A new website from the Anglican Church in North America (ACNA) has just been launched, called anglican1000. They’ve made a new proclamation that they intend to plant 1000 new churches in five years. Now, I like to dream big, but that’s remarkable. The ACNA formed recently with the aim of creating a “separate ecclesiastical structure” for Anglican faithful in North America distinct from the Episcopal Church and the Anglican Church of Canada. They now have almost 800 churches.
I seem to be reminded, again and again, that growth often comes out of grassroots renewal. Old-line churches are shrinking on almost every front, but groups that grow up out of stagnation often have new motivation to develop leaders, engage in missionary activity, plant churches, and evangelize in new ways. The proclamation even calls on seminaries and parishes to develop new models of ministry.
The ACNA is asking a series of great questions that I think we in the Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada can ask, and resolve to pursue. Firstly, who is Jesus (Christology), what is he doing in the world (Missiology), and how can we join him (Ecclesiology)?
In closing, I like this:
“Bishop-elect Todd Hunter sent delegates and participants of the Inaugural Assembly out with a charge to help build the Kingdom of God. “No one cares about our ‘brand’ or our internal disputes. It is about making new Christians.”