Mission Action Plans

Why do we need a Mission Action Plan?

It’s a well-known truism that ‘if you aim at nothing, you’re bound to hit it’. The same is true for our mission and ministry. We might look around our churches and wish for more people, warmer buildings, a richer prayer life, more young people, committed volunteers, stable finances, more engaging sermons or better coffee – but if we don’t have a vision for the future and a plan to get there we never will.

What is a Mission Action Plan?

A Mission Action Plan (MAP) is a document which articulates the vison for growth which has been agreed within a Mission Community and the practical steps needed to move towards this. MAPs are a local expression of the Diocesan Vision: to grow in prayer, make new disciples and serve the people of Devon with joy.

A MAP is not just a list of what you currently do, neither is it a static document. MAPs develop over time and change as they are used. The practical steps described in you MAP can be used to set the agenda for the Parish or Mission Community Council and help you to stay focussed on the things which you have decided are most important.

A MAP doesn’t have to be a complicated document. The example below is a simple four-point MAP which is structured around the three-fold diocesan vision. Please click the image to download the MAP.

Four-point MAP

Some other examples of different ways to present a MAP are available below. All these show how the diocesan vision can be used to expand local strategic priorities set following a vision day or consultation exercise. Please click the image to download the full MAP.

Text based MAP Grid style MAP

Larger churches might choose to structure their Mission Action plan around a larger number of priorities or action areas. The following is an example based on the ‘Eight Common Factors of Growing Churches’ from the Church of England report ‘From Evidence to Action’. This MAP is an real example from a church in the diocese, and has been updated since this version was produced.

MAP based on 8 factors of growing churches

MAP based on 8 factors of growing churches

Mission Community Development Team

The Mission Community Development Team are here to walk with mission communities as they produce a MAP or revisit their existing strategy. During the process they will draw on local expertise and link mission communities with expert practitioners and advisers who can help develop the details of their MAP. Each archdeaconry has a Mission Community Development Adviser who will work with the Archdeacon and be your first port-of-call as you write or revise a MAP.

For further information, please contact the Mission and Ministry team. Email Mission and Ministry