some methodologies for a missionary church
to the present inhabitants. In smaller pioneer teams, the presence of gifted,
resilient and visionary people who will work well together is essential. They
have the advantage of being more flexible. Large incoming teams face the
temptation of setting up and being church in the same way as they
experienced church before being sent out, and the venture then fails
to engage with local people.
what size of planting unit?
The decision about whether to adopt a cell or congregation model will be
partly influenced by the numbers of people that the planting church can
afford to give (as well as the number that can be recruited from elsewhere).
Experience has shown that the dynamics, challenges and necessary skills
are different for different planting unit sizes. There are distinct types of plant
that can be categorized according to the size of the starting team.
has its own advantages, disadvantages and keys to success.
The cultural question needs to be explored how far will a different form
of church be necessary to reach this group? How much distance or space
should be made from forms of church they may have known and/or
rejected? These questions may lead those working deliberately with the
non churched to conclude that `congregational' church is not the place
There is some evidence that the contexts listed below particularly benefit
from a type of small group church or from incorporating `small group' into
another expression of church.
Working with non churched where there is a bad image of church to
Working with churches arising out of community projects.
Working with those with addiction problems.
Working where young disciples need peer group accountability.
is the need for a multiple congregation or to work from another site?
`Multiple congregations' are instances of where a church sustains more
than one, relatively distinct, congregation. Many Anglican churches already
accept this pattern with their `8.00 Communion' congregation and their
main morning congregation, although seldom would this be seen as part
of a mission strategy. Multiple congregations motivated by mission are a
deliberate attempt to serve a variety of people and their spiritual and
cultural needs, providing different ways in which people can explore and
express their faith in worship. A church might for mission purposes offer
an early Sunday morning all age service, and a later Sunday morning more