What is Fit for Mission?
Fit for Mission is a pioneering new way of working that is focused upon making the Diocese of Liverpool ready to grow and sustain the Church for future generations. It connects to the Diocese of Liverpool’s strategy of a ‘bigger church, bigger difference’, and focuses upon addressing barriers to both past and current growth, like bureaucracy, as well as what we can all do to make the church ready for future missions. Supported by the Fit for Mission team over a two-year change process, parishes across a deanery area will join together to form one larger parish. This will enable local leaders and parishes to make decisions about how they can best support, sustain, and grow their parish, in line with the four key Fit for Mission priorities.
- Introducing people to Jesus
- Deepening discipleship
- Developing Christian Leaders
- Working for Justice
Why do we need Fit for Mission?
We’ve all been trying hard to grow our churches, but sadly, 70% of them have been in sustained decline for some time. In the Diocese of Liverpool, we've had a 65% decline in church attendance over the past 30 years, while still trying to look after 95% of our buildings. We know this isn't sustainable, and after prayerful discernment from Bishops and Archdeacons, as a diocese, we believe that ‘Fit for Mission’ is the way we can grow and sustain the church for the future.
Fit for Mission will help churches and parishes to address some of the current challenges preventing growth. This means looking at some of the issues that prevent clergy and leaders from focusing on mission, such as things like bureaucracy, admin, and buildings that are not fit for purpose, alongside looking at how we can tackle a lack of diversity across our congregations. 43% of CofE Churches have no children in them, and only around 1% of our communities engage with their local church. Fit for Mission is how the 35% of us left in the church can help change this.
Would you like to know more about the history and development of Fit for Mission? You can read more on our project history page.
When and how will this happen?
Working in ‘Cohort’ groups, each deanery will work through a two-year transition period, over the wider 6-year programme which runs from 2022 – 2028. During this time, deaneries will be supported by the Fit for Mission team, with funded specialist capacity. To find out more about the process support, click here. To find out more about when your deanery may begin to work through this process, you can email the Fit for Mission team, on firstname.lastname@example.org
What will this completed process look like?
By focusing on our 4 mission priorities and our 5 programme actions (listed below) each deanery in the Diocese of Liverpool will be able to make local decisions about the best ways to sustain and grow their parish.
- Planting & Revitalising through Cultivate and LyCiG
- Working to our strengths in larger teams and portfolios
- High-quality support and clear lines of accountability
- Having the right buildings to support future mission
- Larget parishes with high-quality support services and simpler administration
What are the next steps?
- To find out more about the Fit for Mission Process, click here.
- Contact email@example.com for more information