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Who we are?

We are a group of people who believe in the church as God’s family and we work together to equip this family to support and welcome believers of Muslim backgrounds.

We are from different churches and organisations including followers of Christ from a Muslim background (BMBs) and Christian background leaders with long experience in this field. 

What is Joining The Family?

Today in Britain growing numbers of Muslims are choosing to follow Jesus Christ. They want to join Christ’s community, whether in British churches or in same-background fellowships. We need to understand their needs, care for them and help them grow in Christ. And we want to learn from them.

In November 2012, in Manchester, a young Muslim lad walked into the Cathedral and asked, “How do I become a Christian?”[…] That same weekend a Saudi woman walked into a local church asking the same, and a young Somali lad had befriended a Christian, was so impressed with him that he asked the same question. Since then I’ve come across a number of similar situations across the city, indeed across the country. It got me thinking, “how well prepared is the church for the harvest that God is bringing? For what may be a trickle at the moment, God willing will become a stream, then a river and even a flood.”

Rev Phil Rawlings

Joining The Family is an initiative to help churches in the West to understand, love, equip and learn from Christ’s followers of Muslim heritage (BMBs). This vision was expressed at a consultation in Britain in 2013 and was taken forward by a core group comprising some Christians of Muslim background and Christian leaders with long experience in this field.

The core group developed a set of resources in partnership with Interserve and Carfax Media, with additional valued help from Elam Ministries and the Mahabba network.  The resources include a film-based discussion course, seminar materials, this website as well as a book.  The book builds on the course material but goes into greater depth and may be read alongside the course or separately. A strength of the course is the way it prioritises the voice of believers of Muslim heritage.  In the film clips they give the main input, and they are frequently quoted in the book. The whole church has much to learn from them.

The Joining the Family core group are keen to provide guidance & support to church leaders and others who are involved in discipleship of BMBs by connecting them with people who have experience & expertise as they seek to support those in their church family.

In spring 2020 a review of Joining the Family’s partnerships and legal/financial sheltering was carried out. It was quickly suggested that there was a natural fit between Joining the Family and the charity Word of Life, in terms of vision, values and mission. Word of Life has been producing materials for sharing Jesus with those from other faiths for thirty years. Since 2019 the mission of the charity has refocused onto BMB discipleship, bringing together the Come Follow Me course, training to use CFM and research into the discipleship of believers from Muslim backgrounds.

It was felt that the vision and resources of Joining the Family complement the aims and ambition of Word of Life really well. New disciples need a home within the body of Christ at large. Joining the Family’s role in the equipping of the church to welcome, receive and mentor these disciples and all they have to offer could be a natural outworking of their three interrelated tracks: curriculum, training and research.