JULY 1971


Movemental Confession

1. The globe continues to suffer. The Spirit Movement is that group of people that sees this suffering and decides to assume responsibility for it. This responsibility is acted out by sensing this moment in history which is one of heightened consciousness of man's awareness of his situation in the postmodern world. He sees himself enmeshed in outmoded economic structures that tyrannize the political and cultural dimensions of his life. The innocent suffering that results causes deep yearning for a new vision of how he can shape his own destiny. Balance needs to be restored to the cultural, political and economic aspects of fire so that each man may claim the promise of life that the earth belongs to all the people.

Social Shift

2. The great shift of our time is the rediscovery that local man holds the power, wisdom, and insight to grasp the trends and malfunctions existing in society. It is clear that the preestablishment - the order keepers ­­ and the dis­establishment ­­ the callers­into­question ­­ both are frozen into existing patterns. Emerging from this tension is the trans­establishment ­­ the Spirit Movement ­­ which knows the gifts and limitations of both. Emerging out of this insight the Spirit Movement has decided to intensify its involvement in the social process. In the summer of '71 the Spirit Movement, in the continuance of its signal mission, engaged in a research assembly to study the dynamics of the social process and to formulate the initial proposals upon which the New Social Vehicle would be built. The implications of this research for the Spirit Movement are given in this working paper.

Guideline Function

3. These guidelines are directed toward those self­conscious churchmen who have heard the cries of the global society and have decided to expend themselves in the humanizing, restructuring of the society. This paper will enable churchmen to engage in the necessary task of assessing the work of the research assembly and will provide some practical guidelines for appropriating this research .


4. As a result of the Summer '71 New Social Vehicle Research Assembly, the Spirit Movement is entering into the stage of development in which it will look seriously at its role within Historical Christianity. The church is called upon again to release the Word in present day society.

Universal Condition

5. Historically the church gives man the possibility of living in the Word and catalyzes the creation and sustenance of social structures. The mark of this century has been the apparent collapse of those social structures. The church has not been spared from the experience of this collapse, and is struggling now and needs to continue in this struggle, to discover authentic and effective ways to fulfill its historic roles.

Visional Gift

6. The Spirit Movement provides an authentic context and a vision of creative response to the universal condition through the power of corporate social research and experimentation on behalf of the whole church. The vision of the New Social Vehicle reveals the possibility of appropriating the ontological deeps of humanness and the archaic gifts of sociality as the 20th Century necessity. Therefore, the Spirit Movement fulfills the role of visionary as it proclaims the gifts of the Historical Church and demands a creative thrust into the radically open future.

Movemental Intentionality

7. Our historical tradition calls for the creative and strategic dissemination of the insights gained at the Summer '71 Research Assembly. The immediate imperative on the Spirit Movement is to create a comprehensive story about the Assembly and to develop a strategic plan for sharing that story. This story will be used for broadening and strengthening our denominational relationships.

Project Accountability

8. From the perspective of one year's experience of the Local Church Project, we see the possibility of the practical renewal of human society. To further develop this possibility and to infuse the church with new vision for its comprehensive social responsibility, we will continue to dialogue within the Historical Church. Thus, the Local Church Project can be seen as a means whereby the church can appropriate the gifts and intentionality of the research methods developed in Summer '71.

9. In the 20th Century, the church will take seriously its servant role. The church must carry to all men that vision, born out of struggle, of what it means to self­consciously create the future for the sake of all men. In the midst of this on­going task, the Spirit Movement takes responsibility for its role within Historical Christianity.


10. The guidelines for relating the vision of the New Social Vehicle to the local church must enable the millennial man of faith to re­envision his task of catalyzing self­conscious church renewal. The proposals of the New Social Vehicle illuminate the sociological responsibility of every local church, and make even more urgent its immediate renewal.

Local Vision

11. The vision of the New Social Vehicle provides the local church with a comprehensive context for its parish engagement. By conveying the vision of Summer '71 to local churchmen, the Movement relates the suffering within any parish to the social contradictions of the globe and thereby contextualizes the local mission as the concretion of the global task. By grounding himself in the social process, the local churchman is released to respond to depth social contradictions and is freed from superficial activism. The particular guideline for the next year is to implement ~­1ll educational form that enables a congregation to deal systematically with this new vision.

Parish Orientation

12. Research in the New Social Vehicle will have a lasting effect on the practical working of the dynamics of the local church. This understanding of human sociality will guide the cadre and congregation as they pour content into the parish aspect of the Local Church Project. Specifically, the Local Church Project will be intensified in its second year with the addition of an in­depth orientation to the parish in the light of the New Social Vehicle vision. Further, the New Social Vehicle research will strongly inform the details of the third and fourth years of the Local Church Project. All the instruments of the Summer Research Assembly, for example, the social process triangle, will be useful to the regions as they deepen the orientation to the garish in local churches.

