Kairos Connexion – An interview with Nic Harding

Today we wanted to share a bit more about Kairos Connexion (Kx) – one of the regional teams that is emerging across Europe. Below is an interview with Kx Team Leader Nic Harding, former Senior Leader at Frontline Church in Liverpool.

Nic – What is Kairos Connexion (Kx)?

kairosmapKx is a network of churches and leaders across England, which has evolved over the last four or five years from churches that have been through the training processes with 3DM. These churches have committed to the same DNA in leading local church, using things like Missional Communities to help with this. However, as well as leading local expressions of a missional movement, Kx churches have committed to partner together around a vision to impact the nation with gospel, with shared values of discipleship and mission. Together we continue supporting one another and learning together as we move forward on the journey.

We look to extend the invitation of relationship and partnership with other churches, who may share the same vision and values. Because of this, we are reaching out to new churches and offering the Kx training in this DNA that has previously been provided by 3DM. So leaders in England and Wales can now connect directly with us to experience things like learning communities, coaching and workshops.

It’s probably important to say we are not trying to replace or recreate a denomination or stream that already exists. We are trying to create a relational network that leaders and their churches can connect in to, whilst fully remaining within any denomination or stream they are a part of. This is about a family of churches that are looking to pioneer a particular way of doing church and wanting the support that comes from a family as they do that.

For more info – people can check out our website at http://www.kairosconnexion.org/

What’s the vision for Kx?

The vision is to see the nation transformed by the gospel through a movement of missionary disciples. We are working with churches to help them effectively raise disciple makers and become centres of training (hubs) for other churches.. We also want to work with city regions to help their local churches work together around a broader kingdom coalition for the sake of the whole city and regions. Together we can impact a whole nation.

We are looking forward to establishing some national training initiatives with other key practitioners too. We will continue to innovate with training, such as the Caesar Kalinowski Learning Community we are running in 2016.

As I’ve mentioned, a large part of this also involves bringing new churches on board and help them reconfigure how we do church: looking back at the New Testament, looking forward at cultural trends, and using that to work through what the church needs to look like in the 21st Century.

The biggest challenge for all of us as leaders is to really “live the life”. We can no longer just be professional managers of institutions. We have got to be radical disciples who are prepared to create a model around our individual lives, households and communities that demonstrates what the life of a disciple should look like. This is at the heart of Kx.

We are at the beginning of an exciting journey – it’s a moment for innovation and mutual discovery. We have been given some great foundations from 3DM – now we need to build on those foundations to become increasingly effective with the gospel and see it impact our nation.

Kx has a dream of a nation alive with missionary endeavor, where new and existing churches are growing missional communities which are incubating a new generation of disciple-makers. Together we can change our towns, cities and nation.

What’s your personal journey as a leader?

My journey started 42 years ago with a powerful encounter with God on summer YWAM missions in Paris and Amsterdam. That hunger for God led to me connect with the early house church movement. These origins taught me about meaningful community and the need for mission and discipleship to be at the heart of the church. I have spent the last 40 years or so trying to persuade others that this is the case!

DiscipleshipOne of the things people often hear me saying is “I have been looking for and trying to help lead the church that Jesus died for and is coming back for“. I want a church of conviction – not of convenience. I am passionate about the job we have on our hands as a church: For every person to have the chance to hear about Jesus and encounter the gospel, and become part of his family.

That requires a radical rethink in how we do church. It requires EVERY member to play their part – we equip and train the saints to do the work of ministry. That’s where things like Missional Communities and huddles come in – thus far, they are the best vehicles we have found to do that.

What has the journey been in Liverpool?

We have always had a mission-oriented church, ever since we planted it in our front room in 1991 with 12 people. Right from the start, we had a city-wide vision to impact the people of Liverpool with the gospel. We have tried various different strategies over the years to disciple and equip people.

What we discovered with Missional Communities was that they fitted the need for people to have something that was lightweight and low maintenance, low control but high accountability. This empowered people to be entrepreneurial and go after the call that God had put on their lives. It allowed us to put the mission and the vision of the church back in the hands of all the people in the church, and released them in to living out authentic community together.

Over the years, we have developed a city-wide network with other churches and worked closely with the bishop, the cathedral and the city region. I feel we are on the cusp of developing a sort of partnership that could be copied in other cities in the UK. I think there are something like 117 unity movements across the country which is amazing, but there are possibly none that have really grappled with a shared kingdom vision to make disciples who make disciples. I would love to see Liverpool begin to do that.

KOne of my dreams is the 1 in 1000 idea – that we have 1 missional expression of church to take responsibility for every 1000 people in the UK. In one sense the number isn’t the most important thing, but the key is that there needs to be ownership over a specific group of people for effective mission to work. This would look like each missional expression of church developing prayer, presence, people of peace and pathways to faith for their adopted area or people group.

These expressions could be missional communities, fresh expressions, cell groups, congregations or church plants This is all part of what we would love to develop as the national network evolves.

How does this all relate to 3DM?

For the past few years, 3DM has been the central training organisation for churches in Europe wanting to learn about this DNA of discipleship and mission.. Kx is now the national network for England and Wales that will take on the responsibility for developing this growing relational network. That means continuing to develop new connections with churches that are interested in missional discipleship as well as working with churches that are already on the journey. We will continue to run things like workshops, taster days, learning communities, huddles etc under the banner of Kx training.

The reality is that we are right in the middle of the transitioning process at the moment and currently I am building a team that can help to deliver this in England and Wales. So if you want to be part of this journey, then Kx is the place to connect!

How can people respond?

We would love to hear from you if any of this interests you or you would like to talk further with us. You can get in touch with the team directly at:

http://www.kairosconnexion.org/contact-us/

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Nic is the team leader of Kairos Connexion and is based in Liverpool, where until recently he was the senior leader at Frontline Church. Nic and Jenny have 4 daughters and 7 grandchildren. A good book in a coffee shop is his favourite kind of recharging time

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