Vision and Values

PARISH & PEOPLE challenges the increasingly sectarian and embattled mindset that develops in local churches now that the Christian faith no longer sets the norms for society.

PARISH & PEOPLE promotes a vision of Christ’s Church as:

A Thankful ("Eucharistic") Community

  • where God’s grace is gratefully received and generously shared

  • where groups and individuals discover their unity through cherishing diversity

  • where the congregation that meets to give thanks is a communion of smaller communities, each with their own life and vocation in the wider world

  • where the congregation that meets to give thanks also sees itself as part of a bigger fellowship, serving God’s mission in many complementary ways

  • where all who are baptised accept their calling to ministry

  • where leadership is exercised as an aspect of Christ-like self-giving, not of control

This vision is betrayed when 'eucharistic' is thought of as restricting public worship exclusively to services of Holy Communion.

A Mutually Cherishing "Covenant" Community

  • where grateful receiving and generous giving are exercised mutually and in solidarity with the whole of humankind

  • where individuals are sustained and nourished on their journey of faith wherever that journey takes them

  • where all are selflessly engaged in a purpose beyond themselves

This vision is betrayed when communities turn in on themselves, or become exclusive or secretive, expecting every member to think alike.

A Learning Community

  • where community life is characterised by an openness to learn and be enriched from unexpected sources

  • where no limits are placed on where or how the leading of the Holy Spirit may be discerned

This vision is betrayed when learning is treated as 'instruction' and where learners are expected to submit themselves uncritically to the authority of their teachers.

PARISH & PEOPLE strongly endorses the 'Five Marks of Mission' - as widely promoted within the Anglican Communion and beyond:

  1. to proclaim the good news of the Kingdom.

  2. to teach, baptise and nurture new believers.

  3. to respond to human need by loving service.

  4. to seek to transform unjust structures of society.

  5. to strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life of the earth.

Parish & People believes, however, that these five commitments are best understood not as 'marks' but as inter-twining 'strands' that are inter-dependent and integral to what it is to be Christ's Church. They indicate a lifestyle, not an agenda.