Missiology is firmly planted in the realm of communal belief, expression, and practice. A theology of mission is marked by the the communities we inhabit and the places we call home.
“From start to to finish, missiologists have come to the conclusion that missiology is about the church; it is from the church and it must build the church.”Scott W. Sunquist, Understanding Christian Mission
Mission is theology in action, in context, embodied by a beloved community. Mission is informed and shaped by our theology, and our theology finds purpose and place in mission. Theology without mission isn’t fruitful, and mission without theology is unsettled; both are necessary.
Sometimes theology or mission, goes out ahead of (or meanders away from) the other. Those places are the unexplored frontiers of missional or theological understanding. We frantically search for a working-out of the other.
An ongoing critique, evaluation, and re-imagination of theology and mission are necessary. Missiology (praxis) and theology (doctrine), need room enough to adapt, listen, and grow, as new information, new research, new voices, and new perspectives join either conversation.
Theology and mission are sometimes used as cudgels to enforce, instead of being a shepherd’s staff that guides.There is a co-dependency between missiology and theology, that is driven by our ongoing sense of awe and wonder towards God, and love and care for neighbor.