Urban Mission and Church Planting

The missional ministry course of Bristol Baptist College is a response to the missional challenge now facing the church in our urban areas. Its aim is to form and equip people with the character and skills to engage in creative mission and church planting in demanding city environments.
The unique features of the course are the opportunity it provides to engage in six years of incarnational style mission and ministry whilst being supported as part of a team at the same time as training, and  the opportunity to work for two days per week in another job and thus develop broader appreciation of mission through bi-vocational practice.
In addition to the competencies already in place as part of ministerial formation, we have added a further four which relate specifically to mission, these come under the headings of pioneer, community formation, urban and bi-vocational. These additional competencies will focus the formation process for the development of a creative and resilient missional future.
This is an in-service course of missional-ministerial formation intended to lead to an academic qualification acceptable to the Baptist Union Ministry Department and thus to admission to the Union’s ministerial accreditation list.
The course takes place in partnership with re:Source Bristol (part of West of England Baptist Association) and Urban Expression (urbanexpression.org.uk) who will develop and support ‘mission teams’ in urban areas of Bristol where there is an opportunity to re-plant a struggling church or plant a new congregation or Christian community. The mission team will be supervised by an accredited Baptist minister with urban mission experience who will in turn be supported by members of the Urban Expression Steering group and the re:Source Bristol team.
The ‘minister-in-training’ may also be associated with a local Baptist church (either the church being ‘re-planted’ or another local church) and will have been invited to participate in pastoral ministry by the church on a mutually agreed basis. This will enable the minister to gain competencies required for pastoral ministry.
Phil Lawrence writes:
“The incarnational mission track has given us an opportunity to continue to engage in ministry in south Bristol, where we have lived for 19 years. We have felt challenged throughout that time by the proximity of Knowle West and other South Bristol estates, and are encouraged by other Christians who have responded to the call to move there. We are now looking forward to becoming fully immersed in the life of the estate ourselves.
There are many opportunities to partner with others in meaningful social action, whether paid or unpaid. It is also good to connect with both a new expression of church, and an established one; through the emerging Christian community of households, and the developing Anglican Baptist partnership.”
Find out more here or contact Steve Finamore
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