Speaker: Rev Adrian Youings
Reading: Jeremiah 30:18-24 (NIV)
18 “This is what the Lord says:
“‘I will restore the fortunes of Jacob’s tents
and have compassion on his dwellings;
the city will be rebuilt on her ruins,
and the palace will stand in its proper place.
19 From them will come songs of thanksgiving
and the sound of rejoicing.
I will add to their numbers,
and they will not be decreased;
I will bring them honor,
and they will not be disdained.
20 Their children will be as in days of old,
and their community will be established before me;
I will punish all who oppress them.
21 Their leader will be one of their own;
their ruler will arise from among them.
I will bring him near and he will come close to me—
for who is he who will devote himself
to be close to me?’
declares the Lord.
22 “‘So you will be my people,
and I will be your God.’”
23 See, the storm of the Lord
will burst out in wrath,
a driving wind swirling down
on the heads of the wicked.
24 The fierce anger of the Lord will not turn back
until he fully accomplishes
the purposes of his heart.
In days to come
you will understand this.
All Saints Trull
Our Mission: becoming and making mature disciples of Jesus in Trull and beyond
Verse for this year: “We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God” (2 Cor 5:20)
Where are we now? We have put in…
Foundations for Future Growth
Over the last 5 years, our numbers have plateaued. However, the numbers must be looked at carefully. We have welcomed many new people during those years but overall we have not grown. There are no obvious ‘leakage’ points. We have seen small numbers of new Christians. I believe we have laid important foundations which, with prayer and God’s blessing, might begin to lead to numerical growth in near future…
TCCC now fully up and running and is an excellent resource for community engagement and service:
- Managed well and well publicised
- Paying its way pretty well
- The Hive café is a tremendous focal point
- Community interest and bookings are increasing
- Church exploring new ideas (eg Poetry, Buzz, Dementia support)
- Service Patterns
We have now established four stronger Sunday congregations
- All have strong core (tho’ early days)
- All have good space for numerical growth
- All distinct (welcome wide variety people)
- Excellent team of leaders, preachers, and musicians
- Whole-life Discipleship (Frontline)
We have established the ‘frontline’ idea at the heart of way we think about church and our own lives as Christians. Our focus on Sundays is more focused on encouraging, supporting and equipping people to live out their God-given calling 24/7 on those frontlines of work, family, leisure, neighbourhoods.
- Balanced ongoing discipleship programme: Head – Hands – Heart
- Practical ways of being more frontline-focused (eg Powerhouse, TTT, What’s God been doing”)
- Centred our teaching/growth groups on ‘frontline’ so as to root it.
- Created some good opportunities with key parts of community demographic
- Older people : Coffee Connect, Craft group, 12-2, Hive, Dementia support
- Families & YP: Launchpad, Worship Thru’ Play, Trull School, Pulse, Angels
As well as more general outreach events: Christmas craft, poetry evening, The Buzz etc
Vision for 2016-17
- Numerical Growth
“I will add to their numbers and they will not be decreased” (Jer 30 v19)
To see church members passionate to see family, friend’s colleagues and neighbours come to a living faith in Jesus Christ. The primary focus this year should be ‘evangelism’. We are ambassadors for Christ – he is making his appeal through us – we must implore people to be reconciled to. We have laid the foundations, now focus on prayerfully and expectantly seeking to see those who are not yet Christians become Christians.
- Preaching/GG’s in Spring term on book of Acts
- ‘Hands’ term (Jan –April) – equipping/shaping for evangelism:
- 6th February: Church and Parents working together – nurturing faith in children
- 2nd March Rachel Jordan CofE National Advisor Evangelism: ‘Talking Jesus’ in Trull
- March: PCC focus on connecting with our community
- Holy Week: The Significance of the Cross for people today (3 sessions)
- April: Dr Denis Alexander (Faraday Institute, Cambridge Uni) Science & God
- Joyful Worship
“songs of thanksgiving and the sound of rejoicing” (Jer 30 v19)
To see and hear our church community confident and joyful because of what they know and have experienced of God’s of goodness, even at times of hardship.
- First 6 months bedding-down of the new service pattern
- “What is worship?” – focus on during heart term (summer 2016)
- Encourage more sharing of where we have experienced God’s goodness across the services, and more expectation of experiencing God’s goodness
- Strong Community
“a community in which I take pride” (Jer 30 v20)
To see our church community more connected and committed to one another, Our three new congregations will feel quite ‘odd’ for a while so we need to work hard at establishing them as congregations (worshipping, caring, missional communities).
- Greater focus on each congregation as individual unit
- Work hard at binding together members of the individual congregations the three ‘new’ congregations (follow the lead of 8am)
- Congregational oversight teams focus on nurturing of each congregation to be thriving/growing unit
- Devoted leadership
“I will bring him near and he will come close to me, for who is he who will devote himself to be close to me?” (Jer 30 v21)
A key factor in churches not growing is leadership structure. Aim this year to establish a structure of leadership and understanding of roles in the church that will release numerical growth. It will require an increased commitment and focus on the part of some key leaders and esp. the PCC. It will require re-defining roles and responsibilities. A greater focus on ministry-oversight leaders.