I was very encouraged to be part of Tuesday’s Pioneer Conversations Day around the theme ‘Mission is…’ held here at Church Mission Society.
I had the privilege to meet and listen to Kyama Mugambi. He has done many things, been a pastor and church planter, and is currently writing a book. What Kyama managed to do in his workshop was demonstrate for us how mission is reciprocal; showing us a mission initiative that started in one part of Africa and crossed over for us in the UK by way of many other places and influences.
It reminds me that mission can be extraordinary, it can involve many people working together, crossing barriers, boundaries and even oceans.
By the end of the day I was in another workshop, this time with Ann Morisy. We were thinking together about aging, and the mission we as people who are aging might be able to engage in with others. In many ways this was the ordinary face of mission, of thinking about the practical things that make up life. For example with divorce rates so high in the UK now, many are living alone and going into old age alone. How can we engage with others realising that mission is not something we can do to other people?
Kyama had spoken earlier about some of these themes as well.
Something I hear in pioneering circles quite a bit is ‘Everyone has a piece of the puzzle.’ This makes me feel excited because I recognise that I too get to be both ordinary and extraordinary. Not because of any special gift I have but because when we throw our lot in with Christ we have the mighty miracles of heaven alongside very everyday choices. Things like to serve others, draw alongside them and participate in their lives (with their permission); because mission is reciprocal, it’s not something we do to others, it is something we engage in with others.
If any of this has made you regret missing the Pioneer Conversations Day in Oxford it is not too late to go along to Chelmsford for their Pioneer Conversations Day, this Saturday 11 November.
We are delighted to be working in partnership with our first regional pioneer hub, the St Cedd Centre based in Collier Row (All Saints Church, Woodford Wells, Inmans Row, Woodford Green, IG8 0NH).
It’s good to be welcoming keynote speaker Jonny Baker, who is speaking about ‘Mission is…done from the inside?’ With an additional keynote being given by Mark Berry, pioneer of Safe Space in Telford and co-author of A New Monastic Handbook and a new Grove Book on how mission flows out of community.
There will be workshops with Vanessa Conant, speaking on mission as community development. Vanessa Conant is the team rector in Walthamstow. Janet Nicholls, rural adviser and agricultural chaplain to the Diocese of Chelmsford, is presenting on rural mission. Ordained pioneer minister in Billericay, Dan Pierce, has the intriguingly entitled session ‘Mission is…messed up: Why it doesn’t work and why it’s not supposed to!?’
Janie and David Beales from DNA Networks in Colchester will share their experience of creating and developing missional clusters and Rachel Summers, who is a student at St Cedd’s, will talk about mission and social media.
Tickets are still on sale, £20 including lunch:
Go to https://cmsconversationsdaychelmsford.eventbrite.co.uk to find out more and book.