I'm calling the series: 200 Words. You can read the series as it unfolds HERE.
And think of these posts like kites: let's just see if any fly.
First, if you are out of the loop, then read my post about moving from über-urban Manhattan to downtown Sydney.
Now, I know that no one really can, but I would like to start a vision from scratch. I'd like a Tabula Rasa if ever one existed, so that we could write only new and fresh things on it, trying to reach the lost as we love the city.
But (and here is a trustworthy saying and worthy of full acceptance), none of us start from scratch. Not even the church planters. None of us have a Tabula Rasa. The slate is not blank. Jesus has already written on the slate in his gospel. It is his church, not ours. And he has revealed his will in the Holy Scripture.
And more, the saints who are already serving in York St have been planning, and praying, and serving and reaching the city long before I will arrive, and long after I go (God willing). And so I will need to listen closely to those who are already serving Jesus from York St.
And even more, though some of my readers struggle with this, many of you are not a blank slate denominationally either: you are Anglican. And York St is Anglican, and I am one too. There are things we do, and its worth embracing what we have been given.
That having been said, I am beginning to conceptualize what a mature and vital church might look like and be like in the city of Sydney. Partly for my own benefit, and partly so that I will have good things to discuss when I arrive in Sydney.
I want to start my thinking, though, not with pragmatics, nor with a plan, nor with a profile of a city worker or dweller. This is not yet about cultural engagement. And this is not a vision statement for York St, or anything so specific.
I want to start with the broad vision of truths that matter.
I scribed these 20 points fairly quickly a few days ago. It's not exhaustive, and there is overlap. And I'll want to bring them down to only a few things in the end.
But this is kite flying, right?
I plan to write 20 posts (200 words a post) on the following 20 matters in the lead up to Christmas. Would that interest you? Would that be worth a read?
So, my question: what needs to be in the DNA of a church like York St? I'd say that a mature church needs to:
- Glorify and Fear the One True God
- Love and Serve Jesus.
- Be Born of and Empowered by the Spirit.
- Proclaim and Promote his Holy Gospel
- Inwardly Digest his Holy Scriptures
- Promote Preaching with Gravitas.
- Provide for both Sacraments
- Build and Serve Christ's Body
- Have a outward Kingdom Orientation
- Passionately Worship God.
- Appreciate Historic Anglicanism
- Submit to Discipline and Holiness
- Be Informed by Hope
- Love and Engage God's World
- Take Joy in Creation
- Live Generously and Hospitably
- Bind the poor and brokenhearted
- Express Joy
- Value Art, Literature, Music and Creativity
- Promote Productivity and Work
What's missing? What should be taken out? Say your piece now, before I write on each topic.
You can read the series as it unfolds HERE.