“Dreamers who do” launch St Albans pioneer hub

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St Albans Diocese joins forces with Church Mission Society to set up leadership training hub for lay pioneers

Church Mission Society and St Albans Diocese announced this week that they are to join forces to launch a new regional hub to train lay people from the diocese in pioneering mission, from September 2020. The new St Albans hub will become the sixth pioneer leadership training hub in a network that also includes hubs in the Dioceses of Carlisle, Bath and Wells, London, Chelmsford and Oxford.

The new training will lead to the nationally recognised CMS Certificate in Pioneer Mission and is for people looking to develop both their understanding and practice of pioneering mission. Study will be based around six modules, namely: pioneering mission, reading the Bible in context, doing theology, mission spirituality, transforming communities and mission and church.

St Albans Diocese is passionate about people and communities being impacted and transformed by the love of God. Those who complete the course will be equipped for lay pioneer ministry and mission, and building church on the fringes. Through theological study and reflective practice they will be equipped to apply their learning to their own contexts in new and different ways, that will certainly involve the transformation of their localities and the formation of new worshipping communities.

Tim Lomax, Director of Mission, says of the development: “At St Albans we are looking to formally recognise and resource pioneers. One goal is to broaden the range of people in ministry, who can reach new people across the Diocese, as well as those who have a dream or idea to take the gospel outside the current reach of church and don’t know how to begin.”

Andrea Campanale, Pioneer Network Developer at Church Mission Society, says: “CMS is delighted to be partnering with the Diocese of St Albans on a new initiative to train lay pioneers. It will add to the growing network of pioneer hubs around the UK, encouraging and releasing lay leaders in the church to imaginatively take the message of Jesus to new audiences and see Fresh Expressions of church birthed out of diverse contexts.”

This new pioneer training hub is part of CMS’s growing network of training for lay pioneers that is being developed in partnership with dioceses around the country. The first was the St Cedd Centre for Pioneer Mission in the Diocese of Chelmsford and there are now also hubs in Bath and Wells and London dioceses. They are the result of 10 years of continued growth of the Pioneer Mission Leadership Training programme that CMS pioneered from its base in Oxford.

The St Albans lay pioneer course starts in September 2020, but ‘taster days’ are taking place on 12 February and 23 May for those exploring pioneer ministry or undecided about joining the CMS training programme.

Find out more or sign up: St Albans lay pioneer training taster days.

[A wide variety of participants is sought, but those who are accepted on the course will need the backing of their Vicar or Rector].

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