Sharing but Independent

Last Sunday I led worship for the Bernwood Group of churches. Four churches in Buckinghamshire, two with membership in single figures, so they had invited me because of my interest in small churches.

This was a group of churches where there is shared support as well as each having their own distinctive mission in their own communities. The shared support comes from a team which includes a half time stipendiary minister, a self-supporting minister, retired ministers and lay preachers to say nothing of committed elders. The distinctive mission includes the building in Twyford being used for a village Post Office with church members providing hospitality to customers. Banbury is heavily involved with the Anglican church, whose building they share, in running the building as a performance venue for ‘Live Arts’. The buildings at Marsh Gibbon and Brill are used within their communities for a variety of activities.

During worship we thought about how much can come from small things providing we rely on God for the plan and we remembered how, when Jesus appeared to his disciples in the story told in Luke chapter 24 verses 36 to 49 he had commanded them to proclaim ‘repentance and forgiveness of sins to all nations’.

My sense here was that God was working his purpose out in these places through these Christian congregations.

Sharing a cup of coffee before lunch

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