Appointment in Winchester Diocese of the Archdeacon for Mission Development

Tim DakinDear Friends

I am delighted to be able to announce that the Reverend Canon Dr Paul Moore has been appointed as the first Archdeacon for Mission Development in this Diocese. In this innovative new role, the first of its kind in the Church of England, Paul will be leading a newly formed Mission Development Team working across five key areas: developing and over-seeing fresh expressions of church and pioneering work across the Diocese, promoting social engagement (including establishing social enterprises), education, world mission partnerships, and enabling all forms of mission and training through the School of Mission.

Paul joins the Diocese of Winchester having served in the Diocese of Portsmouth for over a decade and as a parish priest for over 25 years.  In that time he has become a leading figure in developing new ideas to welcome and encourage people into church and to reach beyond the church to people previously untouched by it. Paul is one of the founders of Messy Church, which is about to celebrate its 10th anniversary, a form of church where adults and children can explore faith together through imaginative and often messy craft activities and experience Christian community through interactive participative worship and a shared meal.

This is a very exciting time for the Diocese and I am delighted that Paul will be taking on this role. His extensive experience in parish ministry is the perfect foundation for the work he will be undertaking in our existing communities and beyond. I am sure you will want to join me in welcoming him, his wife Lucy and their two children to the Diocese. We anticipate he will take up his new role at the beginning of September.

In faith, hope and love

+Tim

The Right Reverend Tim Dakin

The Bishop of Winchester

Winchester Diocesan Synod Update

Diocese of Winchester

Here are my notes from the Diocesan Synod Fish and Chip Supper last night which shared an update on the Winchester Diocese vision.

Colin – Overview of the Resource Pack

The Conference was great but how do we engage all those who weren’t there – the 30,000 who attend our churches each week.

Post-Conference Resource Pack

Handed over to Luther Pendragon (Ben, Adam and Paul) looking at what we want the resource pack to do.

  • We want as many people as possible to engage with the material and input from the Conference.
  • Provide a permament record of the context in which our Strategic Priorities were discerned.
  • Inspire people across the Diocese to engage with the vision of “Living the Minssion of Jesus”.

Want to capture the conference in as many ways as possible, looking professional on a tight budget:

  • A DVD showing the videos from Diocesan Synod
  • Audio podcasts of all presentations to be played from the CD-ROM along with the slide presentations – done with small groups etc. in mind.

Couple of warnings

  • This is one element of how we take things forward.
  • It is a tool – the tool needs to be used – we are asking you to be a champion of this in your deanery and parish.

Every Parish will receive at least one pack in the next two weeks.

 

Bishop Tim

Read from The Great Commission.

When he was a Principal of a Theological College in Nairobi, reopening the college, a young lad sat in his office saying the Lord had told him to come to this college, as a refugee with no money walking around Nairobi, this is where God had called him!  Bishop Tim had many offers like that, but something in him met Bishop Tim’s spirit – so he said yes, and saw great ministry between tribes of refugees.

That call is still there for us.  Matthew focuses on Emmanuel – God with us – at the beginning, write at the end he focuses on God being with us to the end of the earth.  To live with Jesus, to obey that command, to show that baptism means something, what it means to be human, to love, to see the world transformed.

We’ve had the most extraordinary opportunity to be together at the Conference, we’ve done the mountaintop experience, but many are now back at the coal face of reality.  Going to trust Jesus, as we gather together we heard the Spirit speaking to us and now we can begin to look at the practicalities, we can re-imagine the church, re-imagine the diocese to become a mission shaped diocese, to transform society – we have great resources amongst us if we are committed to sacrificial living – we will see generosity bring hope.

To bring these four strategies to reality we need leadership, +Peter and +Jonathan help do this in the Northern and Southern Archdeaconries looking at the Archdeacon, Deanery and Parish levels.  Asking how do we work that out in this context?  We have with the Bishop’s Staff Team to offer the service and leadership that will make a difference at this time.

Written to all Area Deans, Assistant Deans and Lay Chairs looking at the process of how Mission Action Plans will come into being.  One area of detail that will need to be discussed and work together is how the Mission Action Plans will work.  It will not be possible to opt out of these.  SOmeone who will help us with this is the new Archdeacon for Mission role, 1% of the Church of England Clergy have enquired about this role!

Very excited, sense we are so much on the edge of what will happen.  There are challenges but the Lord will be with us, we will go forward and we will see great things happening amongst us.

Questions & Comments

When will we see the Rule of Life, PCC is interested in what that will look like?  Agree Mission Action Plans and Diocesan Rule of Life by Advent next year.  This gives us time to discover what a rule of life is, and what the history of rule of life in our Diocese is.  The Professor of Ecclesiastical History from Oxford is coming to give the Bishop Lectures, if ordained you will be invited, others come along, we’re in the town hall.  It will not make you holy, but if it represents holiness, it will remind you of how to live your life for God and others.  Hope to have a hint in the way the Lent Course is being put together.

How will we maintain Priests in Parishes alongside the 3Ps.  The Ps are dimensions, not priorities, so we need to learn the difference between vision, outcomes, and plans.  This will come into the plan where we look at how mixed economy is worked out in a practical level.  The dimensions are much bigger than priest and parish.  It is a strategic priority worked out practically.  Believe in the ordained church, believe in parishes, but also believe in doing things in different ways as our founders the Benedictines did.

