The Mathetes Trust is available to lead parish missions, normally for a single church, but if asked for a group of churches working together. We send a team to the parish, normally for a week, sometimes for a weekend. The size of the team is decided in discussion with the church.
Our missions have three aims:
First, we aim to see a significant number of new Christians in a single week. The teams we send experienced in mission, and used to helping people find faith. The team come for a week, reaping what the church through its good works has been sowing for years.
Second, we aim to recruit a significant number of people to take part in an enquiry course (perhaps Alpha, or our course Beyond Ourselves) which will follow the mission week.
Third, and perhaps most importantly, we aim to greatly increase the confidence of the church regarding evangelism. When we leave, we hope to leave behind a church which believes that with God’s help it can continue to grow and lead people to faith without outside help.
Criteria for going ahead with a mission
For a mission to be successful, churches must meet the following criteria:
The church must not be too strong. If your church is already very confident about evangelism, and if the evangelism is ongoing with many converts, then a mission will tend to disrupt this rather than help it.
The church must not be too weak. If there is not much evidence of God being at work in the church community, then we would not want to send a mission team, because there is not enough to build on. Some churches are like this: they are going through the motions of their religion, but there is no testimony to God answering prayer or changing lives. If that is your situation, we would still like to help you – but not by sending a mission team.
The church people must not be too busy. We will only come if the church is able to find ten people (preferably more) who have the time to come to three training sessions, to fully participate in the mission week, and then to follow up the converts to the mission and lead the follow-up course.
Mission Week Activities
There are 4 kinds of activities. All missions include the first two. Some missions include the third and fourth.
Set piece evangelistic preaching – Sundays, special events, healing service, men’s event, ladies’ event, teenager event; any event which your church is confident will attract a crowd.
Home-based meetings to which church members invite friends
Cold call evangelism – some of street evangelism, door knocking, prayer visiting, evangelism explosion, healing on the streets, street pastors, treasure hunting, using a church café or restaurant
The mission week includes events which build on ongoing ministry to specific target groups, eg children, old people, ethnic groups
Steps to be taken in preparation
Roger meets with church leaders to agree on a mission and discuss a plan and a possible timetable
The church appoints an organising committee for the mission week who will lead on developing a program, organising prayer, publicity, hospitality and finance
Roger and the church leaders meet with the church to ask them to commit to the mission week and the training program, if enough people sign up we go ahead with the mission
Depending on the size of the mission up to 3 training sessions on non-consecutive Saturdays
The mission week takes place
Follow up by the church team who will have been given training
We will teach principles of evangelism – the Great Commission, the Gospel, the Holy Spirit, the place of healing, the place of testimony
We will teach principles of friendship evangelism (Mathew 5:16) – living with integrity, loving everyone we meet, wise ways to converse with people, use of testimony, using invitations
Principles of targeted evangelism. If your aim is to reach out to children, to the elderly, to teenagers, to business people, or to any target group, then how do you go about it?
Principles of follow up, one to one follow up, the use of enquiry courses.
What do people say about our missions?
“Stepping out of my regular life of marriage, employment, faith, family, golf and watching rugby, and going straight into mission was a shock of adrenalin and fright. To be surrounded by a combined ‘Home and Away team’ for 8 days, with complete freedom to think, speak and sing of the gospel is a privilege, exhilarating and joyfully exhausting all at the same time. I was paired with Pete from Coventry and Terry from Barnsley. Both had an irrepressible sense of humour; the three of us were consistently dissolving in laughter throughout the week. Both Terry and Pete have wonderful powerful family based testimonies, which clearly touched the people God intended to reach. Since the Mission I have a renewed hunger for the word, and my prayer lists have joyfully expanded. God is amazing.” – Ian Cripps
“It was, naturally, a tiring week but one that I am so grateful that I was part of and one that I will never forget. As the visiting team left at the end of the week, I found myself wishing they could stay, but as follow up work has begun, I have realised that they left us well equipped to carry on God’s work without them. I could write an endless list of adjectives to sum up the week such as exhilarating, daunting, awe inspiring to name but a few, but if I had to pick a highlight, it would be the moment my husband let Jesus into his life.” Lorraine
“The mission for me has been life changing. God has shown me through the mission week that if I decide to ignore all my doubts and worries and just trust in him he can make the impossible happen.” Rachel
“Amongst the many healings were those in team and other church members. The most spectacular took place in Finlay. On benefits, he welcomed Andrew and Sheena at his door, prayed a prayer of commitment and after receiving the Holy Spirit told his story. A driver, he’d been crushed at work when a large steel ring held by a crane hit him, injuring his shoulders, knees and left femur. His main problem was that his 3 femoral fractures had resulted in his right leg shortening by 2 inches. Prayer led to his shoulders and knees moving normally, pain-free. Then his right leg fracture calluses disappeared as his leg telescopically lengthened by 1½ inches! The next day, gutted that I’d missed this sign, I returned with Andrew to pray for the last half inch. The leg grew in front of my eyes. Finlay then easily demonstrated symmetrical non-limping, walking without needing his specially raised shoe. Not bad! He remained on Cloud Nine, giving his testimony in church on Sunday and asking if anyone needed a shoe! Filled with the Spirit and well-encouraged, we began to pray for more miracles, with God answering daily.” Dr Richard Scott, Bedworth
“This mission took place as part of a year of mission from St Lawrence Church with the title ‘Love North Wingfield’. The church prepared for the mission using the Beautiful Lives material and it followed the usual Mathetes Trust style of special events, home meetings and door-to-door visits with a ‘Home’ team of 14 and an ‘Away’ team of 12 forming a foundation of personnel enabling the wider church to engage in mission. All special events were well organised with around 600 people attending, with clear Gospel teaching from Roger Morgan, Richard Scott and Gary Ralls. Personal contact was made with 115 people through knocking on doors. By the end of the week, 16 people prayed a prayer of commitment to Christ and another 20 are being followed up as meaningful contacts. 2 small Alpha groups have begun, with another small group studying Mark’s gospel. This mission was a pleasure to be part of and was made possible by the amazing commitment of Roger and his ‘Away’ team, and the St Lawrence ‘Home’ team.” Revd Colin Cooper, North Wingfield
“Last year our ministry focus was our nine day ‘One Life’ mission – we were hugely encouraged by the event and in particular taken back by the openness and vulnerability shown on doorsteps to the gospel, leading to a number of adult baptisms, the establishment of a new discipleship group, and powerful testimonies of God working in people’s lives. Plans are in place to run a mission again this autumn, A Better Story. ” Revd David Archer, St Mary’s Purley.
“I just wanted to thank you once again for your support, guidance and your input into the ‘There is Love in Dover’ mission week. It was wonderful to work alongside you and to share the experience of the week. I know from conversations with others, that the training events you ran really made the difference to those who attended feeling somewhat unsure about whether to go out or not.” Revd Sean Sheffield, Dover
Thinking about a mission?
If you would like to find out more, check out the reports on our recent missions:
Mission in Bedworth (October 2018)
Mission in North Wingfield (June 2018)
Mission in Dover (April 2018)
Missions in Purley and Breaston (October 2017)
If you would like to discuss the possibility of receiving a mission team, please contact us.
updated by Revd Dr Alison Morgan