You may have heard the phrase “mission ready” in the context of theological learning but what does that actually mean in a practical sense? Rev Nigel Rogers—Trinity College Queensland’s Dean of Formation and Dispersed Learning—illustrates the characteristics of the mission ready graduate and how that links to the Basis of Union.
Would you know a graduate from Trinity if they were ministering in your congregation or workplace?
There are many diverse expressions of ministry and mission that a Trinity graduate will engage in. After all, Trinity is intent on forming and educating people for the broad reach of the church. However, this diverse expression still carries the consistent thread that a Trinity mission ready graduate is grounded in and centred on the word of God.
Diversity is always and only ever an expression of unity, that which binds us together. Therefore, mission ready graduates don’t have a manufactured uniformity in their capacity to interpret and proclaim the word of God. Rather, the hallmark of mission ready graduates is the life within them that flows from unity with Christ who, as the Basis of Union declares, is the “Word of God who acquits the guilty, who gives life to the dead and who brings into being what otherwise could not exist”.
The life giving union with the word of God infuses a disciple’s character and competence, which gives rise to their capacity for ministry and mission. Character is so often shaped by the way it is modelled and experienced within the culture of any organisation.
Humility is one of the most evident and prized character traits within the culture of the learning community at Trinity. The humility of a mission ready graduate will drive a character that serves others with resolve and resilience knowing that it is one of the most profound ways that others can see and experience the very nature of the word of God.
Humility engenders teachability. In any endeavour it is always the teachable ones that expand their competence the most. Trinity not only offers world class theology and ministry education, it inspires people to be lifelong learners. A mission ready graduate from Trinity will be constantly learning to draw deeply from the word of God.
As they move into mission and ministry they will have significant competencies in biblical interpretation, preaching, the prophetic voice, pastoral care and leadership. All of these capabilities will be grown and honed with the missional focus of pointing people to the word of God.
Therefore, how would you know a mission ready graduate from Trinity? In essence, the hallmarks would be that they are a lifelong learner who is humble, teachable and constantly seeking to express the word of God which anchors their life.
Rev Nigel Rogers
Rev Nigel Rogers is Trinity College Queensland’s Dean of Formation and Dispersed Learning and was previously the CEO/General Secretary of the South Australian Presbytery and Synod. For more information visit trinity.qld.edu.au