Over the season of Summer, particularly around the New Year, it’s pretty common for people to pause and reflect. As a diocese, we’re taking a season of time to reflect on the past and prayerfully consider the future. At critical junctures like this, it’s important that we listen together for God’s leading.
As parishes we are all at different places, with different challenges. But as one diocese, we are together at this very significant moment of change. The question is not whether we will make changes – the question is what kind of changes we must make to bring revitalisation and growth through effective mission.
Psalm 127 was a song of the people of God for their pilgrimage to Jerusalem to worship at the temple. This simple statement reflects a deep trust in God: “Unless the Lord builds the house, the builders labour in vain” (v 1a). The worship of God is no longer confined to a temple in Jerusalem. Through Christ Jesus we “worship the Father in the Spirit and in truth” (John 4:23).
Over the coming months, we are all challenged to engage in three things:
Firstly, to commit to intentional and regular prayer, asking for God's clear guidance. And to share what we are hearing.
Secondly, to commit to having intentional and regular conversations, exploring questions like "Where is God clearly at work?" "Where have we lost touch with our local community?" "Where might we need to be open to radical change?"
And thirdly, to prepare ourselves for change. God is calling us towards making some brave decisions. We are the people to carry the burden of making necessary change. This is the legacy that we will leave for those who come after us. Change is often painful, but God gives us the courage and the strength to carry it out. Faithfulness means we seek to listen to God and then take tangible steps towards the future God is calling us into. So, ask God to prepare our hearts and minds for the decisions that must be made.
You can find our Season of Discernment Portal here.
We have invited these writers to share their experiences, ideas and opinions in the hope that these will provoke thought, challenge you to go deeper and inspire you to put your faith into action. These articles should not be taken as the official view of the Nelson Diocese on any particular matter.