Friday, October 31, 2008
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Monday, October 27, 2008
Respite Club - Two Saturdays every month we run a respite club in K2 where families who have children with special needs can have them looked after in a fun, loving, caring environment while they get a break. This is just part of our special needs ministry which is ever growing and of which I'm incredibly proud.
Ethos on Tour - Our Youth band 'Ethos' were down in Hereford this weekend playing at a Hope08 Youth Event on Saturday night and a churches together joint service on Sunday morning. Lee (our Youth Pastor) went with them and spoke at both events, seeing 8 first time commitments over the weekend. We're believing for Ethos to have a growing ministry serving the wider church and they're already playing at the NewFrontiers Butlins event in January and have an invite to go to Lithuania and play at a youth event there too. As an indication of their commitment Lee and Ethos were back to run our youth meeting on Sunday night.
Ben Davies on Tour - Ben and Mo were in Cyprus last weekend doing a series of meetings for a church over there. Ben is having increasing impact nationally and internationally and is also going to Poland And Lithuania before the end of the year. Just so you know Ken Bothamley also going to Lithuania with Ben, and will be visiting the Balkans again before 2008 is out.
Alpha Day Away - This was held on Saturday at Tony and Liz Pudner's House. I spoke at the first session where there was just such a great buzz amongst the guests. I had to leave after that but Ken and Karen Jones who were leading the day said the buzz just grew and God was powerfully at work in the lives of the guests - more to come of this I'm sure.
Skydiving - On Saturday morning Ruth Jackson, Lisa Rutland and Iris Joyce went skydiving to raise money for CAP. Mad or what! I'm sure it's not too late to sponsor them if you want to - just get in contact with them.
Wedding - On Saturday afternoon I did the wedding at The Kerith Centre of a girl who isn't a christian, but who works as a helper in our respite club, and her partner. It's really interesting that she considers herself to be part of our community and so wanted us to marry them, and it was a real privilege for us to be able to serve them in this way. Very few of the guests had ever been in The Kerith Centre before so it was fascinating to chat to them and hear their comments on what went on - very peachy!
Sunday Meetings - I'll write a separate blog about "The Wall" on Sunday morning, but suffice to say for now I was thrilled by peoples response to stepping up as a community to making our three main meetings in January happen. I haven't heard what the total offering for Serenje was yet, but I do know that the 5-11's raised £150 in their bring and buy sale for Serenje which was brilliant. Hearing Catherine Rohr again on Sunday evening was great too.
I'm sure there's stuff I've missed, so add comments to fill us in on anything else you are aware of. We're hosting a South of England CAP Pastors Conference tomorrow (Tuesday) which I'll be attending, then I'm taking Thursday and Friday off to spend some time with the family.
Hope you have a great week,
Friday, October 24, 2008
Well we just got an email from Gabriel to let us know how it all went, which I've included below.
Talking of the Summit this Sunday night we're showing the talk a lady called Catherine Rohr did at there this year. I've now seen it once live and four times on DVD and can't wait to see it again - it's that powerful. Get there to see it if you possibly can! Also don't forget the second week of the Serenje offering this weekend.
As Catherine Rohr prays "Bring it on God.....".
From: gabriel makan
Sent: 24 October 2008 09:16
To: Sue Ranger
Subject: Re: GLS this Weekend
The GLS in Jos was, to the glory of God, successful! By 3 days to the Summit, our Registration was about 900. This scared us not to go on Radio and TV, so we do not have Seating crisis. Yet we realised that doing so would have served as Reminder to many delegates who were selected/nominated by Heads of their Church Denominations. Attendance first day was around 550 and second day around 650. The Speakers were well received and we have continued to receive positive feedback of how a blessing it was to those who attended.
My time with you at Bracknell was so valuable as it gave me a good picture of how the GLS runs. Willow sent a volunteer Technical person with a good Projector. He arrived in Jos, along with 2 officials from Kent's Church, on the 14th October. We had time to go over issues peculiar to our Location and God helped us such that at the end we made just a few learning mistakes.
Thanks for your support and prayers. Our God will continue to be glorified in our labor of love for His Kingdom sake. Please extend my personal appreciation to Pastor Simon.
Thursday, October 23, 2008
It was so cool to see the great stuff Ed is doing, and the passion he does it with. A number of the people in the two classes I went to also go to Hilltop, our church group for adults with learning disabilities, and it was really good to see them too. Their dancing was much better than mine!
If anyone else fancies having me visit their work just let me know!
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Andy did a great job - you can listen to an archive recording here.
Radio 1 and the Chris Moyles show must be next on Andy's list!
Total money given: £19,629
Total money pledged for the next 12 months: £17,180
That gives us a grand total of £36,809, which is fantastic. Gift Aid needs to be added to that which should take it over £40,000, but we still need in the order of £60,000 this weekend to meet our target of £100,000.
So for those of us still to give let's be praying and asking God what we should give this weekend. I have a deep confidence in us as a community, that even in the current economic turmoil we will give beyond ourselves and reach our target. It's just so exciting to be on this journey together. That because of what we're doing children who would have been deprived an education will instead get through secondary school and then go on to train as doctors, nurses, school teachers, politicians, business leaders and church leaders. That parents who would have died young because they weren't able to take their ARVs and didn't have enough food will live into old age and get to see their children grow up, get married and have children themselves. And that a whole community will be given hope and a future because we chose to give.
