After a lengthy period of evaluation and review PMC has now been granted an extension of the Bishop’s Mission Order (BMO) until March 2018. Whilst the review process meant that we have been unable to really develop any new work for some time it has provided a substantive period of discernment as to the contribution that PMC can make to the future of the church in Poole
What has become clear is the important role that organisations like PMC can play in helping and enabling the church to become a genuine mixed economy of church, and in reconnecting with contexts that are significantly disconnected from church. In the establishment of Reconnect and Space for Life PMC has shown that it can pioneer and nurture new worshipping communities and begin to explore how these new communities can relate to the established church.
In addition we now have the experience of running the Mission Shaped Ministry course and the Learning Community for teams of people trying to start new communities of disciples. All of this puts PMC is a very good position to begin to explore new contexts in which new communities of disciples might be planted. However, what is clear is that this must now take place by working with others from the local church. Our role will therefore be one of enabler, coach, catalyst and support.
There are now two strands to our work. Firstly, ‘Breathing Spaces’ that emerges from the ministry of Space for Life and which is described in more details here. Secondly, missional community as a flexible model for incarnational mission and church planting. For this second are we have therefore identified 2 contexts which we are beginning to explore engaging with; Turlin Moor and Young Adults.
In the strategic presentation we did in conjunction with Old Town and Hamworthy Parishes to the Bishop of Salisbury earlier in the year, Turlin Moor was identified as a key mission priority. There are a number of Christians living there, committed to reaching their own community with the Gospel, but who currently worship elsewhere. We will be exploring working alongside them to develop vision and values for their mission and to see if a path toward establishing a worshipping community on ‘the Moor’ can be developed.
We also identified young adults as a mission priority. Young adults are a demographic the Anglican church nationally is struggling to engage with. Here in Poole we found that there has been an increase in the proportion of young adults living in the central town area. 23% of homes in the Old Town ward are occupied by young single professionals and students. This is certainly not reflected in the age profile of any of our churches! So what can we do?
PMC will be exploring this issues and looking to the possibility of forming a missional community with a vision to engage with this generation. And as part of this we will be hosting a day workshop in February 2017 with input from people already ministering to young adults. If you are at all interested in this or if you want to get details of the workshop day as soon as we get them do get in touch.
In this same phase we will also be working hard to develop greater sustainability for PMC in the future. PMC is funded entirely from local giving and grants. We do not want to rely on grants, particularly for ongoing ministry. Therefore we are looking to grow local individual and church giving over the next 2 years. Our 50:2 appeal aims to encourage 50 new givers of at least £10 per month in the next 2 years. More information and a link to our giving page can be found here. Please would you consider investing in pioneer mission and the future of the church by giving to PMC? Thank you.