Welcome to this month's InBrief newsletter. Please do take a read. You'll find some of my thoughts at the start of a new Church year, and details of some great events including a visit from theologian Tom Wright, a SOZO (prayer ministry) training weekend, & a gospel choir concert.
The year ahead
Last Sunday was Vision Sunday in the life of our church. It was great to see many of you there. If you weren't around or want to listen to the talk again, you can do so HERE.
We thought about the way that Jesus stirs up people, communities & cities. As Jesus rode into Jerusalem on a donkey, a King coming in peace, we read in Matthew 21 verse 10 that "the whole city was stirred and asked 'Who is this?'". A whole city stirred by the presence of Jesus!! That's what He does. And what I love is the way that Jesus' disciples went with Him, and invites people like us, disciples, to go with Him.
As we think about stirring our communities with Jesus, one foundation is a confidence in who we are. This is importantly individually as well as for a church community.
Here at Riverside, we're a Vineyard Church. We love being part of the Vineyard family of churches. We love our history, what God has released to us. We love the culture & the DNA of the Vineyard. But we need to remember & build upon our foundations.
So starting this coming weekend, we're teaching a series entitled "The heart of who we are". We'll look at our foundations as a Vineyard Church and those things that we love & make us distinctive.
As we do so, I'd love everyone to get hold of a book released by Vineyard Churches at the start of this year, entitled "Vineyard Values". It's a great book and is also only £5! As we teach through our series, we'll point to chapters in the book which will help to reinforce what we're thinking about with some great stories from around our Vineyard family. So if you haven't got a copy of the book yet, I'd love you to get hold of one this weekend.
Last Sunday I also shared about our journey to being a multi-site church, a journey that in many ways we've already started through things like Vida. Please do catch up with if you missed last Sunday. If you feel some sense of calling towards multi-site pastoring or leading, I'd love you to come along to the Equip session on 17th October - details HERE.
I also spoke about the exciting things we're seeing in kids & youth ministry, in prayer & prophetic gatherings, and the acceleration we're experiencing in worship. As I've often said, there is always more with Jesus!
Lastly, I spoke last Sunday about the importance for all of us of "not waiting for the big thing but rather saying yes to the next thing". The story in Matthew 21 starts with Jesus asking two of His disciples to fetch a donkey. This probably wasn't high on their list of life goals. It probably wasn't the most glamorous ministry assignment they could think of. But what they did was simply say yes. And their "yes" was a part of a whole city being stirred.
So what is Jesus saying to you? What is the next step He's inviting you to take. Please don't be someone who waits around for the big thing, rather be someone who says yes to the next thing that Jesus invites you to be a part of.
EQUIP | OCTOBER 2018
Over 3 Wednesday evenings and one Saturday in October, we will be running a variety of equipping courses, either one off sessions, 2 week or 3 week courses. From Getting into the Bible and Leadership, to parenting and learning guitar, there are a wide variety of options available.
Equip takes place on Wednesdays 3rd, 10th & 17th & Saturday 20th October, 8pm. Refreshments served at 7.45pm
IN CONVERSATION: TOM WRIGHT | Friday 19th October | 7:30pm.
THE DAY THE REVOLUTION BEGAN
Widely respected academic, former Bishop and much-loved author Tom Wright reflects on the revolutionary power of the Cross, and invites you to consider the full meaning of the event at the heart of the Christian faith.
We'd love you to join us for this great evening.
Café & Bar open from 7:30pm. All proceeds from the Café & Bar on the night will go towards Alpha.
SING GOSPEL CONCERT | Sat 6th October | 7pm.
Join us for a unique evening of Gospel music performed by choir members and individuals gathered for the SING 2018 Conference. The evening will be led by singer/songwriter Geraldine Latty and other professional musicians and it promises to be a great night out.
Tickets cost £5 per person. Cafe & Bar open from 6.30pm
THE CAUSE TO LIVE FOR | 16th-17th November
With speakers and worship from around the Vineyard, Cause will be filled with times of worship & teaching & space to eat, laugh, play and pray. This is for students, 20s and 30s. Tickets available for £20/£25 from causetolivefor.org.uk Chat to Dave or Rob for more info.
CHRISTMAS IS AROUND THE CORNER...
We’re very much looking forward to celebrating Christmas with you, so here are some dates to add to your diary:
9th Dec - Christmas Carol services
16th Dec - All - Age Christmas Service
24th Dec - The Night Before Christmas
25th Dec - Christmas Day Service
31st Dec - Watch Night Service
MEN'S BREAKFAST | Sat 27th Oct | 9:30am.
9:30am, at the Riverside Vineyard church centre. Full breakfast including limitless tea & coffee for just £7!!
Great time of connecting, eating together, plus an interactive discussion.
If you've never been to a men's breakfast before, why not make this your first one? The deadline for bookings is 5pm on 25th October, so best thing to do is book right now!
All men welcome, we'd love to see you there!
YV: EXTREME! | Tues 23rd Oct | 10am-12:30pm
Grab your friends and bring them along during half term for a morning of fun activities and extreme challenges! The cafe will be open, there will be lots to do and another opportunity to win some prizes. The Ultimate Showdown will also return with more gunge than last time!
Look out for more details in your inboxes soon!
PRAYER EVENTS COMING UP...
Great opportunity to worship, wait on the Lord, hear Him speak and pray for the Kingdom of God to be released and demonstrated amongst us.
Prayer for Revival: Tuesday, 2nd October, 7am-8am.
A great way to start the day - We gather in the Prayer Room.
Monthly Prayer: Friday, 12th October, 8pm - 9.30pm. We Meet together in F23/24.
VIDA | Saturday 20th October
If you're Portuguese-speaking, don't miss Vida at 7.30pm.
Refreshments served from 7pm. All welcome!
Bethel SOZO | Basic Training