Growing City Focus:
Transformation of our places will only happen as church and other Christian leaders begin to view their ministry from the perspective of the city and not just their local church or denominational agenda.
No one church, agency or individual will enable cultural, social and spiritual transformation. Churches and key Christian leaders in the cultural and social spheres need to build strong relationships and work together.
Sustained United Prayer:
The transformation of our places is ultimately an act of God through the establishment of the Kingdom. United prayer must be at the centre of all that is undertaken, responding to the Spirit’s initiative and talking authority over the places God has called us to.
Developing Growing Missional Churches:
There is no shortcut to the progress of transformation; we will need to plant and grow more and more healthy churches, who incarnate their ministry in the locality and grown through conversion.
Churches Growing Whole-life Disciples:
Growing and planting more churches in itself is not enough to see transformation. To affect the cultural and social spheres of an area, church members will need to be inspired, trained and released to be Kingdom people in their places of work and neighbourhoods. Church institutions and their leaders can never sufficiently affect the cultural and social fabric of their cities; they do, however, have in their congregations the people who can bring about transformation.
Support of Christians in the Cultural and Social Spheres:
To affect the cultural and social spheres of an area, Christians in those spheres will have to be enabled to join together in regular prayer, support and training. Such spheres include health, education, arts, media, council, business to name a few. Not only must unity between church leaders be grown to effect transformation, but also unity of spirit and purpose between Christians in the cultural spheres, the cultural sphere networks and the church unity network. God is joining up all things to bring about an all-things transformation.
Emergence of Christian Public Leadership:
Arising from the support of Christians in the cultural and social spheres, it will increasingly be important to see raised-up Christians who can become key public leaders, especially in government, business and media contexts. Public and Private Sector Engagement for the
Renewal of Civil Society:
For churches working together in unity for the transformation of their areas, it is vital they work in partnership with other third sector organisations, the public and private sectors. A new spirit of partnership must develop between churches and social institutions such as; local government, cultural centres, third sector charities, schools, businesses, police and health bodies – those public and private bodies that are working towards the common good.
Special Focus on Poverty Reduction:
With so many possibilities for service, churches and Christian agencies will need to work together in unity and primarily focus on those who are the most vulnerable in society, affected by material and relational poverty.
by Roger Sutton,
read more in: A Gathering Momentum: Stories of Christian Unity Transforming Our Towns and Cities
(published by Instant Apostle).