Missional Discipleship Conference

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This conference is a collaboration between the International Research Consortium (IRC) and Church Mission Society (CMS).

About this event

Eight papers from a wide variety of speakers will be available in video and text formats for engagement before 23 June and discussed in two parts from 9.30-11.30am and 7pm-9pm UK time on the day.

The IRC is an annual meeting of scholars and practitioners from around the world who share their research on missional churches and is pleased to share this platform with CMS who have many similar interests, including a vision for forming disciples of Jesus at the edges.

Christian discipleship is a much-vaunted idea which is understood in many different ways across the wide variety of Church traditions. In the Church of England, in particular (though not alone amongst mainstream UK churches), creating the conditions for ‘whole life discipleship’ in local churches has proved particularly elusive systemically over many decades. That is, despite its espousal from the leadership and great many reports being written, it has remained just an idea in the minds of some, bearing little relationship to cultural and behavioural change on the ground. Currently one of the strategic objectives of the English Anglican Church is to create a new generation of ‘missionary disciples’. This conference opens up these questions: What is discipleship that is connected deeply to the mission of God, what does it look like? How are disciples formed? How do the individual and the community as a whole combine to enable discipling to happen? What do we learn about discipleship from reverse missionaries and from the edges of church?

All the papers for the conference will be available as recordings (with supporting texts) three weeks before the conference event (on 1 June), which will consist of two, two-hour sessions discussing the papers and the overall theme of the conference. The conference fee of £10 gives each delegate access to all the papers and both sessions as follows (closing date for registrations is 31 May):

Session 1

9.30-11.30am 23 June

Facilitator: Dr Harvey Kwiyani (Liverpool Hope University)

Guichun Jun

Mike Harrison

Naar Mfundisi-Holloway

Steen Olsen/Dean Eaton/Noel Due

Session 2

7pm-9pm 23 June

Facilitator/Moderator: Rev Canon Dr Stuart Burns (Leicester Diocese)

James Butler

Nick Shepherd

Diana Greenfield

Nick Ladd

The Papers

Anglican Ecclesiology: a help or hindrance to being Missional Disciples?

Dr Nick Shepherd FRSA is Programme Director for Setting God’s People Free (SGPF) for the Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England.

Missional discipleship in the public sphere: With special reference to followership and Christlikeness in the concept of public discipleship.

Rev Dr Guichun Jun is an ordained minister in the Korea Evangelical Holiness Church. He finished his doctoral study at Oxford Centre for Mission Studies (OCMS) in 2016 and is now a research tutor at OCMS.

The interplay of the personal and communal in the formation of missional disciples in a post-Christendom world.

Rev Nick Ladd has been an Anglican minister for 37 years. At present, he serves with his wife in a parish in Birmingham Diocese and works freelance. He has recently completed a doctorate on Christian community formation and maturity.

Discipleship that Empowers African Women to Serve in the United Kingdom

Dr Naar M’fundisi-Holloway works for the Headquarters of The Salvation Army in London as an Action Researcher. She did her PhD at the University of Birmingham in the UK, examining Pentecostalism and Charismatic Christianity in Zambia.

What missional discipleship looks like on the edge.

Rev Diana Greenfield is the full-time Church of England pioneer priest for Glastonbury and Street in Bath and Wells Diocese where she is also the Diocesan Adviser for New Religious Movements and Alternative Spiritualities. She is a part-time DTh research student at Roehampton University, studying Missional Conversations between Pagans and Christians.

The term ‘discipleship’ and participation in the missio Dei

Dr James Butler, Postdoctoral Researcher, University of Roehampton and Pioneer MA Lecturer and Assistant Coordinator, Church Mission Society

Walking with Jesus in the early 21st Century: Steps towards Corporate Missional Discipleship

Steen Olsen, Retired bishop and pastor, Lutheran Church of Australia

Dean Eaton, Mission Facilitator and Church Planter Mentor, Lutheran Church of Australia

Noel Due currently serves as Regional Resourcing Minister for the Queensland District, Lutheran Church of Australia

Joyful disciples: a study of a missing link in considering spiritual disciplines and corporate missional habits.

Rt Rev Dr Mike Harrison is Bishop of Dunwich in the Diocese of St. Edmundsbury and Ipswich and has a national responsibility for Pioneer Ministry.

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