How Missionary is Your Church? (An evaluation)

By © Salim Photography/
The following comes from David Bosch's Transforming Mission.  Usually, I post extended quotations on my Scatterings blog, but felt this was worth posting here.  I found the list personally challenging as I reflected on my career as a pastor and church planter.  I encourage you to do a bit of self-examination of you are leader in a local church.  Forget about your seating capacity and offering plates for a moment.  How does your church measure up to Bosch's keys below:

Manifestations of the Missionary Dimension of a Local Church

1. True worship

2. Hospitality and welcome to outsiders

3. Pastor doesn't monopolize ministry, treating members as mere objects of pastoral care

4. Members equipped for their calling in society

5. Structurally pliable and innovative

6. Doesn't defend the privileges of a select group

7. Intentional and direct involvement in society

8. Moves beyond the "walls of the church" to engage in mission in areas of evangelism and work for justice and peace

So, how about it? How "missionary" is your church really?  Also, I'd be interested to hear from you if you have points to add.  What would you add (or challenge) to Bosch's list?


  1. Perhaps the author includes prayer with worship, but it's so important that I think I'd add a point about that since many think of worship as the opening song service. I guess in light of the description of worship found in James (caring for widows and orphans in their distress and keeping unstained by the world), then prayer would still be a welcome added point--prayer for the local and distant lost, various cultures within cultures, missionaries--full time and non-full time, and so on. And it would be important for this to be regular, consistent, persistent prayer--personal and corporate, not limited to an annual missions conference. I'd be happy to see further description of the points on the list, too.

    1. You are right on, Chris! Great comment.