The Fresh Expressions initiative, a joint Anglican and Methodist venture launched in 2004, has attracted increasing interest from academics, clergy and laity, yet there is very little that offers critical reflection on it. This is the natural successor to John Hull's useful short critique in Mission- Shaped Church: a theological response, and key authors assess the impact of mission-shaped thinking and practice from a variety of angles.
An impressive line up of contributors first asks what counts as a `fresh expression' and who decides. Part 1 explores what postmodern ways of viewing the world means for the way churches explore truth and uncertainty, and tradition as an evolving rather than a static enterprise. Part 2 uses real examples to examines who attends `fresh expressions' and what it incarnational theology looks like in practice. Part 3 considers the implications for clergy training and whether there is a case for making `pioneer ministry' a discrete type.
The conclusion asks whether a `mixed church economy' can really work.