The image of God, from which you and I are made, has much to do with imagination – so says photographer, blogger, Proost director, and Christian Missionary Society leader Jonny Baker, whose worship resources and creative insights have made him one of the go-to guys in today’s missional church movement.
Jonny trains Christian pioneer workers in the Church of England who are part of mostly small outreach ventures in a variety of contexts outside of the traditional church realm. He is fired up about the vitality and energy around him – catch his enthusiasm in this insightful interview.
Click here to download the Mp3 to your mobile device.
Click here to visit vts.edu
Jonny Baker is regarded by many as one of the key players in Britain’s alternative worship scene. He has spent 25 years of ministry on the edges of the church, inspiring us with creative music, videos, photographs, and a passion to widen God’s mission of love and reconciliation for the world. Here are my notes from the interview:
Transition Produces Creativity
Christianity in Europe and the UK has never been under the kind of pressure it’s facing today. However, that transition is forming some enviable creativity – Jonny says 100 new communities alone as part of his CMS work are breaking new ground for mission.
Photography as Spiritual Practice
Paying attention, being aware, and beholding beauty are essential components of both good photography and a buoyant Christian life. Jonny says the creativity in all of us, when allowed to flourish, will have similar spiritual parallels.
Blogs as Connecting Points
Jonny started blogging, 2-4 times per week, in 2002. He says much of the good stuff is really someone else’s stuff that he just passes on. In what ways do we use our blogs to open people’s eyes to important ideas even if they’re not our own?
About Jonny Baker
Jonny has worked for the Church Mission Society (CMS) for the last 10 years, most recently setting up and leading the innovative Pioneer Mission Leadership Training. The Church of England has recently approved CMS training as a pathway for pioneer ministers, both lay and ordained, under the conviction that a mission community training mission pioneers makes good sense.
Jonny is a member of Grace, a creative church that was part of a movement in the UK that became known as alternative worship. He is author of Alternative Worship, a collection of resources from that movement, and more recently Curating Worship exploring lessons for leadership out of those creative communities. He also helped create the multi media labyrinth installed at St. Pauls Cathedral London, and published in the USA. He is a partner in proost.co.uk - a new media company publishing downloadable resources for worship, and his blog is widely read as a hub to all things emerging, missional and alt worship related. See http://pioneer.cms-uk.org , http://about.me/jonnybaker for more info.
Sponsors I Mentioned
Virginia Theological Seminary is the largest Episcopal Seminary in the U.S., forming men and women for leadership in the church. In addition to the MDiv, Anglican Studies and DMin degrees are their Masters of Arts degrees with a fous on Theological Studies, Christian Formation, Religion & Culture, and Biblical Interpretation. Check them out at vts.edu.