Fresh Expressions Canada seeks to evolve from an Initiative to a Movement
Last November, I met with Dr John Bowen, Bishop Mary Irwin-Gibson, Dr Judy Paulson and Rev Nick Brotherwood to discuss a new transition in the life of Fresh Expressions Canada. As I take on the role of Fresh Expressions Canada Team Leader, I will rely on the past experience of Nick and John who were thanked for their contributions to the program over the past few years
We put so much time and energy in maintaining, planting, growing and shaping churches for Christians. But how might we pay attention to the fact that the fastest growing religious demographic in Canada is No Religion? Additionally, how might we form missional communities that are focused on Dones (those who have given up on church and decided they are better off without it) and Nones (those who are not affiliated with any organized religion)?
I believe the Fresh Expressions movement speaks directly to these questions. Evidence-based research confirms that it is now one of the most significant missional movements of the 21st century - spreading quickly across Europe, North America and Australia. Fresh Expressions is now making a difference across Canada by equipping all types of individuals to start all types of missional communities. These pioneers start from a place of longing in their heart to create evolving structures that strive to serve the people they care for and love.
In 2017 I will begin creating a new low-touch, high-support 'Mission Shaped Network' by listening to those who understand there is a missionary crisis in Canada. These change agents will be visionaries drawn from an eclectic arena of Church leaders; business folk, local practitioners, social entrepreneurs, theological educators, and other missional change agents.
My vision is to create A 'Mission Shaped Network' of churches and individuals who will commit to a missional paradigm of planting new churches in Canada. This spring I will start by building a team of people with whom I will develop a plan for the new Fresh Expressions entity to be in place by October of this year. If you find yourself drawn to this movement, please feel free to contact me for more information firstname.lastname@example.org