Mission Action Planning – how do we make the process work instead of just being a Mission Wish List.  Need to develop a mission model, there are many out there, start by reading Mark Chew and Mark Ireland, How to do Mission Action Planning, and then have to agree our own model.  Will propose a model in December that we will back for the whole diocese.  It isn’t just for us, but the generations coming behind us who we need to be faithful for, to release and enable them.

Pete Maidment – The Lent Course 2014

Pleased to share some of what the Lent Course 2014 might look like.  Offering 6 sessions of material, to help you and your congregations to engage with our four strategic priorities.

  • Session 1 Living the Mission of Jesus – what does the kingom of God look like
  • Session 2-5: The Four Strategic Priorities
  • Session 6: Working towards A Rule of Life

A time of going deeper, exploring what does it mean to go deeper.

Overall aim, strategy or outcome: People in the Diocese of Winchester will have a good understanding of the four strategic priorities and how they can transform personal spirituality, churches and communities.

Some further outcomes

  • A renewed passion for Jesus living out his mission
  • A deepened sense of community and commitment to one another
  • A marked increase in commitment in discipleship
  • Steps taken towards creating a Diocesan rule of life

Asking Andy and Pete to head this up means it is a course for everyone.  Not just for adults in home groups, so children’s groups, youth groups, adult groups (home groups, lent course groups, men’s nights in pubs, women in pubs, mums in toddler groups!), sermon material – using lectionary readings to link with sermons, and Messy Church outline.

Core Material

  • Core material that all groups will have, regardless of background:
  • Learning outcome – every group will have the same aim
  • Introduction – same background reading material
  • Scriptural texts – same bible stories
  • Questions for discussion – the same questions for discussion
  • Prayer – corporate prayer

Enabling people to talk as families and communities.

Additional material

  • Liturgy
  • Worship
  • Cultural reference points- music, movies, literature, poetry
  • Spirituality links – helping people using it in their own prayer time
  • Website – people to use in their own ways

Training

Will be training people in January and February to both Archdeaconries, both Channel Islands, course specific but giving transferable skills e.g. for youth work.

Sample material

FInal material will be edited and designed.  Do share feedback to Pete and Andy.

 

Do you trust us?  Trust us to deliver, commit some time this Lent to share in this journey.

 

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013

Diocese of Winchester

This last week I was privileged to join with 200 other Diocesan Synod members and guests at the Winchester Diocese Synod Conference at The Hayes.  God did some truly amazing things as we talked, prayed, worshiped and listened together – uniting such a diverse group of people around four priorities for the next three to five years is no small miracle.

Below are the links to all my live-blog posts from the different sessions:

Please remember all of these blogs were written live and so won’t always be 100% accurate, and may contain typos and spelling mistakes. For further information about the Diocesan Synod Conference check out the Diocese of Winchester website.

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 16

Diocese of Winchester

Bishop Tim’s sermon from our concluding Holy Communion together, as usual this is a live blog, apologies for any typos or spelling mistakes:

This is the day, two years ago, that my announcement was made.  It is fantastic to see where we’ve come from in the last two years.

Wanted to speak on John 20 before +Tom spoke on it a few days ago.  Focussing on peace and receive the Spirit.  We miss these when focussing on the “as the Father so I”.  Chaplain to the Garter – an extraordinary privilege to do it – when we gather for Ordinary of the Garter – play a small role in the service – with a particular reading the same one every time – Ephesians 6:1-20.  Reading the passage, “having shod your feet for the preparation of the gospel of peace” and the Lord spoke to +Tim.  Stopped, didn’t know for how long, in front of his majesty the Queen!  It’s all about peace is what he heard God say.  Carried on reading but didn’t know what happened, or where he stopped!

Reflecting on peace, exploring the significance of it.  Took that emotional moment to go deeper and bring home some things.  The outcome of mission is peace – that’s what it is all about – longing to see as something we will all commend ourselves to.  That longing and hope that we have that all things will be put right, that creativity will be fulfilled.  Nothing less than +Tom spoke about – a longing for recreation – for when creation will be full of the glory of God.

It is the first day of the recreation when Jesus greets his disciples.   We think of his words as a normal greeting, but he returns to it a second time, I’m not just greeting you in the normal way, but the peace I can now give you because of who I am, and what’s happened through the resurrection.  He is the peace and it is in that vain the Father sent him.

It is that great eschatological hope we can share with everyone we meet – the peace in Jesus.  Don’t forget what Jesus also says – “don’t let your hearts be troubled”.

It is very clear the forgiveness he is talking about is the reconciliation with God – we need to share it with others so that they share it with others around that.

Athelston and his vision of understanding Jesus as the risen Lord is something we could begin to focus on.  It is the offer to enter into peace when he says “receive the Spirit”.  It is almost a pleading with the disciples.  The Spirit of the mission of the Farher and the Son – the Spirit who animated Jesus in His mission – the very Spirit of Mission.

It is the same greeting of peace that Jesus ives Thomas after he has put his hand in Jesus’s side.  The sense of another comforter is something we can receive.  Jesus is the first comforter, the first divine missionary who can make peace possible, and now he says there is another comforter coming.  The Missionary Spirit who works in Jesus can work in us.

