Q. How do I develop a mission statement for my church?
A: Bryan Rose, lead navigator for Auxano, suggests these seven steps for developing your church’s primary purpose.
1. Collaborate with a diverse team.
Bring together 9-12 staff and lay leaders from multiple generations and ministries.
2. Study the Scriptures.
Read and reflect together on Matthew 28:18-20, Mark 16:15, John 20:21, and Acts 1:8.
3. Understand the lost in your community.
Make list “A” naming the condition of people who are far from Christ, digging deep for characteristics or issues specific to your locality (i.e., isolated, child-centric, pursuing significance, unfulfilled).
4. Describe growth as a believer in your context.
Make list “B” describing the character, actions, and condition of growing followers of Christ, specifically in your church (i.e., renewed, at peace, compassionate, in community).
5. Articulate an action-oriented calling.
Using steps 3 and 4, craft a 10- to 15-word mission statement that activates your congregation to pursue movement from lostness (List A) to growing in Christ (List B) every day.
6. Filter through the “5 C’s.”
Most mission statements are too complicated, wordy, and long. Use this filter to refine your new mission.
• Is it clear? Could a 12-year-old understand and live it?
• Is it concise? Are you using commas and conjunctions? If so, your statement may be too long.
• Is it compelling? Does this inspire conversation and excite?
• Is it catalytic? Is active participation required to live it?
• Is it contextual? Is it reflective of who and where you are as a church?
7. Prayerfully lead toward this true north.
Understand that vision transfers through people, not paper. Lead the church body to embrace your church’s mission statement by consistently communicating it through sermons, conversations, illustrations, and actions.
For more resources on setting and living out the vision of your church, visit VisionRoom.com.