Reimagine: Leading the Church out of Lockdown

John McGinley

April 2021

“Christ is the Lord of a history that moves.  He not only holds the beginning and the end in his hands, but he is in history with us, walking ahead of us to where we are going.” Thomas Merton

Welcome to Reimagine – a set of resources originally developed in Leicester Diocese – which will help you reflect and think through the process of leading churches forward into a post-lockdown world.  We talk about ‘a new normal’ but what will that look like?  This will either happen to us if we just plough on without stopping to think.  Or it can happen through us if we open ourselves to what God is saying to us and allow him to reshape us.  This moment presents an opportunity for change to the Church.  Because of the disruption that we have experienced, we now have the chance to reimagine the Church of tomorrow.

Within this resource, we have prepared some different contributions to help you in your reflecting, reimagining, and rebuilding. We are aware of how exhausting this lockdown time has been and so we wanted to put some tools in your hands, which we pray will be helpful in making this process feel possible.  Below is a brief description of each of these which can be downloaded in pdf format.  We recognise that these are only the first words on this subject, but we offer them in the hope that in the hands of God we might discover how he is calling us to see his Church bring the kingdom of love and restoration into our local communities.

An Invitation to Reflect and Learn
Guidance and questions to use in your reflection on the themes of this time.

The Church of Tomorrow
Ten emerging themes of what the church of tomorrow might look like.

The Leadership Journey
An outline of a leadership process designed to engage key leaders and PCC members, including a suggested meeting format to help people engage with these questions and themes, and a process to lead into action.

Outreach Ideas
Some practical ideas for making the most of the evangelistic opportunity of this time based on the five Restore themes.
A Community Building Event
An outline of a public event to bring church members and local community together which enables them to celebrate, connect, reflect, and reimagine the future together.
Sermon Outlines
Restore is five sessions of sermon outlines and small group material shaped around Psalm 23 to help church members engage with the themes of: Reflect; Refresh; Rejoice; Remember and Recover.

Small Group Resources 
Five session outlines for small groups to follow.