A framework for starting something missional in your parish

Author: The Revd Tim Yau

Published on: 9 March 2022

The Church is still facing the consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic. When we think about the uncertain future of our churches we need to remember “nothing will be impossible with God” (Luke 1:37).

Just as Gabriel announced to Mary, we need to remind ourselves that when we are faced with something enormous and unprecedented God can birth something uniquely new in us. The Church is not supposed to be here for itself, but for God and the world. Often, we need to go to where the people are rather than expecting them to come to us.

Here are three quotes for you to consider:

  • “Mission goes out from God. Mission is God’s way of loving and saving the world.”
  • “Mission is the fundamental reality of our Christian life… Our life in this world is life in mission.”
  • “Mission is the whole Church bringing the whole Christ to the whole world.”

When we think about our purpose as churches, we have to think from a missional perspective, but where to start? Unfortunately, there isn’t a “silver bullet” that will sort out falling church attendance, low giving and crumbling buildings; however there is a tried and tested ‘Missional Journey’ that can help start afresh and it looks like this:

  1. Listen: Through prayer and research, lovingly listen to God and to people round you in the parish.
  2. Love and Serve: Through listening, you prayerfully discover a simple way to love the people around you.
  3. Grow Community: You build community in the process of loving and serving your parish.
  4. Share Faith: As trust deepens, you find natural opportunities to share Jesus together, and start to explore faith.
  5. Shape Church: A new mission community with the character of church takes shape among those coming to faith, where they are.
  6. Repeat: New believers repeat the missional journey in new places with new people in new ways.

While there is a natural progression from stage to stage this doesn’t mean it’s prescriptive. You can find yourself going backwards and forwards, which is why the framework is centred on prayer, and underpinned by ongoing listening and a gracefilled relationship with the wider Church.

For help contact us through: www.dioceseofnorwich.org/churches/mission-enablers

The author...

No Image Found

The Revd Tim Yau

Licensed clergy - Interim Assistant Minister, Sprowston and North Norwich Team Ministry (Benefice)

This article is from...

Articles in this issue...

An out of the blue moment

I first became interested in the Anna Chaplaincy movement when my husband and I were studying for a certificate in ‘Older People’s Ministry’ at Cliff College, led by Debbie Thrower, the pioneer of this ministry.


My journey

I feel very privileged to be a participant on the Anna Chaplain Training Course and am grateful for our PCC’s support and blessing.


Seeds of ministry sown

Our journeys to becoming Anna Chaplains were similar yet different.


Before engagement comes motivation

It can be an age old dilemma, how do we get children and young people through the doors of church?


New life for waste land

Following major repair works to St Andrew’s Church at Felmingham, situated in a beautiful rural village in North Norfolk, it was a positive time for the Friends of the Church to explore a more ecological approach in the maintenance of the Church and its environment.


Parable of wise and foolish builders

The Climate Crisis can seem far away and not something which will affect us here in Norfolk and Waveney very much.


Let it grow

St Francis Church, Heartsease, has long been committed to proclaiming the Gospel of Christ through offering loving support and practical assistance to the parish we have been called to serve.


Starting from scratch again!

Here at St Andrew’s Eaton (in Norwich), we’d had several attempts at having a church away day, postponed each time by the pandemic.


Wild Church, Norfolk

For the last six months Wild Church has been running in an outdoor community space called Loch Neaton. As a Licensed Lay Minister, I head it up, and a new intergenerational community has been growing.


Hive of spirituality

The Hive in Great Cressingham, Norfolk, was launched in the middle of the pandemic just before the second lock down on 19 December 2020. It is a place of Creativity, Spirituality and Wellbeing.


Keep up to date

Subscribe to our eNews for a snapshot of news, events and resources, usually emailed once a fortnight

Signup to newsletter