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STORY

OUR

The vision of The Sonder Collective began in 2015, and since then we have been growing and as a collaborative space for many churches and communities. 

So where did it all begin?

"Like a lot of ministries, The Sonder Collective began with a vision, which turned into a hope, and now it's a lived reality. Let me share with you our story... 
 

At the start of 2015 I had a vision:


'As I closed my eyes, in-between the blinks, I could see a dry desert of rich, dark, deep, yellow with cracks forming through this dry, dry ground. Around the place there were half dug holes deep in the ground… when you look up, you could see them everywhere. Across the whole landscape were these deep dug holes, and seeping up through the all the cracks was this sweet, vibrant water.'

 

 I held on it for a little while, trying to figure out what it meant for me,  but one day I was out with a friend and in our conversation I realised that maybe this vision I am holding holding on to was actually not for me - but it might be for her. 

So I shared it.

My friend looked at me, and was like; ‘Yes! I’ve been seeing the cracks too.. but through them I can see sprouts shooting up with life. I can’t help but think it is a call to the church..’

Two weeks later I get an a phone call, and it is my friend calling to share something. She spoke about how she caught up a friend of ours who needed to share a vision with her. She said it started the same, with seeing a dry desert of rich, dark, deep, yellow with cracks forming through this dry, dry ground. It also saw these half dug holes deep in the ground all over the place, and there was this rich, sweet water seeping up through the all the cracks and holes. But then she had more to add... those dug holes deep in the ground, she saw as wells that were once teaming. But now they don't 'overflow' as they used to-this is why the water is seeping out through the cracks of the earth, shooting up life wherever it can, with these little sprouts with purple flowers. But more life could come, if we stretch ourselves, meet with one another, and re-dig these wells to help reach into this sweet, vibrant water. 

She was adamant that this vision was a call to the church - these cracks as the sprouts shooting up are revival coming back in the church. 

 

So we started planning what it would look like to bring this into reality. 
 

A year later I was having another conversation with two different friends and one of them started sharing a story about her brother, and the first encounter he had with Holy Spirit all the way back in 2005. It started with him flicking through Scripture and he was drawn to Hosea 14. 
 

I will heal their disloyalty;

I will love them freely,

for my anger has turned from them

...
His shoots shall spread out;
his beauty shall be like the olive tree,
and his fragrance like that of Lebanon.
They shall again live beneath my shadow,
they shall flourish as a garden;
they shall blossom like the vine,
their fragrance shall be like the wine of Lebanon.

 

 HOSEA 14: 4, 6-7

As he looked up from the page he could see the shoots popping up, and he heard God saying to him that these sprouts are of a new generation hungry for their faith - it is a revival for the church. I was shocked and excited about what I was hearing; it was almost like a confirmation to continue with how we could make this a lived ministry.

 

From this started the crazy idea of The Sonder Collective. 

• • •

With an aim of a collaborative ministry across our churches, it makes sense that it was in a mutual space that this vision was shared, for that is the most fundamental reality of our community • sharing. We have an opportunity to gift our resources and time, share them with one another, so that all our wells of faith can grow deep and nurture the spirituality of their community. 

Our focus is on youth and young adults ministry - a niche ministry that our smaller churches do not always have the ability to offer specified ministry programs. By combining our programs across churches and sharing what God has gifted us with we have an ability to let this vibrant, sweet wellspring of water reach to everyone, not just a select few. More so, we are able to grow with a depth of understanding and compassion as we are able to meet together from
 different paths, churches and homes. Different theologies and liturgies allow us to express, teach and experience our faith in ways that we did not think was possible.

To think about the growth we are experiencing together, we know there is more goodness to come.

 

 

 

2015

2016

2017

2018

  We began discussing this vision, and speaking to churches in Murrumbeena & Shepparton.

• • •
The Sonder feet
began.

Churches in Murrumbeena
& Shepparton started jumping on board. By the end of the year we developed 2 regions:

 

 • Sonder Murrumbeena.
• Sonder Yonder.

   Murrumbeena Uniting blessed
this missional community with yearly funding.

• • •

    We ended the year with:
• Sonder Yonder looking at Rural Vic
• A third region of Sonder Brighton. 

• Gathering over 80 young people
• Uplifting 16 home church
communities. 

• Uniting together across
5 denominations.

         The Governor of Victoria, Linda     
     Dessau, mentioned The Sonder 
   Collective on mainstream radio.

• • •

      We ended the year with: 

       • Gathering over 150 young people.
  • Uplifting 25 home church
communities. 

• Uniting together across
             7 denominations.

The many communities gathering across Victoria is exciting, and I am humbled by the immense privilege The Sonder Collective has by being welcomed to walk alongside many church communities."

 

 

Kelly Skilton

Founder & Director of The Sonder Collective