Vital congregations are healthy and growing reflections of Christ’s love in the world. They are places of authentic Christian community who care and serve with compassionate, advocate for justice, offer immersive experiences of discipleship, and share the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Vital Congregations come in all shapes and sizes. What we see in all are:
- Passionate focus on God’s mission and our discipleship.
- Clarity of vision and purpose.
- Resources to implement their plans and take risks.
- Attentive to people, relationships, and community.
- Leadership that is shared between clergy and laity.
- Commitment to listen to and learn from their context.
- A heart for innovation and willingness to stretch in mission.
- Generosity, humour, and hospitality.
A mixed economy of Church
Growing churches are missional. We grow by diversifying – embracing new expressions of church that will gather, worship, learn, serve and grow in ways that are very different from our traditional congregation.
In observing the growing missional church movement, Archbishop Rowan Williams described what he was seeing as a Mixed Economy of ministries where old and new expressions of church exist side-by-side as a blessing to each other. Much like a grandparent’s role in raising a grandchild, traditional congregations encourage, resource, nurture and advocate for new expressions of church.
These days, we are adding a new dimension to this hybrid approach as we turn to online platforms for worship and programming.
Our future will be in raising leaders and creating places for these new communities of faith to seed and take root.