Recent blog posts
Visits to Newfrontiers Churches
King's Community Church (KCC) is a Newfrontiers church in Hedge End, an eastern suburb of Southampton. I visited the church last Sunday. The church has a beautiful building with a surrounding grassy space. The auditorium has a balcony and feels very compact, but can seat 400. Even so, the church has to have two Sunday morning meetings to accommodate everyone.
We received a very warm welcome and in the picture above are chatting with Steve Haines, one of the elders. There was a great time of worship with some contributions from the floor. It was a little shorter than I am used to, but I discovered later that the aim is to keep the meeting length shorter during the summer months.
The sermon was truly excellent—one of the best gospel messages I have heard for a long time. The preacher was Steve Chick and he was kind enough to give me his sermon notes afterwards, so I can say authoritatively that this outline is accurate :)
The Secret of Satisfaction (Matt 5:6)
The sermon had a really good application both for the Christian and the non-Christian, and can be downloaded here: http://www.kcc.uk.net/Media/AllMedia.aspx?speaker=Steve%20Chick
Finally it was great to see our friend Mark and Steph Heath again. Mark is well known for his Word and Spirit blog which is well worth following.[read more...]
Last weekend I visited Jubilee Church in London, UK. I was determined to visit the Saturday morning prayer meeting—Adrian had told me that it was the power house behind the growth of the church. (I blogged about the church two years ago: http://chri.st/jubilee-church-enfield and there has been remarkable growth since then.)
Jubilee meets in a Cineworld cinema in the central hub of Enfield, a multicultural urban area on the edge of north London.
On July 22 we attended the Sunday evening prayer meeting at Winchester Family Church. The church building has a superb location in the heart of Winchester and is very easy to find (and to park).
The building was originally a large cinema with one big screen. Through the years it became a bingo hall and fell into a sorry state of repair. Eventually it was bought by the church and a beautiful restoration has just been completed. The church website describes the history of the church which dates back to 1928. The image of the church is fresh and non-chuchy, right down to its motto you can see on the sign here: something different!
On Sunday July 22 we visited Life Church, Southampton. I was particularly interested in visiting this church because I spent most of my life in this city (we moved to Canada in 1991) and went to Southampton University.
The church is new, being planted earlier this year from Winchester Family Church, with other families coming from Bournmouth, Hedge End, Portsmouth and elsewhere.
The location of the church is very easy to find since it is right on Above Bar St. (the central shopping street). The biggest problem was finding somewhere to park. We spotted some people getting out of a car who looked like they were going to church and we were right! They helped us find parking.
We visited Jubilee Church, Enfield (North London) on July 15th 2007. When the church needed to expand from their previous location, there were some prophetic words about a large building with lots of glass windows and about people coming from the north, the south, the east and the west. Not only does the Cineworld cinema complex where they now meet have a huge glass front, but is it located at a major intersection with roads off in the four directions of the compass.
Here is a close shot of the front of the building. In the church is in a period of tremendous growth and is truly multicultural. They describe themselves as "an, informal, multicultural church with people of all ages represented. Whatever your background you should find a warm welcome!" One of the reasons we wanted to visit them is that our goal is to build a multicultural church in downtown Toronto, and so we were very interested in seeing what it looked like. Another reason is that it is the home church of our good friend Adrian Warnock.
We visited Macclesfield Family Church on July 8th 2007. We found out about the church from the website which is very nicely done. We found the place the church meets without too much trouble. It is the Peatfields Centre which is a day-centre on campus of Macclesfield College. It is a light and airy building, welcoming and attractive. The people were very welcoming and it immediately felt like we were part of the family.
We very much enjoyed the worship and felt free to participate. There was a strong sense of the presence of God and although it was not a large group of people, there was a lot of participation.
The church website has a short history:
Keith Gamon leads the church and here you can see him preaching. Our travel contraints meant that we had to leave before the end of the service. Unfortunately the sermons are not online yet because Keith is midway through a series in Daniel and I was very interested in what he would say. Before we left, the people all gathered around us and prayed for us as we plant Newlife Church, Toronto.