Project Expansion

13. As the New Social Vehicle begins to take form, it is apparent that the Local Church Project will be intensified. This expansion of the project will be handled in a manner rationally consistent with preparing the framework for the emerging New Social Vehicle. This demands an intensification of training. First, training of auxiliary priors to establish new Religious Houses and Galactic Outposts. Secondly, cadres who are potential local auxiliaries must be nurtured and trained so that they are ready to move into a Galaxy as guided by the expansion rationale. And finally, emerging wisdom from continuing research on the New Social Vehicle proposal will be transmitted to the local church in order to enable the tactical system to incorporate key insights.

Regional Structures

14. The demands for local church renewal require intensification of regional structures. Existing Galaxies will help in this effort as their regional involvement tactics are activated. Regional structures are key to relating the local church to the global mission. The vision of the New Socia1 Vehicle provides a new context for structural experimentation and care in the area of local/global relations. The future of Galactic churches requires that energies be thrust into local church penetration, and preparation.

15. It has become clear in a ­new way that the local church is the key to global mission. The demands which the creation of the New Social Vehicle places on the local church require the transcendence of activism, the utilization of spirit disciplines, and the embodiment of the New Religious Mode. Out of the struggle of' the New Social Vehicle research and its implications we can affirm the local church in its historical role as that group n society which authentically cares for mankind in radically new ways.


16. The New Social Vehicle research intensifies the claim on the Spirit Movement to act out its role within Historical Christianity. The Spirit Movement must reaffirm its obedience to the whole church. It acts out his obedience through the strategies of penetration, formulation, permeation and development at the regional level. The demand is to intensify these strategies in order to create spirit giants who embody the radical style of the resurrectional man.

Penetration Expansion

17. In order to intensify penetration, models will be created for comprehensive development of regions. The thrust of recruitment in the regions will be three­fold: 1) strategic individual recruitment; 2) focused congregation recruitment, 3) broadened denominational enlistment. This includes intentional recruitment of ministers and their wives for the development of the Local Church Project.

Formulation Expansion

18. The Spirit Movement will develop regional structures which embody a comprehensive model for deepening participation in the mission and providing care, nurture, and enablement for spirit men on a metro level with regional commonality. The expansion of the Local Church Project and intensification of regional structures will require the development of new cadres and galactic congregations. It is imperative, therefore, that every RS­I graduate be cared for comprehensively through regional participation and spirit training in cadre 1ife' Odyssey, Academy, and advanced courses. Increasing consciousness about the dynamics of human sociality provides new insight into the corporate dimension of individual spirit care.

Permeation Exploration

19. These insights need to be shared with a broad spectrum or colleagues. The chief task of the Spirit Movement is to begin to ground the theoretical documents prepared during Summer '71. This involves new research activity ­­ through permeation colloquies and PSU's ­­ beginning at the regional level to compile data from the experience of colleagues in existing social structures and to test the dynamics of the New Social Vehicle model. On the regional level, this is the exploration of the action centrum dynamic.

Development Foundation

20. Fidelity to its total mission demands that the Spirit Movement see its own responsibility for financial support. Therefore, it is essential that the approach to funding the Movement and all its projects be conducted on a comprehensive basis. This requires further development of long­range projection, timelines, and the creation of on­going structures to coordinate the development function among the metro, regional, and continental levels. The Movement must continually create a context for the local man which simultaneously holds the global and particular needs. The financial needs of the Movement create the imperative on the local spirit man and bring into being structures of accountability to sustain the spirit revolution.

21. Summer '71 provides the Spirit Movement with new vision for the future and for its task of reconstructing the local church. The breakthrough in social vision is a step towards further clarifying the role of the church as that which transcends established societal tensions. The Spirit Movement will intensify its research and experimentation by building systematic order and common discipline, particularly within the regional dynamic. It must be conscious of the imperative of continued research on the New Social Vehicle, specifically social permeation in the context of the local church. This research is allowed and demanded by the deepened context that the Movement has been provided by the societal analysis and imperative from Summer '71. In the midst of both continued intensification and extensification of the movement al task, the unity of the New Religious Mode and the New Social Vehicle must again be emphasized.


Regional Readiness

22. The presence of a thousand churchmen at the Summer '71 Research Assembly, the reception of the Continental Local Church Project by 80 congregations, the establishment of new Religious Houses throughout the Continent, refined regional structures, new formulation and permeation constructs, and the spread of ITI's in international regions all point to the readiness of the Spirit Movement in the regions to begin a year of further study of and research on the perpetual task of building the New Social Vehicle.

Research Intention

23. The Research Assemblies of the past two years point to the fact that the entire Spirit Movement has become a serious researching and re­tooling body. Its primary thrust is in the analytical sociological methodology to forge comprehensive care constructs. In order to extend clarity developed in Summer '71, it will be necessary to continue this work with specific focus on regional PSU's. Building a Movement consensus and common memory on the results and implications of the summer will be accomplished by decisional study and brooding.

24. The bending of history and the forging of the NSV will flow from the radical intensification of the spirit dimension of life. With global vision, the man of faith must focus on the local situation and open it up to new possibilities. At this point in history, when men have self­consciously articulated the ideological principle that all the earth belongs to all the people, the imperative is that spirit men commit themselves to the shaping of the New Social Vehicle.