Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Vision Fund Update

In my previous blog about the vision fund I promised an update on how we’ve spent the money we’ve raised so far. The graphic above gives a breakdown of what we’ve spent, how much we’ve given away and what we have left. 

Although we currently have just over £100,000 left in the fund (with around £4,000 still to be given away in tithes) that’s going to be spent quickly as we fund all the costs for Windsor and West Wight from the fund up until the end of 2020, and look to progress a number of projects across our sites. 

We’d love to raise another £100,000 to give us the resources to continue to invest in our sites. Please be thinking and praying about what to give, either via the offering this coming Sunday or by giving online or direct to bank transfer

Thank you so much.

Simon

Thursday, June 20, 2019

2019 Vision Fund Gift Days


Our next Vision Fund Gift Days are coming up on Sunday 30th June and 7th July. We would love to raise another £100,000 towards the costs of funding expansion on all of our sites. Please be thinking and praying over the next couple of weeks about what you would like to give.

In the coming weeks I’ll post details on exactly what we’ve raised so far and what it has been spent on, but in the meantime here are some of the highlights of what we’ve already done and intend to do on each of our sites. 

Bracknell

On our Bracknell site we’ve paid off the mortgage on the K2 House, leaving us debt free as a church. We’ve also examined the possibility of extending our buildings, but concluded that the cost doesn’t represent good value for money when we look at how much extra space we’d create.

We are still trying to buy the land next to K2 from the cricket club. Once we know whether that is possible or not we will build a walkway through from the Kerith Centre site to the college car park, and put a Foodbank storage area by the K2 house (we are currently paying to store Foodbank food offsite). Plans are also progressing to upgrade the kitchen in K2, improve the toilets in the Kerith Centre and redevelop the K2 house for office staff and ministry use. 

Blackwater Valley

We spent money examining the possibility of partnering with Sandhurst School to build a permanent home for our site on the school grounds. In the end we concluded that this wasn’t going to be feasible, which led us to move to the Village Hotel in Farnborough. 
The vision fund has paid for all the equipment needed to facilitate our move to the Village Hotel, including the purchase of a van and all the audio equipment required. 

Going forward we need to work with the Village Hotel to improve the projection and permanently install some of the audio equipment in the hotel to make weekly setup simpler. We are also beginning to look for a home for social justice in Blackwater Valley. 

Windsor

Up until the end of 2020 all the costs associated with our Windsor site, including staffing costs, building hire and equipment costs are being met from the Vision Fund. 

Our Windsor site has run out of space for kids work on a Sunday which is very quickly going to limit our growth. We are applying for planning permission to put a portkabin on the gospel hall site, as well as drawing up plans to redevelop the existing gospel hall to make it work better for us. 

West Wight

As with Windsor all the costs of our West Wight site are being met from the Vision Fund up to the end of 2020. Ben Britton and Dan Wells come on staff at the beginning of September, and the West Wight site starts meeting every Sunday from the 15th September. 

It’s all about people

Behind all of this is the desire to see people find their way back to God. That is happening in increasing measure on each of our sites. By investing in the Vision Fund you are investing in seeing lives transformed by the power of the gospel. 

We plan to close the Vision Fund at the end of 2020, at which point we think we will move to a model of individual sites taking up offerings to fund projects on their sites. We will probably from time to time still have gift days across all our sites to fund starting new sites.

Thank you for being willing to consider how you can play your part through giving to the Vision Fund. As always there is no pressure on anyone to give, this is just an opportunity to invest in the growth of God’s Kingdom. 

Blessings,

Simon

Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Wildfires 2020


We have been so encouraged by the stories coming from Kerith delegates who have attended the past 2 years of the Wildfires Festival that we are going to make it part of the annual rhythm of our church calendar. 

We want to make it possible for as many as possible to attend, and in particular want to use this as an opportunity to invest in our children and teenagers. To help achieve this:
  • We are going to take up an offering later in the year so that we can offer FREE places to all our children and youth up to the age of 18.
  • The offering will ALSO cover bursary places for adults who need financial support to be able to attend Wildfires.
So what does this mean practically?
  • The super super early bird rate (which saves you £20 on the full adult ticket price) ends on the 30th June, so if you are a full paying adult then please get your ticket now via the Wildfires Festival website (I’ve just bought our tickets!).
  • If you have already booked in some under 18’s and would like to take up the free under 18’s offer then please contact us via info@kerith.church for a refund on those tickets
  • If you’d love to come but money would be a barrier to you, please ask to be considered for an adult bursary place. To do this speak to your site pastor on a Sunday, or email them via the who’s who page of the website.
  • In the next few weeks we will release details on on how to give into the fund that will enable others to attend.
Please be thinking and praying about the possibility of joining us in May next year - whether as campers, in a caravan or staying offsite. You won’t regret it!

We are also looking into options to hire tents for those without so don’t feel you have to rush out and buy a tent just yet!

Hope that all makes sense. If you have any questions then please email reception and we’ll attempt to get you an answer.

Blessings,

Simon

Monday, June 3, 2019

Going Deeper in God’s Word - WTC Open Evening


Many of us have just come back from an amazing three days at the Wildfires Festival. There was so many good things about being there, but for me one of the highlights was the coming together of an emphasis on both the word of God and the Spirit of God. Historically most churches resolve the alleged tension between word and Spirit by placing an emphasis on one or the other, but as we contend for revival in our nation we need to go deeper in both (to that end you might want to take a look at this prophetic word from the evangelist Smith Wigglesworth given in 1947). Wildfires saw both a longing for more of the Spirit (powerfully expressed in healings, the prophetic, tongues and interpretations and the unforgettable ministry of Pastor Enoch Adeboye), along with a desire to go deeper in the scriptures (with the likes of John Mark Comer, Pete Hughes, Lucy Peppiatt and Matt Lynch). 

