A simple approach to discerning and following God’s call on your Church.
This material is a straightforward way of looking at your church, your community and God’s call on you as his people in the place you are.
Recognising that many ways of looking at your vision and planning as a church can feel overly mechanistic, Cultivating Church uses a more organic approach that leaves (and indeed requires) space for listening to God. It understands that each church is unique. It also appreciates that life is complicated, and that God sometimes does unexpected and amazing things.
The ‘Cultivating Church’ booklet outlines the stages of discerning your purpose, values and vision as a Church. It also suggests how you might create a simple plan for beginning to fulfil that vision.
There is also a sample ‘Away Day’ programme and questionnaire that will help you practically to do the work needed to develop those plans and purposes.
We would be more than happy to work alongside you in this process. It is often the case that someone from outside the situation can help you see things more clearly. If you feel that might be helpful for you, then please contact us on John.Hellewell@Chester.anglican.org
Alternatively, you may have people you already know that can do this for you, or someone in your deanery might help. Ask around, and use whoever you’re comfortable with.
The whole ethos of Cultivating Church is that every church is unique, so please adapt the material for your local context.
Jesus Shaped People (JSP) is a whole church discipleship adventure that recognises the priorities that Jesus modelled in his three-year ministry.
The Jesus Shaped People journey is for churches who want to model their vision and the shape of their mission around Jesus’ ministry. This helps enable God’s people to feel equipped as they worship together as a gathered church, and then step out as confident disciples as a sent church to the frontlines where God has placed each of us.
JSP helps to shift the culture of churches. JSP is one of the national resources being encouraged as part of the Church of England's Every Day Faith initiative.
Main JSP programme
Jesus’ five key Kingdom priorities are recognised by JSP as People, Teaching, Team Building, Prayer and Prophetic Challenge. Each priority is explored over three weeks, making a fifteen-week programme. Support is available during the journey from both the JSP National Team and the Diocesan Mission Team.
Further JSP resources are available, to use after the main journey, or as an introduction to it. This ensures Jesus’ ministry priorities are embedded in the life of the church and so make a greater impact on growth both spiritually and numerically.
JSP can be of benefit to a wide diversity of churches, particularly those set in social housing estate communities and areas of high social disadvantage, but certainly not limited to this as it has borne much fruit in other contexts.
Interested to know more?
The website has a wealth of information, see www.jesusshapedpeople.net
Or contact: Brendan Bassett, JSP UK Team Leader on email email@example.com
or John Hellewell, Mission Adviser, who has run the course in other churches (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Leading your Church into Growth (LyCiG)
A Christian organisation who equip church leaders and churches to grow.
For almost 25 years they have been serving the local church across the country with a vision to encourage and equip churches to grow both numerically and spiritually. They run residential courses, provide training days and resources as well as supporting dioceses in developing their own growth programmes. They help all kinds of churches, Catholic or Charismatic, Evangelical or Liberal, Rural or Urban, Big or Small.
The main course is residential, and is aimed at clergy and lay leaders from across different traditions and denominations who are looking for help and encouragement in leading and growing their churches.
This is a course where the local church...
• Learns key biblical teachings on growth
• Discusses asks questions and applies these teachings to their own situation
• Becomes insipred and motivated
• Makes decisions, implements plans and new ways of working
• Sticks with these plans, reviewing and adapting them as they go along
There are a range of workshops during the conference through which members of the team bring their personal experience and expertise.
This works best when a small ‘leadership’ team attends together, rather than just one clergyperson.
For more information, see their website: www.leadingyourchurchintogrowth.org.uk
Peter Froggatt, Director of Outreach on email@example.com
John Hellewell, Mission Adviser on firstname.lastname@example.org