Johannes Hoekendijk Evangelism (mission) “is often little else than a call to restore ‘Christendom … a flurried activity to save the remnants of a time now irrevocably past.” “Evangelization and churchification are not identical, and very often they are each other’s bitterest enemies.”
Late 20 th and 21 st Century The mission of God, the missio Dei, is God’s action in the world to bring about God’s Reign. The Trinitarian God has effected a new order in which all people and all creation can find unity with God and each other in Christ.
General Convention of 1835 All Episcopalians, by virtue of baptism and not voluntary association, are members of the Domestic and Foreign Missionary Society. Baptism is our “co-mission,” commission in God’s mission.
The Baptismal Covenant … Orients us as to the nature of God and God’s mission. Shows us how we, the baptized, are commissioned “co-missioned” into the mission of God in the world.
The Baptismal Covenant … First three questions affirm the reality of a triune God who is creator, redeemer, and sanctifier. The Trinitarian God is the start of our life in God’s mission.
The Baptismal Covenant … Five post-Creedal promises show us how to participate with God in God’s mission.
Worship Will you continue in the apostles teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in the prayers? … I will with God’s help.
Forgiveness Will you persevere in resisting evil, and, whenever you fall into sin, repent and return to the Lord? … I will with God’s help.
Proclamation Will you proclaim by word and example the Good News of God in Christ?.. I will with God’s help.
Service Will you seek and serve Christ in all persons, loving your neighbor as yourself? … I will with God’s help.
Justice Making Will you strive for justice and peace among all people, and respect the dignity of every human being? … I will with God’s help.
Worship Forgiveness Proclamation Service Justice Making Every follower of Christ, through baptism and in the power of the Holy Spirit, is called, individually and corporately to pursue these ministries equally.
Missional Experiments in a Post-Christendom World
We find our life in God’s mission by virtue of our baptism in the name of the Trinitarian God. The work of mission belongs to the laos, as the people of God.
Stephen Neill: “once everything is mission, nothing is mission.” The essence of mission is the crossing of frontiers from the known to the unknown, from the safe to the dangerous, from the comfortable to the uncomfortable.
The spirit of mission thus involves risk. Risking ourselves as agents of the Trinitarian God’s desire and reality of restoration and reconciliation for all people and the whole world.
2013 Gallup Poll of Most “Irreligious States” 1.Vermont 2.New Hampshire 3.Maine 4.Massachusetts 8. Connecticut 13. Rhode Island