By way of a quick update, here are 5 important things for you to know and reflect on about the east site as we approach the summer:
- One church across two sites – As elders we’re very clear that when we multiply we will be one church across two sites, served by one eldership team. As a team we are committed to building together across the west and east sites, and believe there are significant advantages of building together rather than in isolation. As a result, we’ll continue to find meaningful ways to demonstrate this ‘one-ness’ through shared vision and purpose, but also finding opportunities for the church to come together to worship, pray and bless this great town.
- Children’s groups – We’ve had many parents speak to us with genuine concerns about the effects that multiplying will have on their children because it may affect some existing relationships. On a personal level, this is something we are living with as parents of Ella and Jed, and we recognise the cost of taking our children out of a setting they are comfortable with, into a new environment that they don’t know. We also recognise that this is a great opportunity to engage with our children about God’s mission and the reasons for multiplication. We’d love to encourage you to do the same, irrespective of whether you are coming east or staying in the west. Finally, as leaders we’re spending a significant amount of time praying and engaging with the children’s groups so that we can multiply effectively and raise Jesus-centred, Spirit-filled children across both of our sites.
- Serving – We’re sure it won’t come as a surprise, but multiplying will generate lots of additional opportunities to serve across all areas of Gateway life, particularly on Sunday mornings. We’re the family of God’s people, called to bless, love and serve one another. That means finding ways to serve each other, whether that’s helping in children’s groups, serving someone a hot drink, or attending to the car park – especially on cold and wet days! If you know Gateway is your family and you’re not serving at the moment, please consider where you can be a blessing to others, and get in touch with Al Cotton or Mark Thornett.
- The where – When we multiply we will be meeting at Dorcan Academy. God has really opened a door with the school and we’re really excited about being based here.
- The when – Over the autumn term we’ll be having two meetings in the east, on 2nd October and 6th November, to prepare for the launch in January 2017. We will officially launch the east site on 15th January 2017. The meeting time will be 11:00-12:45, starting with tea and coffee on arrival. In the west, we’ll be moving back to one meeting, at 10:00am. As elders we believe moving back to one meeting in the west will enable us to share resources across sites where needed, and gather momentum for future multiplication.
As always, if you have questions about the east please come and speak to us or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks, Al & Sarah Cotton