In Martin Robinson’s view the creative energy of the community stories in this issue of the Journal, comes from their fragility. These churches do not describe well planned journeys, but surprising encounters with God along an unpredictable way.
Paul Weston picks up the fragility theme below when he considers how these missional communities did their theology ‘on the way’, without presuppositions. Church language, for example, was picked up quite late in the journey of the Saturday Gathering, and church there has required some deconstruction and reinventing of what it means to be church in that context. Training people to participate in this dangerous mission of God will require a new mindset.
What are the characteristics of the of the communities described here, and what are their practices. Alan Roxburgh and Sally Mann pick up on a comment from the Webinar ‘chat’ (from Duke Vipperman) on the porous nature of Celtic Christian communities. These communities were not closed, unlike those described in the book The Benedict Option (Rod Dreher, Sentinel, 2017). According to Alan and Sally, the communities described in this issue are also not closed, but ‘porous’. They are ready to engage with the brokenness of their contexts and it is in this willing vulnerability that God is encountered.