Monday, November 21, 2011
mission shaped ministry national gathering update
Friday and Saturday was mission shaped ministry train the trainers gathering, hosted by Uniting College, which I sort of facilitated. About 35 folk from 4 denominations around Australia gathering, some with experience of pilots in Adelaide and Canberra, others wanting to know more about running mission shaped ministry courses in their patch.
John and Olive Drane provided input drawing on their UK involvement. They demonstrated a session, allowed us to debrief it and shared with us the vision, values and practicalities. Those from Adelaide and Canberra shared what it was like for them to run a course, what they had learnt and what they would do differently next time.
The time concluded with a discussion of the future and the following steps were agreed:
- The welcoming of two new partners – Uniting Synod of Western Australia and a Uniting grouping (perhaps Synod or Presbytery) from Queensland.
- The seven existing and two new partners ask msm UK to extend the current Memorandum of Undertanding, and the embedded pilot phase ethos, allowing local groupings to continue to run in a pilot, experimental phase. (This could result in pilots in Western Australia, Tasmania, Victoria, Sydney, Queensland, plus again in Adelaide and Canberra sometime in the next 12-18 months).
- We want to keep meeting as a national body. We favour a sort of working coalition which can resource, network, allow us to encounter diversity. To enable this, we will meet as a national body in November 2012, in Adelaide, hosted by Anglicans, at Adelaide College of Divinity, bringing with us more shared experiences of local pilots in action.
- Set up two working groups, one to explore how to get a video of stories of Australian fresh expressions, the other to explore how to develop ethnic participation in the mission shaped ministry course.
So there we are. 12 months ago, there was nothing. Now there is a coalition of 9 partners (more are welcome at any point), representing all of Australia apart from Northern Territories, all feeling empowered to run their own local msm courses, yet all keen to keep gathering around our shared experiences in on the ground mission training.
Personally, it’s been a lot of extra work, not just being part of running a local msm pilot, but also leading (sort of) what has effectively been three national gatherings over the past year. But I’m delighted with the outcomes and with the sense of shared collaboration and equality that has emerged.