Jesus did it through the way of the prophet – comforting and challenging.  Jesus was constantly comforting and challenging to bring the peace about.  We will enter into this way of comfort and challenge – parakleis – the way of life – the fourth P!  A way of life for us of comforting and challenging.  Jesus is the prophet greater than Moses whose historical mission reveals God’s mission and whose risen mission reveals his mission in us.  He calls us into this life of comfort and challenge that there might be peace.  Receive the Spirt, live the mission of Jesus, bring the comfort and challenge so that the ultimate peace might be in this world.

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 13

Diocese of Winchester

As a Bishop held responsible for the money, the mission and the response.

The board of Finance are held responsible if it goes pear shaped, but the Synod is responsible for the total amount of expenditure – not the detail of the budget.

How does the money work for us:

Average parish spends

  • 15.88% on Capital Expenditure
  • 5.07% on Charitable Giving
  • 40.09% on Parish Share
  • 25.30% on Other Running Costs
  • 13.65% on Salaries and Expenses

A three year budget allows a little wiggle room for carrying forward and altering the order of priorities.

Diocesan Expenditure

  • 80% on Mission Development
  • 12% on Mission Support
  • 8% on National Church’s mission

Diocesan Income

  • 84% Parish Share
  • 8% Fees from occasional offices
  • 2% Rental Income
  • 1% Professional Fees
  • 1% Old Aresford Place
  • 4% General Income

This shows how critical the Parish Share is to us.

Mission Development

88% is focussed on clergy stipend and housing.  Other areas are all ways in which we do mission, different ways.

Mission Support

Central support is people in the Diocesan Office and the Diocesan Office is how you run the plant.

National Church’s mission support

All agreed by the General Synod – major changes to ensure we now get good value, and impressed by the delivery.  Rachel is someone we pay for through this.  That’s what we pay for.  The only commitment for Mission Agency/Mission Socieities the rest is how they gain though freewill – we have many other ways we can increase our freewill.

That this Synod authorises the Diocesan Board of Finance to expend the sum of £39,722,000 of which £33,478,000 to be generated from parish share in 2014-2016.  The Bishop’s Council is requested to explore opportunities to generate additional sources of income which it may use to support the Synod’s emerging strategic priorities.

Questions and Discussion

Given in 2014 we are £200k under how confident is the Bishop in reaching this.

Since 2010 no increase in total Parish Share, very sad if it was to be cut any further.  The 1.8% increase from Deaneries is looking like it will not be managed.  If there is a shortfall in 2014, there might be higher increases than the 1.8% for future years.

2014 budget has a £100k contingency, who has the authority to spend it and is it carried forward.

With the £100k reserve, and the £200k shortfall is there a reserve from which this can be resolved or is it a future black hole.

Bishop’s answers:

£200k is a short-fall but we’re asking if we can give more, it is not a lot in this Diocese.

This is real back-to-basics, and we’re beginning to cut into the bones in quite an uncomfortable way.  Hopefully as we work through the Parish Share proposals we could see a difference.  People will want to give money to a vision.

Contingency money goes ups and downs with cuts you can make along the way – to help smooth the expenditure.

We have no real reserves as the Crown took it, Lincoln gets £4mm a year from its investments.

 

MOTION CARRIED

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 11

Diocese of Winchester

Session 11 is entitled “Rule for Life – Part Two” led by Bishop Tim Dakin.  This is a live blog – apologies for any spelling mistakes and/or typos.

Propose a motion, discuss the motion and vote on it.  The Bishop, as President, does not need a seconder!  We journey far together with those who aren’t members of Synod, so those who aren’t Synod members please do join in the conversation, but do resist voting as it is a statutory process.

 

A Rule for Life: Ground of Purpose, Vision and Mission

Having the ground for the purpose, the role and the mission.  Having a rule of life helps us to do anything else.  Had a rule of life, and this has been an important part of his journey through para, non and other ministries.

This Synod approves the principle of adopting a Diocesan Rule of Life, and requests the Bishop and his Staff to produce a final version for use across the parishes and communities of the diocese.

Won’t focus on what content, but on why it is so important.

 

A Rule for a Mission Spirituality

Attempts to provide shape and content from a Christian perspective.  David Ford, A Shape For Living, is due to be re-published again.

Steven Bevans says it is “like a reservoir tapping into the infinite life – giving, refreshing and empowering presence of God’s Spirit.”  A liberating, opening up of what life might look like.  A “Mission Spirituality is for women and men who want to grow and thrive in their identity as people who consciously participate in the mission of the triune God, moving beyond their own zones of security in terms of culture etc.” (Bevans)

Worship and prayer have to be the start of any priority or anything else, and this is where they exist.  A Rule grounds us in a prayer life with God in Christ.  It draws together our common mission heritage, expresses our common life, and resources our common purpose.  We had our own English Benedictine Movement:

  • Committed to engaging with national life
  • Committed to engagign with culture
  • Commitment to cross-cultural mission – e.g. sending Boniface to Europe.

It would be good in our diversity to find one another through our common life in this common rule.  Crossing diversity, and our understandings on how to do mission, even if we have different ways of doing it, it will still be powerful.

