Greetings in Christ,
As I shared with you last week, we were encouraged to become VIP Christians. Visionary, Intentional and Participative.
It is essential that each one of us have a vision for our life and ministry. So I want to share my vision for St Mary’s and how I believe that we should be Intentional and how we need to participate.
Our Diocesan Vision is rather vague – Loving Communities – and I challenge you to think about what a “Loving Community” looks like to you and for you. What is it that you find loving and how is it that you share love.
My Vision for St Mary’s is that the community of St Mary’s will be rooted in prayer and active in service. A place where every member is growing in the understanding of the priesthood of all believers and the mission field for their lives. My Vision for myself is that I will lead by example through my leadership of the various community groups which I see as part of the Church growing and church building work of God. I believe that God cares for the poor, the orphaned, the youth and for the environment and I will serve God in every one of those areas. I believe that God cares about the education of our children and in the development of a society that worships God not only with their lips, but by the way that they live in the world.
My Vision, is that the Church will be active in the affairs of our society, caring and interacting – that is how we build a loving community!
I believe that we have to be “Intentional”. This means that we have to be proactive. This means that we have to be skilled! This means that we have to be aware!
To this end, I intend to spend more time next year teaching on the Bible itself – what it says and what it means. I intend to offer in-depth training on Ministry. I hope that Alpha will be led by a Lay Person but ministered to by myself and a leadership team that is well equipped for the task.
I wish to train as many as possible in the concepts of Mission Shaped Ministry (Jesus Shaped Discipleship)
Participation. There are many ways that we can participate more in the life of the Church. Not just in terms of Sundays but in every aspect of Ministry.
The outcome of all this will be that St Mary’s will hold it’s own financially and effectively minister to the Kingsburgh Community as God intend us to. This will require a change in the way we do things, that is why I said (a few weeks ago) that we have some difficult decisions to make.
Unless we grow, our overheads are too large for our ministry, and that is no good. We know that we cannot just ask people to give more – that is not a solution to our budget deficit!
But it means that people are going to have to put more into the life of the Church. Bring their friends, share their needs and bear witness to what God is doing in their lives. We are going to have to diversify the way that we do things to reach a broader and bigger community. Our Sunday School needs to grow and that means bringing non church goers into the church. We cannot just be focused on ourselves, we have to be “Seeker Sensitive”, we have to be able to minister to people who are not familiar with the Anglican Church, we can no longer rely on people returning to the Anglican Church to grow our numbers, we have to do things differently and provide space and opportunity to draw non believers into God’s Church. And that is something that we have to do together! That is something that we have collaborate on!
Participate – share your ideas, seek to be equipped to share your faith, it’s not business as usual. God is telling us to develop our outlook so that the lost can be reached, the wounded healed and the faithful share their lives with the lost.
And so I exhort you, to commit yourself to the work of God. So many of you are doing so much – let’s give God glory and work tirelessly to do what we have been called to!
May God bless you abundantly and fill you with courage and strength.
Yours in Christ