NEWS 21 Nov 03

Dear Friends

Many church planters have decided to put aside this Friday (Nov

21) as a day of prayer. Because Friday evening is a ‘night of power’ in Ramadan (the Muslim fast) – thousands of Christians around the world are dedicating that night to prayer and fasting – and praying that many will have visions of Jesus that evening.

We invite all church planters to dedicate time on Friday and Sabbath (21 & 22 Nov) for special prayer. We are praying for –

– the outpouring of God’s Spirit upon all church planters and plants – by name.

– the spirit of encouragement.

– courage to speak of Jesus with our unchurched and lost friends.

– Club 39 – and all those working with teens.

– those who criticise and make the task of evangelism a greater burden by their constant opposition.

– church leaders and administrators who are working to encourage church planting.

– specific people who do not know Jesus as their Saviour.

– some who have asked for prayer –

Ian & Verlie Hamilton, the Alpha group he is working with, Church Resource Ministries (UK);

The Club 39 team, family and friends – following the sad passing away of one of their leaders.

Patrick Johnson and the specific ministries of his church in Oslo.

Our friends Michael and Sue.

Dana & Leslie King and the many ministries of Yeovil Family Church.

The Korinta Cafe Church in Riga.

Laverne Byng – and her ‘Gym Fellowship’ Group.

Pray for Laverne’s friend Katy – and for one of Laverne’s Buddhist friends.

We will be upholding each other – and reflecting upon the ministries that each represents – as we pray. I invite you to share with us the experiences you have with God over the next couple of days.

Christian regards

Peter Roennfeldt

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CHURCH PLANTING NEWS – 21 Nov 04 – ‘Day of Prayer’

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In this NEWS’

# HAPPENINGS IN ÖREBRO (Sweden) – and PRAYER NEEDS # CafeChurch CELEBRATES 5th BIRTHDAY # ENCOURAGEMENT – from Laverne!

# KORINTA – PRAYING FOR YOU!

# PRIVATE WORSHIP – ESSENTIAL TO EFFECTIVE MINISTRY # SMALL GROUP FORMS FROM ‘WELCOME HOME’ MINISTRY # CHURCH PLANTER – SUPPORT EVENTS IN BRITAIN –

HAPPENINGS IN ÖREBRO (Sweden) – and PRAYER NEEDS # Work has started in preparation for ‘Mersmak 04’ – ‘many are looking forward to it and please pray’ that people will commit their lives to him.

# “We are continuing the afternoon services once a month,” writes Siri Bjerkan Karlsson. “These meetings are reaching many young people who would never otherwise come to church. We are hoping to have afternoon services twice a month. Please pray for us!”

# Pray for a young mother, Aisha, with two children – who has started coming to our church. She has no Christian background – but has longed to meet God.

# Three weeks ago we had an inspirational week-end with four groups who were in Finland from Sweden came together and continued the work of inspiring each other with what God is doing and what we will be concentrating on in the future. Björn Ottosson, Karsten Berglund and Martin Vucmanic were with us, leading us. It was an inspiring weekend!

# We have started a “prayer ministry” where we have concentrated on prayer in our sermons and our small groups and once a month on Friday evening we have a prayer celebration – where we meet together, praise God in worship and prayer. We will be praying for the Moslem world on the 21st of November.

# We have a prison ministry going on. One of the elders (Nils-Börje Eklöf) and the leader of the “care ministry” (Elsie Stone) are at one of our prisons every other week, meeting the inmates and building relationships with them. Please pray for them!

# “We have a young family from the Philippines that started coming to our church over a year ago,” writes Siri. Friendships have been built. The oldest son is over 20 and the daughter 17 – and they have been at home in the small groups. The youngest girl is 10 years old and has been active in the Pathfinders. The mother Trisita – came to Sweden after her Swedish husband died 5 years ago. “Last Sabbath (15 Nov) Trisita died of an aorta aneurysm,” reports Siri. This has been a very say week. The members of Örebro have been giving a lot of support. “Please pray for this family and pray that our church can be their extended family in the true sense of the word,” requests Siri.

