This stage is designed to help the church journey toward making the changes God requires of it.
The questions in this stage are different to the questions in the other stages, in that the church needs to constantly ask them throughout the work. It may be helpful for the church’s leadership team to frame their reflection on the MAP process around these four questions as they review each time they meet.
These are the questions that the church will engage with in this stage.
Are we staying close to God?
The first core principle of the MAP process is prayerfulness. The MAP process is concerned with the church increasingly becoming the church God is calling them to be, so it is vital for them to be constantly seeking God’s direction, wisdom, discernment and equipping.
The work of the MAP process should be regularly included in the prayers of the leadership team and during times of corporate worship, but the church will also wish to find other creative ways in which to seek God concerning the work.
Are we aware of what God is doing in and through us?
The second core principle of the MAP process is leader commitment. Although much of the detailed work of the MAP process may be done by other individuals or teams, it is important that the leadership team continue to oversee and be involved in it.
We recommend that the MAP process becomes a standard item on the agenda of the leadership team’s normal meetings and that regular updates are sought by them from those involved in the work. If the work is progressing differently than expected, the leadership team will want to review why and to understand whether any changes might be needed to existing actions and plans.
Are we celebrating God’s faithfulness?
As God continues to work in and through the church, it will be important to celebrate the good things that are happening. This will remind the church of God’s faithfulness and encourage them to continue in the changes He has called them to. There are different ways to celebrate:
With those involved, thanking them and recognising God’s work in and through them.
- As a leadership team, giving thanks to God.
- With the whole church, through regular updates and an annual celebration service.
- With the wider community, sharing all that God is doing through the MAP process.
Are we communicating with others well?
The third core principle of the MAP process is integration – keeping MAP at the centre of the life of the church. People forget very easily, and will assume that if they don’t hear anything then nothing is happening. Therefore, regular and constant communication is vital.
Communication will need to happen at all the same levels as for celebrating God’s faithfulness (individuals, teams, leadership, church, wider community). The leadership will also need to communicate regularly and in different ways. The church may consider communicating via:
- personal contact (announcements, events, one to one, small groups)
- physical media (newspaper articles, newsletters, letters, information boards, posters)
- electronic media (email, website, blogs, videos)
- social media (Facebook, Twitter)
You may find the following extra resources helpful during this stage:
- Prayer and Worship Resources
Some ideas and models to help keep prayer and worship at the centre of the MAP for Derby Diocese process.
- Seeking Evidence for Church Health
A resource for those looking for measures and indicators to help them assess the health of the church.
For further help or information on any aspect of using MAP for Derby Diocese, please contact:
Rev. Jason Kennedy, Diocesan Missioner
Derby Church House