Called to pioneer?
A pioneer is someone able to imagine what a new Christian community can be and enable it to happen.
The Methodist Church recognises pioneers and planters as a precious gift and is committed to them. We will support, coach, and connect them through the Methodist Pioneering Pathways (MPP). If you are reading this, you may well sense a call to begin something new for God.
We invite you to take a few moments to read through the MPP webpage to see how we support our pioneers and how you can join this growing community.
But am I a pioneer?
It could be you feel you do not fit the image of a pioneer or planter. Take a look at the characteristics listed below that are common to many pioneers and reflect on whether you see them in yourself. In each person, these gifts will be expressed differently, as we are all uniquely and wonderfully made by God. To explore further if you are called to pioneer and plant, why not make some space to think deeply by downloading the Discernment Journal that contains some helpful questions to steer your reflections.
The Methodist Church believes a pioneer is:
In a variety of settings, be it church, community, artistic or business a pioneer is motivated to initiate a new project from very little or nothing, to begin with.
A gift to imagine what new Christian community might be for new people and envision others to work towards its creation.
An effective pioneer builds teams of people around a vision to enable it to become reality. By enabling others to discern their gifts a pioneer gives a project a sustainable future beyond their unique gifts.
Connected to others
Creative connections to their community, to God and to individuals is the passion of pioneers. Being connected will always be a significant place of inspiration and energy. Forming friendships with those beyond the established church comes very easily.
Called to the edge
Though committed to the established church, pioneers often find themselves called and happiest at the edge. The borderland between church and community is a creative space for new ideas to emerge.
A natural evangelist
At ease speaking about their faith sensitively in every situation, a pioneer is always open to sharing the gospel in relevant ways.
Committed to diversity
Being called to the edge a pioneer notices those who are missing or excluded from Christian communities. A pioneer will plant new Christian communities that seek diversity and inclusion of all.
Risk-taking and mistake-making
Though not seeking to fail, a pioneer has a willingness to risk failure in the pursuit of finding out where God is leading. They see dealing with failure as an essential part of development and progress.
Responsive to changing contexts
A pioneer is able to pivot quickly to changes around them and make them fruitful opportunities for faith to be shared or moments of growth for the new community.
Desiring faith community
Essential to pioneers is the desire to form new Christian communities where people can become followers of Jesus for the first time.