In today’s Church Times Peter Graystone, who works for Church Army developing pioneering evangelism projects, writes about the Business Committee of General Synod cutting an entire day of debates at its next meeting. Peter says that; “the true cost of this decision is the loss of the reports that would have filled this summer’s group of sessions with hope and inspiration. In particular….. the absence of the report…. painstakingly to mark the fifth anniversary of the occasion when Synod debated and commended Mission Shaped Church: church planting and fresh expressions of church in a changing context. Ironically, that report challenged the entire Church, including General Synod, to make mission initiatives to the non-churched a priority – the very thing that has not happened in its exclusion from next month’s agenda.”
Peter adds, “The saddest aspect of this decision is that the narrative of five years of pioneering mission is one of hope and encouragement. Synod members will now not hear of the parts of the Church of England where, as a direct result of the principles advocated by Mission Shaped Church, the Kingdom of God is growing in ways that are beautiful and life-enhancing.”
Too often we moan and wring our hands about the decline of our churches and yet, on this occasion, those responsible responsible for organising the business of the Anglican Churches’ policy making body have missed an opportunity to hear stories of hope and encouragement. I know I’m an unfinished Christian but this really does sound like unfinished business- why can’t the Business Committee make space for General Synod to hear great news, God knows they need to?