Tempo 11-13th October 2002
The leaders of Tempo Methodist Church invited a Lay Witness team to conduct a weekend mission in October 2002.
?????? led the team.
?????? led the team.
Eleanor Hayden, Local Co-ordinator, writes....
“Do we really need a lay witness weekend, and will the congregation support it?”
Throughout the preparation for our weekend those negative nagging thoughts lingered in the background. Congregational meal, Men’s breakfast, Coffee mornings, Children’s workshop — sounds like a lot of commitment but having experienced a previous LWW I knew that the benefits and blessings would by far outweigh any anxious doubts thrown as obstacles in our pathway of preparation.
Many months prior to the weekend several members of our congregation expressed a need, hunger and thirst for something more. Hearts had been burdened to pray and a growing desire for fellowship and friendship had developed with a vision to share our faith. Like many church ventures, there is always a concern we would be made do something we were not entirely comfortable with or able for, but this notion was soon resolved. The team members were sensitive to our needs, views and ideas. There was much room for negotiation. As a result we had unity with a balanced and united vision / goal.
The team poured out of themselves and God poured out His Holy Spirit.
One of the most striking observations during the time spent together was the absence of preaching and sermons. Stories were told in a very natural and loving way. As a congregation our hearts were “strangely warmed” and our lives touched by ten people willing to share their experiences of living out their faith through times of joy, bereavement, pain, loss, stress and disappointment.
It is a struggle to find words that can adequately describe what the weekend meant to us in Tempo Methodist. On the whole we were encouraged, built up in our faith, we gained confidence, we were blessed, and yes we had real results and real growth.
Following an inspired meaningful and challenging service on Sunday morning, many people responded to a gracious appeal. A gentle move of the Holy Spirit led individuals to kneel at the altar and recommit their lives to Christ. Personally, in my own journey of faith I had not experienced anything so moving and real.
The evening service was totally amazing. Approximately fourteen people without hesitation spoke plainly of what God had done in their lives during the weekend. We rejoiced, we shared, we celebrated God’s goodness, His love and gracious favour upon our lives.
The following are a few quotations: “As a Christian my faith had grown cold but the weekend has helped me to renew my faith”.
“I could not miss one night. The stories told by the team members made me feel reassured that God loved me and would take care of me.
“Something was missing; during the weekend I found a personal relationship with Christ”.
“For sometime I had a worry; the team prayed for me and with me. I was greatly helped”.
“The best thing was keeping a team member in my home, I was really blessed”.
Towards the end of our evening service our minister the Rev Eric Duncan made an appeal. Once again the altar rail was filled to capacity.
To God be the glory great things He has done.
To our Lay Witness Team:
We wish to express sincere heart felt appreciation to all ten team members. You gave willingly of your personal time and lives. We felt your care and love for our congregation. You will always find a welcome in Tempo Methodist Church. Thank you.
To our Minister:
A sincere thank you. You cultivated a climate of freedom and empowered a congregation to step forward and claim more of God. Thank you.