To that end I’m delighted that we’re going to be partnering with the Westminster Theological Centre (WTC) to host a Thames Valley hub which will allow any of us to do, on a part time basis, everything from a Certificate in Higher Education all the way through to an MA in Kingdom Theology. There are already nine people from Kerith in the process of signing up to study with WTC, and I’m hoping by the time we kick off in Septmber we’ll have quite a few more. 

WTC isn’t just for those who feel called to preach or lead a site or a church. It is for anyone who wants to go deeper in their relationship with God through a better understanding of the Bible, and who wants to be better equipped to serve God in whatever they do in life. Over a year it involves twenty Tuesday night study evenings, two five day residentials, essay writing and lots of reading, and costs around £3,250 so this isn’t an easy option, but one which will repay the time, energy and finances invested in it.

For anyone interested we’ve got a WTC Open Event on the 11th June from 7-9.30pm in the K2 building on our Bracknell site. There will be the opportunity to experience a  study evening with refreshments, worship, a talk from Lucy Peppiatt on what Jesus taught about himself, Q&A and an opportunity to meet our hub director, Karen Dack. You can register here

For those wanting to do something a step before studying with WTC we’ll have two other options. The first step is The Bible Course which is an 8 week course run as a small group. There will be new groups running this kicking off in the Autumn. The second option is Equip, which will be a two year journey through the story of the Bible from Genesis through to Revelation. This will run on a Monday night, people will be able to opt in our out on a termly basis, and will academically be around GCSE level. 

Let’s make a commitment to be people of the word and the Spirit, and use these opportunities to go deeper in the word of God.

Hope you have a great week.

Simon

Thursday, May 2, 2019

Don’t miss the opportunity to sign up for a small group


We had a brilliant time yesterday evening gathering the leaders of all the new and existing mainland Kerith small groups for a time of encouragement, equipping and prayer for one another.

It was so exciting to see the army of existing small group leaders being joined by a whole load of new leaders who are adopting the termly small group format. There was a buzz of excitement in the room at what God might be about to do as we enter a new chapter in the story of small groups in Kerith. 

Our termly small groups start next week, and if you’re not yet in one it’s not too late to sign up. There are groups running the growth track courses, praying for revival, dog walking, mountain biking, combining craft and Bible study, getting people from couch to 5K and much more. Over 200 people not previously in a group have already signed up to join one, but there are still lots of space for more people to add to that number. You can even sign up for more than one if you want to! 

You can see all the small group options here. You can also filter down the options by site and by the day of the week the groups meet to find one that works for you. Please step out (even if you’re a shy introvert like me) - it will do you good and you will do others good.

Blessings,

Simon

Thursday, April 25, 2019

New Series - 40 Days with Jesus


On Sunday we start a new six week series looking at the life transforming encounters different people have with Jesus after His resurrection. This week we’ll hear about the first person to meet the resurrected Jesus, Mary Magdalene. 

The series is based on a 40 day devotional book written by a good friend of ours, Dave Smith who leads KingsGate Community Church which has sites in Peterborough, Cambridge, Leicester and London. If you’re not currently immersed in a different Bible reading plan then I’d really encourage you to get a copy and go deeper with what we’re going to be teaching on the Sundays. 

We’ll have a limited number of copies of the devotional available to buy on Sunday at our three mainland sites priced at £4 - please bring cash as we don’t yet have a way to easily process card payments (we’re working on it!). You can also order the book online from Eden where it costs £3.99 (plus £2.50 postage if you spend less than £10, so you might want to buy something else). If we sell all the ones we’ve ordered we’ll get more for next week.

Sunday is also the first time our Kerith Blackwater Valley (BV) site meets at the Village Hotel in Farnborough. If you’re not part of our BV site please be praying for them, as they’ve got a big launch Sunday with the mayor and several local councillors coming along. If this is your site then have a great Sunday in our new location. All very exciting. 

Wherever you’re going to be I pray you have a fabulous Sunday as we continue to celebrate that “He Has risen!”. 

Simon

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

Kingdom Come prayer this Wednesday


This coming Wednesday (24th April) is our next Kingdom Come night of prayer. This is part of our new rhythm of kicking off every term with an evening where we can come together as a community to worship God, and to ask Him to move in our lives, in our church, in the nation and in the nations. The evening will run from 7.30-9.30pm and is at the Kerith Centre on our Bracknell site. The evening is open to anyone who wants to come, although we will spend some of the time praying for things specifically happening within Kerith. 

The evening will be a mixture of prayer and worship, with our friend Pete Greig from 24-7 Prayer coming along to equip, lead and encourage us to pray. Pete will also be talking a little bit about the brilliant new book, “How to Pray”, and the revised Prayer Course which 24-7 Prayer have just released. 

I’d also encourage anyone who can to fast for the day, as a statement of our desire and longing to see God’s kingdom come and His will done. 

We’re asking all those able to make the walk to park at the Braccan Walk Car Park, which will cost £1.50 if you arrive there after 6pm. Please leave about 10 minutes to get from there to the Kerith Centre as you won’t want to miss the start of us gathering together.

It’s going to be a great evening, especially off the back of all God did in and through us over the Easter weekend. Hope to see you there!

Simon