No matter the size or circumstance of a congregation, there are some fundamental congregational characteristics that reflect a thriving culture of call. Churches that become “calling congregations” display:
* a robust belief in the priesthood of all believers and the call issued to every disciple. This belief is regularly expressed and enacted through the congregation’s language, worship, and relationships.
* an intergenerational approach to ministry. Youth and young adults are regularly invited and enabled to participate in the work and mission of the congregation. The church has an identifiable mission which provides them opportunity for meaningful congregational involvement.
* a connection to the life of the wider church. The congregation is familiar with the processes by which members may move into intentional forms of vocational ministry.
* an awareness of the needs for future leadership and a commitment to identify and nurture such leaders from within their own membership, on behalf of both the local church and the wider church.
* Discuss: Does your congregation display these characteristics? How might it grow into them?