The Home for Good campaign, spearheaded by Care for the Family, CCPAS and Evangelical Alliance, is encouraging and equipping churches to make a difference to the lives of children in care.
There is a crisis in the UK. There are 4,600 children waiting for adoption, and 9,000 more foster placements are desperately needed. Together, we’re in contact with 15,000.
Imagine what would happen if one family in each of these churches decided to foster or adopt, and other families in their church wrapped around them to offer support? Find out more at www.homeforgood.org.uk
Now this is amazing….
I do understand (at least I hope I do) the need for thinking that looks outside the often narrow confines of how we often conceive of and practice church/faith. But many calls to ‘think differently’ often times seem to be a call to think within other people’s boxes, and to do so crassly and ineptly.
So thank you Terry Pratchett for for putting my feelings into fewer words for me;
I’ll be more enthusiastic about encouraging thinking outside the box when there’s more evidence of any thinking going on inside it.
p.s Thanks to Brett Jordan for sending me this quote
Of all the books I have read, Imagining the Kingdom by Jamie Smith is one that has influenced me the most.
Jamie has some videos giving some background and details about and from the book.
Introducing the Vineyard Institute
We are pleased to announce the landmark provision of an innovative, independent, worldwide, theological training initiative. Following an extensive period of consultation and planning, ‘Vineyard Institute’ will launch on September 1st 2013.
Vineyard Institute will be a multinational, multicultural and multigenerational working partnership between all Associations of Vineyard Churches; with the aim to move forward and unite existing, recognised and future theological training under one umbrella, in order that leaders can be trained and supported at all levels of church life around the globe.
John Mumford, National Director for the UK & Ireland and member of the VI Board, said:
‘We recognise that there is a need for the Vineyard family globally to unite together to improve our theological training, so with this in mind we are pleased to announce the Vineyard Institute, the first worldwide Vineyard partnership for theological training.
We believe that the Vineyard Institute will provide the highest level of theological training for us as a movement. This will assist us as we pass the baton to future generations and continue to plant churches around the globe.’
Rich Nathan, Senior Pastor of Columbus Vineyard and member of the VI board, added:
‘The Vineyard movement is expanding rapidly into the Majority World, and this presents varying language, cultural and economic challenges. Our aim with VI is not only to raise up leaders at all levels with outstanding Vineyard theology and praxis; but also to make training and equipping readily available to emerging leaders from all over the world, with content translated and contextualized into their own culture, with subsidised tuition in low income and majority countries and regions. Through this we can truly have effective theological training occurring in every country where we have Vineyard churches.’
The Vineyard Institute will draw from the best Vineyard theological resources available, as well as having a heavy emphasis on a two-way flow of content and best practices from local contexts, to provide an ever-evolving sharing from within the International Vineyard family. Derek Morphew has been appointed as the VI Academic Dean, where he will oversee a team of the best theologians in the Vineyard movement.
Vineyard Institute is committed to supporting the students of Vineyard Leadership Institute to completion of their certificate. The additional academic resources of VI will provide VLI students many more courses to choose from as they continue in VI.
More information and sign up for mailing lists is here.
I just received my hard copy of the first issue of the new Journal of Missional Practice. There is a short article/response by me to Martin Robinson in this issue. You can also read the journal online here.
I’m spending a day with my tribe of London area pastors, with input from Dave Workman. Dave leads the Cinncinati Vineyard church (https://vineyardcincinnati.com/).
Dave’s church is huge by UK standards, 6,000 people. What has always impressed me is not the size of his church but their orientation to being outward looking and their growth with new Christians.
Dave has a great book, Outward Focused Life (http://amzn.to/13CqNWo), that shares some of what his church has learned.
I’m currently listening to him speak about ‘elemental leadership’. Earth, Water, Air, Fire, and how that correlates with missions and organisation in leadership. When I get his power points/slides I’ll post them here.
The Bed Song.
Every couple should watch and listen then speak to each other.
I got round to reading the book Exponential: How to accomplish the Jesus Mission, by Dave and Jon Ferguson.
A few things that the book sparked in me in no specific order:
1. Scale: despite the more ‘organic’ nature and aims of the book, the size examples from the USA needs contextualising for the UK!
2. Resources: Church planting and church development takes immense resources of people, money and time. Anyone who thinks otherwise is mad. The rest of life gets immense investment, and if seeing churches grow and people come to faith through them is our primary investment for life, that should reflected in our resources and investments; from all involved.
3. Strategy: Churches don’t grow by accident (well some might seem to). But vision, values, the related allocating of resources and commitments takes a lot of hard work and strategic development.
4. Organic: Even the most relational of churches requires all of the above.
5. Leadership: People willing to lead and bring others into leadership/apprenticeship/what ever you want to call it, takes time and focus and commitment. Again this doesn’t happen by accident.
6. Exciting: All the above can creative and exciting.
7. Artists and Strategists go together: This book is worth the purchase for the one chapter on how and why we need artistic communities and how they can work with strategists in Church.
8. Simple and Complex: I was reminded that the more things grow the more there is a need for simplicity and complexity. A simple and clear vision and understanding of what our church vision and mission is about, at the same time as an ability for those leading cope with increasing complexity and ambiguity.
9. What’s our focus for mission?: What’s our focus for mission and church? Therapy for what we don’t like about church, or confidence in the Gospel and our mandate to bring others into an experience of Jesus and his mission?
10. Reproduction: Already indicated in no.9 above. Are we reproducing and what are we reproducing? The need to take a long hard look at what we becoming and leading others into becoming in our church communities is needed at all times.
Thoughtful and provocative (as usual) post from Jamie Smith, about the Common Good and Paternalism. Jamie writes:
“In what Charles Taylor calls our “age of authenticity,” the greatest virtue is sincerity. And the greatest vice? Paternalism.
I used to worry about this. After all, who wants to be identified as a paternalist? It’s the new bigotry.
But I’m getting over it. Quite simply, I don’t think you can sign up for pursuing “the common good” and hope to avoid at least some implicit commitment to paternalism—some sense that one knows what is good for others.”