Dear Church Planters
I have just returned from visiting the church plants in the Netherlands with Rudy Dingjan and Gerard Frenk. It has been a very encouraging (in fact inspiring) time! In the next edition of the NEWS I will share more of what is happening – for this CHURCH PLANTING NEWS is already too long. You will be really encouraged to see what is happening in so many places – and, there are many ministry ideas here!
Are you coming to the Church Planters X-Change in Finland (3-10 Aug)? There are more than 80 coming from Britain – and over 60 from the Netherlands! Don’t miss out. …
Keep praying for each other. Rejoice in what God is doing – and support each other. Share your stories – and encourage each other.
CHURCH PLANTING NEWS – 27 May 03
CHURCH PLANT BORN IN ASHFORD (England)
“We had our first meeting in Ashford on 17th May and there were
34 adults and 24 children present,” writes church planter Fernand Lombart.
“We had wonderful time praising God and I challenged them to make difference in Ashford. Our long term vision is to have a centre that is open seven days a week in the heart of the community meeting the needs of the community.”
NEW BUILDING FOR CHURCH PLANT BUILT IN 3 WEEKS!
“We are glad to report that another miracle had happened in Macedonia,” reports leader and church planter, George Trajkovski. “The new church building for the Negotino church plant was built in just three weeks.”
Builders Lloyd Ellis and Lyle Ball from Charlestown church in Newcastle, Australia call the new church plant in Negotino the “happy church.” The opening ceremony and the first worship were held on Sabbath, May 24. “The new hall was packed with friends, visitors and neighbours,”
says George. “The Negotino members were at loss for words to express their gratitude to God and our missionary builders, Lloyd and Lyle – whom we now
consider half Macedonians.” This is the third church building that Lloyd
and Lyle (retired businessmen) have built for new church plants in Macedonia.
NEW GROUP AT STANBOROUGH PARK
“Last Sabbath a member, recently bereaved of his wife, said he’d like to have a small-group in his house,” writes senior pastor Robert Vine.
“He lives in an area we don’t have any groups, so we are very pleased about it and look forward to establishing another group in the Watford district. I’ve had a lot of funerals recently (nine since
January) and they can have a discouraging effect on the pastor. So a small-group represents new life in the Body of Christ.”
GETTING TO KNOW PEOPLE – IN THE GARDEN!
“My wife and I have taken responsibility for an allotment,” says Robert Vine. “It is very hard work pickaxing, weeding and burning rubbish, but already we have the whole area (200 square yards) dug and planted.
I’ve never met a group of people so helpful or friendly as the other diggers. We’ve already made friendships which could be developed in the future. To us it’s all about ‘Authentic Friendships’ – stage two of the Life Devlopment process.”
CHURCH PLANT IN ABU DHABI (the Gulf)
Victor Harewood – who encourages gospel work in the Gulf countries (Middle East) – reports that a new group of believers has been established in Abu Dhabi.
BLUE – PLANS THE FUTURE WITH SMALL GROUPS!
“At the moment we are in the process of organising a 2nd worship service which will be underway in September, and, combined with the café, we should be humming,” writes Murray Harvey from Stanborough Park BLUE.
“Jerry Unser is also coming over from Australia in July to take a week-of-prayer type event and will further assist in establishing small groups which have just formally begun.”
NEW CHURCH PLANT CORE GROUP FORMED IN SLOVENIA!
“We now have over 12 regular visitors in Kranj each Sabbath,”
writes David Currie – Australian evangelist visiting in Slovenia to assist in the planting of a new church. “On the last two nights of our public meetings we had over 45 visitors. Ten have asked to be baptised. Davor Misckovic is continuing with the meetings and outreach.”
Plug In – MOVING OUT!
“We are now looking for a mentor, who can guide us through the process of training more leaders,” says one of the Plug In leaders, Lasse Bech. “We are also going to prepare presentations to go out to the community to seek their wider funding and leadership support.” Already some support has been offered.
MIRACLES IN ISRAEL
In Israel, where last year new groups were planted in 100 previously unentered cities, “48 people have been baptized since the beginning of 2003,” reports the leader Richard Elofer. “We are witnessing miracles almost every day in Israel and Palestinian territories.”
MILE END CHURCH PLANT –
CHURCH PLANTING NEWS readers will recall news of a new church plant in Rouse Hill (Sydney, Australia). Because their chosen name had been used by another group – this church plant is now known as Mile End Community Church. But, much more than a name change has been taking place!
“Each Sabbath we now have between 35-45 adults attending Mile End, and usually around 15 children,” says church planter, David Jack. “We have workshops at 10 a.m. (currently studying through our values) and worship at
11.15 a.m.. We have a lunch every week providing opportunities for building relationships with visitors. We have had visitors every week since we commenced. Last Sabbath there were 13 adults visiting.”
A baptism is planned for this coming Sabbath – with 3 men being baptised. “Two of them were unchurched,” says David. “One became a Christian in the cell group and is being trained to be a cell leader.
Currently all but 2 of our membership (34) are in a cell groups and we have
6 groups operating. We have training for cell leaders every second week.”
NEW LIFE CHRISTIAN COMMUNITY – MOVING!
“We are moving our worship Gathering (New Life Christian
Community) to the suburb of Croydon where the established church will join NLCC,” reports planter Phil Brown. “We are busy painting, changing the
seating, etc. It will give us more room and a few more people. We hope
to grow and move on from there. We are also trying to purchase the Crossing. I have decided on a few changes – to focus on more evangelistic Bible outreach at the Crossing, to simplify our program, focus on the cells and do more training of our people to better share their faith.”
FISHPOOL – MINISTRY IDEA! (North England)
Lay leader of the Fishpool Community Church, John Barron, is sharing a list of fellowship challenges with core group members each week.
The challenges for this week are –
Pray for the Holy Spirit each day
Give a loaf of bread to someone near you
Give out 5 VOP cards
Write a letter to a non-Christian telling them that God loves them
Pray for your neighbours on either side by name
Tell someone why you love Jesus
IMPACT’ HELPS THE FLOW OF WORSHIP (from Preaching NOW – May 03)
In the May 2003 issue of Baptist Life, Rick Muchow, pastor of magnification at Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA, explained that “Music is not worship itself, but a tool to worship.” In order to provide an effective flow for Saddleback’s weekend services, he uses the acrostic
IM stands for Inspirational Movement, or an energetic song of praise.
“In order to wake up the Body of Christ, we have to wake up the body,”
P stands for Praise song, which is a song sung about God in the third person.
A stands for Adoration, a praise song sung to God
C stands for Commitment, with songs like “I Worship You” or “I Surrender All”
T stands for Tie it all together, using a song “that summarizes the group’s worship of the Lord, sung in the collective third person.
INNOVATIVE IDEA FOR OFFERINGS!
Southside Community Church now has electronic banking facilities
(EFTPOS) – and members may pay offerings, donations &/or tithe by EFTPOS.
(e-southside – 22.05.03)
FROM e-southside (15.05.03) …
“So then faith comes by hearing and hearing by the word of God…” (Rom 10:14)… How many of my neighbours haven’t heard? How many of yours haven’t heard? How many people in our community haven’t heard the story of salvation? … Whose responsibility is it that they hear? … Very often the Holy Spirit uses us, uses me, uses you! Are you available?