Purpose or Mission of SCCs
Intrinsic to the nature of SCC is the understanding of church as ecclesia, gathering: in Greek and Roman Empires, a social and political meeting of free citizens, to seek the welfare of the locality, and Jesus' manifesto in Luke 4: the kingdom (reign, or realm) of God to be realised in the here and now.
The SCC (in contrast to some other groups) has a purpose or mission beyond maintaining its own life. In contrast, the primary purpose of House Groups is often devoted to self nurture and Cell Church to Evangelism.
The purpose or mission of the SCC is usually worked out in one of two ways, Collective or Dispersed.
The Collective way is when the SCC discerns a call to carry out a particular task within its local neighbourhood. The members agree to work to this one end and all their gifts are brought to bear on that task. The early history of SCCs in South America (known there as Base Ecclesial Communities - BECs) followed this model.
The Dispersed way may be more appropriate to the more mobile society of 21st century Britain. Here each member will have a different ministry in the place where their family, work or social life is lived out, on a 24/7 basis. The life of the SCC will then be devoted to giving space for members to reflect, among their peers, on the issues they face as Christians, to learn from experience, to explore how they might make a difference, and to grow in effectiveness.In both models the learning, self-development, fellowship and evangelism that happen within the life of other groups (Home Groups, Cell Church etc.) also become a feature of the life of the SCC.
The witness of the SCC in its reflection on, and response to, the challenges being faced in its day-to-day experience leads to the SCC becoming a Learning Community as well as a Missional one.
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