Building unity and harmony between the churches in central Bromley, and building bridges of trust and friendship between the churches and the commercial / retail community....this is the task of the Town Centre Chaplain.
Russell was commissioned as the new Bromley Town Centre Chaplain serving the Churches Together in Central Bromley (CTCB) and started officially on 1st Sept 2010. This position had been vacant for about 18 months. In his own words...
I was chatting with Jonathan McGill of Bromley Town Church about networking between the churches and also about going into the parks, shops, and businesses in Bromley when he encouraged me to apply for the position of Town Centre Chaplain. I did so and surprise, surprise...I got appointed!
There was a lovely gathering in the Bromley United Reformed Church building on Sunday evening 26th September to officially commission me as chaplain. There was a nice crowd and I counted 15 church leaders there. It was a great expression of unity among the Bromley churches.
My vision for the Chaplaincy is:
1. for it to cultivate good relationships between the churches in Bromley. Consequently I make time and effort to meet with the leaders of the many churches in Bromley and I try to attend meetings in the churches. Because Amazing Grace gathers on a Saturday evening it leaves me free to fellowship on a Sunday. Sometimes I'm out ministering...but if not I often attend one or two of the gatherings of other local churches on Sundays. This has really helped me to build good friendships there.
2. To engage with the commercial and retail community on behalf of the church and to build bridges of trust and friendship. I don't see that so much as evangelism, but as pre-evangelism. To this end I meet with the leaders of the Glades Shopping Mall, the leaders of the Bromley Borough Council, and management in the many other businesses in Bromley.
3. To facilitate the ministry of members of the Churches Together in Central Bromley who feel they would like to participate and contribute to the service of the church to the business community.
I'm delighted at this opportunity to serve the wider church in the wider community. Because it's only 20 hours a week, I'm confident it need not encroach on my ministry to the Amazing Grace Church. Please pray for me that God might use this ministry for His glory! Thanks.
In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. So Joseph went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. — Luke 2:1 and 4-5
Thoughts on Today's Verse...Isn't it amazing at how many inconveniences in our lives the Lord uses to accomplish his will in us. Can you think of a worse time to have to go on a cross-country trip with their modes of travel than Joseph and Mary faced. Yet God turned it into the moment in which the angels found their tune and Satan met his match.
My Prayer...Father, I thank you that behind history, and especially behind the part of history where I live, your hand is always working for my redemption and your glory. Give me faith to ride out the difficult times, knowing that you will use those difficulties to be the incubator of your next great work in me. In the name of Jesus, the Joy of angels, I pray. Amen.
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