In December of last year, the Waretown/Barnegat Anew Leadership Team met with Conference officials and explained to them we wanted to officially end the new church planting project Barnegat Anew.
This was disappointing in one sense: we worked very hard but could not project a sustainable second church within the three year time frame we were given. In another sense, however, this end has led to a great new beginning! Using what we’ve learned in disciple-making, leadership development, and mission work in new church starts we have launched a ‘Missional Community’.
This group of 5 leading families at the WUMC is part discipleship group, part fellowship group, and part mission team. We meet twice monthly for an evening meal and either study/discussion, fellowship/outing, or mission/service. Between meetings we have practices, action steps, and intensive training sessions to keep us focused.
Why? Because all the best research on church growth and vitality shows us that living the Christian faith is more than just showing up to church on Sunday morning or even taking part in church programs and groups. It is a daily commitment to ACTION, growing as a follower of Jesus, building relationships with friends and neighbors based on long-term trust, credibility, and humbleness, and serving in faith, hope, and love WHEREVER WE FIND OURSELVES DAILY (work, school, neighborhood, church, sports team) and the needs discovered there.
There will be a second Missional Community starting in January 2015. Call Pastor Erik to learn more about this exciting new opportunity!