There’s been a conversation around the movement for a while now, which over the last few months has seemed to intensify slightly. Many of you will identify with questions that we keep being asked in relation to whole discipleship and Missional Communities thing, such as ’how do MCs work with families?’ ‘how do I disciple my kids?’, ‘is this really going to work in my church if my family hasn’t got it?’
The background to this is that many of us have grown up with the prevailing mindset that says when we go to church on a Sunday the children and young people have their own groups and the adults have the ‘proper’ teaching. Centralised Children’s Ministry is of MASSIVE importance in all this, but we believe there is a much fuller experience of discipleship and mission that we are missing out on if that is all we engage with as families. In fact, there is a hugely significant role here for Children’s Ministry to play in resourcing the lives of families and communities through the week.
One of the key words for us is ‘oikos’ – extended families on mission together. The goal of all this is to see whole families raised up to reach their friends, neighbours and communities with the Good News of Jesus – EVERYONE should be involved, from the youngest to the oldest. But it takes a mindset shift and a different way of operating if we are really going to see this happen effectively – from one where the adults do the ‘proper’ stuff and the kids are at best entertained and maybe learn a few bible stories whilst we do this, to one where it is recognised that whole families can be engaged in discipleship and mission together, to reach families who don’t know Jesus yet.
We’ve been working on this for a while now, and as we have developed the principles and practices of Missional Communities we have done so in such a way that they exist to help us grow as an extended family on mission together. As 3DM our objective is to resource churches, leaders and families to continually grow their understanding of what this means and how to do this better. Alongside the training that we are offering, over this next year in particular we are seeking to develop resourcing specifically for those wanting to learn how to grow Missional Communities reaching families.
But, we’d like your help..! We want an open conversation about this whole area – what would you find most helpful for us to provide you with or produce to help you? How do you think families and communities could be better resourced to disciple children?
We’ve obviously got our own ideas and experience that we are bringing to this, but it’s really important to us that we hear what people are saying, particularly with regard to:
- family/extended family
In order to hear your thoughts and comments, we would love it if you could take 5 minutes to complete a short survey we’ve put together. This will enable us to feed in your thoughts to the questions and conversations we are already engaged with in this area and a few different perspectives. If you could share it around with those in your churches and get their thoughts as well that would be great!
Click here to fill out the survey or use/share the following link: http://svy.mk/1hHz3s3
By way of incentive – we are offering a free trial of the first kids and families resource we produce this year to 5 people (picked at random) who fill in the survey for us
Thanks in advance for your help, we’ll be feeding back on what we’ve heard, so do look out for the results in the coming weeks and months!