CafeChurch CELEBRATES 5th BIRTHDAY

Last weekend the Copenhagen CafeChurch celebrated their fifth birthday. “It was a wonderful weekend,” reports planter Betina Wiik. “88 guests came. We have never been so many on a weekend – and, the birthday party was great. All the different cell groups had some entertainment. We had a lot of teenagers coming. One unchurched teenager said – ‘It was the best weekend of my life.’ We are so encouraged about the teens and look forward to the worship services we are working on for teenagers together with ‘Plug In’.”

ENCOURAGEMENT – from Laverne

“All who are under the training of God need the quiet hour for communion with their own hearts, with nature, and with God. … they need to have a personal experience in obtaining a knowledge of the will of God.

We must individually hear Him speaking to the heart. When every other voice is hushed, and in quietness we wait before Him, the silence of the soul makes more distinct the voice of God. He bids us, ‘Be still, and know that I am God.’ This is the effectual preparation for all labor for God. Amidst the hurrying throng, and the strain of life’s intense activities, he who is thus refreshed, will be surrounded with an atmosphere of light and peace.

He will receive a new endowment of both physical and mental strength. His life will breathe out a fragrance, and will reveal a divine power that will reach men’s hearts.” — Christian Service 249.

“As activity increases and men become successful in doing any work for God, there is danger of trusting to human plans and methods. There is a tendency to pray less, and to have less faith. Like the disciples, we are in danger of losing sight of our dependence on God, and seeking to make a savior of our activity. We need to look constantly to Jesus, realizing that it is His power which does the work. While we are to labor earnestly for the salvation of the lost, we must also take time for meditation, for prayer, and for the study of the word of God. Only the work accomplished with much prayer, and sanctified by the merit of Christ, will in the end prove to have been efficient for good.” – Desire of Ages 362.

KORINTA – PRAYING FOR YOU!

“Two weeks ago – in our Friday evening service – we had a ‘praise evening’,” writes planter Juris Rekis. “Although we were only about 30 people, we had a wonderful overflow of the Holy Spirit upon everybody who was present. The best part is that about 20 of the people there were non-christians! 2/3 of our ‘praise group’ of 12 people – were guests. Can you believe it? Non-christians standing shoulder to shoulder with us – experiencing God and afterwords holding hands in prayer! Now that’s a piece of heaven.”

Juris says – “We have decided to also hold our hands in prayer on Nov. 21 and 22 for the overflowing of the Holy Spirit upon all plants and all the lost people of Europe. Please encourage others to pray for us. It would be great. We will appreciate it very much.”

PRIVATE WORSHIP – ESSENTIAL TO EFFECTIVE MINISTRY

“Private worship is an essential part of a healthy relationship with God, author and professor Donald Whitney said in a lecture series at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, as reported in a Nov. 11 Baptist Press story.”

“How can once-a-week worship satisfy the heart of those who know and long after God?” Whitney asked. “How in the world can anyone walk out of a worship service where God has been exalted and they claim they have met with God and say . . . ‘Well, I don’t need any more of that for a week’?

“How can you meet with God and not be compelled to want to meet with Him more often than just what is convenient once a week?” Whitney, associate professor of spiritual formation at Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary in Kansas City, Mo., continued.

“Ignoring personal worship, however, will transform a minister into ‘the politicking and the ladder-climbing and the name-dropping and the prideful string-pulling sort of person that seems to take more delight in politics than preaching sermons or preparing for ministry,’ Whitney said.

“Statistically, only one of every 20 seminary graduates will remain in ministry through age 65, he said, attributing the attrition rate largely to a neglect of private worship. Without private worship, ministers ‘will burn out because there’s no drinking from the wells of living water,’

Whitney said.” (See PreachingNow – Vol. 2, No. 43)

SMALL GROUP FORMS FROM ‘WELCOME HOME’ MINISTRY

“We have a life group starting as a result of the welcome to your new home ministry,” reports planter Rosemary Lethbridge. “This is 100% unchurched people and the result of the contacts one ‘spotter’ made through delivering ‘Welcome to your new home’ packs. I am so grateful to God for the way in which He is using us to meet and positively impact the community as we meet their needs.”

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