Thursday, 18 June 2009

Introduction: Living Faith in Milton Keynes

Living Faith in Milton Keynes

In a time of global economic and ecological problems it is important that local churches dig deep to discover rich spiritual and theological resources that will help them to respond in a meaningful way.

In Milton Keynes, the concept of “sustainability” is crucially important. We need to find ways of sustaining ourselves by re-focusing on the Risen Christ who should always be at the centre of our life and work. We need to find sustainable patterns of discipleship in a society which encourages long working hours and produces over-burdened and over-stressed people. We need sustainable and vibrant Christian communities which will continue to make a difference in society. We need a sustainable approach to ministry which will in turn sustain, encourage and develop individual believers and communities across the city.

“Sustainability” is a response to the call of Christ to be good stewards of all that he has entrusted to us.

“Sustainability” is also essential if we are to keep on serving the communities in which we are set. Sustainable Christian communities are often able to stay active when all else fails. They are God’s generous gift to human society.

Finally, “sustainability” is a witness to a world obsessed with the consumption and accumulation of more and more - money, wealth, popularity and power. A church which truly understands sustainability has a great deal to share with the people around it.

This strategic plan for mission and ministry uses the framework of the diocesan vision statement, Living Faith, but it has been developed in relation to our specific local context. It is an Anglican strategy for the Anglican Deanery, but it has been thought through with an awareness of our local ecumenical situation (see Appendix A for more about our approach to ecumenism).

It is only intended to inform decisions at deanery level, but we hope it will also prove helpful for the churches and parishes of Milton Keynes.

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1 comment:

Tim Norwood (A Vicar) said...

This introduction was written soon after the Strategy Group Meeting. The concept of 'sustainabilty' is important but I think it needs to be twinned with a concept of 'generosity'.

God's generosity in creation - generosity to ourselves in terms of life, time and ballance - generosity in terms of mutual support and finance - generosity in terms of the gift of the church to the world - and so on...

There are hints in the plan already to a concept of 'generosity' but I think this needs to be more explicit and central in the re-draft.

This is conformed by comments from a range of people including the Archdeacon.