From Revitalization to Mission

Shaping_of_things_1"The challenging context in which we live in the West requires that we adopt a fully missional stance.  While some established churches can be revitalized, success seems to be rare from our experience and perspective.  We believe that the strategic focus must now shift from revitalization to mission, i.e. from a focus on the "insiders" to the "outsiders"; and in so doing we believe the church will rediscover its true nature and fulfill its purpose.  Perhaps an established church can plant a missional congregation within its broader church structures.  Others might sponsor and support the planting of new congregations on their doorstep to reach those not interested in the conventional church.  But it does seem to us that the real hope lies with those courageous leaders who will foster the development of alternative, experimental, new communities of faith."

"In our travels around the world we have encountered a new breed of Christian leadership, young and feisty, willing to experiment with audacious new versions of Christians communities within unchurched subcultures.... Some will fail; others will have great success.  But it seems to us they are more likely to succeed when legitimized, affirmed, and supported by the more conventional, established churches and denominational structures in their midst."

(p. x)