Living out what we are - a mission strategy for All Saints'  


The church stands in continuity with God’s people in the Old Testament, called through Abraham to be a light to the nations, shaped and taught through the law and the prophets to be a community of holiness, compassion and justice, and redeemed through the cross and resurrection of Jesus Christ. The church exists to worship and glorify God for all eternity and is commissioned by Christ and empowered by the Holy Spirit to participate in the transforming mission of God within history.


2) Purpose of this paper  

  

  1. This paper proposes a strategy for mission involvement at All Saints’ Church.  

  

  1. The requirement for the Church of God to be involved in mission is directed by the Bible; not only in Jesus’ final Great Commission to his disciples (“Therefore go and make disciples of all nations”, Matthew 28:19, and “You will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth”, Acts 1:8) but also elsewhere (e.g. Paul, “How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can they preach unless they are sent?” Romans 10:14). It is worth noting that without a commitment to mission by the church some 1,500 years ago, we in the UK would not be believers. The gospel is to be preached to all nations.  


3) But what does mission mean for All Saints’ Church?  

  1. World Mission has been described as “The whole church taking the whole gospel to the whole world”.ii  

  

  1. Whole church: There is no indication in the Bible that a concern and participation in mission is for selected Christians only.  

  

  1. Whole gospel: There is no differentiation in the Bible between preaching and social action they are both necessary parts of the whole gospel. Indeed, some have identified mission as having three main elements:  

  • Proclamation (“And how can they preach unless they are sent”, Romans 10:14)  

  • Church support (“Paul set out from there and travelled from place to place throughout the region of Galatia and Phrygia, strengthening all the disciples”, Acts 18:23)  

  • Social action (“The King will reply, I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me’”, Matt 25:34-40)  

  

  1. Whole world: Equally there is no differentiation as to where the gospel is to be takenWe include in this strategy thinking in terms of both our own personal evangelism in and around our homes and workplaces in the Sid Valley (“in Jerusalem”) and that which happens in the wider world both within the UK and beyond (“in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth”).  

  

  1. Thus what does the biblical imperative mean for us at All Saints’ today 

  1. Mission must be an inclusive concern of the whole church family.  

  1. Mission must be an integral part of the life of our church and its members. iii) Mission must be an active part of that life.  

  2. We should look to be involved in a cross-section of activities; the “whole gospel” to the “whole world”.  

 

 

 4) Turning words into actions  

  

  1. This urgency of mission should encourage us to build on our current involvement to ensure it permeates all of our church’s life. There should be three elements to what we do:  Education of ourselves,  Support of those involved in mission, organisations and individuals, through prayer, giving and action, Sending of individuals

  2. EducationWithout education (the communication of information and passion) it is difficult to pursue support and sending. We should establish a programme of regular mission education for the whole church family. This should use a variety of methods and media, e.g. Display boards, Literature,  Web site,  Inclusion within the regular preaching programme,  Inviting reports by local leaders and visiting speaker,  Mission events (lunches etc.)  

  3. Support: We need to identify and focus upon a small number of individuals and mission organisations who represent a cross-section of the “whole gospel” and the “whole world” who we will then commit to supporting. Ideally these will be ones with which the church as a whole, or individuals within the church, already have links. The support should take the form of regular information distribution, prayer, practical support and giving. Mission giving should be a protected proportion of the overall church budget.  

  4. SendingTo be a church that mirrors the one we find in the New Testament we need to encourage and support individuals and families to consider “full time” involvement in mission be it in a role locally or nationally or going overseas short term or long term.   


   5) The way forward

  1. The PCC has agreed the formation of a Mission Co-ordinating Group that brings together a small number of individuals from within the church family who have a passion for mission in order to take forward the above strategy into the life of the church.
  2. The Mission Coordinating Group will take this strategy forward and produce a plan for approval by the PCC