Wonderfully, we’ll be joined by a group of eager enthusiastic volunteers from the Cornhill Training Course who will form part of a mission team. Cornhill students are typically young adults who spend one or two years learning how to teach the Bible in different contexts. They're coming to us to help out and to learn how a local church does mission.
In previous years the mission has been quite ‘top down’ in terms of ideas. In consultation with the apprentices and staff we’ve thought of ideas that might work and then tried to sell them to the congregation. There’s been a mixed response to this approach! Lots of the events have worked really well but that's not always been the case. Therefore I think we ought to take the risk of seeking a more ‘bottom up’ approach.
Integral to this approach is the convening of a ‘Mission Action Group’. It's not a committee. Committees never get anything done. This is an action group! They're different! The purpose of teh group is threefold
1. to confer and consult with the ‘troops on the ground’,
2. to generate ideas for mission events that will receive widespread support and then
3. to promote those ideas and events in the congregations.
The advantage of this approach is that this ought to engender and encourage ownership and participation of the mission. After advice from the management consultants amongst us we've sought to bring together a blend of the ‘ideas’ people who think out of the box, the ‘completer finishers’ who make things happen and the 'black hat wearers' who bring a touch of realism to our discussion. You can work out who fits which role within the group! We’ve got people from both all age church and evening church. We’ve also got people who already have key specific responsibilities within the congregation. Whilst some of us will be those who make things happen it’s not anticipated that we’ll be the only ones doing the work!
The group will be chaired by me and consist of
John Lumgair [audio visual]
Anna Hartridge [administator]
Polly MacLachlan [children's work]
Peter Judkins [music]
I’m still awaiting answers from one or two others who've been asked onto the group.
You can participate in three ways
Please pray for us as a group. We’re meeting for the first time on Monday 26th December and we'll meet a handful of times next term. Pray for the group dynamics and a real passion for mission.
Please provide us with ideas. We need suggestions. You know what your friends might come to better than we do and so let us know. You could e-mail any of the people above.
Please prepare for the mission. This will be an unusual time for us during which the spiritual needs of our friends, colleagues and neighbours will be uppermost in our hearts and minds. Though every Sunday is a terrific time to invite someone to church these events out to be especially useful in helping us reach out to Balham with the gospel.