Minister's Letter - February 2020

Dear friends,

As we set out on our journey with Holy Habits, none of us are starting out knowing nothing. We’re all building on past knowledge or experience. Some of us will have practices – that are called “holy habits” – that sustain and nurture us in faith. For all of us, me included, there will be something to learn or rediscover. One of the important aspects of Holy Habits is the opportunities to learn together, and from each other. So, I’m glad that most of the house groups and the groups and services for children have opted in. Please encourage your group to join in if it hasn’t! We hope that, as we explore what the Bible says about the ten themes, we will experience a deeper sense of fellowship and to use that experience to shape the Church in an ever-more Christ-like shape.

This is also a journey of discipleship that will help us to discover what being a disciple of Christ means for each of us, as individuals, and for the Church as a whole. Not only so we can thrive, but so that we serve the community and the wider world, more fully. Discipleship is a life-long journey that every Christian is on because we are all Jesus’ disciples – including ministers! And it involves us all in a process of discerning the gifts and skills God has given to us to serve God. The focus of where we serve God will change over the course of our lives as our commitments to our families and work change, and we discover we have more time to be involved in the life of the church, community or wider world. We are called to service, and to use our God-given gifts and skills, with generosity. If we don’t, our fellowship will not thrive. If you’re not sure about this, have a look at Paul’s image of the body of Christ in 1 Corinthians 12: 12-31.

One of the significant challenges we have as a church community at the moment, is finding people to undertake roles that are essential in the life of the church and without which our fellowship will not thrive. These roles belong to the whole church, to all the disciples who worship in Chandler’s Ford Methodist Church, and not just the few that feel they have the time or energy. This means that we all share the responsibility of encouraging and enabling each other to express our discipleship, by contributing to the life of the Church and the wider community, through leadership or service. In the coming months, we will be looking for new Stewards, new Worship Stewards, and someone to lead the Communion Stewards team. We are still seeking people to become part of a Resources Team and someone to lead it. We haven’t got an Evangelism Team. There are also opportunities to assist with our children’s and youth activities. Please be open to the possibility that God is calling you into one of these roles, or that God might be calling someone you sit next to in Church, at a table within the Dovetail Centre Café or in your house group, and talk with them or me.

Please don’t feel constrained by these. If you sense a call to extend or deepen the fellowship of this church, through your engagement with Holy Habits, then don’t keep it to yourself. Share it! God has given us all gifts “for building up the body of Christ.” (Ephesians 4.12)

With good wishes, Sue