Browsing articles from "January, 2015"
Jan 28, 2015
neil

3 reasons to be at this conference

What do we need to grasp to be effective ministers of the gospel in a city?

1. Cities are the future

Today for the first time in human history over half of the world’s population live in cities. The UN estimate in World Population Prospects that by 2050 the world will be 68.7 percent urban.

Stephen Um & Justin Buzzard in their book Why Cities Matter write ‘never before have cities been as populated, powerful, and important as they are today. . .cities shape the world because what happens in the cities spreads.’

Copyright Helen Ogbourn

2. Cities never stay the same

Um & Buzzard point out a second feature of cities – the pace of change.  ‘Nothing ever stays the same in cities. There is constant movement.’ A city like Birmingham has changed beyond recognition in the 40 years I have lived here. It looks different, feels different and thinks differently. It takes time, insight and skill to answer the question ‘what do I need to know to most effectively love and communicate Christ to my city both now and for the next 20 years?’

3. Ministry in cities is complex

One final observation worth highlighting from Um & Buzzard, ‘cities are populated with people of various cultures, different worldviews, and different vocations. Cities force individuals to refine their cultural assumptions, religious beliefs, and sense of calling.’

That raises important questions: what is the future of my particular city? What kinds of opportunities does urbanisation present for the gospel? What does it mean for our church to be a church for the city?

Meeting the challenge

If cities are growing in size, power and influence and if cities are always in a flux of change and if cities are ever-more diverse in assumptions and beliefs then the church must come together to face the challenge and to find answers to the issues we face.

2020birmingham will be holding its 2015 annual conference entitled City of the Future on the 10th March here in Birmingham.  And the issues in this post form the heart of our conference agenda. Which ever city you represent why not come along and learn together how better to reach and serve our city now and into the future.

Jan 15, 2015
neil

City of the future

 

Every church can and must become a church for its particular city suggests Tim Keller.  

Which means that if we are to reach our city with the gospel of Christ we will need to establish churches  and ministries that are committed to the city and that can also effectively engage the people of the city.  The future of the city is therefore our theme because it has never been more important to discern all that is required to contextualise the never-changing  gospel in an ever-changing city.

At this year’s 2020birmingham conference we will ask:

  • What are the challenges and opportunities?
  • What does the church need to do and be?
  • What does it mean to serve the good of the city?
  • What might it look like to not just live in the city but to love it now and in the future?

This year’s 2020 conference will equip you and your church to better understand what lies ahead so that, with humble confidence, we can do effective ministry now and in the coming years. We want to cultivate ministries that both honour God and bless the lives of those who live in our great city.

We are delighted that the Rt. Revd. David Urquhart, Bishop of Birmingham will be one of our speakers.

From one man he made all the nations, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he marked out their appointed times in history and the boundaries of their lands. God did this so that they would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from any one of us.’ Acts 17:26-27

The conference will be held at Birmingham Christian Centre on Tuesday 10th March from 10am to 4.30pm. For further information and to book a place visit 2020future.

2020birmingham is a catalyst for church-planting in our city seeking to assist in the planting of 20 new churches in our city between 2010 and 2020. For a brief introduction to the story so far visit Momentum. We are also part of City to City Europe.

 

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