A welcome from Bolton …

This weekend my round of autumn visits began in Bolton. I was invited to lead worship by the United Reformed Church of St Andrew and St George who are members of the Vision Pastorate with Rose Hill United Reformed Church and Tonge Moor United Reformed Church. 

When we arrived there were a number of people in the church admiring a new banner – designed by the children in answer to the question – how can we show a welcoming church? The children helped to make it too – ‘I made this one’ a little girl told us pointing to an image of a girl with pigtails and a dog on a lead (centre front).

I had also been invited to choose some favourite hymns for a ‘Desert Islands Hymns’ session – this was a church which was brave enough to ask me both to preach and to talk about myself!

Telling my story before lunch led to shared stories over lunch as my story reminded people of their personal and faith journeys.

As we enter the Vision4Life evangelism year our stories will be so important. Here is a church where stories will include that all-important element of Christians working with their community, the working day through workplace chaplaincy and the night life through Street Angels. Let’s celebrate what we do in the name of Christ whilst we seek to identify the new challenges which he sets us day-by-day.

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