Mission Initiative

Mission. It defines everything we stand for and work for, in our Baptist Union of Scotland. Taken up in the purposefulness of our Heavenly Father. Drawn through our baptism into the pattern of His Son, Jesus Christ, who has paid the price of our sin. Arrested in the power of the Holy Spirit to live out our lives to the glory of God. We are utterly committed to unashamedly witnessing to the saving presence of Jesus Christ.

We see it as our privilege and duty to share the good news of Jesus Christ, telling people everywhere how they can come to know His presence, purpose and power: experiencing the reality of God’s holy love in this world and into all eternity.

The Mission Initiative Group (MIG) exists to support the National Team, in shaping and reviewing BUS Mission Strategy. Membership is drawn from among recognised proponents and practitioners of mission within our churches.

MIG will regularly review:

  1. mission priorities among our churches
  2. mission initiatives among Baptist Churches
  3. mission products and organisations afforded BUS endorsement

MIG will seek to:

  1. encourage missional thinking among Scottish Baptists
  2. establish CMD opportunities in missional areas, in conjunction with MinDC
  3. support the national team in reviewing and evaluating report for wider encouragement
  4. generate reports that encourage missional development initiatives

MIG operates under the authority of Council, to whom it reports. Members of MIG serve for 3 years, on a rotational basis, for a maximum of 2 consecutive term (with the exception of the chair, who may be appointed in / for a third term). The General Director and Mission and Ministry Advisor serve as permanent members of the group.

MIG recognises, following prayerful discussion within the group, National Team and at Council, that the present mission priorities of our Union are formed by the following observations:

  • It is within our experience that, when a church declines below 30, there is a critical point at which we can effectively assist the work and witness of the church, through supporting a period of transitional leadership.
  • We have identified the need to reach out to Scotland’s poorest people and look to means of promoting and encouraging this.
  • We recognise the need to encourage the development of churches in under-reached areas of Scotland.
  • We continue to look at recent missional initiatives that we might learn from, developing initiatives appropriate to our context and culture in Scotland

The Bridge Community Church is a new church in Aberdeen that aims to partner with God in seeking the spiritual and social renewal of Aberdeen through communities encountering the gospel.

They want to be a place where the unchurched find a home, where broken people can encounter the gospel of grace and be transformed. The church is currently made up of a group of folks journeying together in community. The bridge is built around the table, a place where food and life are shared and thanks is given for all that we have. In this pairing of the mundane and the sacred there is a place for wrestling with who Jesus is and how our how that changes us and out place in the world.

More about the bridge

  • The bridge is focussed on reaching the Bridge of Dee area of Aberdeen.
  • Mission for the Bridge currently takes two forms:
    • The gospel is best shared in a context of relationship. We make intentional decisions about our time to make space for those outside the church.
    • In our context the church is not thought of as generous, so finding ways to express the generosity of god in practical ways has opened conversation and relationship. This has included handing out bottles of water at the local walking/cycling path, providing Christmas gifts for the elderly in the community and supporting people in the neighbourhood in crisis with meals and babysitting support.
  • The Bridge Community Church is committed to working with other agencies, church and organisations where there is a shared commitment to the renewal of neighbourhood.

On the 12th October 2015, I transitioned from my role as Associate Pastor at Calderwood Baptist Church (CBC) to Pastor at Dennistoun Baptist Church (DBC).

In one sense it has all happened very quickly. We were aware of the possibility of replanting DBC through the support of CBC late last year. Two of the members at Calderwood, Andrew and Shirley McKendry had been involved at Dennistoun for a number of years and through their contact both churches were able to come together to discuss the potential of a replant of DBC. Fast forward to May of this year and the discussion between both churches had become an agreement to replant through a small church planting team from CBC. Within a short period of time Pauline and I have seen God’s hand leading us to a place where we would have a clear calling to both the church and community at Dennistoun.

In another sense God has been at work over a long time to bring us where we are today. For myself (Mark) the journey began in 2004. I sensed God’s call into full time ministry, and in particular to minister to the unreached and the very least. As I continued theological study and gained experience in ministry, (through an internship and full time employment at CBC), God gave me a heart for church planting and in particular to be a light in a community where there was little or no Gospel witness.

