planting in Multi-ethnic Sydney

by on July 14, 2010

Thinking over adjustments we might need to make to our plans for mission in Canterbury, has been helpful for me. It’s helped clarify what are our core commitments, underneath all the policies, structures, approaches etc that make up our vision. What are the things we can’t let go of without losing our original vision, the vision that brought us to Canterbury in the first place? I’ve got four in mind:

1. Mission: we are there to reach unchurched people with the gospel of Jesus. That’s why we are being sent to Canterbury. Transfer growth is not success.

2. Church: we want to do mission as the people authorised by God for the job: i.e. as his Church. We recognise that the church is integral to the unveiling of the gospel in the world: it’s the gospel with skin on.

3. Sustainable: we don’t want to be yet another plant that folds after three years when the funding tap is turned off. Massive waste of investment when that happens. It’s only worth starting if you think there’s a reasonable chance of building a church that can last. If not, do something else!

4. Reproducible: there are 800 000 people in this region, most of whom haven’t got access to the gospel of Jesus. Most of them don’t even know an evangelical Christian. One mission cell at Canterbury is a start, but it’s not a  big enough vision to be appropriate for the situation. What is needed is a mission group that can reproduce itself in a few years: the process has to be easily repeatable. If we opt for an approach that relies on unique conditions or special funding to make it work, we kill the broader vision for mission to the region.

These are the four pillars at the foundation of our vision, as I see them. Whatever changes we make to our plans, must be to preserve and enhance this vision. Whatever can be changed without destroying these ‘core values’, may be changed.

Any thoughts? Have I left anything out?

From → General

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