National recognition for Baptist pioneers
A pathway that offers national recognition for Baptist pioneers has been officially approved
‘Equipped to Pioneer’ has been available for a few years, but the details have recently been clarified, and in April the national ministerial recognition committee officially approved this as a pathway to national recognition as a Baptist pioneer.
This part-time training is for anyone in Baptist churches involved in pioneer ministry and church planting. Pioneers seek to go to where the church isn’t, do what Jesus does, and see what happens. They may be starting something completely new, or based in an existing church, but their intention is the same, to grow new and contextually relevant Christian communities.
‘Equipped to Pioneer’ consists of 10 core modules, five of which are offered by Baptist Colleges (sometimes in conjunction with associations) and five by the Crucible Course, which is run by Urban Expression and partners including the Incarnate Network, the Northumbria Community and BMS World Mission.
Candidates are required to choose a two further option modules, from a choice of six, delivered by Colleges and by the CMS Pioneer Mission Leadership Training Course. The modules may be taken in any order and will normally take a minimum of two to three years to complete.
Any pioneer wanting to pursue recognition should to speak to their regional minister about being commended by their church to their regional Ministerial Recognition Committee. Ideally, this should happen before they undertake any of the training. There will be a second Ministerial Recognition Committee once all the modules have been completed at which national recognition is approved.
Of the Crucible Course, Stuart Murray-Williams, an Urban Expression co-founder, said, 'The Crucible course operates from the perspective that the long era of Christendom is coming to an end and that mission from the margins will require fresh thinking and practice in many areas. The course encourages participants to explore new ways of engaging in evangelism, discipleship, church planting, urban mission and community renewal.'
The Revd Angie Tunstall has been on the course. She said, 'What an amazing course! Living in urban Eccles as cross-cultural missionaries, Crucible has really been a great environment for shared learning, listening, thinking and reflecting with others on what it means to creatively be a part of a small urban Christian community.'
For more information visit www.baptist.org.uk/etp