It is very pleasing to see the establishment of an increasing number and range of ‘Unbounded Church’ linked missional communities which this site is dedicated to encourage and facilitate. The central concept is to set free (unbind) the ecclesiology (doctrine of church) voiced to us by the New Testament from the ‘Christendom-form’ in which we have generally bound it. This allows that ecclesiology to be expressed in a multitude of legitimate ways in order to penetrate the Kaleidoscope of universes where the ‘Unchurched’ now dwell-universes quite alien to the traditional church universe.
Particularly encouraging is the percentage of Unchurched and De-churched in these new missional communities which ranges from 30 to 60%. This can be compared to traditional church congregations (even those seeking to engage in mission) where that statistic is usually below 10%. There is no doubt that for what might be called ‘missional efficiency’, certainly in terms of engaging with the unchurched, ‘Small is beautiful’ indeed!
it is important that, even as we give thanks to God for these new shoots that He is clearly blessing, we do not allow these real successes to cause us to lose sight of the bigger picture.
The bigger picture is that the trends of declining conversions and the rising average age in congregations continue, and a mathematical analysis of those trends clearly shows that the only way they can be reversed is by a missional strategy that multiplies Christian communities. This is something we have not been very good at.
So, it is important that when we establish any type of new missional community it must be one that can be easily reproducible, in fact as we set it up we must be thinking about the next one. Otherwise, while it might be considered a success viewed in isolation, it will not really contribute to the requirements of the ‘big picture’.
Some thoughts on this can be found in ‘Multiplication – A Many Splendoured Thing’ (@ https://unboundedchurch.com/?s=Multiplication) or by searching for ‘Multiplication on this blog.
This is what I call the ‘Multiplication Urgency’.
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