The Diocese is moving towards replacing traditional parishes with new Local Ministry Areas (LMAs)
Revd Canon Marianne Osborne is our Ministry Area Development Officer andTransition Missioner
She heads up a mission team equipped to help local church communities with the transition.
“Change isn’t coming,” she says, “it’s here, but we can embrace it if we work together.”
Beyond formation – Marianne’s latest update
As we come to the end of the year, the time has come for reflection, discernment and planning together on how best to equip our LMAs to redirect their energies from the practicalities of transition towards outward mission
We have begun to discuss the needs of individual churches in our transition meetings, particularly with the Shadow Councils. Together we are assessing the shape, strengths and weaknesses of the new ministry areas. We also led a day in each archdeaconry talking to ministry teams about potential resources, a toolbox if you will, to empower each LMA to identify compatible resources and approaches for evangelism and growth.
We want to encourage LMAs on their individual journeys into mission and through discernment, considering their unique geographical locations, Welsh language needs, size of churches, and socio-economic contexts: no one plan should, or indeed would, fit all!
The Development Team will continue to offer support as the LMAs find their feet working within the new standing orders and developing relationships within their new areas.
Revd Canon Dr Rhiannon Johnson is compiling a list of useful resources that can be used in training members of our churches as God continues to raise up workers within the LMAs.
Mrs Janet Ingram, Education and Pilgrimage Officer at Tŷ’r Pererin, is offering LMA Vision days: a time to be prayerful and reflective resulting in the production of a Spirit-led vision for the future of individual LMAs.
Our diocesan conference this year was entitled Grasping the nettle, acknowledging, I believe, the pain of change over the last year, the difficulties and chaos of reorganising the diocese. It has been challenging but we can’t just breathe a sigh of relief and think it’s over; we have only just begun a new chapter in the life of our diocese.
Our Diocesan Strategy, Growing Hope, asks God to lead us on ways both new and unknown, to work towards Reimagining ministry, Revitalising churches and Rejuvenating the people with the hope that Christ Jesus brings into our lives.
We are part-way towards reaching our goals. However, now is the time to pause and pray, asking God to show us the way into our communities, to the places where He is already at work and where we just need to fan the Spirit of God into flame so that the glorious light of Christ may burn brightly for all to see; then the work of evangelism and mission really begins!