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Sometimes getting kicked out of church can be a great thing! Yesterday was the official ‘Commissioning and Sending’ of the members of Trinity North East from Trinity City. At each of the 5 gatherings, the members of TNE from that gathering were interviewed, prayed for, experienced the ‘laying on of hands’ and were encouraged to go for the sake of Jesus mission in the world.
As we anticipated it was a day of mixed emotions. Some of our ‘starter group’ have been at Trinity all of their lives, or 47 years in one case. Others have had significant involvement across different ministry areas, so saying goodbye to the regular contact at the city and to relationships was painful. And yet… we weren’t saying good-bye. On the one hand, as someone said – it is great when you can leave church and take 50 friends with you! But more than that to be part of the Trinity network of churches means that there is great encouragement of being just one part of something much bigger than ourselves. While there will be some loss of contact each week, our lives and paths will inevitably cross from time to time.
For me the most encouraging part of the day was hearing the members of TNE talking about why they are ‘being sent’ – it wasn’t because they were looking for a shorter drive to church but because they have local friends who they are hoping will be able to come to church and hear more about Jesus. Please pray this would indeed happen!
We have started! After a sleepless night, much prayer and fasting (through nerves rather than godliness!), it was great to actually get started with our first ‘trial’ service. A huge team of people came in to the set up at 8am. By 8.30am the musicians we up and rehearsing and the kids programs were just about set up with various bits and pieces around the place. We plan to ‘down tools’ at 9.30am and get everyone involved in the different ministries to stop and spend some time in prayer together. It meant that by 9.40am we are all ready to welcome people as they come in.
All in all, it was a great time. People have commented to me all week on how relaxed it all was and the terrific encouragement that came from finally all being together ‘revving’ up for our mission together. We looked at the ‘methods of mission’ from 2 Corinthians 4, and tomorrow we will look at the ‘motivations for mission’ from 2 Corinthians 5.
We had 81 adults and 30 children along. This included about 20 visitors – not bad for a ‘secret’ service!
We will have our 2nd and final trial tomorrow morning, before our Commissioning and Sending Service in the City on 14th February.
Many thanks to all of you who have been praying – I’m excited!