iWitness – Lent 2016


The Bishop’s Lent Course for 2016 is aimed at growing our confidence to witness to the Gospel in all its fullness. Rooted in the Acts of the Apostles and Luke’s Gospel, it will help us to explore how living the mission of Jesus in the power of his Holy Spirit means we are people and communities which:

– Steward faithfully
– Act justly
– Serve sacrificially
– Teach effectively
– Proclaim boldly

Last year, St Benedict (‘Ben’) helped us to bring a ‘rhythm’ to our lives. This year we will be empowered to share the good news Ben knew with those around us.

We’ll be bringing our resourcing events to you in the New Year. Want to find out more? Click here.


Guardians of Ancora Christmas comic

Guardians of Ancora.jpg

The city of Ancora used to glow with the light of a thousand stories. Now these tales are gone and the Spire grows dim. But some still search for stories, to relight the Spire once more. They are called the Guardians of Ancora!

Join the characters from Scripture Union’s groundbreaking tablet game, Guardians of Ancora, as they rediscover the Christmas story. The Ancora Christmas Bible comic combines high-quality artwork with augmented reality content to bring the story of Jesus’ birth to life.

Hand in Hand Conference 2016

Hand in Hand 2016

Whatever your involvement in children’s or family ministry there will be something for you over the weekend.

Time to connect with God, be refreshed and reflect on your ministry

• Through worship and Bible study in our main stage sessions. Paul Butler (Bishop of Durham) will be exploring two stories from the Bible as he speaks on Nurtured and Nurturing on Friday and Saturday; Lou Fellingham will lead us in worship as we Rejoice! on Saturday evening.
• Through opportunities for prayer, reflection and to encounter God during the optional session times on Saturday.
• With space in the programme for you to take time out – for a walk on the beach, a conversation with another delegate, exhibitor or speaker, or prayer with a member of our pastoral team.

Time to develop fresh ideas about your ministry with children and families

• Through the challenge from our final main stage speaker – Terry Williams (SU, Queensland Australia) to consider the need for information and formation if we want to see transformation.
• Through our programme of optional sessions with streams addressing family ministry, focused on the relationship between church and families; mission, focused on how we reach out to families and children in our locality; Holy Spirit, focused on ensuring a Spirit/Word balance in our ministry.
• Through the ‘deeper for leaders’ sessions –one within each of the three streams.
• Through the Additional Needs Alliance forum, incorporated within the optional seminar programme, which this year will address What happens at the top of the ramp? Getting the practicalities in place to welcome children with additional needs is only the first step. We will also explore and celebrate ways to recognise and encourage spiritual development.
• Through clinics, where you can book to discuss issues you may have with your children’s or family ministry with some of our team

Time to be resourced for your ministry

• Through Hands On workshops, including our Hands On Discovery afternoon on Saturday when local families are welcome to come along and you can join them in sessions seeing the theory in practice. This will conclude with a celebration led by Bob Hartman.
• Through our exhibition and shop areas where you can meet with many of the organisations and ministries resourcing aspects of children’s and family ministry with products, ideas and local events.

Full details can be found here


The Church Sticking Together – The Vital Role of Intergenerational Relationships in Fostering Sticky Faith


Another article seen in the Aim Lower Journal:

It turns out that intergenerational relationships are one key to building lasting faith in students. Silver bullet? No. Helpful if we want students to live their faith beyond high school? Absolutely. Sadly, many high school students lack these significant relationships. In our effort to offer relevant and developmentally appropriate teaching and fellowship for teenagers, we have segregated (and we use that verb intentionally but not lightly) students from the rest of the church. In interviews and open-ended survey questions, participants shared reflections like this one: “The students seemed to be very separated from the rest of the congregation. Maybe fixing that gap would help unite the church.”

This article was adapted from Sticky Faith, Youth Worker Edition, by Kara Powell, Brad Griffin and Cheryl Crawford (Zondervan 2011) and originally appeared in the Sep/Oct edition of Immerse Journal. Reprinted with permission.

Read more here.

Introducing the Quito call to action on children at risk


The following comes from the Aim Lower Journal:

“The Lausanne Consultation on Children at Risk was held in Quito, Ecuador, on 17-19 November 2014. We were gathered with more than 60 of the foremost experts in the area of children-at-risk, including church leaders, theologians, missiologists, and NGO representatives. The two documents that emerged are the fruit of our collaborative work from this gathering, and I am happy to present them to you on behalf of Anne-Christine Bataillard (Senior Associate for Evangelism among Children) and the Lausanne Children at Risk Network.”

The two papers are:

Who are Children-at-Risk: A Missional Definition

Quito Call to Action on Children at Risk

You can read the whole article here.