For Pauline, as she has journeyed faithfully in her own walk with God and in her own ministry, she has had an on-going and ever increasing desire to help those in real need and difficulty. When God brought us together in 2013 He knew that He was uniting two people with similar hearts to reach the unreached and to be that witness to the lost.

All of this was confirmed earlier this year when God showed us the spiritual, physical, and emotional depravation that exists in the East End of Glasgow, and the potential for us to minister in the context of Dennistoun, a community in which there is very little gospel witness.

So what will this look like? Pauline and I will be moving to Dennistoun, with a clear call to serve and minister within DBC and the surrounding community with the support of CBC and the Baptist Union. The planting team (which Pauline and I will lead) provides DBC with support in different areas of ministry including preaching and teaching, worship, outreach, pastoral care and tech. This injection of ministry support into the life of DBC exists in order that the church will one day become a self-sustaining church. DBC will continue as an autonomous church and will be linked to CBC in terms of ministry enabling in different areas.

Our heart for DBC is that prayer would be at the centre of all that we do. We see prayer as the engine room of the church, we meet together for ptayer midweek and we gather before the morning service in order that we might ‘seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!’ (Psalm 105:4). Our vision for the church is that we would be a family of believers centred on the truth of the Gospel as it is lived out in our lives through four key areas: Prayer, Word, Community and Mission.

We have been serving and ministering at DBC for just over a month and a half and are already seeing God at work. Sunday services have seen an increase in attendance. We have recently started a Christianity Explored course on a Monday afternoon, looking at big questions relating to the Christian faith. We were blessed to have two different mission teams from Living Hope Baptist Church in Bowling Green, Kentucky, serve and minister to us in different areas of church life. Our DBC Charity Shop (which has been an outreach of the church for many years) has been working with Asylum Help, based in Govan to provide clothing for Asylum Seekers living in Glasgow. In all of this we want to be a people that not only seek to understand the incredible truth of the Gospel but to demonstrate that truth in both word and deed.

We are excited about the opportunity to replant DBC and at the same time constantly aware of our need of Him in every moment and experience of ministry. God is calling us to be faithful to Him and our prayer is that we might bear fruit for Him in the power of the Spirit and for the glory of His Name. We move forward holding onto Jesus’ words in John 15;

‘I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.’

With love

Mark and Pauline

+ Mission Initiative Group (MIG)

The Mission Initiative Group (MIG) exists to support the National Team, in shaping and reviewing BUS Mission Strategy. Membership is drawn from among recognised proponents and practitioners of mission within our churches.

MIG will regularly review:

  1. mission priorities among our churches
  2. mission initiatives among Baptist Churches
  3. mission products and organisations afforded BUS endorsement

MIG will seek to:

  1. encourage missional thinking among Scottish Baptists
  2. establish CMD opportunities in missional areas, in conjunction with MinDC
  3. support the national team in reviewing and evaluating report for wider encouragement
  4. generate reports that encourage missional development initiatives

MIG operates under the authority of Council, to whom it reports. Members of MIG serve for 3 years, on a rotational basis, for a maximum of 2 consecutive term (with the exception of the chair, who may be appointed in / for a third term). The General Director and Mission and Ministry Advisor serve as permanent members of the group.

MIG recognises, following prayerful discussion within the group, National Team and at Council, that the present mission priorities of our Union are formed by the following observations:

  • It is within our experience that, when a church declines below 30, there is a critical point at which we can effectively assist the work and witness of the church, through supporting a period of transitional leadership.
  • We have identified the need to reach out to Scotland’s poorest people and look to means of promoting and encouraging this.
  • We recognise the need to encourage the development of churches in under-reached areas of Scotland.
  • We continue to look at recent missional initiatives that we might learn from, developing initiatives appropriate to our context and culture in Scotland
+ Bridge Community Church

The Bridge Community Church is a new church in Aberdeen that aims to partner with God in seeking the spiritual and social renewal of Aberdeen through communities encountering the gospel.

They want to be a place where the unchurched find a home, where broken people can encounter the gospel of grace and be transformed. The church is currently made up of a group of folks journeying together in community. The bridge is built around the table, a place where food and life are shared and thanks is given for all that we have. In this pairing of the mundane and the sacred there is a place for wrestling with who Jesus is and how our how that changes us and out place in the world.

