Pioneers are people called by God who are the first to see and creatively respond to the Holy Spirit’s initiatives with those outside the church; gathering others around them as they seek to establish new contextual Christian community.”
In Cumbria we are pioneering new ways to reach new people in new places, and Fresh Expressions of Church are growing quickly across the county. One in four people in Cumbria who go to church now go to a Fresh Expression, so we are developing pioneer ministry on a number of fronts and find it useful to think of pioneering as a spectrum with people called to different aspects of pioneering. We value Pioneer Accommodators, often people in leadership who give others permission to try new things. We have Pioneer Replicators who take a model of church and try it in a new place, Pioneer Adaptors, who tweak ideas for a local context, and Pioneer Innovators pushing the boundaries of what is church and seeking to find new ways to connect and do church.
To serve and resource the breadth of pioneer ministry we are collaborating with Church Mission Society in developing The Northern Pioneer Mission Centre. The centre offers a range of really creative training, from the year long Certificate in Pioneer Mission, to dedicated weekend courses and modules as well as day gatherings such as #FXCUMBRIA and other one off events.
The scale of Fresh Expressions in Cumbria means we now have a range of resources and ways to support people locally. Our various Fresh Expressions are themed together so people doing similar things can meet and share ideas.
For example we have Messy Meet Ups for those involved in Messy Churches, an Outdoors and Education theme drawing together leaders of Mountain Pilgrim groups or pioneers in schools, and Cmpfire gatherings for Pioneer Innovators. There is a dedicated booklet on Fresh Expressions and Pioneering in Cumbria with information on how to grow a Fresh Expression of church, the journey they go on and the pioneer spectrum we use.
Do get in touch with Richard Passmore to find out more or visit the God For All Fresh Expressions page.
Director of Mission Innovation and Fresh Expressions
Richard encourages Mission Communities to reach deeper into their communities in creative and relevant ways to grow Fresh Expressions of church where people are.
T: 07823 415816