in the Bath"
Bath, thatís the city not the annual event, is where we are. Yeah I know someone has to live here Ė suffering for Jesus. We got picked. I was expecting a foreign posting. Donít ask.
Along with a bunch of others we left our previous church (brilliant church too BTW) a year or two ago. Some drifted off over the horizon; others began to gather in households while they figured out what to do next. We kind of knew why we were leaving Ė we planned to begin a church planting movement that was going to sweep the nation; no seriously we did. Go on humour me.
We slowly discovered some strong common values and a vision which has begun to emerge out of that. But you donít want to hear about all that boring stuff, you know - organic, relational, community, simplicity, reproducibility, centrifugal not centripetal (what!? Yeah thatís what I thought too!), participative, dispersed leadership, strong mutual discipling, apostolic/propheticÖ no I thought not.
Having babies is
more fun than getting divorced
Infact our plan is not to build anything at all, we just want to give stuff away, we want the Kingdom we have experienced to flow ever outwards. Weíre not interested in having a sexy looking church in the middle to which we are constantly trying to get people along, where we desperately try to hold onto everyone and everything in sight. We want to see people going and making disciples wherever God says to go and if we can serve them in that weíll be happy.
Why the heck should we expect people to leave their culture to come into our weird Christian culture? Jesus told us to leave ours and enter into theirs.
There are now about five nearly six household churches in Bath, Bristol and Chippenham and we are starting to get together occasionally to share stories and encourage one another. Hopefully where we are lacking other groups will be able to help us and vice versa.
Ok so it takes a little longer to get a church planting movement off the ground than we first thought but through some research Iím doing I have found a number of similar networks in the UK who have seen 4th & 5th generation plants amongst non-churched people. Now that is cool.
You may want to check out www.simplechurch.co.uk for some really boring stuff about this sort of organic, simple, home church stuff. Go on, you know youíll love it.