“What’s your USP Mase?” my friend asked, I thought he was talking about USB memory sticks before discovering that he meant “Unique selling point”.
This was a strange question as to me the gap between rhetoric “we need to get out there and share our faith” and the reality of people in our communities coming to faith in Christ is huge.
Although new events and courses spring up fairly often it does seem as though (largely and often) the tide is going the wrong way and many congregations age and decline. Yet what I am passionate about isn’t another course or just a day conference, but primarily a community which helps us explore together what God is calling us to do, to work out our unique vocation within the context he has called us to serve.
Too often much of our thinking and formation is very cerible, the imparting of information through academia.
The School of Mission is seeking to pioneer something very different, offering various ways to explore mission and vocation with community in practical informal ways mainly away from the classroom environment (although we might do the occasionally more formal events) -and hoping to upload lots of YouTube clips.
We aim to offer guided retreats, activist pilgrimages, UK based short term mission trips, peer and group mentoring.
We are seeking to be a catalyst for mission access the UK and believe that much of our discipleship work is much deeper than just acquiring knowledge and practical skills but is about God releasing in us all his call, dreams, vision and destinies. We believe that what God has for us to do is actually locked away within us if we have the courage and faith to articulate it and live it out within a supportive community that is rooting for each of us, we hope to have two hubs that people can belong too, a regional hub and a virtual group (through Facebook/WhatsApp etc).
We believe that through this bespoke work with us all, we may see this nation transformed in a loving and bespoke way.
It seems like both a big dream and a small one, transforming this nation through individuals being obidient to their calls backed by a small group of mates sharing their journeys together. It is at its heart what Church is supposed to be, but certainly not like something I have ever experienced as Church. It’s fluid and flexible, inspired by Alcoholics Anonymous, a non judgemental Missional support group wanting to see people thrive, not led by a “sorted leader” but sharing together as broken people coming together with the audacity to dream.