Resources and the purpose.  A rule of life picks up on the deep purpose of who we know we are as people living the mission of Jesus.

It is the basis for a Mission-Shaped Diocese: for its evangelization of not just here but the wider world, engagement with culture and national life, structures – we’ve got ourselves in a mess over parochial, pioneering, fresh expressions and more – we need structures that will be complimentary for one another; resourcing – Spiritual resourcing that means we are prepared to be resource people.

Three elements of Benedictine Rule of Life

  • Practices: Listening, stability, humility, hospitality, conversion, work, community;
  • Regular: weekly, monthly, yearly – going on retreat, visiting a Spiritual Director, giving your cat a holiday;
  • Relational – all the way across.

 

Moral Therapeutic Deism: An Evangelistic Challenge

Unless we understand what people are saying about what people believe we won’t succeed.  This is hitting the present and upcoming generations, not just an academic interest.  This is what people believe, it has penetrated the church, and wider society.

  1. God exists and creates but he doesn’t do much else.  Many will sign up to God working he exists.  Not a slam dunk to conversion – much more a deist view rather than a theist view.
  2. God wants us to be good – you can define what God is – and it is all that matters.
  3. The aim of life is to be happy – happiness is a straightforward way of talking about life – they don’t worry about the future in the same way.
  4. God is not involved in life unless necessary or needed – only when God needs to turn up for me.  Much of this is around in our churches, our conversations with each other and ourselves.  Christians need to show they want to live differently.
  5. Good people go to heaven when they die.

St Birinus wouldn’t recognise this as a way of life.

 

Wide: Basic Social Theology

A rule of life is important as it helps us to understand the 3Ps are not something you do but something you are.  We are all to be passionate, pioneering and prophetic.

Understaning how we are to engage in wider life.

World of Daily Life (Spirituality): everyone can do this, to be the Christian at work, to share faith at work.  When was the last time you led someone to Christ, and how did you do it?  Questions ++Justin uses in interviewing ministers for his diocese.

Public Life & Civil Society (Community): people notice when we run food banks, when we try to change the community for the better.  We are part of the civic society and we create it. +Jonathan is beginning to link with Southampton City Council in a way that has a big affect for us.

Economics: when was the last time you heard a decent sermon on economics, the crash has such an effect, why did ++Justin tackle Wonga, not to bash them, but because it is right, and so moving pension investments makes a big different.  Politics (Citizineship): if we can’t talk about citizenship matters, what are we doing in following Jesus, we would only have half of Jesus.  The rule of life would provide a basis for this debate.

 

Forms of Mission & Church: The Mods, Sods and Nods

Holiding together complimentary forms of mission.  Ordained into one aspect of the church for 20 years, so coming at it from a different perspective from some others.  Want to find a way of saying yes to people as we were not planted by a parish church movement, we were planted by a mission movement, a Benedictine mission movement planted us, and that needs to be incorporated into our structures.

  • Modality: another way of tlaking about the parish, local, diverse Christian community.  The Parish movement was invented in the 7th century, in the Provincial Meeting of Canterbury.
  • Sodality: spread-out, task-focused and religious like – the Benedictine, Franciscan, Church Army are part of the church.  We need to consciously include Fresh Expressions, Pioneers into it.
  • Nodality: the reason why Anglicanism works well as have flexibility for including all kinds of variations.  Episcopal allows a bishop to say yes to many modes.  Enabling the leadership to lead the mods and sods.

 

Both the modal and the sodal are structures of God’s redemptive mission.  It is therefore normal and normative that the modal church has a mission.  However also, both the modal and the sodal are Church, but in legitimate different ways.  It is therefore normal and normative that the sodal mission is ecclesial.  (George Lings, Understanding Church Better).

When does a pioneer grow up, they often don’t.  We have to recognise some will always be in that sodality model.

Bishops to hold both unity in truth and mission spirituality.

 

A Third Archdeacon: Resourcing Mission Development

Have someone to help through the implications of resourcing our mission.  Resourcing this mission, these priorities, requires someone to think it through at a breadth but allowing people to still deliver.  Responsibility for delivery and vision – what we ask our Archdeacons to do.

Planted global anglican communion – who now at times – don’t see themselves in us.  A commitment to local and global missional church leaders.

Refounding the Wessex Benedictine Mission Movement – someone who will think through the implications of a rule of life.

Someone who co-ordinates those who are co-ordinating.  Implementing a vision for mission with strategic priorities.

Taking diocesan synods and structures seriously – residential conference, to Archdeaconry/Deanery and Parish Mission Action Plans.

Canonical and business structure for mission.

National church is supportive but says you can’t do it this way, so we look for another way of doing it.  If other people start adopting it they will change the law!

Mission Development: education, social enterprise, pioneering/FX, ministry and discipleship, world mission.

Intend to lead alternative model of episcopacy, so all three bishops will be saying, this is how we live, how we work, how we lead you, to enable you to become in Christ.

 

Discussion & Questions

No questions on third Archdeacon as that will come later this afternoon.  Focus on the Rule of Life.

 

Heard things here, that want to take to every church of every denomination in the City of Southampton, as it is of incredible significance.

How far does it role out?  Is it for everybody?

Will the final version be generic or specific, permissive; and do we have a chance to see the final rule of life before it goes life.

