Messy Church

A few years back, I discovered to my disappointment that the label I wanted to apply to our experience of church life had already been taken.  If you hear the term “Messy Church” you are likely to associate it with an all age event, aimed at children but including their parents  with craft, Bible stories,… Continue reading Messy Church

How’s the post COVID replanting going?

For many years, my wife had an orchid plant I had bought her. Neither of us are particularly green fingered but out of all the plants we ever tried to grow, this one seemed to survive and thrive. Each year we would have to repot it to allow for new growth.   Having spent some time… Continue reading How’s the post COVID replanting going?

They took offence (Mark 6:1-6)

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So far in Mark’s Gospel the primary focus has been on crowds eager to meet Jesus, to hear him teach, to be healed, to bring friends to be healed, to have demons cast out. But that’s only one part of the picture. There are of course the religious leaders plotting against him and there are… Continue reading They took offence (Mark 6:1-6)

Should I give up on seeing people coming back to church?

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It varies from church to church but most churches even if they’ve experienced growth through new people joining appear to have lost some people from in person attendance during COVID. I was arguing back in the Autumn that those who had not begun to re-join your gatherings or at least make active preparation probably would… Continue reading Should I give up on seeing people coming back to church?

Post pandemic pastoral conversations – don’t forget those who have returned

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The parable of the Lost Sheep is a wonderful exposition of the Gospel. It points us to the God who passionately pursues the lost. It challenges the legalistic pride and insularity of the Pharisees and it convicts our hearts -do we have that same concern for those who are lost and wandering.  It’s not a… Continue reading Post pandemic pastoral conversations – don’t forget those who have returned

Pastoral care – guidelines

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Yesterday I shared some training notes on giving pastoral care in the church. Here are some guideline notes based on guidelines and policies from a previous church Safe-guarding Your church should have  a children’s and at risk  adults’ safeguarding policy. It is important that we recognise that those policies respond to specific legal and medical… Continue reading Pastoral care – guidelines

2022, COVID or a post COVID world and the church

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I thought it might be helpful to say a little bit more about what we might expect to happen with COVID-19 over the next year or so and how this might affect our approach to church life.  I’ve seen a few people setting out some potentially scary scenarios recently. For example, in one very bleak… Continue reading 2022, COVID or a post COVID world and the church

Shepherding and heavy shepherding

Occasionally you hear rumours about a certain type of church. Perhaps you hear that they sit down with the church members and go through their accounts and payslips before telling the members how to tithe, or you hear about the two old ladies who go on a holiday together only to be met with a… Continue reading Shepherding and heavy shepherding

How can we help people to let Christ’s word dwell in them richly?

My friend Steve Kneale has frequently pointed out that we are not commanded to “read the Bible every day.”  That’s a shock for a lot of us evangelicals because we grew up believing that was the command. That’s not to say that reading the Bible isn’t a good, helpful and enjoyable thing for many. Nor… Continue reading How can we help people to let Christ’s word dwell in them richly?

Which five Bible books have drawn you closer to Christ and encouraged you on in faith the most?

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Ray Ortlund asked this question on Twitter the other day. We of course know that All Scripture is God breathed but I agree with Ray that in our experience most of us will find that there are specific books of the Bible that have particularly stood out for us and ones which we find ourselves… Continue reading Which five Bible books have drawn you closer to Christ and encouraged you on in faith the most?