Thursday, 2 October 2008

Cell UK

Many Churches run all sorts of different types of small groups.

We are happy using the cell model and have been greatly blessed by the resources of Cell UK.

I was speaking to a Church leader in another town yesterday who was looking at cell groups in their church and previous issues they have had running them and I put forward the suggestion "The thing is about the cell model, is that it is a heart attitude more than anything else. You can't just copy a model and hope it is successful unless you have the vision"

It was at that point I realised just how influenced I am by the ministry of Laurence Singlehurst, as that sounds word for word like the sort of thing he would say.

But it is true though. We are not looking for an off the shelf quick fix solution to Church growth, we are looking for our hearts to be shaped to become a more missional community.

The same can be said of the Alpha Course.

Every week church offices across the land get blasted with adverts for all sorts of resources and packaged courses in evangelism, discipleship, reaching out, engaging with your community, caring for your people. You name it, you can probably buy it on an 8 DVD pack for £89 + p&p.

I am weary of the claims made on the promotional materials - the pastor from X town somewhere saying how it has changed his Church.

I do believe that some of these resources are fantastic tools to help churches, but I fear for a christian culture that relies too heavily on pre-packaged programmes. That is one reason I have a deep respect for Cell UK, because it is a conversational movement between likeminded Churches whose resources are born out of local Church experience across denominational lines. That means their training / ideas have been shaped dramatically by experiences in the UK over the last 10 years and the whole concept is now more of a conversation than a fixed package, and the results are far more useful because of it.

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