Church Mission Society (CMS) has nurtured pioneering leaders in mission for more than two centuries. Pioneers from CMS have crossed geographical, cultural and contextual boundaries – sharing the gospel in uncharted territories and bringing about transformation. Now CMS has devised a new course for pioneers, who wish to train on the job, the Pioneer Mission Leadership Training Course. For those in the Church of England this course has been approved as a training pathway for Ordained Pioneer Ministry.
Many pioneers feel they are working alone, in new situations where they need support. This course provides that support, encouragement and practical help through teaching and interaction with fellow students. Pioneers who study with CMS have access to an ever-expanding array of mission leaders and practitioners, a valuable resource for participants.
The course is modular and can be accessed as a Foundation Degree (16 modules), a certificate (8 modules) or for students to dip into the course and study modules when suitable.
The modules are: mission spirituality, faith seeking understanding, the bible’s big story, the mission story of the church, mission in contemporary society, pion
eer ministry, cross cultural skills, pastoral care, missional entrepreneurship, new testament, old testament, theology in global context, ethics in mission, worship, mission leadership and cross cultural placement.
Other distinctive components of the course are ‘sink or swim’ (where people are challenged to launch new projects), specially designed placements to enhance learning/visiting other pioneers and communities, worshiping and praying together, an annual retreat or pilgrimage, sessions with pioneer practitioners, connecting with a mentor and learning as a community.
Most people do the course over three years where a year typically includes: one day a week at CMS in Oxford (about 25 days a year), a residential week, two weekends or a placement with another community and a retreat. If pursuing the ordained route, there will be additional input mostly at weekends with the Oxford Ministry Course (OMC) each year.