A 'School of Pioneers' is to be the catalyst for church growth in London in a new venture aimed at training lay people in church planting.
The project is a partnership between Church Mission Society and the Centre for Church Planting and Growth, and is backed by the Bishop of London, Rt Rev Sarah Mullally.
The scheme is aimed at lay people in London, both those currently involved in pioneering, or identified as pioneers within the Diocese of London. It will offer formal training to enable them to gain the expertise and understanding to help them launch and lead fresh expressions of church including missional communities, community projects and entrepreneurships across the diocese.
Lay pioneers will learn as 'apprentices' through reflective practice on practical pioneering initiatives, which for previous pioneers have included using classic cars, boxing, music and the arts, to reach out to those living on the margins and to many for whom church is an anathema.
Students will receive training on mission spirituality, contextual mission and entrepreneurship, and their application in practical situations.
Rt Rev Ric Thorpe, Bishop of Islington and leader of the Centre for Church Planting and Growth, said: 'We are working to encourage a culture of pioneering through church plants, fresh expressions and missional communities throughout the diocese, and through the School of Pioneers we will be able to train and commission lay people to lead new forms of church in new places for new people.'
The non-residential course will be run on six weekends throughout 2019.
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