Margins and mainstream

Over 200 people gathered in Southwark Cathedral on Saturday for the first annual National Anglican Fresh Expressions Conference. They were greeted by the Bishop of  Southwark, the Rt Revd Christopher Chessun and the day was a joint venture between Fresh Expressions and the Diocese of Southwark.

Keynote addresses and a selection of seminars made up the day and the three main addresses are available below.

Session 1: moving from margins to mainstream (Dave Male)

Session 2: prophetic pioneering (Karen Ward)

Session 3: mainstream, whirlpools and watefalls (Paul Bayes)

Steve Harris, Communications Officer for the Diocese of Southwark, said of the day:

Nearly 200 people gathered in Southwark Cathedral for Margins to Mainstream – the 2015 Anglican Fresh Expressions Conference – on Saturday 21st November.

They had come from as far afield as Switzerland to hear inspiring speakers talk about their experiences of working with and in fresh expressions of church and to take part in seminars covering all dimensions of the fresh expressions experience.

The meeting opened with worship and welcomes from the Archbishop of Canterbury who spoke to the conference by video. They were also welcomed, in person, by the Bishop of Southwark – the Rt Revd Christopher Chessun, the Southwark Diocesan Missioner – the Revd Canon Dr Stephen Hance and Revd Canon Phil Potter – Archbishops' Missioner and Fresh Expressions Team Leader.

The first keynote speaker was Revd Dave Male, the Church of England's National Adviser for Pioneer Development, who spoke on the subject of 'Moving from Margins to Mainstream'.

After coffee, which also offered people the chance to visit the marketplace, the next keynote speaker was the Revd Canon Karen Ward. Karen had come over from the USA to speak about Prophetic Pioneering. She is the Vicar of St Andrew and All Souls Episcopal Church, Portland, Oregon, a 'new parish' mission of the Diocese of Oregon, which founded a new church (Portland Abbey) within an old and failing parish congregation.

Lunch brought an opportunity to sample the delights of Borough Market which is next to Southwark Cathedral. Following this it was time to break into groups for the seminars before joining together again at the local church of St George the Martyr, Southwark  ('The Borough Church') for the final keynote speech from Bishop Paul Bayes on Mainstreams, Whirlpools and Waterfalls.