On the 28th of July Church Northwest launched into weekly services. As you can see in the photos, we do have a fair amount of interest and support for the church. It was an encouraging day. But we've also had our fair share of discouragement to date and we reckon that's just part of the deal. We figure planting a church is like having a baby or getting married - you're never really ready for it, but when the time comes you have to find a way to make it work. We're right in the thick of finding a way to make it work.
Planting churches is also a faith building exercise. It usually doesn't come easy. This is probably by design. As things get more difficult, the need to draw nearer to God and trust Him more becomes greater. One challenge we're facing at the moment isn't a new one to many churches: we need more help. The harvest is ripe here but the workers are few. So let's pray to the Lord of the harvest and ask Him to send more workers to our churches.
A Welcoming Church
When starting a new church it's interesting to see what sort of personality emerges. There's a uniqueness or an identity as a church body that presents itself in the early days. At CNW we're seeing relational warmth and genuine welcome rising to the surface. The following words which were read out at church last week highlight this value:
Kia ora koutou. Nau mai, haere mai. (Greetings, welcome)
Take a moment to settle in. Take a deep breath. You are welcome here.
We welcome your curiosity and open hearts right alongside your hesitations and exhaustion with religion. We welcome your joy and cheerfulness as well as your sadness and anxiety. Your outgoing conversation is welcome here. Your introverted timidity is welcome here. We welcome you at whatever level of mental and physical wellness you are currently functioning.
Your culture is welcome. Your ethnic origin is welcome. Your race, your accent, the food you ate as a kid, and the food you’d much rather have now; all of the complexities that make up your cultural identity are all welcome here.
Your whole self is welcome here. Your greatest successes and deepest failures are all welcome here. That thing you don’t want us to know about - it’s welcome here too. No, it doesn’t scare us. And yes, we’ve got stuff too.
We welcome your humour and your silent contemplation. We welcome the parts of you that are still figuring it all out.
We welcome you in your weakness.
We welcome you in your privilege.
We welcome you in your grief.
We welcome you in your guilt and in your shame.
You are welcome here.
Come as you are.
Tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou, tēnā koutou katoa. (Greetings to you all)
CNW Purpose Statement
Church Northwest: Helping each other take the next step towards Jesus—a community defined by a growing faith, an authentic love for all people, and an active hope for Northwest Auckland and beyond.
One of our partnering churches recently paid us a visit and created this video about our ministry. Have a wee keek!
Church Plant Funding Update
This amount covers start-up purchases as well as operating costs for the first five years, on a diminishing basis. This does not include our salary or personal ministry expenses.
June was a big month for our wee family. Lane turned eleven on the 16th and Henry turned nine on the 25th. We're so proud of both of them. Recently Henry has asked about becoming a Christian and following in his sister's footsteps with baptism. He's even taken it upon himself to write out the reasons why he wants to be baptised. Stay tuned!