Our vision is not so much for a church, but for a town. In June 2012, at a cross sitting majestically on the edge of a cliff, approximately 900 metres above sea-level, high above the Andalucían countryside in southern Spain, God gave Simon and Rachelle the beginnings of His vision for the future of Taunton Vineyard. God has called us to be a church that brings transformation to the town of Taunton with the love of Jesus, and in partnership with the wider church and in partnership with the wider church and other ‘spiritually neutral’ organisations..
To find out a little more about us, listen to our last vision talk from September 2016 here and download the accompanying Impact 2015-2016 booklet by following the link on the right.
Commitments, Values and Priorities
We intentionally press into 4 key commitments which we believe God has highlighted to us as important in partnering with Him in this process of transformation. They are:
- A commitment to being a missional people serving a missional God.
(Keeping mission at the centre of who we are).
- A commitment to living as a supernatural people.
(Seeing the gifts of the Holy Spirit in operation among us and through us).
- A commitment to recognising the importance of the individual.
(Recognising that transformation often comes one life at a time).
- A commitment to the enjoyable; to enjoying the journey!
(Not taking ourselves too seriously, and having fun along the way!).
We press into these commitments within the scope of normal church life which is continually balanced between three priorities. These sum up what we believe to be essential to living the Christian life. They are:
- Strengthening relationship with God.
(God calls us first to Himself).
- Building authentic community.
(The church is God’s agent of transformation in the world).
- Engaging, shaping and transforming culture
(Transformation comes from serving in love the communities around us).
Both our priorities and commitments are underpinned by our values as a Vineyard church in the UK and Ireland. These are eight behaviours that are innate to us. They are our DNA which comes from being from the same seed as hundreds of other Vineyard churches across the nation. They are:
- Jesus - Jesus gives us our aim and focus. He organises us and holds us together. We want to be like Jesus. We desire that through the power of the Holy Spirit, Jesus’ love and power would shine through all that we are and do.
- Bible - The Bible is our final and absolute authority. We want to hear the Bible taught in a practical, inspiring and relevant way. We aim to hear and obey God’s Word to us.
- Kingdom - We seek to move in the power of the Holy Spirit, ministering through His gifts, and seeing God heal and perform miracles. The Kingdom of God is the dynamic reign or rule of God. We live in an imperfect world but we do still, in part, experience Jesus’ rule and reign of His Kingdom here on earth.
- Worship - We desire to worship God with our whole being. We want Jesus to be at the centre of our lives as Lord and Saviour. We want to worship in a style that is intimate, dynamic, culture-current and life-changing. By worship, we mean living in such a way as to bring glory to God. Worship is more than just singing songs; worship should be seen in our daily lives - the way we deal with other people, clients, patients, the boss, pupils, husband and wife, children, parents and so on. The Vineyard is known for its contemporary worship music style and within the Vineyard there are 5 main values that underpin our approach to worship. These values are Intimacy, Integrity, Accessibility, Passion and Expectancy.
- Compassion - Worship leads to the Presence of Jesus and He, by His Holy Spirit, brings compassion. Compassion is not just a feeling; it leads to action! We expect God to make us a compassionate church and we expect to spend money, time and energy expressing it not just to each other, but also outward into our community and beyond - especially to the poor.
- Local Church - We value the local church in all its expressions. In the Vineyard, we believe that our churches have four key facets:
- Army - To be mobilised together in doing ministry instead of being consumers and spectators by helping others, giving and bringing good news to our neighbourhood.
- School - A place to learn and grow in our faith and to be equipped.
- Hospital - A place to receive healing, and recover from the pain and brokenness of life.
- Community - A place to practice and experience community, and connection with others that builds deep friendships and support groups.
- Church Planting and Development - As a movement, we aim to build the Kingdom of God by sending trained people to plant churches in the UK, Ireland and around the world. We are committed to the practice of planting new Vineyard churches that will share Vineyard values, convictions, priorities and practices.
- Training and Equipping - We believe that all Christians should be trained to ‘do the works of Christ’. We can be even better at everything we do! We are committed to apprenticing leaders and giving hands-on learning experiences; from making tea and coffee at our Sunday service, to leading a small group, to training for church planting. When people are trained, we continue to support and encourage them through follow up.