Making new connections and being inspired by others

8th July 2021

“I loved making new connections and being inspired by others,” was the reaction of one of those who joined Cross-Pollinate, an online meeting of church leaders and curious enquirers who met for a morning of cross-pollinating ideas, stories and approaches across the pioneer spectrum. 

More than fifty people joined to celebrate the diversity of ways of sharing the good news of Jesus and the range of approaches to church-planting, growing out of all the different contexts across the diocese.

The morning was structured around the pioneer spectrum which shows how there is room for all kinds of pioneering, and there were opportunities to be with similar pioneer types and to be with those who had different methods or understandings of mission.

Olivia Shone of Holy Trinity, Combe Down, spoke of her journey into digital pioneering and yoga in the tradition of Christian meditation; Greg Bakker from Portsmouth Diocese led a session on pioneer advocacy for clergy; Kathryn Marson defined the role of someone called to help seekers on their spiritual quest, and Tom Yacomeni and Caroline Deakin shared their excitement for the church revitalisation project at St Peter’s in Locking Deanery.

Some of those who joined discovered they were already pioneering, while others found out how to start out.  "What a great morning,’ wrote the founder of a Christian website. ‘It relit my spark. It was also great to make some connections, folks I’d already been chatting to on line that I didn’t know were pioneers!"

Tina Hodgett, who led the morning, said, "With all the contributors sharing their unique stories, it’s clear the diocese is on an exciting trajectory towards growing new Christian communities of every kind, in a variety of ways, as we follow the lead of the Holy Spirit."