Survive, thrive, or die?
lf we want to survive as a congregation, and if we want to be a new church and not jest a repeat of the old models, we might ask:
- What are the things thgt have made the best of church work for us?
- Why we want to restore the church- do we really want to, or are we just feeling guilty? Do we really want to do this? Why do we want to restore the church? What are we looking for?
- Let's be clear in our minds what a church should do and be? What makes a church a church? We need to ask and answer these questions for ourselves- in OUR language.
- At one church there was real responsibility and power. People did the whole service, even cleaning the church and doing the morning tea. It called for commitment, but it was personally empowering. The minister was one among the congregation.
- Commitment: I think a new church requires a long term commitment by a core group. There needs to be an ongoing nurturing and supporting and fine tuning of the vision by that group.
- What are our defining interests? Are we prepared to stand for a certain ethos and emphasis? These need to be catered for and nurtured by a congregation, otherwise how can we commit to that congregation?
- How can we make a church whose motivation and mission is clear?
- How do we make a church which is a safe place for people?
- How do we make a permission giving church- a church where people feel like they have some authority and safety and backup for what they are doing?
- How do we make a church where we feel good? What would make us feel good to belong here? What are the things we feel ashamed of that we would not want to see?
- What would feed and sustain and energise us instead of being a draining thing we have to commit to unwillingly, or as a burden?