How inclusive or exclusive will this Rule of Life be?  What about confirmation, what about God Parents bringing children for baptism?

Is Benedictine the only model, is it possible to have a Franciscan or Ionian model.

Will it be compulsory for all with licensed ministry to sign upto?  The importance of not getting in a muddle between law and gospel.  Nice if a draft version came back to synod for approval.

 

Bishop Tim: Yes.  You can’t make people do things.  This is an invitation, a resource, an opportunity – people will want to ask how can I get it for me.  Like to encourage everyone to think about it.  This is a shape I find helpful and so I want to share it.  Benedectine is not the only way but most other models come under it.  Will definitely come to Diocesan Synod for approval.  Need to be clear it is grace that drives it all.

MOTION CARRIED!

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 4

Diocese of Winchester

Jill Garrett & Andrew Robinson on Journeying together; the purpose of the sessions focused on Strategic Priorities.

This is a live blog – apologies for any spelling mistakes and/or typos

Over the next few days a number of sessions thinking about strategy.  There will be overlap with what +Tom, +Tim and Jill say.

Understanding the practical nature of the “MIssional Journey” we are on together as one diocese – how would I live differently, how would my work be different, how would our communities be different.

Praying, listening to the Spirit and to others, discussing and agreeing the direction of our travel.

Practically planning how we will engage, commit to action and move forward as one diocese, including how you lead your communities:

  • To understand
  • Pray and wait on the Spirit
  • Engage and to commit to action in their communities

If the Bishop’s Staff Team just say accept these priorities, then you won’t engage, similarly it wouldn’t work in your local church and community.

The aim is then as one diocese we can live out the mission of Jesus in the 2nd decade of the 21st century.

John Stott: “We are called to double listening, listening to the Word and listening to the world.”  You know more about anyone else about your community, but we need to listen with the word of God.

David prayed to God for ordinary things: 2 Samuel 22:30: “With your help I can advance against a troop, with my God I can scale a wall.”  2 Samuel 22:37: “You broaden the path beneath me so that my ankles do not turn over.”  But before he does any of that “he enquired of the Lord saying, ‘Shall I go and attack these Philistines?’” (1 Samuel 23:2).  That is where we are as a Diocese, understanding where God wants us to go.

Luke 4:14-19 very clear priorities to Christ:

14 Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit, and news about him spread through the whole countryside. 15 He was teaching in their synagogues, and everyone praised him.

16 He went to Nazareth, where he had been brought up, and on the Sabbath day he went into the synagogue, as was his custom. He stood up to read, 17 and the scroll of the prophet Isaiah was handed to him. Unrolling it, he found the place where it is written:

18

“The Spirit of the Lord is on me,
because he has anointed me
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,

19

to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favor.”

 

What does the Spirit say to you?  There has never been a Diocesan Conference before, and as The Message says “This is God’s year to act!” what is God saying to us this year.

The why and impact of strategy

VIsion is the future we long to see in the diocese and sets our destination as we journey together.  +Tim invites us to share the vision he has for the diocese.

When Jesus sent the 72 out he told them to shake the dust off their feet when they were not made welcome.

Strategy defines the route we will take to the destination as together we seek to “Live the Mission of Jesus.”

Strategy enables us to give clear priorities, to direct resources, to ensure the vision thrives in our own communities, in the diocese and more widely, this is good stewardship.

As synod you are responsible for setting the vision.

Establish strategic direction

The Bishop and Staff Team enable leadership to move forward as one body but it cannot be top down.  You are called to listen to the Spirit about what it means to live out the mission of Jesus in communities throughout the diocese, so that you can decide the priorities.

To engage, equip and motivate, churches and communities equally need to sit and prayer and discuss together the strategy for this missional journey.

Process

  • Listen to the spirit about the areas of diocesan focus
  • Share 4 strategic priorities the Bishop Staff Team have considered and look at how these align to the priorities you have identified.
  • Look at how those two streams sit together and move forward together.

What is the Spirit of God saying to you about where the diocese should focus effort as we seek to live out God’s mission as a diocese.

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 3

Diocese of Winchester

Bishop Tim spoke on the Rule of Life introduction for the third session.  This is a live blog – apologies for any spelling mistakes and/or typos.

Re-Founding Winchester: A Benedictine Mission

Our heritage comes from St. Birinus landed in Southampton not Portsmouth as they try to claim!

 

The Gregorian Mission: Augustine and his monks

Augustine was sent as a reluctant missionary, not just the founding of the Christian church but the re-founding, an outside influence to help us.  You only know the Jesus you know, because of the Jesus other people know.  Augustine’s mission was to the Saxons of Kent, but were actually Jute and linked to the Jute of Hampshire.

Benedictine Foundation  – the purpose was to engage culture with the gospel (6th century).

Benedictine Spirituality and the Founding of Winchester: St. Birinus is our first bishop in the 7th century.

If we were founded in this way, what re-founding do we need to do as we face these challenges.

When at CMS in year 1 +Tim lost his faith having seen Christians killing Christians in Rwanda, didn’t believe in the God of mission, the CMS mission, and the integration of inter-african ministry.  Spiritual director said that’s normal, many are even bishops.  Somehow even when just saying the words, others were praying them.  There is no way to avoid being personally challenged, it may cost you the faith you’ve got, but God will give things back, he can re-make and re-found our personal faith as something much bigger that he is doing in the world.

