The church is set amongst a predominantly urban working-class area with a small proportion of middle-class homes. It is classified as an Urban Priority Area (UPA).
Preparation: To prepare for our week of mission we ran a Sunday preaching series based on Mark’s Gospel – in order that we should know the gospel story. In our home Bible study groups we studied the 2 Ways to Live course over six weeks in order to go over the main outline of the gospel.
We also encouraged the church to think of someone to invite to the mission; for example a family member, friend, neighbour or work colleague.
The mission programme
» Sunday 11.00am
Guest Meeting with evangelist John Chapman
» Monday 7.00pm
Evening event for ladies, at Welbeck Evangelical Church. John Chapman will speak.
» Tuesday 7.30pm
Evening for St Oswald’s Church Family with John. The joys and pitfalls of Christian service.
» Wednesday 7.00pm
Event at St Oswald’s for young people (School years: five, six and seven)
» Thursday 7.30pm
Men’s Evening at the PTE centre with former Newcastle United footballer and media analyst Gavin Peacock. John Chapman will also speak.
» Friday 7.30pm
Invitation Supper and talk with John Chapman.
» Sunday 11.00am
Guest Meeting with John Chapman
We ran our own Taking A Look groups which is our own four-week investigating Christianity course. Four weeks is about as much as our locals will commit to.
The mission meant that evangelism was made ‘do-able’ for many people in the church family; people who previously would have thought it was not for them. Many contacts were made during the mission for future evangelistic events.
A small number of our members made significant spiritual progress as a result of the mission, which was a great encouragement for the church family and many Christians now have a clearer grasp of the gospel. We ‘paced’ the week so that we were not exhausted by the end of it and were therefore more enabled to continue the ongoing responsibility of making Christ known.
Many members of the church family invited others to hear the gospel preached for the first time. We emphasised that even if friends and relatives did not come, which was a sadness, to do the inviting was a terrific step forward. This has helped folk to evaluate their contribution more appropriately. Hopefully, they will continue to invite others to come and hear the good news explained, making evangelism a life-time habit.