Do you get excited about – kids hearing the gospel; a church reaching out to its community; Christian teenagers being trained in ministry; churches working together in gospel partnership? Well then you would have loved to be at Christ Church George (formerly St. Philips) in the first week of October this year. Six teenagers and two leaders from St. Thomas Heideveld met up with a teen and a leader from Emmanuel PE to run a holiday club with Christ Church volunteers.
Over the course of three days the kids who came heard the gospel presented clearly as we celebrated Christmas in October and learnt who Jesus was through the stories surrounding his birth. As normal the message was reinforced through quizzes, silly games, talks, crafts, worksheets, dramas, and through the testimony and example of the leaders. Children from Christ Church itself as well as many from the community heard the gospel.
Coming from St. Thomas we are used to opening our gates and having a flood of children pour in during the school holiday. We discovered things are a little different in George. Rev Shaun Hunter had to work hard to advertise the club, through local schools, in shopping malls, and even in an interview on local radio. But that exemplified the attitude of the members of Christ Church that we met, eager to reach those in their community with the momentous news of Jesus Christ. So much so that their weekly kids club is run by two of their ‘recycled teenagers’ (now enjoying retirement) who are convicted that God wants children to hear the gospel and that he commands his followers to tell them. They will be able to follow up the children that we made contact with during the week.
At St. Thomas we regularly give our senior teenagers the opportunity to serve at the holiday clubs we run in Heideveld. However the mission in George stretched and developed them further than ever. Firstly they needed to work cross-culturally. Coming from the Cape Flats to the suburbs of George they had to think about how to relate and communicate in a different cultural context, and how they could remove all barriers to the gospel. Secondly we trained them to take responsibility for their own small groups, to reinforce the message of the day, get to know the children, and encourage them personally. Serving the Lord out of their comfort zone really forced them to trust him and develop the gifts he’s given them.
Finally although none of the teams from the three churches knew each other beforehand, and came from different backgrounds, we were instantly united as partners in proclaiming the Gospel of our Lord. Members of Christ Church put us up for the week, baked cakes for the kids, and will do the follow up work. The children’s and youth workers from Emmanuel PE put together the club material. The teens from St. Thomas led with enthusiasm and skill. It was great knowing that as we served, prayed, taught and played together we were one family engaged on our Father’s business.
Please join with us in prayer for:-
– the weekly kids club at Christ Church and their work of discipling children
– the continued growth of young leaders from St. Thomas and Emmanuel
– many more gospel partnerships between church families to reach the lost of our country