Dear Friends and family,
So……What have we been up to?
Personal Prayer Retreat, Ashburnham:- In February, we enjoyed a wonderful couple of days at the Prayer Centre, Ashburnham, spending time together, and alone, in God’s presence!
2Chronicles 29, particularly verse 3 got really underlined for us. It’s about opening and repairing the gates of the House of the LORD. We felt God was encouraging us about the significance of Welcome Network in helping the Church to clear its rubbish out, to be open and welcoming to all people and to worship God sacrificially and with passion!
Part of our local response to this word has been to connect the newer churches we are working with into the BURN worship gatherings, into leadership meetings and the local youthwork.
Welcome Network Celebration, Sat 23rd March:- We were completely overwhelmed by your support as we celebrated 5 years of Welcome Network and our 30 years in ministry!
It was such an encouraging time together. Getting ready for the event, helped us clarify our vision and reflect on what we have been doing. People braved the cold winds, snow and travel problems from as far afield as Canterbury and Milton Keynes! To all those who made this day special, THANK YOU!
Healing on the Streets Havering and Rainham Foodbank:- Our major initiating role last year in both these projects is now over but we still get involved when we can. Mary finds it challenging and exciting to talk and pray with Foodbank clients. She recently was able to share her own story of how she came to Jesus. Mary has taken several sessions training new volunteers. Some of the clients at Rainham have taken part in an Alpha group in a local pastor’s home which we’ve helped with.
ONE DAY Mission Event, Sat 29th June:- Over 30 local churches came together to put on this Mission event organised by Across Havering. We helped lead the Prayer Ministry team. Around 800 attended with between 40 to 50 responding to the call for Salvation or recommitment to Jesus. Many of these also received prayer for healing with visible effect!
“Neighbours, Transform your street” from the Neighbourhood Prayer Network. We’ve adopted our own street and try to prayer walk once a week. On Valentine’s Day we put the Father’s Love letter through each door! Why not contact the Prayer Network and adopt your street too?
FUTURE EVENTS:- Please Pray for God’s wisdom and guidance as we prepare.
“On the Move” Mission, Sat. Sept 14th:- This is an outreach event we have organised in partnership with On the Move and 9 churches on a housing estate in Harold Hill. The idea is to share God’s love with music, fun and free BBQ food.
‘Crossing Cultures in our local community’ Workshops in Thurrock, Sat Oct 5th and Havering in November:- These workshops will bring leaders together to network, encourage and share ideas. Our aim is to give some practical insights into how to grow a Multicultural Church.
FAMILY!!:- Please pray for our WONDERFUL and GROWING Family!!
David:- in Bristol, and self employed as an Illustrator. We enjoyed meeting up recently and seeing his Gromit dog,
which is one of 70 Gromit sculptures being displayed this Summer all over the streets of Bristol!!
Jon and Dolly:- we so enjoyed seeing them at Joe and Emily’s wedding. They live in Melbourne, Australia. Jon is working for an energy company and Dolly is a Primary school teacher.
Joe and Emily were married on April 6th. They now live in a flat only 10 mins drive from us and also close to Emily’s parents! So we are all very happy! They both have teaching jobs.
Esther:- we celebrated her graduation (English and Drama) this June, from Glasgow University, She would like to gain experience in writing and producing plays.
Matthew:- also graduated in May from his year at Bethel Supernatural School of Ministry in Redding, California. We watched it live on iBethel TV!! Matt is now living back home with us and starting a one year internship with his local church.
Abigail took her AS level exams. She is learning to drive !!
Vicky took her GCSE’s and said goodbye to Immanuel School. She will join Abigail at St Edwards School in September.
Over the last twelve months we have had three lodgers in the house (not all at the same time!)
It has certainly helped us to stay authentic! We’ve eaten pasta with Daniella, discussed God and gone deer spotting with Stephen and Sofia.
We appreciate you all. Please keep in touch with your news and prayer requests.
Bob and Mary
“They drew a circle and counted me out, but God and I had a will to win- SO WE drew a circle and counted THEM IN!!!”
The essence of Welcome Network is acceptance, belonging and inclusion.
Jesus said, “The glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one” Jn 17 v 22.
May the world be impacted with God’s love through our unity in His glory!
129, Clockhouse Lane, Romford RM5 3QU, UK; landline +44 1708 736156; bob’s cell +44 7988564299; welcomenetwork.org
Welcome Network is affiliated to Churches in Communities International, a member of the Free Churches Group.
Giving information: Welcome Network sortcode 401611; a/c 22141965