Church Innovations’ Partners Post

January 15, 2010

How Does the Missional Church Look?

Hang in there with me. I have a question for anyone reading!


The 2010 Church Innovations Think Tank, co-sponsored this year by World Mission Initiative and Pittsburgh Seminary, where it will take place, will be entitled “How does the Missional Church look?”


Some people who read this blog may not know anything about the missional church movement. It is a large and complex set of small waves which, taken together, become like the movement of water in a giant bay or gulf. That makes it hard to sum up in a short phrase or two. Having made that disclaimer, you might think of the missional church movement as growing awareness and activity that leads local churches and the systems that support them toward mindfully being taken up into the very life and mission of the Triune God.


So how does the missional church look?  Three kinds of answers are possible:

1) it looks Ok or not OK; it seems to be doing well or not so well

2) it looks like a busy seaport where all different kinds of vessels are coming in from a trip, being outfitted for another, or being sent off with supplies and support for a big voyage

3) it looks carefully at its neighbors as well as its members for the gifts and relationships it needs to do and be what God has in mind for it to do as part of God’s life


This blog is written first for the congregations in the Bremer project, where churches study themselves and their neighborhoods in order to better live into God’s missional calling for them.  The project equips those congregations with a spiritual discernment conversation tool as well, so that they can discern what God might be calling them to be or do in their particular location, a calling that might cause disagreement or multiple possible directions to decide amongst.


So Bremer project congregations, or anyone else reading this blog, what do you know that you didn’t know last year about yourselves, your neighborhoods, and God’s call to you? What disagreements have arisen about your life and work, if any? How are you planning for a future looking to God’s life and mission for your direction?  If you can tell us that, we’ll know a few answers to the question “How does a missional church look?”

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