Friday, July 24, 2009

more local mission

Sorry if this is sounding a bit like a stuck record, but there’s a lot happening mission wise at Opawa at the moment. When the church building project first came to the Board back in 2007, we discussed the danger of a building project turning the church inward. I’d come with a mission call, not with a “building call.” To help us process our priorities, one of the questions I asked the Board was how on earth we would explain a $500,000 building project to a solo mum in our local community. (We also read our Bible text for the year and asked each other how the building project would move us toward that Bible text). And we made a commitment to each other – that we would do both: build and keep our mission.

So it is great, three weeks into a 12 week building project to reflect on the week past.

On Thursday this week, Shiloh re-started. 10 children, which is a third of the girls at Waltham in the target age range turned up and it was a great first night. It means we as a church now minister to youth and children five days of the week: with Brigades on Tuesday, Opawa Baptist Youth on Wednesday, Shiloh on Thursday, mainly music/Koru/family film night on Friday and services on Sunday. That’s a lot of love!

On Friday I walked into the church to see the first bach of flu packs scattered around the foyer. They are superbly presented, packed with a range of goodies, ready to be dropped off at the local school and doctors, for them to give into the community.

It is so encouraging to be part of a team and a church on a journey that is keeping both mission AND building in our planning, dreaming, visioning. The local solo mum has somewhere to send her kids and a flu pack, given the likelihood (79%) of her family catching flu. When the project is done, she can hang at the long table enjoying a cafe then catch a parenting group in the larger foyer.

Posted by steve at 08:28 PM


  1. Exciting stuff is happening. Steve, in the end what did you decide to put in your flu packs?

    Comment by KSW — July 25, 2009 @ 2:14 pm

  2. Exciting stuff, Steve. I think it is possible to hold buildings and mission together. We are on a similar track redeveloping our buildings for mission and supporting the disadvantaged in the community – refugee housing, respite care for older carers, pastoral programs with the isolated and lonely, breakie club etc. I guess we would use the term ‘mission shaped’ buildings rather than ‘building shaped’ mission; which is what it tended to be in the past. I hope it all goes well for Opawa Baptist – sounds great!


    Comment by Chris McLeod — July 25, 2009 @ 5:46 pm

  3. “mission shaped buildings” – that’s a great phrase Chris

    KSW – will try and remember to check with our staff team re your question,


    Comment by steve — July 26, 2009 @ 8:04 pm

  4. KSW – the flu pack “may include”

    tissues, hand sanitiser, lemonade, recent magazine, health pamphlets, health diary, a game or two, cards and instructions for a new game, activity book (suduko or colour in), pencils, felts/crayons, book, prayer prompts (practical),

    with a final note “please use and keep this box while you are unwell. When you are better you are welcome to keep it, or you may like to give it back to be refilled and given to someone else.”


    Comment by steve — July 31, 2009 @ 1:12 pm

  5. thank you muchly Steve.

    Comment by KSW — August 1, 2009 @ 3:55 pm

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