More about the bridge

  • The bridge is focussed on reaching the Bridge of Dee area of Aberdeen.
  • Mission for the Bridge currently takes two forms:
    • The gospel is best shared in a context of relationship. We make intentional decisions about our time to make space for those outside the church.
    • In our context the church is not thought of as generous, so finding ways to express the generosity of god in practical ways has opened conversation and relationship. This has included handing out bottles of water at the local walking/cycling path, providing Christmas gifts for the elderly in the community and supporting people in the neighbourhood in crisis with meals and babysitting support.
  • The Bridge Community Church is committed to working with other agencies, church and organisations where there is a shared commitment to the renewal of neighbourhood.
+ Dennistoun Baptist Church (DBC)

On the 12th October 2015, I transitioned from my role as Associate Pastor at Calderwood Baptist Church (CBC) to Pastor at Dennistoun Baptist Church (DBC).

In one sense it has all happened very quickly. We were aware of the possibility of replanting DBC through the support of CBC late last year. Two of the members at Calderwood, Andrew and Shirley McKendry had been involved at Dennistoun for a number of years and through their contact both churches were able to come together to discuss the potential of a replant of DBC. Fast forward to May of this year and the discussion between both churches had become an agreement to replant through a small church planting team from CBC. Within a short period of time Pauline and I have seen God’s hand leading us to a place where we would have a clear calling to both the church and community at Dennistoun.

In another sense God has been at work over a long time to bring us where we are today. For myself (Mark) the journey began in 2004. I sensed God’s call into full time ministry, and in particular to minister to the unreached and the very least. As I continued theological study and gained experience in ministry, (through an internship and full time employment at CBC), God gave me a heart for church planting and in particular to be a light in a community where there was little or no Gospel witness.

For Pauline, as she has journeyed faithfully in her own walk with God and in her own ministry, she has had an on-going and ever increasing desire to help those in real need and difficulty. When God brought us together in 2013 He knew that He was uniting two people with similar hearts to reach the unreached and to be that witness to the lost.

All of this was confirmed earlier this year when God showed us the spiritual, physical, and emotional depravation that exists in the East End of Glasgow, and the potential for us to minister in the context of Dennistoun, a community in which there is very little gospel witness.

So what will this look like? Pauline and I will be moving to Dennistoun, with a clear call to serve and minister within DBC and the surrounding community with the support of CBC and the Baptist Union. The planting team (which Pauline and I will lead) provides DBC with support in different areas of ministry including preaching and teaching, worship, outreach, pastoral care and tech. This injection of ministry support into the life of DBC exists in order that the church will one day become a self-sustaining church. DBC will continue as an autonomous church and will be linked to CBC in terms of ministry enabling in different areas.

Our heart for DBC is that prayer would be at the centre of all that we do. We see prayer as the engine room of the church, we meet together for ptayer midweek and we gather before the morning service in order that we might ‘seek the Lord and his strength; seek his presence continually!’ (Psalm 105:4). Our vision for the church is that we would be a family of believers centred on the truth of the Gospel as it is lived out in our lives through four key areas: Prayer, Word, Community and Mission.

We have been serving and ministering at DBC for just over a month and a half and are already seeing God at work. Sunday services have seen an increase in attendance. We have recently started a Christianity Explored course on a Monday afternoon, looking at big questions relating to the Christian faith. We were blessed to have two different mission teams from Living Hope Baptist Church in Bowling Green, Kentucky, serve and minister to us in different areas of church life. Our DBC Charity Shop (which has been an outreach of the church for many years) has been working with Asylum Help, based in Govan to provide clothing for Asylum Seekers living in Glasgow. In all of this we want to be a people that not only seek to understand the incredible truth of the Gospel but to demonstrate that truth in both word and deed.

We are excited about the opportunity to replant DBC and at the same time constantly aware of our need of Him in every moment and experience of ministry. God is calling us to be faithful to Him and our prayer is that we might bear fruit for Him in the power of the Spirit and for the glory of His Name. We move forward holding onto Jesus’ words in John 15;

‘I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.’

With love

Mark and Pauline