Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Continuing the journey into Will Mancini's book Church Unique, the second step on his Vision Pathway is Developing Your Vision Frame. The Vision Frame contains five components that define your church's DNA and creates the platform for all vision casting. The Vision Frame is expansive enough to include the church's evolving vocabulary that anticipates where God is taking you. Once a leadership team completes the grueling but rewarding process of clarifying vision, what are the right words to capture your Kingdom Concept? Which terms unlock the understanding of strategy? What language engages the hearts of your people?

A Framework for Missional Clarity: The Vision Frame
The central thrust of Church Unique is introduction of a framework called the Vision Frame. It contains five components that define your church's DNA and creates the platform for all vision casting. No leader should lead, no team should meet, and no initiative should start without a clear understanding of the vision frame.

Each component is critical to answering one of the five irreducible questions of leadership:

  • Mission as missional mandate: What are we doing? The missional mandate is a clear and concise statement that describes what the church is ultimately supposed to be doing.

  • Values as missional motives: Why are we doing it? The missional motives are shard convictions that guide the actions and reveal the strengths of the church.

  • Strategy as missional map: How are we doing it? The missional map is the process or picture that demonstrates how the church will accomplish its mandate on the broadest level.

  • Measures as missional life marks: When are we successful? The missional life marks are a set of attributes in an individual's life that define or reflect accomplishment of the church's mandate.

  • Vision Proper as missional mountaintop + milestones: Where is God taking us? Vision Proper is the living language that anticipates and illustrates God's better immediate future.

The Vision Frame components mus be clear, concise, compelling, ccatalytic, and contextual. If these five attributes are fused within the Vision Frame, amazing energy is released. It all funnels into an important reality: the vision is contagious.

Why the Vision Frame Works

During a recent lunch meeting with Will, I was captivated by his background and path to where he is today: a chemical engineering degree, working with a marketing company, and as a pastor. This unique combination of backgrounds gives him incredible insight into process, communication, and the heart of ministry. It also speaks of why the Vision Frame works.

  • It Carries the Kingdom Concept: Your Kingdom Concept "lives" as it is translated into the Vision Frame itself and not as a separate statement. Each church's unique Kingdom Concept finds many possibilities for expression.

  • It is Complete yet Concise: It is comprehensive and addresses the function of the church in a real and tangible way. It is also packaged concisely, enabling the DNA of the church to be portable in the life of the church.

  • It Communicates a Missional Reorientation: The Framework is a powerful tool to capture culture - drawing on the best of who God made you to be, drawing out your best as a people to live and serve in the community. Familiar planning words are used, but given a missional reorientation.

There is a consensus among missional leaders that a new language is needed for evoking our imagination and forging a new identity for the church at large and for your individual Church Unique. Will Mancini's Vision Frame is the framework for missional clarity that equips you to create this new language.

If you are looking for a dynamic, challenging process to re-energize your church and create a vision to carry your ministry to new levels of effectiveness, this is a resource you must have.

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