Experiments

The Missional Wisdom Foundation (MWF) teaches about and experiments with alternative forms of Christian community.

MWF is known as a safe place to experiment: a context in which curiosity, learning, growth, and faith are nurtured and failure is seen as part of the learning process. MWF seeks to explore theological theories “in the real world” before attempting to share them with the world. The MWF experiments provide opportunities for people to try and see.

Many people have translated their ideas into into practice through the MWF. Some of these ideas have lasted and some haven’t. All have created the wisdom from which the MWF teaches.  These experiments are not intended to show what should be, but rather to inspire visions of what could be.

The MWF experiments share one common thread: forming community.

Grace is the foundation of community. Grace is the mystery that inspires life, love, hope, and joy. Grace is the hope stored in the seed. Grace is the healing that flows through an embrace. Grace is the swirl in the dance of the Trinity. The Trinity, the threeness of God, shows us that, through the medium of grace, community, or relationship, is the truest image of God.

The MWF has experimented with both residential and non-residential forms of intentional community. From experiments in shared housing to good neighboring, the MWF’s believes that community and relationship are paramount in embodying the Kingdom of God.

The Missional Wisdom Foundation Experimental areas:

Intentional Community
Across time, space, culture, and religion, people have felt the urge to live in and form communities. The MWF has experimented with what it means to be an intentional community. Our Epworth houses give residents an opportunity to live in community, follow a rule of life, and invest in the surrounding community while the New Day communities do so in a non-residential context. Each house and community is an expression of the beauty and diversity of God.

Expressions:
Epworth Project
The People of New Day

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CoWorking
The MWF coworking spaces breathe life back into church buildings that are no longer being used to their full potential. Each space takes on a distinctive personality as it strives to meet the unique needs of the surrounding community. Artists, entrepreneurs, caterers, people who work from home, and others are invited into the space to work alongside others. The co-worker is welcomed into a deep and meaningful support network that provides encouragement, support, and community. The Spirit inhabits each space, nurturing curiosity, learning, growth, and faith in each member as they reclaim these natural expressions of those created in the image of God.

Expressions:
The Mix Coworking & Creative Space
Haw Creek Commons

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Economic Empowerment
Many who have lived or live on the margins of society know that the are barriers to economic empowerment inherent in our culture. The MWF has engaged in experiments wherein a space is held for those on the margins to develop resources, confidence, and a voice. Then those who have been marginalized can, in turn, hold space for another to rise up and thrive. Based in a theology of abundance, God’s grace is not a finite substance, the MWF holds space for refugee, homeless, and voiceless populations to enable them, through education and companioning, to develop their gifts.

Expressions:
The Ahadi Collective
Residential Intentional Communities in Portland

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Asset-Based Community Development/Neighboring
The MWF believes that everyone is gifted, and as individuals share their gifts for the benefit of others they experience wholeness and the community becomes stronger. Following the asset-based community development model, the MWF seeks to aid healthy community development in ways unique to each individual environment.

Expression:
SoCe Life

Photo credits: Ryan Klinck

Photo credits: Ryan Klinck

Disability Theology
The MWF has developed an intentional Christian community centered around those with disabilities. The goal is to develop an empowered community of discipleship in which disability is not viewed as a hindrance or something to be overcome. All forms of disability are embraced as expressions of God’s wonderful creativity and vast diversity at work. The MWF strives to create community where disabled and non-disabled persons can work side-by-side  and discover and cultivate the gifts that each person embodies. Through this work, the MWF hopes to develop a fully accessible church, physically and theologically, so that the power of fullness for all of God’s children can extend into the larger world.

 
 

Expression:
The Julian Way