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FEAST Day 2 - great day of Networking!

Building Networks

Networks are becoming more and more important. In the past we organised businesses, churches and communities around hierarchical structures but we now live in an age of networks in which networks describe the way we work, the way we relate, the way we communicate and the communities we seek to serve. The internet is not just a tool for communication - it is a way of understanding the world we live in. It exists because we live in a network age - and it is encouraging a society which works in a similar way...

If networks are so important then we may need to learn how to live in a network age and operate in networks. Networking is an increasingly important skill for mission and ministry and this was a big theme at the FEAST Day in Milton Keynes on Saturday 6th March.

The purpose of the day was to bring people together who are keen to explore new ways of doing church in Milton Keynes. It was good to hear some stories from people who are working away on various projects. Coffee time was an opportunity for people to catch up with each other and meet new people. Ideas were shared and contact details swapped...

Mike Baldwin and Testament provided the opening worship and told us a little about their story and the things they do. Testament, Mike told us, is not so much a band as a database. It's a list of names and contact details of musicians from a range of churches in Milton Keynes who can come together to provide high quality music for outreach events. They are already providing music for Oakhill STC and Woodhill prison. On Easter weekend they have been asked to provide five hours of music at Middleton Hall. No individual church could do this, but the database makes it possible!

The story of Testament shows us what can be possible if networking skills are used well. Mike is a great networker and has been very good at building a network of musicians across the city - and talking to people who might have opportunities to offer.

Mike questioned whether Testament and M&M should count as fresh expressions. This really depends on how you read the definition. This project does have a lot to say, however, about being church in a contemporary way - and it is seeking to serve those who are 'not yet members of any church'. Whether it's technically a 'fresh expression' or not, it is a good example of the role that networks can play in the mission of the church.

FEAST Day 2!

In September 2009 we held a FEAST Day. This was an opportunity for individuals and groups to come together and share the good ideas that they have for doing church in new ways. It was an exciting event with a CafeChurch taster, good conversation and some multi-media worship with Air.

On March 6th 2010 there is going to be another FEAST Day at Christchurch Stantonbury. This will be a breakfast gathering with coffee and danish pastries at 9:30am, worship from Testament, and an opportunity to discuss a new plan for a Pioneer Minister on the eastern flank who will help us all think about mission and fresh expression...

The agenda will be:
9.30 arrive coffee and danish
10.00 worship M&M
10.20  Welcome and introduction - Tim Norwood
10.30  Input re Music and Message and discussion
11.15   Coffee refill - loo break
11.30  Info and discussion about Pioneer Ministry in MK 
12.00  News, decisions, plans, action, moving forward, what's happning around the place
12.30 - finish

Air: December 2009


Fresh Expressions and our understanding of 'church'

Tim Clapton would like to follow up our session on ecclesiology.  Feel free to post your contributions and discuss the questions Steve left with us which were quite useful:

1.  What are the values and foundations [of FX or emerging church] ?   (roots)

2.  What are the characteristics of [FX or emerging] church ?  (fruits)

3.  What gifts do we need to bring this about ?  

LSM in Fresh Expressions

We had a good discussion about Local Shared Ministry at the Fresh Expressions residential.

I particularly enjoyed the suggestion that churches/Christian communities should be represented by amoebas...

Planning a day in March...


Peter Ballantine, Tim Norwood and Keith Beech-Gruneberg met this afternoon to discuss the residential and think about the day in March. Current plans are 1:00pm to 6:00pm with sessions on ecclesiology, church planting and fresh expressions... More details soon...

Residential: How was it for you?

The residential at Felden Lodge is now over. Any reflections from those who went?