Diocese of York

This is what our vision for Generous Churches Making and Nurturing Disciples is all about. It’s not a new initiative or programme – it’s a focus on how we work out God’s mission in our Diocese. It’s simply about growing, and working together.

Coming out of the consultations and the reflections of the small working party was the desire to focus on growing. It was recognised that growing is multi-dimensional and Five Marks of Growing were identified as part of our shared mission to build up the Body of Christ:

Christ-likeness

Becoming like Christ is the fundamental call of Christian discipleship. It is not always easy to assess, but we often recognise the flavour of a life becoming more godly. How we pray and worship is a key element in this mark of growing.

Commitment

Commitment has several features, including: commitment to Christ, to seeking God’s kingdom, to Christ’s body the Church. The outward signs might be measured in terms of those engaged in nurture Courses, Baptisms and Confirmations, Vocations to lay and ordained ministries, and Stewardship.

Partnership

Partnership is about working with other churches, locally and globally, schools, community groups, people, organisations for the common good, peace and justice. It’s about loving our neighbours as ourselves.

Influence

As disciples we are called to be salt and light to the whole world, and reflecting God’s light into dark corners. We look to influence attitudes and behaviours in our communities and wider society.

Numbers

Jesus’ last recorded command was to make disciples. We must be bold in our aims to increase the number of people associated with our churches, as worshippers and disciples. If a church is growing in numbers, it is often because it is focusing on other Marks of Growing. Increasing numbers is often a sign of spiritual health and certainly increases the Church’s potential and capacity to do God’s work.