8 Simple (but not easy) Rules for Movement: Part 6 – Send Co-Vocational Teams

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When so-called “secular” work is seen as part of the mission, it can aid the church reproducing the process.

Now that we have a leader in place and a team of complementary gifts established, we are now ready to institute a process for sending them into the harvest. I propose that the sixth step required to establish a culture of multiplication in the local church is to prepare and send co-vocational teams.

What is Co-Vocationalism?

A few years ago, I was trying to create a new, vocational imagination within our church planting network, www.sendnetwork.com. We needed a mindset that both valued the sacred calling within the “secular” workplace and leveraged the calling as a kingdom parish for a stout gospel ministry in church planting. The problem was, the only word that we had at the time was “bi-vocation” – the prefix ‘bi’, means two. Two competing ideas. A division of focus. We use this prefix in words such as bisect or bifurcate. It becomes an incongruent schism of the whole.

Very often, it seems, a bi-vocational pastor or church planter had two vocations that were not aligned into a singular vision. One paid the bills. It was a necessary secular evil in order to fulfill the true and legitimate calling of the sacred. If the outside employment could go away and there were enough finances from the church readily available for full employment, that would be the obvious preference.

This idea, although familiar to both our clerical preferences and our ecclesiastical history, is quite foreign to our Scriptures. We needed a new term, a symbol that conveyed a congruent harmonization of work and ministry.

The prefix ‘co’ comes from the Latin, com, meaning with or together. We use it with words like, co-author or co-pilot. It connotes two different things working synergistically together …

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