“We are a multi-cultural family of faith, in the community, for the community. Our mission drives our ministries: we seek to be a community that passionately loves Jesus Christ, that intentionally engages in authentic community and that radically advances the cause of Jesus.”
Our Mission Statement comes from Jesus and Paul (one of Jesus’ earliest and most faithful and fruitful followers).
Jesus’ generic call to human beings was: “Come, Follow me and I will Form you into Fishers of people” (Matthew 4:19, this is further explained under Values). After his resurrection, when he ascended into heaven, Jesus commissioned his followers to “Go and make followers of me from people of all types, plunging them into the reality of the Trinitarian God and teaching them to obey all I’ve commanded you, and I will be with you at your side till the job is done” (Matthew 28:19-20). We can only make followers of Jesus to the extent we ourselves follow him, learning to live in the Reality of the Life and Love of the Father and Son and Holy Spirit, and thereby increasingly obeying all that Jesus taught.
All that Jesus taught is summarized in his ‘double commandment’: “Love God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind, and with all your strength. And love your neighbor as yourself” (Matthew 22:37-38). This points to the second phrase in our Mission Statement, but now in the words of Paul: “Live a life of love just as Jesus loved us and gave himself up for us as a fragrant sacrifice and offering to God” (Ephesians 5:2).
Therefore, to follow Jesus and to make followers of him from all kinds of people, is to learn how to live a life of love, just as Jesus loved us. Who does not want to love, does not want to learn how to live a life of love? It’s embarking on a spiritual journey – a journey of spiritual formation of life and character toward Christlikeness. This is essentially what we’re about as a local church.
“Following Jesus and making followers of him…<br /> Learning to live a life of love just as Jesus loved us.”
However, we can say that we have core generic values that might change somewhat in their articulation, but taken from Jesus of Nazareth two thousand years ago his basic call to follow him gives us our core values of Following, Forming, and Fishing (from Matthew 4:19). If we add our other key texts (Matthew 22:37-38 and 28:19-20), we can add Fitting and Freeing.
HERE IS A BRIEF ELABORATION TO GIVE CLARITY IN DESCRIBING OUR CORE VALUES:
Following God – intimacy with God (formation of personal spirituality)
Forming Community – intimacy with one another (formation of – and formation in – authentic Christ-community)
Fishing World – engagement in the world at all levels to make followers of Jesus of people of all types for radical social transformation
Fitting Context – to do the above core values as fits our personal and church life context, pacing ourselves and living balanced healthy lives
Freeing Love – doing all with a view to being free to love God and others as he loves us… learning to live a life of love just as Jesus loved us.
God transforms lives
God seeks the lost
God breaks down the dividing walls
God loves sacrificially
God delights in justice
OUR VALUES SHAPE OUR IDENTITY: THROUGH GOD’S MERCY WE ARE BECOMING PEOPLE WHO LOVE…
Grace and Truth (John 1:14): We desire regular confession, repentance, and forgiveness with God and one another. We desire the Gospel to transform our lives as we follow Jesus wholeheartedly. We desire to listen and submit to the Scripture, God’s revealed Word for His beloved children.
Unity (Ephesians 2:14-18): We desire to represent the diversity of our city as evidence of the Gospel’s reconciling power. We desire authentic and accountable fellowship. We desire the corporate gift of Sabbath worship and rest.
The Kingdom (Luke 9:1-2): We desire to proclaim the Kingdom – evangelism, to demonstrate the Kingdom- compassion, mercy, and justice, and to participate in the Kingdom through prayer. We desire to welcome the stranger with radical hospitality. We desire to be intentionally present to our neighbourhood as we discern the Holy Spirit’s invitation to love our neighbours.
OUR REAL GOAL – OUR “2020 VISION & PLAN” – IS TO BE A
fully developed and well functioning community of followers of Jesus
(through intentional spiritual formation of every member),
with an equally fully developed and well functioning Vineyard Community Centre (this means building a new worship hall and other needed facilities),
to equip, coach and deploy the next generation of leaders
(in fulfillment of the Association of Vineyard Churches SA 2020 vision),
to be a resource to help existing churches and plant new churches, and
to be fully engaged in various missions to for the social transformation of our community, city, country and continent!
TO INVITE EVERY MEMBER OF OUR DIVERSE LOCAL COMMUNITY INTO A SPIRITUAL FAMILY THAT IS:
Growing together as disciples of Jesus
Worshipping God from the heart
Loving one another deeply across every boundary
Sharing God’s love in word and action
Working and praying for God’s justice and peace
The vision above is not a vision for just the leaders to implement, it is a vision for all of us to participate in and build together. At Following Jesus we believe that everyone gets to play, we as leaders don’t do church for people but with people. Our five priorities are the vehicles that helps us towards our destination.