Discipleship Resources have been recommended for use by Anglicans who are involved in evangelism and church growth but The Anglican Communion Office can take no responsibility for the appropriateness of the content of these resources for your context.
ALPHA & YOUTH ALPHA – These two courses are so well known that little needs to be said here except that I have used the course in middle class Oxford, inner-city Wembley and the forests of Sarawak amongst Iban youth and each time with some success. I have also helped to adapt Alpha for use in Orthodox churches in Romania and Russia and I know it is used widely by Roman Catholic churches. But it is not appropriate everywhere. It did not work, for some reason, in my parish in Newcastle. Much more information read here
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PARENT & TODDLER GROUPS – These groups can take many different forms and can be run by churches, groups of churches or even an individual cell group. In essence they recognize that in our culture a parent who is not in work and is at home caring for a pre-school child, or children, can be very isolated. This is also a stage in life, following the birth of a child, when adults ask questions about the meaning of life and faith. The group can be held in a home, church room, community room, swimming pool, etc. but the essential elements are praying church members (who don’t need to be young – sometime a ‘grandparent’ figure is just what is needed), a welcoming and safe environment, toys, and helpers to care for the children whilst parents talk. In my last church in one period of two years 65% of new church members were first contacted through the Parent and Toddler group. Helpers need some training/advice on how to appropriately share their faith in this context. Further information at Engage Today
COMMUNITY OF ST. ANSELM
This is the Archbishop of Canterbury’s initiative launched in September 2014 to open up Lambeth Palace in London to Christians aged 20-35 – inviting them to spend a year living, studying and praying at a historic centre of the Anglican Communion. The Community of St Anselm will be a group of adventurous young adult Christians from all walks of life, hungry for a challenging and formative experience of life in a praying community.
The Community will initially consist of 16 people living at Lambeth Palace full-time, and up to 40 people, who live and work in London, joining part-time. The year-long programme will include prayer, study, practical service and community life. Members of the Community will live in a way the ancient monastics would recognise: drawing closer to God through a daily rhythm of silence, study and prayer. But, through those disciplines, they will also be immersed in the modern challenges of the global 21st century church.
You can learn more about the initiative here and here and at the community’s website: http://stanselm.org.uk/ with further explanation in a YouTube video here . For further questions or comments contact the Prior at email@example.com
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Alison is well known as the author of The Wild Gospel and Word on the Wind and especially for her contribution to the African-based discipleship programme “Rooted in Jesus”. Her new book, Following Jesus: the Plural of Disciple is Church, is published by ReSource.
The question ‘what does it mean to be a disciple of Jesus’ is a key one for the church today. Alison has wide experience of helping people to answer this question, and this book offers a radical new contribution to the debate. Discipleship, Alison suggests, is about living and sharing our Christian faith, not just being taught it; it is not about what we know, but about who we are becoming.
CONTAGIOUS DISCIPLE MAKING: LEADING OTHERS ON A JOURNEY OF DISCOVERY – In Contagious Disciple Making, David Watson and Paul Watson map out a simple method that has sparked an explosion of homegrown churches in the United States and around the world. Contagious Disciple Making details the method used by Cityteam disciple-makers. This distinctive process focuses on equipping spiritual leaders in communities where churches are planted. Unlike many evangelism and church-growth products that focus on quick results, contagious disciple-making takes time to cultivate spiritual leadership, resulting in lasting disciple-making movements. Through Contagious Disciple Making readers will come to understand that a strong and equipped leader will continue to grow the church long after church planters move on to the next church. Published by Thomas Nelson 2014. Available here.
MISSION-SHAPED PARISH: TRADITIONAL CHURCH IN A CHANGING WORLD – By Paul Bayes et al looks at the bread-and-butter things that churches regularly do, through the lens of mission. It takes a fresh look at a typical parish church’s worship, pastoral contacts, civic and public responsibilities, faith nurturing opportunities, its administration and government – and creatively points to how all of this can be seen from the point of view God’s mission. Available from Church House Publishing
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