Someone said of mission that it is ‘getting somewhere and finding that God has got there before you’. So it has been here in Temora, where Mainly Music, Saturday Church (S.urch) and the beginning of the Springdale Community Church are all signs of God at work, bringing refreshment and hope to His people.
Mainly Music is the beginning and energy of all of this movement. Carol came to Temora having wanted to do something like Mainly Music for many years. And waiting in Temora was a church with a similar passion and a group of people ready to have a go. God was at work long before us!
Each mainly music session has been designed for enjoyment in the context of Christian community. Weekly sessions during the school year are full of fun, educational music and musical activity, followed by something to eat and something to play with, plus time to eat and chat!
Saturday Church (S.urch) is the bridge that has developed between Mainly Music and traditional church. It is a casual worship gathering once a month that provides a space for families to gather and to explore faith together. There is no formal start time, a meal at the end and a mix of games, craft, bible story and prayer on the way through. Again, for some time, John has had a vision for a casual service like this, and here were a group of people ready to have a go! God at work before us!
Our October meeting was ‘Church in the Park’ and provided a wonderful venue for ‘churched’ and ‘unchurched’ people to meet and enjoy one another’s company.
Springdale is a small village ten minutes out of Temora which has had no church presence for the last seven years, but over that time new people have come to the village and now there is a growing spirit of optimism. In response to requests we restarted services twelve months ago under the banner of the Springdale Community Church. Now each month more than 40 people gather for worship and fellowship! It was a great joy to have four local boys confirmed at Springdale this year and we are planning centenary celebrations for July 2018. God at work before us!
All this movement and growing discipleship is only possible if people are growing in their own experience of grace … God’s love. Mission comes out of a strong, quiet centre which has a deep trust in the goodness of God. And again, God was there before us. For many years John has considered using the Freedom in Christ discipleship course, but it never seemed the right time. The Freedom In Christ approach to discipleship is focused on firstly establishing every Christian in the sure foundation of their identity in Jesus. It then gives them the tools to break free and stay free from all that holds them back, and gives a strategy for ongoing transformation. This year, we ran three sessions in the first half of the year and are currently running one more. In total, 45 members of the parish have participated in the course this year and for many it has transformed their daily walk with Jesus.
In all, we are grateful to our Heavenly father for calling us to be a small part in the journey of so many as we live out as best we can the belief that a life transformed by Jesus will lead to a community transformed by love.
The Reverend John and Carol Jenner,