Fresh Expressions

Fresh Expressions is a model of outreach especially for churches that are seeking to be more missional.  It is one of the most effective ways for a church to reach and disciple persons who have no interest in attending church.  The model, developed by the Anglican and Methodist churches of England, is based on Jesus’ sending of the 72 in Luke 10.  It is a model that can be initiated by as few as one or two persons and it doesn’t necessarily require a lot of money.  Any-sized church can do a Fresh Expression and in any setting.  All it requires is a bit of understanding and a heart for those outside the church that Jesus referred to as the lost.

Training available in Indiana in 2020:

Vision Day, February 22, 9:30am-3:30pm (Central Time), Blue Grass UMC, 14200 Petersburg Road, Evansville, IN 47725-8362

Vision Day, March 7, 9:30am-3:30pm (Eastern Time), Union Chapel Ministries, 4622 N. Broadway Avenue, Muncie, IN 47303-1083

Vision Day, May 2, 9:30am-3:30pm (Eastern Time), Clay UMC17646 Cleveland Road, South Bend, IN 46635-1382

Vision Day, September 26, 9:30am-3:30pm (Eastern Time) in the North Central District

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Fresh Expressions Grants Available

The Indiana Conference is offering dollar-for-dollar matching grants for up to $1,000 to eligible churches.  Eligible churches are those that meet all of the following criteria:

  1. Is a United Methodist Church located in Indiana
  2. Has leaders who have attended a Fresh Expressions training
  3. Has the intention of starting a Fresh Expression effort that…
  • Intends to reach people from outside the church’s congregation
  • Meets at least monthly
  • Intentionally disciples:  Begins with hospitality and moves, as is appropriate, to more tangible discipling approaches—one-to-one mentoring, prayer, Bible study, etc.
  • Is connected to the church and is supervised by the church’s pastor or a designee
  • Does not expect those who attend to ultimately attend the sponsoring church; the Fresh Expression can be their church

4. Has had its church council/board officially approve launching the Fresh Expression

Grants are considered by the Church Development Committee four times per year and applications must be submitted two weeks prior.  Contact Brenda Gross (Brenda.gross@inumc.org) for this year’s deadlines.

Fresh Expressions Grant Application

Share your church’s Fresh Expressions story

Send a description to Ed Fenstermacher (ed.fenstermacher@inumc.org).

Listen to other Fresh Expressions stories:

Helpful Resources:

  • Deep Roots, Wild Branches:  Revitalizing the Church in the Blended Ecology, by Michael Adam Beck
  • Fresh Expressions:  A New Kind of Methodist Church for People Not in Church, by Kenneth Carter and Audrey Warren
  • Fresh Expressions of Church, by Travis Collins
  • Welcome to Dinner, Church, by Verlon Fosner

For more help contact Ed Fenstermacher (ed.fenstermacher@inumc.org) or visit:

Dinner Church Collective
Fresh Expressions U.S.
Messy Church U.S.A.