Home Mission pics

Home Mission pics

Tuesday, 26 November 2013

Update from Locking Parklands

I've been hearing that many people have enjoyed the WEBA video Weston-super-Mare, a Moving Story as it's done the rounds of the Jesus be the Centre events this autumn. My suspicion is that many of us can relate to this particular story, about two couples who take the step of buying not-yet-built houses on the new development at Locking Parklands so that they can build Christ-centred community there. Perhaps some of us hope God might use us in a similar way one day.

I was recently asked for a short piece to go on a leaflet promoting Home Mission, which all our churches will be receiving soon, and so I got in touch with Liz Cundy, one of the  Locking Parklands four, and asked her for an update. As they've only been there a year, and incarnational mission is a long term business, I didn't expect as much news as I got! I could only write a few words for the leaflet, so here's Liz's full reply for us all to share:

We are still visiting all new people who move in and taking them a welcome bag and card which gives us the opportunity to meet each new family.
Mums and Tots with about 8 families on our books happens at our house weekly on Mondays with both Mums and Dads as does a Community Coffee Morning on Thursdays when we have approximately 6 - 10 people coming along. 

We also head up the Residents Community Group which organises Events  - our BBQ in the summer attracted 200 people!
Other events have included an Easter event ,a  Teddy Bears Picnic, and more recently a Harvest morning using Chris Duffetts ' Fruit of the Spirit'  ideas alongside Tea Coffee and Doughnuts.  As we have no community building we have to do all of these outside but God has been gracious and faithful so that we haven't been rained off yet.  We see our church as being the worshipping part of this same community group and not something separate.

The four of us meet regularly every week over a meal and then spend the evening catching up, praying and listening to God.

Hospitality has been one of the most important ways of meeting with people and we usually spend at least one evening a week just having different folk round for meals and gradually building up relationships with them.  We have discovered there are a lot of 'Prodigals' on our patch so believe that they play quite a big part in what God is doing here.  Please pray that God will inspire us and give us wisdom for the next step forward.

As this is about Home Mission Funding for our training at the Crucible Course we just want to say how valuable the course has been to us, not just in it's teaching but by the encouragement we receive from other like-minded people each time we go.

Please pray for Liz, Malcolm, Debbie, and Andrew as they take all of this forward!
Ruth Whiter

Monday, 11 November 2013

Building Community at Hillfields Park

Last week our new Association Manager Rob English attended a public meeting at Hillfields Park Baptist Church in Bristol. He came back full of excitement about what this small, strategically placed congregation is doing - and hoping to achieve - in this area that has suffered from drastic cuts in council services. So we asked their Development Officer, Sam Carrier, to tell us a little bit more:

Hillfields Park Baptist Church recently hosted a public meeting to talk about its important plans to build a new community centre on its site near Fishponds, Bristol and to consult with local residents.

A number of people spoke - sharing stories about the deprivation of the local community and the great need for a larger facility for all ages in an area where there are no community facilities at all.

 The church is already providing a lot of social services but has run out of space to meet demand. The church is a registered charity, and its patron is Richard Pendlebury, chief executive of the homeless charity Emmaus in Bristol and also a deputy Lord Lieutenant for the City.
Richard Pendlebury with Development Officer Sam Carrier
 He clearly feels very strongly about the poverty, petty crime, poor social cohesion and poor health in the Church's neighbourhood and encouraged the meeting to continue to step out in faith.

Hillfields Park Baptist Church's vision is to have the centre built and operational by 2015 - no mean feat for a small, low income congregation. But it has already raised over £80,000 and is clearly determined to achieve this project. For further information contact sam.carrier@virginmedia.com or 07976 967 290.