Dear e-News friends and church members,
Thriving Friendship Houses
In this week’s e-news we want to keep you up to speed with developments concerning our church and changes in the nation.
I know that we are all so desperate to meet and fellowship with one another again. We thank God that it seems we are making progress against this pandemic. We especially thank God for His divine protection over our lives, the number of healings that are being reported, including from Covid-19 and cancers, and for the number of people who have come to faith.
We have also seen a significant growth in new growth groups and a much higher attendance across the board. Small groups are in, they’re biblical, and the best way to evangelise and grow right now.
Whilst things are lifting, they haven’t as yet lifted enough for us to come back to our corporate gatherings.
Having done a Covid-19 risk assessment, our team report that our buildings are too small to hold services and maintain social distancing at the government required levels. And most of the schools, community centres and hotels are not available for hire for other locations.
If we were to meet, it would only allow a very small number of people to gather at any one time.
Further, since the restrictions would require no singing, and no children’s church it wouldn’t be church as we know it. We will therefore wait a little longer before we get back together in that way.
HOWEVER – households can meet, (up to 8 persons indoors). So, FELLOWSHIP is possible.
So, for the month of August we would suggest that we start the following:
1. Growth groups should start physically meeting in homes where possible.
Bearing in mind that you will need to also have the meeting on zoom or Facebook since you can’t exceed 8 people present. You will also need to comply with current good health and safety practices. We will fully support you with materials and guidelines to make this possible.
2. Start making your house a friendship house/go to church online with others.
Either invite a family around to your house-or you go to theirs for one of the Sunday services.
Enjoy food and fellowship at the same time. But each will need to use their own personal cups, plates and cutlery. Crowds of uptown 15 can gather outside for say a BBQ, or a walk in the park. Whilst its still summer let’s max the opportunity.
Such social events where a big key for our growth in the early part of our church journey.
3. Invite your unchurched friends to join with you in any of these relaxed and friendly opportunities.
4. We will have a Regional Leaders Meeting in August, and around 50 people will be able to attend in person for that event. A booking system will be in place online shortly for those who would like to be there. It will of course be streamed at the same time, to the wider leadership group.
We have been learning about soul purpose and discipleship in our Surge month. This is our primary objective and small groups are the best way to go.
We will continue to produce a quality church online experience for the weekend, with many other broadcast/input opportunities available during the week.
Do you remember what we said when all of this first happened?
God wanted us to thrive not just survive in this season! And that is what’s happened in every way, with thousands attending church with us on any weekend, new groups, new nations, new ministries, new courses, new languages new salvations, many people baptised in the Holy Spirit and healed across the web. WOW! God is good.
Well, as we move into this next phase, let’s raise our faith once more to thrive and not just survive. Will you believe with me to see the number of small groups double and develop over the next few weeks?
On another very important note. Our court case against CEC/Usher Hall kicked off this Monday, and we thank God it went well and looking very positive. But there is a long way to go, so please uphold this unfolding situation in your prayers.
The social action teams have been going flat out, but we expect the demand for hot food to fall, and the need for food bags to rise in the next few weeks as emergency hostels are wound up.
Very unusual days, but a very amazing God.
Don’t hesitate to call or connect if you need any further information.
We love you guys, look forward to seeing you on the weekend.