Bring it on....
Hope you have a great day.
Monday, October 20, 2008
From what I've heard it sounds like a good time was had in Bracknell too. I'm in the middle of listening to Lee's preach from Sunday morning, it sounds like both Lee and Zoe did a great job speaking on Sunday. I also hear there were over 180 people from more than 60 churches at the CAP Money training course we hosted on Saturday - it's great to be in partnership with the CAP guys - their success is our success.
Let's just hope Newcastle can beat Man City tonight, and then my weekend will be complete!
Thursday, October 16, 2008
It was great to catch up with Tebogo - his church is doing really well but he's feeling the pressure of leading it all - I told him I had no idea what he was on about :-)
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Just heard that three ladies made first time commitments this week at Sparklers (our Mums and Toddlers group). Well done to Dany and the team for their planting and watering, and thanks to God for breaking in and causing the growth.
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
A great photo of John Kirkby speaking on Sunday morning. I was so gutted to miss it, but have heard from everyone how well he spoke. People also said how well it fitted into the Money series we're in and as preparation for the next two weekends Serenje offering. Please be thinking about what you're going to give towards our target of raising £100,000 to cover the costs of the first year of this project.
I also heard the drama on Sunday morning was very good. I thought you might like this photo of some of our great drama team in action.
Monday, October 13, 2008
- The meetings will start at 9am, 11am and 7pm
- Each meeting will be an hour and twenty minutes long
- There will be childrens work for the two morning meetings
- Children can be dropped off up to 10 minutes before the start of each of the morning meetings
- We'll serve tea and coffee and run connect between the two morning meetings and after the second morning meeting
- We will look at having the children come in for the adult worship at some times during the year
- There will also be youth work as part of our morning gatherings
- Initially only the 11am meeting will have signing for the deaf and hard of hearing
- For most of the year we'll have the same preach at all three meetings, although there will be some Sundays where the morning and the evening will have a different preach
- Lee Layton-Matthews will be gathering a team to oversee the evening meeting, possibly looking at running a coffee bar both before and after the meeting
- We'll open the balcony from day one of the evening meeting starting in anticipation of growing a big Sunday evening meeting
- We're still hoping to have Hilltop (our group for adults with learning disabilities) join with us once a month on a Sunday evening
I'm so excited by the opportunity these three meetings are going to give us to grow. I realise that there is still lots of detail to be worked out, but we've got a great team working on how having done the fire bit we now do the aim! I'm going to speak on the morning of 26th October on Nehemiah rebuilding the walls and what we can learn from that about the journey we're on. Why not start reading it in advance of the 26th.
Hope you have a great week,
Thursday, October 9, 2008
We also watched the film crew I mentioned yesterday at work which was fascinating. Their attention to detail is quite incredible and a real challenge to me as we look to do more media stuff. There must have been 100 people there when I went for a run at 7.30 this morning and they were telling us this is a low budget movie! The film is going to be released next June, is about Charles Darwin, stars Paul Bethany and will be released next June. They wouldn't let us be extras though!
Tonight I've been karting in Milton Keynes with some guys from the company I work for. Great fun but my arms really hurt now!
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
The photo probably isn't very clear but there is a film crew here making a film about the life of Charles Darwin. They're filming a scene where Charles Darwin and a load of children run towards a lake. Not exactly Indiana Jones but watching it has kept all of us amused - it doesn't take much!
Talking of Charles Darwin we'll be looking at evolution versus creation next year. Perhaps we'll show some of this film!
Monday, October 6, 2008
Saturday, October 4, 2008
I went for a meal with the Lithuanians and Albanians and they were just overwhelmed by it all.
Can't wait for today!
Thursday, October 2, 2008
This morning I met with Saul who leads that church along with 3 other key leaders, Ben Davies and Ken Bothamley to talk about next steps in our relationship. It looks like Ben is going to go over and do a leaders weekend for them in early December which will be exciting.
The Kerith Centre is buzzing this morning with people setting up for the conference. I've come home to watch some of the DVDs as I'm hosting it all.
Hope to see you there!
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Anyway, Alan Lander (one of our elders) sent me a link to some great guides on creating financial headroom in our lives from a Christian organization called Credit Action. The man behind Credit Action is Keith Tondeur who is highly respected in money circles and his views are often sought by Government. I've used some of his books in preparing some of the current money series - they're very good and are available at our bookshop. Anyway, on the Credit Action website there are some very readable and practical money help guides in their 'Better Money Management' series including specific guides for single parents, students and a helpful one on pocket money.
I'd also highly recommend the CAP money course which is transforming how Catrina and I are making headroom in our finances. We've never been great at budgeting - if you're the same then book yourself in for the next course which starts on Tuesday 14th October.
Off in a bit to see the Lithuanians who are apparently now in the UK and on their way to sunny Bracknell!
We must always be a people who think globally but act locally. To that extent it's so exciting to be associated with people like Andrew, and that this afternoon the 26 Lithuanian Pastors who are coming over for the Willow conference are turning up. If you see any of them at the conference or on Sunday (they'll probably be hard to miss!), or the Poles, Albanians, Nigerians or Americans who are coming too then be sure to let them know how pleased we are to have them with us.
Hope to catch you at the conference on Friday or Saturday.