WHAT IS Vision4Life?
- A further phase of the United Reformed Church’s ‘CATCH THE VISION’ process
- A four-year process offered for development in each local United Reformed Church
- Self-refreshment of each church’s engagement with the Bible, prayer & evangelism
- Materials & support from denomination & synods to enable local design & development
HOW HAS IT COME ABOUT?
A consultation group on spirituality and evangelism, with members from across the URC’s theological spectrum, found a shared excitement about new approaches to the Bible that include the whole people of God in the task of interpretation. We believe every URC could use these approaches to seek fresh, enabling engagement with the Bible. We can picture whole congregations developing their skills of storytelling, listening and conversation in ways that ought to connect the ancient texts with their current situation and stimulate a new confidence in who we are and what we believe. We wondered whether the same range of faith-telling skills, might enable the renewal and strengthening of each church’s shared ‘tent of beliefs’ if also used in support of prayer and evangelism. Might this be how our churches could renew their vision for life? Might we all then bring these skills to ‘big tent believing’ – being a diverse, lively, interactive denomination ready to speak & act & attract fresh generations of diverse believers?
WHAT WOULD IT MEAN FOR A LOCAL CHURCH?
Each congregation is invited to set up four conversations between May & August ’08 to explore ‘the big picture’ and their own local story with regards to: 1. The future of the church; 2. The effectiveness of the Bible in their church; 3. The role prayer plays in the life of their church and its members/adherents; 4. Their preparedness to talk about their faith to each other and to outsiders. After these conversations each participating church will then decide whether they wish to commit to developing (with a lot of shared materials and support) their own 3-year programme to renew their engagement with The Bible, with Prayer and for Evangelism.
THE PROJECTED TIMETABLE…
- Initial presentation about the proposals at General Assembly 2007
- Advance promotion at Synods and in churches through Autumn 2007
- Introductory materials with support events for ministers available from February ’08
- Each church arranges 4 conversations and a decision between May & August ’08
- Year One materials with support events for planners available from September ’08
- Local church planning & promotion of their own year one programme thro’ Autumn ’08
- Advent 2008 – Year One, focussed on the Bible, begins…
- Year Two materials with support events for planners available from September ’09
- Advent 2009 – Year Two, with an added focus on Prayer, begins
- Year Three materials with support events for planners available from September ’10
- Advent 2010 – Year Three, adding a focus on faith-telling for evangelism, begins
Download the Vision4Life factsheet (pdf)
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