Dear Church Family
It's good to be back at The Belfrey after my sabbatical. I'd particularly like to thank Greg Downes for all he's done leading the church whilst I've been away. Greg's now on holiday, enjoying a well-deserved rest!
I started back last weekend with New Wine's 'Inspire' festival at Thirsk. It was an excellent event - in the North, for the North - and was a great success. People from lots of churches of varying sizes and contexts across the North encountered God, with many filled with the Spirit, some making first time commitments and some experiencing healing and prophetic words. They were sent home truly inspired! I was rightly proud of the many wonderful Belfrey folk who served - on the youth team, in the prayer shed, helping with stewarding, with music and worship, giving seminars, leading meetings, speaking and much more. Serving the North in this way is so central to our church vision. Well done team! I was asked to give the final talk on the last morning. If you want to get the essence of that message, click here as I've put it out in a recent blog.
New Wine hopes to do a similar but larger event around the same time next year. It would be great for us to really get behind that as a church and for many of us both to go and serve. So look out for further details in the coming weeks.
My sabbatical was a fantastic time of rest and renewal. I travelled quite a lot in the United States and saw much beauty - in creation, in people and in art. I've experienced the presence of God in power and love. I've seen many healings and heard inspiring speakers. I've read and written and journalled. I've enjoyed time with family and loved ones. I am very grateful.
One of the stand-out leaders I came across during my sabbatical was Randy Clark. Randy is a humble and thoughtful leader. He is a gifted healing evangelist and through his ministry many, including people like Heidi Baker, have been touched by the Spirit and gone on to do extraordinary things for the Lord. Greg has become friends with Randy and we're privileged that Randy has agreed to come to speak in St Michael le Belfrey Church, on Monday 12th September. There'll be an afternoon meeting for leaders of churches and then an evening celebration at 7pm to which everyone is invited. So please do mark this date in your diary, tell others about it and come. We are expectant for a great day on 12th September!
This weekend is a bank holiday. If you're away, enjoy the break. On Sunday in St Michael le Belfrey Church I will be speaking at all three congregations across the day on the theme of 'Commission' from Luke 10:1-24. Donald Werner from Burundi is in town and we'll be pleased to welcome him as he's interviewed at the 9am Congregation. Whatever you're doing, may you know the Father's love, walk in the Spirit and point those you meet to our great Saviour, whose name is Jesus.