 

Long: Strategic & Sustainable

The only other diocese using the mission-shaped language is one in Toronto, using a challenging schedule.  If you take the decline rate there will only be 1 person left in the Church of Canda in 2061.  We’re not as bad as Canada, but we will be in fantasy land if we don’t deal with the crisis to re-engage the gospel with our culture.  We can do that at street level through Street Pastors for example.  Business as usual won’t suffice, something has to move on.

The Anglican Church of Canada talks about what is sustainable but is bold.  Unsustainable ministry is defined as: “not strategic, not mission-focussed, inward-looking, depleting capital assets, unable to maintain property and create reserves, can’t cover operating expenses, reliant on funding outside of freewill offering of members.”

The Bishop’s Staff Team have made proposals but they are for re-working, with the help of Jill and others.  Proposed priorities:

  • Sharing faith
  • Transforming Society
  • Parish & Pioneering
  • Sacrificial Living

Is this what the Lord is saying?

 

The Benedictine Rule of Life

Creates culture (the Western culture!) by engaging with culture.  Unless we are clear that our rule of life needs to be that radical it won’t work.  It should give shape and content to spirituality.  It combines worldview and way of living with a vision for the wellbeing of society.  INcludes basic patterns for how to live, for example Ely Benedictine rule: listening, obedience, stability, work, and transformation with an act of commitment.

What happens if we re-work this for us a diocesan rule from our Benedictine cathedral?

 

Developing a Pattern of Life

Pope Gregory’s mandate concerning heathen temples: he desired that native temples be Christianised and asked Augustine to Christianise pagan practices into dedication ceremonies or feasts of martyrs, since “he who would climb to a lofty height must go up by steps, not leaps.”

This is not a quick fix, but a long-term recovery and re-founding, we won’t see results in the next week.  Pagan temples and practices need to be tackled but that takes time, and we need to give ourselves time to do this.

Going by steps – what should it include?  Your relationships with family, friends, at work, church, neighbourhood, wider world, self and God.  Fairly obvious but when did we last sit down and reflect on all these different elements to live the full mission of Jesus.  What do we do daily, weekly, monthly, yearly?  +Tim writes his in his daily Bible, so he reflects on it regularly.

This could be deeply challenging, it could disturb us, but what an impact it could have if we were willing to make this commitment.

 

Deep into Jesus’ Mission

The long-term view is dependent on going deep with Jesus and his mission.  Jesus is God’s missional love in action – fairly obvious – but sometimes we need to state the obvious and remind ourselves of this.  An icon in +Tim’s study to help him contemplate on Christ.  Are we still walking with Jesus, do we understand who he is, ask him to help us each day.  Jesus is someone we can go on contemplating and contemplating.  The ++Rowan chose to speak on the contemplation of Christ to the Roman Catholic house of bishops.

Jesus is the confidence in God’s mission – the three Ps are not based on Tim Dakin energy and vitality but on a God who is changing us.  Jesus is the only confidence we can have.

Getting to know, by living, the historical and ongoing mission of Jesus.

Living the mission of Jesus really gets +Tim going, we will say it in different ways, Jesus is doing it and we can be a part of it.

Theological summary: “Getting to know Jesus the Prophet, incarnate Priest and ascended King.”

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 2

Diocese of Winchester

This was the first of three sessions by Bishop Tom Wright.  This is a live blog – apologies for any spelling mistakes and/or typos

When you invite a middle-aged bible scholar presumably you want middle-aged exegesis!  Loved some of the things +Tim meant such as Street Pastors, doing that on Stockton Tees wearing purple cassock with fluorescent yellow jacket of Street Pastors on top – the girls who dress to kill couldn’t match him!

Moved to work in the academy and the university so not many stories, but like teaching someone to fish they can eat for life, share some stories from past ministry and you will have better stories, but hopefully spread the big picture of some aspects of the mission of God in scripture, focussed on Jesus, and then given to his people in the power of the Spirit.  To open up ways to read scripture missionally which will give not just ideas but resource you for the task.

John 20:19-23

Two words “as” and “so” are critical.  All of us, bishops included, would much rather that God got on with his mission and we have a ring-side seat where we could watch.  There is no place.  As the Father sent me so I send you.  God remains sovereign, and we are an angled mirror to reflect God to the word and the groaning and moaning of the world to God.

Watch whatJesus is doing: healing a cripple, welcoming children, washing disciples foot, home truths for the rich and powerful, telling people he is becoming King and demonstrating it.  Telling strange but beautiful stories.  As the Father sent me so I send you.  We can’t do all these things but in the power of the Spirit we can do these things for the world.

We need to ponder, to mull over the gospels.  Too often we cut it down to a nice moral lesson on a Sunday morning, and better that than nothing, but the gospel is vast like a mountain outside the back door and we focus on the foothills.  The gospel is the turning point of all world history.  The only reason we are here is because in the 1st century the living God opened a corner in Palestine and invited us to come with him.

