Thursday, July 30, 2009
faith:full families take a lot of work
I’ve just printed off my speaking notes for Adelaide. 74 pages, and 20,000 words in note form. That’s a lot of work! It’s something I’ve been working on for nearly a year now, using a range of places to workshop stuff.
Here is my introduction in the written material I have provided for participants:
Aim of week: To provide stimulation for our ministries as children, youth, family workers by weaving together selected Biblical narratives regarding families, together with contemporary missiology.
Key image – tables: You sit at a table. The people in your ministry context sit around tables. Jesus sat at tables. Many Bible narratives occurred around tables. What narratives and insights – Biblical, ministerial, missional – can shape our “table” ministry?
My context: I come not as an academic with a lot of well polished talks. Instead the material is tentative and on the run, shaped by 6 years helping an established church refind a heart for local community ministry. This conference has provided a chance to go back through my hard drive, trying to pull together key moments and learnings and shaping narratives, with specific regard to family ministry, and to realise this recurring theme of table. And so to offer the fragments to you, wondering what you will find as we sift life and ministry together. I am looking forward to that with you.
A more thorough outline is here. The angelwings research team has also cooked up some case studies – 4 different contexts in which ministry can be happening – and I’m looking forward to seeing what participants make of them.
While I am in Adelaide, I’m talking with a publisher about the possibility of this becoming a book. Just an exploration. But it seems to me that there is very little written on ministry across the generations from a Downunder perspective. Even less that is closely attentive both to Biblical narratives and to contemporary mission insights. So there might be a hole needing filling. It certainly would be nice to see 74 pages and 20,000 words find life not just for 1 week, but in an ongoing way.