What’s happening?

Sunday, November 3, 2013

A Warm Welcome to St Albans, one part of Christ’s body in our city, where we seek to encounter, worship and serve Jesus Christ in all aspects of our lives.  This has been a big week at St Albans with the Mardi Gras alternative to Halloween on Thursday evening, Indoor Sports night with Element Youth on Friday night, the Presbytery Central Ministers Gathering on Friday afternoon/evening and the full Central Gathering yesterday.  Presbytery Central extends from Gisborne to Taihape to New Plymouth and down to Levin and Martinborough.

Thanks very much to all who helped make the Mardi Gras such a good event.  We hosted another huge crowd in a wonderful atmosphere.  Special thanks to Russell who master-minded the whole event for the tenth time!  A great record!  And no rain again....”the prayers of a righteous man availeth much.”

Presbytery Central: It was wonderful to have nearly every minister in our new presbytery present for a time of fellowship and conversation on a variety of matters on Friday.  Then about 100 of us from 42 churches gathered yesterday for a stimulating time with our three guest speakers: Rev Wayne Te Kaawa (Maori Synod Moderator), Rev Dr Mark Keown (New Testament lecturer at Laidlaw College) and Dave Mann (Coordinator of the Hope Project) and workshops.

Today we welcome Dave Mann as our guest speaker.  As most of you know by now, Dave is the Coordinator of the Hope Project which plans to put three booklets in every NZ letterbox in 2014, sharing the gospel message with stories about the coming of the Gospel to NZ from 1814, and giving some explanation of the hope we have within us as followers of Jesus.  This will be part of a multi-media campaign including TV adverts and a NZ Gospel website.  But most of all, Dave wants – God wants - ordinary NZ Christ-followers like you and I, to talk with our family, friends, workmates and neighbours about what Jesus means to us.... and to ask them what they think about the booklets.  This is the first gospel project seeking to reach every NZ home in 30 years.

Sadly the only thing holding back this great vision is us – NZ Christians and churches – who have the resources to make this happen.  While they have 240 churches partnered at this point (including St Albans), they need more churches and more Christians to partner this year.  People have given approx $700,000 but they need $1m of the $2.25m required for the Hope Project before they will commit.  See their latest 20-minute promo video about this project at:  shininglights.co/videoshopepromo4.

Next Sunday’s 10am Service will be different!  Good different!  Element Youth have something special prepared for us, so please come to worship God in a variety of ways.  It’s great to have our young people so keen to share their learnings with us.

After that service will be our first Sausage Sunday – inviting the community to join our shared lunch.  Please come with food to share next Sunday and a willingness to chat with visitors from our wider community.