Welcome to everyone worshipping with us today at St Matt's on this "Op-Shop Community Sunday"! As the name suggests we will focus our worship around what God is doing among the people associated with the Op-Shop.
Our Sunday gatherings are certainly taking on a dynamic which would have been hard to replicate in the old pattern - God is certainly using the new pattern to show us how to be community, even family. Easter weekend was a helpful experience of the variety of worship we can now achieve.
I couldn't have been happier with how the two services went. Highlights for me were: the testimony of Jason Odeh, on Good Friday, that it was your welcoming of him and his family that encouraged him to stay and see what God was doing; the very moving baptisms of the two Wilson children on Easter Day - a beautiful family that God has brought us to be part of our bigger family.
And as I write this, I've just come home from our first Alpha night (in a long while). There were two folk who are not attenders at our church who came along and participated quite happily in the evening, which is what we have all longed and prayed for. A great, renewed start! The Alpha talks we're using are brand new this year, streamed via the internet and are about 30mins each in length. You can find them on YouTube or at alpha.org
We'd value your prayers for the SRI teachers who will commence this week with new material and a new format of combined classes (because of the reduced numbers of parents giving consent for their children to be taught the Christian faith). Tate Street School is working hard for us to make this happen at all so that is something to give thanks to God for. And there is tremendous good will from the teachers and other staff as they appreciate all that our church community does for their community.
So be of good cheer - "Trust in the Lord and do good" we read in Psalm 37:3 (the rest of the psalm is also important and well worth a read . . . ) God will do it J
God bless, Ian