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Questions for leaders as we leave lockdown...

As lockdown restrictions begin to be released in the UK we asked Paul Mogford and Natalie Williams to come up with some questions which church leaders could investigate with their teams, to help them move forward and plan for the future. These questions may also be of use to any church leader in other contexts where churches are beginning to meet in-person again.

1. Why do we do the things we do? (Are they biblical? Common sense? Habits? What are your 'sacred cows'?)
2. "We don’t want things to return to normal in church". So what 3 things would you do differently? (Lots of leaders and members have been saying that after the pandemic we don't want things to return to 'normal' church. This question should help you begin to assess what it is you think needs to be different in your specific context - you may find more than three...)
3. What are the specific needs in your community? (Are you sure? How do you know? Would your community leaders or members answer in the same way? If you’re not sure, how can you find out?)
4. What is the best use of your church building, if you have one? (Is it time for you to shift your focus on your building working for 6 days of the week, not working for 1 and then everything else fitting in around that?)
5. How can you move beyond crisis support to actually changing people’s lives? (It's important to support people in crisis but how do we create long term change in people's lives, moving them on from crisis into stability? How can we create structures that release people from poverty and crisis?)
6. How involved are your evangelists in your projects? (How can people with evangelistic gifting help your projects remain missional?)
7. How will you actively create viable pathways for those hit hardest by the pandemic to come to Christ?
8. Have you thought and planned how you will disciple those who have suffered most during the pandemic when they do come to Christ? (This may be very different from other forms of discipleship)

Hopefully these quesitons will be relevant wherever you are in the world as you can apply the concepts into your contexts. Clearly some nations are still in lockdown and others are gradually opening or have re-opened but you can still use them to help you plan ahead and think constructively about how you can re-shape following lockdown.

We hope they are helpful! If you've got a great question which isn't on this list please do let us know and we can update it, we really want to serve our churches across the globe as best we can as they begin to transistion out of lockdown environments.

Paul Mogford - heads up our Devoted management team, is Head of network development for Jubilee+ and is part of the team at Kings Church Cockermouth
Natalie Williams - used to be a journalist and is now CEO of Jubilee+, Natalie is also the Community Engagement Director at King’s Church in Hastings, she has co-authored three books on poverty in Britain.