Conference offers help with rural church planting
Broadgrace Church in Coltishall will be hosting a conference on rural church planting, entitled ‘In the Middle of Somewhere’. John Hindley, who is pastor of Broadgrace, reports.
I serve a rural church, Broadgrace, that meets in Coltishall. It is a delightful village and you may well know it. The 2011 census put the population of Coltishall at just over one and a half thousand. Just over half the world’s population lives in urban areas. In England it is probably around three-quarters. So to see the world evangelised you would think we should be planting more churches, establishing more missions and putting more effort into sharing the Gospel in cities.
Let me first say that there does need to be more urban church planting. There are millions of people in the cities of England, let alone the world, who are out of effective reach of the Gospel.
For every church planted in the villages of England, we should see three planted in the towns and cities. My hunch, though, is that far more than this proportion are planted in cities. Praise our Father for each of them. All the rural church planters I know agree that we need many more urban churches. Yet all the urban church planters I have talked to agree that we need more rural churches planted.
That is why Broadgrace is hosting this conference. The aim is to encourage, support and inspire more rural church planting. Not so that there will be less urban church planting, but so that there will be more.
I want to rejoice over young people moving from our church to cities, serving faithfully and joining church-planting teams. I know urban pastors long to see members moving out to join teams planting in the countryside.
We need more church planting because churches are where the love of Christ is displayed (John 13:35). They are families where the broken-hearted are bound up, where the light of Christ shines and where the word of life is held out to those who are perishing. We need more churches because this is how Jesus will reach a lost and hurting world.
If you long to see churches planted in the countryside then please come and join us on 19 March for a day to pray and discuss how we might partner with one another under Christ to this end. We also hope to encourage one another and strengthen our arms to the plough. So if you are discouraged, especially if you are in rural ministry, then please come along so we can share one another’s burdens.
Broadgrace is hosting this Rural Summit on behalf of Acts 29, a church-planting family that has networks across the world. Here are the details of the day:
The Middle of Somewhere | An Acts 29 Rural Summit
Thursday 19 March 2020 | 9.30am to 4pm. The Barn, North Farm, Burgh-next-Aylsham, Norfolk, NR11 6TW.
Cost: £20 (inclusive of booking fees, lunch and refreshments). If the cost would prevent you from coming, please email John Hindley (firstname.lastname@example.org
) and we will cover your costs.
Tickets from Eventbrite, click here
Further information: email@example.com
For more information about Broadgrace, click here.
For more information about the Acts 29 Rural Collective, click here.
Pictured above is Patrick Bowler, who will be speaking at the conference