Roy Crowne writes:
The HOPE leadership team has taken inspiration from Colossians 4:2-6 where the apostle Paul prays for a door to open for his message about Christ. It’s our hope that as we work and pray together a door will open for the gospel. Our dream is that churches taking part in this year of mission together will see significant growth. Our faith-target is 10%, so a church of 30 would see three more people becoming part of the church community.
Prayer and preparation
Throughout 2017 we are preparing first of all by praying. You and your church members can download our Friday Focus prayers from hopetogether.org.uk/pray. Also, during 2017 we are hoping that all participating churches will encourage and empower all their church members to do three things:
- To speak – so that church members will have a new confidence in using words to share their faith. Again Colossians 4:6 comes to mind – that we should speak graciously. We want to help people to give of themselves in friendship, in service and also giving a reason for the hope they have.
- To give top quality materials that will help our unchurched friends on their journey to faith. HOPE will be providing exciting resources for churches to give to every house in their community at Christmas and Easter – a magazine of high quality that can be used as an invitation to a Christmas carol service and Easter guest services. We also have Who Do You Say I Am? – a beautifully illustrated book which helps people to discover more about Jesus, why he died and what his resurrection can mean for us today.
- To be intentionally invitational. We want to encourage Christians to invite people into their homes, into their lives, but also into the events of our church family: Christmas carol services, Easter guest services, and courses like Alpha and Christianity Explored.
Rhythm of Mission
Having empowered and trained our church members in 2017, HOPE has a number of activities that form a rhythm of mission that churches can focus on in 2018. We hope this rhythm of mission will become a pattern for the future:
- A Christmas carol service that invites as many people as possible from your village, town or city
- A guest service on Easter Sunday that talks about who Jesus was, what he said, what he did and the difference it makes when people follow Jesus today.
- In the summer, where appropriate, church-based fun days to bring the community together.
- In the autumn, around harvest time, there are a number of great courses that our friends can be invited to. Also, HOPE is working with World Vision to develop pop-up restaurants so church members will have ideas and resources to build friendships with neighbours or colleagues.
We hope every church will take part in the HOPE Year of Mission using at least one of these opportunities. Together we can do so much more and we are trusting that, as thousands of churches work together from all denominations, streams and backgrounds across this nation, we might see a door of spiritual blessing open over this nation.
To sign up, please email Sue Jennens at Sue.Jennens@hopetogether.
We are so looking forward to working with you over the coming months and we are praying that God will bless all you do to make Jesus known in your community.
Yours, with loads of appreciation
HOPE’s executive director
‘HOPE 2018 is here to help you and your church reach your friends, family and community with the great news of Jesus. Together, let’s pray, step out in new ways and talk about Jesus.’ Dr Rachel Jordan-Wolf, National Mission and Evangelism Adviser for the Church of England
‘HOPE unites the church across denominations, race, culture and customs. Jesus prayed that we would be one (John 17: 2-23). When we come together in prayer and mission we show the world what God is like, so they can believe in him. Our unity has a powerful impact.’ Rev Yemi Adedeji, HOPE’s Associate Director and Director of the One People Commission
The apostle Paul writing the church in Colossae encouraged them with these words ‘whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus’. Ten years on from Hope08 HOPE 2018 will be continuing what we started but more so. More churches. More creative ideas. More opportunities for people to become followers of Jesus. Steve Clifford, HOPE’s chairman and the General Director of the Evangelical Alliance
We want to see loads of people come to Jesus. As someone deeply committed to mission, ministry and leadership training among young people today, I am excited about HOPE Revolution’s Mission Academies and the vision to equip young leaders with vision, understanding and creativity to serve God in our world.’ Mike Pilavachi, Associate Director of Soul Survivor
I want to be part of a movement that will usher in a revival, that I pray will happen in my lifetime. I believe that HOPE 2018 is an expression of that movement.
Pastor Agu Irukwu, Senior Pastor of Jesus House for the Nations, Redeemed Christian Church of God
We are committed to working together with HOPE and other churches toward seeing the hope of Jesus Christ shared in our communities. Revd Gareth Powell, Secretary of the Methodist Conference
Jesus calls us to make disciples. Combining social justice with courageous proclamation of the gospel is the only way to get the job done. One without the other is only half a gospel. HOPE 2018 is about getting the job done together. Andy Hawthorne OBE Founder and Chief Executive of The Message Trust
Being part of HOPE 2018 will enable us to see churches across the country changed so that they can transform communities and culture. Revd Paul Harcourt, Leader of the New Wine Network
Our vision is ‘Growing healthy churches in relationship for God’s mission’ and HOPE 2018 gives local churches a great opportunity to make this vision a reality. Revd Lynn Green, General Secretary of Baptists Together
Elim’s Big Centenary Ask challenges all our Elim churches to explore ways to plant a new church or a fresh missional expression of church in their local communities. HOPE 2018’s dream for church growth will help Elim churches to fulfil our vision. Chris Cartwright, General Superintendent, Elim Pentecostal Churches