On the Margins?

Christians across western culture are facing profound challenges and fresh opportunities. The long era of ‘Christendom’ is coming to an end. We now live in a plural society, with multiple religious options alongside the prevailing secular assumptions, in which Christianity has lost its position of dominance and privilege and churches are on the margins of society.

Although we seem to be declining in numbers and influence, this context offers many new possibilities – if we have the courage and imagination to grasp them.

Why the Crucible Course?

Crucible is for Christians with courage and imagination, who suspect that:

  • We need to operate as cross-cultural missionaries because we live in a cross-cultural mission context.
  • We need to think creatively about incarnating the gospel and planting new kinds of churches in emerging and diverse cultures.
  • We need to recover the biblical vision of shalom and reflect on how we live as followers of Jesus in light of this all-embracing vision.
  • We need to pay particular attention to the margins, because we serve the God who frequently does new things there.

Stream 1

2019-20: Manchester and Southampton

  •     After Christendom    
  •     On the Edge    
  •     Church Unplugged    
    After Christendom    

After Christendom

Investigates the many opportunities, as well as the challenges, that the end of imperial Christianity presents. A core module which sets the context for all that we explore together in Crucible.

Sessions on previous After Christendom modules have included:

  • What was Christendom and why might we be interested?
  • What is Post-Christendom and how do we respond?
  • Group Bible study: church in Exile? Psalm 137; Jeremiah 29
  • Reading the Bible after Christendom: what if Jesus meant what he said?
  • Group Bible study: paradigm shift? Acts 11:1-18
  • Jesus, mission and church
  • Group work: Tension points?
  • The twilight zone: living between paradigms
    On the Edge    

On the Edge

Examines the dynamics of mission and ministry in marginal urban and rural communities and offers biblical and practical insights.

This new module replaces the previous Urban Challenge module and will include sessions on:

  • Marginality
  • Urban and Rural dynamics
  • Good news to the poor
  • God on the margins
  • Missional listening
    Church Unplugged    

Church Unplugged

Offers resources for pioneering new churches and new kinds of churches and to pioneer these in emerging or marginalised cultures beyond the scope of many inherited churches.

Sessions on previous versions of this modules have included:

  • Planting, emerging, creating – where are we now?
  • A church planter’s story
  • 12 ways to plant a church
  • What’s new – shape, ethos, theology, mission?
  • Creating new churches – creativity and case studies
  • Research and preparation
  • Team building
  • Group sharing
  • Group work: Church: essentials and non-essentials
  • Guided reflection

Stream 2

2019-20: Exeter and London

  •     Restoring Hope    
  •     Becoming Human    
  •     Jesus Unplugged    
    Restoring Hope    

Restoring Hope

Explores how, in light of Godʼs mission to bring shalom (peace) to all creation, we can live towards that hope and create communities of peace. A big picture module with stretching insights.

Sessions on previous modules have included:

  • Re-imagining hope
  • Re-neighbouring
  • Recounting stories of hope
  • Re-distributing power
  • Re-formatting church
  • Re-framing the city
    Becoming Human    

Becoming Human

Probes the dynamics of discipleship and asks how we can become more fully human as followers of the Son of Man. With thought-provoking insights into contemporary discipleship.

Sessions on previous modules have included:

  • Becoming Human – the journey we are on
  • Following the Son of Man
  • Becoming human ourselves
  • Helping others become human
  • Reflecting Together
  • Creating healthy communities
  • Group work: Struggling towards humanity
  • Becoming human together
  • Group Bible study: The Rule of Christ (Matthew 18: 15-17)
  • Discipleship and mission
    Jesus Unplugged    

Jesus Unplugged

Imagines how we might re-tell the story of Jesus today in ways that connect with contemporary culture. With freedom to push the boundaries we explore words, themes, images and methods which might help.

Sessions on previous modules have included:

  • Following the Way
  • Speaking my language: how different people learn
  • How did Jesus communicate?
  • Story telling
  • Film night
  • Why did Jesus die?
  • Why did they kill Jesus?
  • A story of hope

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You can join the course at any time. Not all modules are taught every year.

Copyright Urban Expression 2019

Registered Charity 1090734

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