A VISION OF THE CHURCH:
In Tasmania we are blessed on occasions to observe an amazing phenomenon of nature, the Aurora Australis, the Southern Lights. An Aurora can be described as a “radiant emission from the upper atmosphere.” I was blessed one evening travelling home late from Launceston by this radiance falling like a curtain from the heavens.
The Aurora over the landscape of Tasmania draws from within me a deep longing that the Light of the World, our Lord Jesus Christ, will break into our lives and ministry in powerful and transforming ways. We yearn for His radiance to be fully known, that His rule and Kingdom will be on earth as it is in heaven.
Our State, Tasmania, needs the Church, our Anglican Church, and every Christian man, woman, boy and girl to fulfil our biblical mandate to proclaim the good news of God’s kingdom and to declare the purpose of God in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. With God we commit to build a healthy church transforming life.
THE BISHOP’S MISSION ACTION PLAN:
I believe we must continue to re-imagine and clarify our purpose. Why does the church exist? Why does your parish exist? Why do people need Christ? Why do people need the church? Why do people need this particular church denomination? Who are we? What has God called us to be and do? Who is our neighbour? Why don’t they trust us? How can we rebuild trust? It is only as we consider these questions that we will understand the life that God is calling us to bring to our relationships.
I have pondered these deep questions in the context of priority setting. As agents of the God of Life: What are the challenges facing the Diocese as we bring life? What strategies do you feel may be effective in addressing the challenges? What issues demand my priority and how might we tackle these issues?
Take time to reflect on how your local ministry might work toward a planned response.
Consider the key strategies mentioned.
To be a church that is creative, innovative and flexible
How would you rate your ministry in each of these areas?
How might those ratings be improved?
To be risk literate
How do you manage risk in your ministry context?
To build relational church communities
How might you determine how well you are doing in this area?
To emphasise missionary discipleship
How is discipleship emphasised in your ministry context?
To unlock leadership
How are you developing leadership in your ministry context?
To unlock resources
What resources do you believe are under- utilised?
What evidence do you see of this priority in your ministry context?
WHAT COULD YOU DO TO CONTINUE THIS PROCESS AT HOME?
See 2004 Bishop’s Vision for the Missionary Diocese of Tasmania:a healthy church transforming life can be found here.