The Sermon on the Mount when reading it would think is 3 out of 9 ok – but that misses the point – they are not blessings for those people but blessings through those people for the world.  People say why doesn’t God do something – Iraq, Syria, world hunger, football transfers – they imagine when God does something he sends in the tanks and clean it out, but he sends out the meek, the humble, the mourners, the hungry for justice starting schools and hospitals, bringing love, healing, knowledge for people – that’s how God works.

What is the basis of all this?  Start in the middle and work out – the great story of the resurrection.  Used to interview parish priests for jobs – which 2 passages of scripture would you take to a desert island – but you already have John 20, Romans 8, Psalm 119.  Many Christians over last 200 years have tried to hold the fabric of the gospel together whilst not being sure about the physical resurrection.  If Christ has not been raised our faith is futile and we and the world are still in our sins, new creation has not yet begun.

That’s why John emphasises that it’s the first day of the week – he does nothing by accident – so many heights and depths for us to read and explore – it is a new Genesis – in the beginning was the word – you don’t begin a book like that by accident – creation runs its course for 6 days and on the 6th day he creates humans in his image and on the seventh day he rests.  On the Friday Pilate brings Jesus out before the crowds, and on the 7th day God rests in the darkness of the tomb.  On the beginning of the new week is the beginning of the new creation – something which is the ontological basis of mission – without it we are do gooders trying to make the world less miserable.  Yes the world is tough but the resurrection says a cosmic shock wave has gone through the world.

The Church has been at the forefront of the world making it a better place to live, making huge enormous differences due to the living God establishing his kingdom on earth as in heaven.

Breathing on them to receive the Holy Spirit is another Genesis analogy.  Go back to John 7:37-39 Jesus has gone to Jerusalem, been relatively quiet during feast of tabernacles and then quotes Isa. 55 and at tabernacles they would pour out water to remember God providing water during the exile.  Not into the believers heart, as a lake collecting water greedily, but out of our heart, The cross cleanses the hearts of Jesus’ people so that now the Spirit can be given.  The death and resurrection of Jesus is central to enabling the mission of God.

The theme of the Temple used to be seen as an old-fashioned object, but temple theology is the very centre of the missional life of the church.  In John 7 there is no place in the Old Testament which is where the v 38 quote comes from but Ezekiel has an image of the city and the temple being restored, with the glory of God returning, and then the river of living water flows out of the temple to make even the dead sea fresh.  This is what Jesus and therefore John draws our attention to.  Not a safe place to retreat to but a bridge head joining together heaven and earth.  Gregory Beale wrote The Temple and the Churches Mission which is worth reading even though it is quite technical.

It all goes back to the end of the book of Exodus.  Reading the Old Testament through Genesis good, Exodus the slaves will be free, then ch 20 is the 10 Commandments and then a big sigh but the book continues from Genesis 1 and 2 of heaven and earth coming together in the garden, that heaven and earth will come together in the tabernacle.  If you don’t read it at a run you don’t get the drama of it – Aaron building a golden calf downstairs while Moses receiving the instructions for the tabernacle – Moses intercedes and God shows them to build the Tabernacle outside the camp – God fills the Tabernacles.  He is joining together with his people.  It is a microcosm of the creation, a sign of Ephesians 1:10 to join all things together under the Messiah.

It is those themes that are being evoked in the introduction of John’s gospel.  We’ve heard it too often at carol services, we need to refresh it.  The Greek says “skne” – seam – the tent, the tabernacle.  What narrative are we living in now?  Many Jews in the second temple period took it very seriously – that God had abandoned the Tabernacle – waiting for the fulfillment of the end of Ezekiel and Isaiah.  They would say in the first century no this has not happened.  They realised in Malachi they needed to take care in liturgy because he could suddenly come back but no one knew what it would look like.  God never appears in the same way, no one knows, the four evangelists in their own different ways, say it looks like a Jewish man striding through the streets, praying with people, welcoming children, looking in the eye of the rich and respectable who aren’t that respectable, riding into Jerusalem on a donkey and gave his life as a ransom for many.  That’s the fulfillment of Ezekiel.  In Jn 2 Jesus says destroy the temple and he will rebuild it.  The tent being pitched in the tabernacle is not just about Jesus but about us and the wider world.

We think the climax of John’s gospel will come, but then we get the farewell discourses with the disicples in the upper room.  Jesus and his followers is the real temple – receiving the Holy Spirit. We are to be temple people, through whom the new creation launched at Easter becomes a reality in the world, though whom the living water poured outo n the cross flows out to make the dead sea fresh.

Three vinaigrettes:

  • Mary in tears thinks he’s the gardner, and he says “Miriam (not Maria, but the name she was known as a little girl) Jesus renames us, give us our true names and then tells us to tell others.  The Ascension isn’t about being absent, but going to the CEOs office to run the kingdom.  All ministry flows from the announcement that the risen Jesus is the Lord of the world.
  • Thomas, grumpy, be my guest, see the evidence, let’s not be high and mighty about the doubt, we need to meet the doubters half-way, Jesus says come on, let’s do it together.
  • Peter in Jn 18:18 and 21:9 at a charcoal fire – three denials met with three questions.  But they are puzzling, most translations don’t bring this is out, he says do you love me, the agape, big love word.  Peter can’t say that, he says yes I am your friend – philo not agape.  Jesus says feed my lambs.  We have all let Jesus down big time, whatever labels and jobs we have.  You might expect Jesus to say ok we will put you on a probationary course to get you back in the saddle, nor I forgive you, but feed my lambs, the word of commission functioning as the word of forgiveness.  The third time he says, “are you my friend”, but Jesus was saying ok Peter if that’s where you are that’s where we will start, feed my sheep, and by the way there’s some stuff I’ve got planned for you, follow me.

