My friends Alan and Debra Hirsch were in Chicago a couple weeks ago. They arranged their schedules so we could spend a good part of the day at COMMUNITY and the rest hanging out in Chicago together. We had a blast!
Alan is the author The Forgotten Ways and a leading thinker on the missional church. While they were here, I asked Alan to speak at our all-staff meeting (see pic) on one of the major themes of his book – apostolic environments. Here are a few things Alan had to say about Apostles and apostolic environments (or at least the way that I remember it):
- Apostolic environments create spontaneous expansion and movements.
- Apostolic environments have an invisible force, like gravity that has massive influence on others.
- Apostolic environments create a “vibe” about the place. Alan noted that by simply walking into our Yellow Box and from hanging out with us a few times he could tell that COMMUNITY has this “vibe”. The “vibe” has a moral or spiritual authority about it.
- Apostolic environments have a “go” function that is always sending people out to start new things. And often these new communities and new churches will cross cultures.
- Apostolic environments will create networks of related churches.
- Apostolic environments will coach those churches within their networks.
- Apostolic environments will also find ways to guard the DNA and make sure the churches within it’s networks continue to be places that are going and sending.
Below is a diagram that gives further explanation about apostolic environments.