Missional Communities (MCs) are not the destination but they are enormously valuable, because MCs are a structure that helps us to get to our true goal: Extended families on a mission! The mission of these extended families is to compassionately reach out to those around us, invite them to join us in community, share the story of the gospel, make disciples, and gather them into families to follow Jesus together. MCs are simply the initial vehicle we learn to drive that gets us to the real destination: learning to live as extended families functioning together on mission with God.
What are Missional Communities?
- A group of 15 – 40 people who are seeking to reach a particular neighborhood or network of relationships with the good news of Jesus.
- The group functions as a flexible, local expression of the church and has the expressed intention of seeing those they in relationship with become followers of Jesus with them.
- They exist to see God’s Kingdom come to their friends and neighbors.
- They are networked within a larger church community, allowing for a “scattered” and “gathered” expression of church.
What are characteristics of Missional Communities?
- Lightweight, low maintenance, mid-sized communities led by laypersons with typically three or four “official” meetings per month in their missional context.
- Each MC will likely have unique missional context (when they meet, where they meet, with whom they meet and what they do).
- Each MC attends to three dimensions of life that Jesus himself attended to:
- UP: Time with God (through worship, prayer, teaching, giving thanks, etc.)
- IN: Time with believers, building vibrant and caring community
- OUT: Time with those who do not yet know Jesus
“The most vigorous forms of community are those that come together in the context of a shared ordeal or communities who define themselves as a group with a mission that lies beyond themselves – thus initiating a risky journey. Over-concern with safety and security, combined with comfort and convenience, have lulled us out of our true calling and purpose.”
– Alan Hirsch & Michael Frost, The Forgotten Ways