New mission campaign to bring Jesus to Sydney
Jesus brings website
A new Mission campaign for the Diocese, called Jesus brings, is set to kick off in 2014.
The campaign, officially endorsed at Synod and commended to all churches, is designed to encourage churches to conduct locally relevant mission, but have the support of centralised resourcing and branding, as well as flagship events.
The Rev Baden Stace, rector of St Cuthbert’s Carlton and chair of the Jesus brings steering committee says the aim is really to support the local parishes to push particularly hard in 2014 with mission.
“We’re trying to energise the parishes,” he says. “Connect 09 was a great time for many churches across the Diocese, and they sounded energised to be part of something bigger, and to be part of something together... we’re wanting to equip them and give a mission focus such that 80,000 Christians in Anglican churches across Sydney and the Illawarra can collectively shout out to our region what Jesus brings, and get to the heart of the gospel.”
The theme of the mission is designed to be targeted, providing a theme that’s specific enough to give focus, and broad enough to allow for local flexibility. The focus also allows for what Mr Stace describes as particular ‘seasons’ in the calendar year that allow for larger events that still fit in with the work the churches will be doing in their own parishes.
“We’re calling parishes to align around two seasons,” he says. We’re wanting to use the Easter season next year as a point of focus ... but we’re also looking to provide a second season in August and September when we can turn up the heat again and offer another point of focus to parishes. If I can put it like this, Easter is about local churches doing local mission well, and the August season is about doing mission together on a larger scale with some larger events around the city.”
A key part of the campaign itself, says Mr Stace, is about providing specific resources for churches to make use throughout the year. “We are developing a whole range of mission resources. So there are things like banners to be put up in front of churches or public squares, as well as t shirts,” he says. “We’re working on targeted gospel fliers, which churches can use right across the diocese. Creatively we’re developing quite an innovative gospel resource, actually, which combines the text of Luke’s gospel with web content that people can access via their mobile device, which we’re working on with the Bible Society, and it will have six QR codes [bar-code like stamps that are smartphone camera readable and can contain complex information like URLs] which can be scanned and can actually give the reader a guided experience through the gospel, with apologetic material, background about Luke and the cultural context.
Churches have also been asked to pray for the mission on the 2nd of February 2014 during services.