Tuesday, May 29, 2007

The 'health' of your church

I remember a while back, somebody said to me they didn't care about numbers, about money coming in, about how cool their church gatherings were, but instead by the number of people trained up and sent out as missionaries. Obviously this doesn't just mean overseas, but also locally and what not. I reckon it's a pretty decent thought.

So if a whole bunch of people from your church went off and planted new churches or mission projects, or went overseas, then I reckon that would totally be a success, even if the original church were to cease to exist as a result.


Anonymous said...

what about the people who need the nurturing aspect of a larger group? We have a number of people with mental issues at church, who wouldn't fit the new model. If the cream of the crop all go out and leave only those who can't, how will nurture happen? We need missionaries to have some connection with churches to feed the strugglers.

Jono said...

Yes, mission is only one aspect of a healthy church, in my eyes. A church, to me, is mroe than a place where you can send out missionaries form, but also a place for a Christian community to come together, learn, worship and other stuff as well. To me, a church that focusses only on mission is not a wholistic church, although it is definately still a good one. If the original intention of the church was to simply create missionable people, who go out into wherever, and then ceased to exist, it has been sucsessful, but a church would still need to exist for all the otehr aspects that need to be adressed int hat community.

karyn said...

I think captain best and owl have a limited view of 'mission' I also agree that for a church to cease to exist, it must be for the benefit of the Body of Christ. If there are people who need leaders to maintain a nuturing environment then the church must maintain missional people right where it's needed. Just because we don't 'go out' does not mean we are not being missional. From my point of view, living alongside people, caring and worshiping with them, loving them, teaching them and being a family is being missional, how much more wholistic can a church be?

Anonymous said...

Who are we to judge what a good church is?

Things happen in people that the 'church' (institutionalised - organisation) might not see the results of for years. Thus how can we judge a current groups work on the current outcomes. I think above all its about living faith..

Let me explain, I go to a christian school - donvale christian college to be exact. And we had a chat in pe the other day, 10 guys some of strong faith, some who have gone to church a few times, some who choose not to think about it at all, and one - an athiest whos dad was a minister. The athiest is one of the nicest, generous, honest and loving guys you could ever hope to meet. His opinion of our school in particular - where most people have some kind of belief/faith, was that christianity had become a title, and no longer a life. if you were a christian you were included in certain cliques and groups. For him he views each of his friends the same, whether they are christians, hard core drug addicts or anything else - they are all equal. But he sees that when christians as a general group within our school look at their friends there is often the view that these guys are christians they will come, but "john" isnt so maybe he might not enjoy it. In other words we werent treating people equally. He felt it was a one way street...he was sick of being treated as a 'project' by some of guys at our school...thus he said its more important for us as christians to live our faith instead of treating it as a title...anyway maybe thats jus a sad reflection on our school. But one worth sharing.

So maybe above all we just need to really concentrate on living out our faith..we may not realise it, but others do notice the difference and indifference in christians..sorry to bore you :-p


Digger said...

hey owl, I think maybe ur misunderstanding my point. I'm not saying that the point of all churches is to disband and go off and do new things, but some may be.

I wasn't talking specifically about FCoC, but in that, I wouldn't say the idea is that everybody leaves the 'mothership' to go off and do new things. If people are trained up as missionaries, then maybe some people's mission is to look after those in the church?

Still working that out in my head I think.

Digger said...

Yeah I think ur right Jono, mission is one aspect of a healthy church, and not the complete deal, but i still think it should be the driving force.

Say like pastoral care of the church community, is that just for the purpose of caring for people, or so that they are restored to a fullness of life so that then they can continue to share that with others?

Jono said...

Yeah, I get where everyone's coming from, and agree with most of it. The thought of stuff within the church also being mission escaped me for a bit. Maybe what I meant to say was that A wholistic church shouldn't be only focussed on external mission. But yes, Digger, it should definately be one of the driving forces of a church, and even the single focus for a few churches, maybe. All I wanted to say was that we have to make sure we don't forget the issues closer to home, and forget about the 'internal' mission that needs to be done.

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