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CMS Certificate testimonial

We are coming toward the end of the latest round of the CMS certificate. We run this course to equip and

enable people who feel called to pioneer in their local context. We’ve had a fantastic group on the course

this past year, from across the Diocese, all engaged in range of different pioneering projects.

Stephen Lamb is a pioneer based on the island of Jersey. Here Stephen describes his ministry and the impact the course has had.


My experience of the CMS course can largely be summed up by the following: Diversity, Digging Deeper and Graffiti Church. So let me explain what I mean. Diversity is very important in the context of who we (as Pioneers) are reaching out to with the gospel. Potential barriers, for example, language, physical abilities, culture and awareness of neuro-diversity can only be addressed once they’ve been identified. I found this to be challenging in a helpful way, particularly when I considered a young man who was recently joined our church after attending a Graffiti Church event (I’ll explain more about this later). It’s worth noting that the pioneers on our course are also a diverse group, with a wide spectrum of backgrounds, experiences and opinions. This has made for good, challenging discussions, leading each of us to dig deeper. Digging Deeper. Like many groups of people, Christians have many clichés. Words and phrases such as ‘saved’, ‘outreach’ and even the word, ‘church’ are used casually, as though we all know what these words mean and are all in agreement. However, not only do these terms (and many others) carry different connotations for different people, the individuals who speak of them often don’t know what they mean (myself included). I particularly found the discussion surrounding ‘what is church’ to be stretching and enriching as part of a diverse group.

At the commencement of the CMS course, I had an idea to begin something called Graffiti Church.Graffiti art is something I’ve done for over 20 years. The idea was not for it to become a church, in and ofitself, but rather a means of bridging the gap between the gospel and people who may not step foot in atraditional church. As I mentioned earlier, one man came along to the first session of Graffiti Church, withhis partner and children. They have all since been baptised. Was this down to Graffiti Church alone? No!But I received the following quotes from him, which helped me to see how Graffiti Church provided awelcoming, open door.“Graffiti can make old, dirty buildings look alive again. Or it can make the nicest buildings look like an eyesore.... Ironically, this analogy can apply to both life with Christ and life without him, lost in sin”.“As someone who has had faith without a church and who found faith through the influence of the HipHop movement, which graffiti belongs to, a church using graffiti was the perfect net to cast to capturesomeone new on the walk....”Finally, one of the most helpful things I’ve taken from the course is the friendships built and encouragement received to dare to step out and try new things.


Find out more here

 The next round of the CMS certificate will start in January '25 and we will be accepting applications soon. You can download a flier here 

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