He showed them his hands and his side.  It won’t be easy but peace be with you.  That’s +Tom’s prayer for this conference.  Not just to be beneficiaries but agents of the world.

Group discussion

  • Challenged by the angled mirror – we reflect God to the world and the world’s moaning and groaning to God.
  • The Beatitudes remind us that it can be God meeting us in the mess, the pain and the grubbiness, not the shiny perfection we often think we need.
  • The language of the questions to Peter – very powerful and large implications for us.
  • The water as it flows from the Temple must be dirty as it flows through us – as God meets us where we are at.  Like the River Jordan – a real disgusting river.  A real grace flowing out.

Winchester Diocesan Synod Conference 2013 – Session 1

Diocese of Winchester

This is a live blog – apologies for any spelling mistakes and/or typos

Welcome from Archbishop Justin Welby

Very exciting to hear all the things in the diocese, and to hear it sharpening it’s focus on the mission.  Look forward to learning from you as you go forward in this.

  • Living radically in the world: not cutting ourself off, living in our own holy huddle.  The work of the Street Pastors in Southampton is a classic example of being a mission shaped diocese.  When we are utterly engaged in the life around us we are most likely to find ourselves serving the cause of Jesus.  Discard ruthlessly those things that make us inward looking.
  • Being an incredibly thoughtful group of Christians: being in the world involves looking critically at the baggage we bring, and the baggage the world brings and not tripping ourselves up over it.
  • Rooted in Jesus: a commitment to common and individual prayer, with an every increasing love for Jesus.

Serve through making people jealous by having fun and showing what God is

Winchester has an incredible link of overseas, so it is not the Winchester church, or the English church, but the global church, be conscious of this.  Share in the joys and the sorrows of the Church of England.

Don’t take anything too serious apart from worship, everything else is pretty humorous, especially ourselves, let’s go away caught up not on where we are but on where we could be.

Bishop Tim – Missionary God; Missional Church

We have the enormous privilege of becoming like God through participating in His mission.  Becoming a mission shaped diocese will take us to the very depths of who we are and what we can become.  The Analogy of God’s Mission: Becoming a Mission-Shaped Diocese.

Contexts and Constants

Everyone says this about their times, these are amazing changes, Phyllis Tickle says we are in the change that happens once every 500 years and so we are in this change, globally, at the moment.

The Acts of God challenge us to have a growth in confidence as we see God is in mission.  We have seen a change in facts and values; where is the relationship between morality and facts.  God is excluded from so much, and yet many would say you can see .  We are back, and religion has to be taken into account – the comeback kid against secularist theory.

Mission shaped-church means we have to understand our culture better and learn how to communicate better.  We are in a cross-cultural mission within our own culture which is the first time ever, especially for Westerners.

We are in the process of change-making – we have a generational opportunity that we haven’t seen for many decades, could look at change for the generations behind us.  That means reflecting on our governance, management and strategy.

There are some constants (A. Walls): Jesus – constant maong us; connected to Israel – very important for us to remember that the history of Israel, and the Old Testament is important ofr us to reflect on; part of the global community as the church; scripture and sacraments.

Mission-Shaped Diocese

God in society, not only in just and/or personal faith but for Christianity to be in the marketplace as change makers.  We are not alone, the new Chief Rabbi has spoken on “transform communities” and “grow”.

Built into the role description of all news bishops as the Five Marks of Mission and the Three Quinquennium Goals.  The Church is committed to this agenda, as is Bishop Tim:

  • Passionate personal spirituality
  • Pioneering faith communities
  • Prophetic global citizens

We are called to be like God, through His mission.

We need to be more self-conscious of what our diocese is like to belong to, what is our strategy, where are we going, how are we structuring ourselves os we can be the people we are.

Filled with the Fullness of God

Using Ephesians 3:14-21 as a prayer for the Conference.  If we understand the fullness of God we will naturally walk in the path of mission.  Paul’s prayer is like Jesus’ prayer in John 17 – to fill and to fulfill is a strong missional theme.  God fills and fulfills and does it again and again, overcoming anything and everything through his love.

Been on holiday to Africa – reminds hims of the vitality of life.  God’s love is simply overflowing.  Vital for us if we are to understand God as father of all – sharing God’s life with all.  Vital for us if we are to understand God as father of all – sharing God’s life with all.

God can and does act – versus a practical atheism.  God acts through Christ by the Spirit – that Triune understanding is imperative.

God acts with us personally, corporately, and globally.

Deep, Wide, Long, High: Sharing the love of God

  • Deep with Jesus and his mission.  Bishop Tom will lead us in reflections on how we can go deep with Jesus if we are willing.
  • Wide: personal, corporate and public – the calling that we have because of the love of God
  • Long: strategic and well resourced for the long run
  • High: Spirit of the Ascended Lord – giving himself in all that he is by his Spirit to us.

To do this takes risks, uncomfortable, and challenging.