Traditional Evangelism strategies seem to focus solely on the intellectual arguments for God, for the need for Jesus and ignore the real reasons why people seek out the Paradise Promise: an emotional connection with the unseen, the sacred and meaning in their lives. There aren’t enough words to describe this movement of the heart and this is where the Sacrament life of the Church returns to fill the emotional void of mission. Based upon extensive work in alternative worship groups, youth work and real frontline evangelism with young people for whom a formal course would be meaningless, Fr. Simon Rundell, an Anglican Parish Priest in the Diocese of Exeter, seeks to raise our consciousness towards the mysterious, the sacramental and the numinous whilst connecting with those far outside the walls of the Church. The key question this year’s festival might want to ask is “what or whom are we saving paradise for?”, and how the traditions of the Church can shape the cutting edge of Gospel-shaped mission in the 21st Century.
Fr. Simon and the Blesséd Community are well known at Greenbelt for their wildly sacramental offerings in worship. He was written widely on Sacramental Alternative Worship and Sacramental Worship with Children and is currently developing materials for Frontline Evangelism with Young People.