But how can I make Missional Communities work with…? PART ONE
Are the principles behind missional communities really transferable? Can you really make a community fruitful in any context? I’ve got to be honest, I think the answer is yes. You can do a missional community anywhere and with anyone; that’s not to say it won’t be challenging… of course it will! But challenging and impossible are very different concepts.
One of the enemies of fruitfulness is assumption. And when you’ve been trying to be a leader for a while you hear a lot of them:
“Missional Communities only work in middle class places”
“Men don’t like coming to church because….”
“Attracting young families is really easy”
“You need to be a university town to really get young adults”
“Discipling young families is really hard”
All these assumptions!!! And if you listen to them you’d eventually believe that it’s impossible to have a successful MC in any situation.
Helen and I have been privileged to be involved in leading Missional Communities and coaching community leaders in different places for a few years now and the more we do it the more I’m convinced that any MC is possible and every MC can be hard work.
- We’ve built a young adult community in a normal town a fair way from any university and it was a blast!
- We started a community for a mix of people just after having our first baby, it was tricky but super-fun!
- We have good friends planting a community in a working class situation and others leading fabulous communities that link people from very different backgrounds (some quite vulnerable) together.
- We’ve seen brilliant communities develop for teenagers and some for people who (reluctantly) define themselves as “in the second half of life”. I know of at least one, very successful community that mixes those age groups and everything in between.
Some of those communities are no longer going, all found the journey hard work at times, all were fruitful.
So stop believing someone else’s assumption. Have a go: follow that inkling of vision, or passion, or frustration, gather a few people around you and see what God does with you!
Ben Askew lives in Harrogate UK with his wife Helen and their family. He is Pioneer Curate at Kairos Network Church, an Anglican fresh expression seeking to plant Missional Communities across the Harrogate area.
Image made with Notegraphy.