Having a ‘mission plan’ or ‘growth plan’ is essential to the health of every Methodist church. The calling of the Methodist Church is to respond to the gospel of God’s love in Christ and to live out its discipleship in worship and mission. Just as each church worships differently, so each church goes out in mission to its community differently. The shape of a local church’s mission will depend on lots of factors, such as the gifts and resources of the people who make up that church, and the needs of the community it serves. Some churches are large and have lots of potential volunteers; many churches are small and volunteers scarce. Some churches are rural and some are urban; some are rich and some are poor. We can’t all do the same things and we don’t need to – but we can all do something. Every church is an essential part of the mission of God and has a part to play.
In this section of the website you will find resources to help your church, circuit or district put into words its hopes and dreams, and start to plan how it will take some steps toward making those dreams a reality.
How do we get started?
First, have a look at some of the resources in the 'toolkit' below. Each resource offers a slightly different way of going about the conversations which will shape your mission plan. There is a brief description of each one to help you decide which is right for you.
Second, plan a series of sessions when your church, circuit or district will talk and listen together – to God and to each other – trying to include as many people as possible. The more people feel included in the mission planning process, the more likely they are to be motivated to take action once you have decided what you will do, and the happier they are likely to feel about any changes that result.
Third, fill in the ‘Mission Plan Framework’ so that you have a record of what you have heard together about God’s plans for your church, circuit or district’s future, and what actions you will take as a result. You should feel free to adapt the framework to suit your needs. There are some guidance notes to help you.