sass & sarcasm from a southerner in south kensington
Wednesday, October 10, 2012
A huge part of being away from home, family and friends is learning to build a new home, new family, and new friends. Don't worry Winston, you're not being replaced but for the next year I'm loving London as my home, my flatmates as best friends, and family..? Well I've found a church family so that will have to do for now. Carly and I have been going to afternoon services at HTB Queen's Gate, just 15 minutes away from our flat. It has been quite an experience. The 4:30 service is, in a word, different. There is prayer but it is accompanied by music, there is passing of the peace but it is accompanied by hugs and personal prayer time, and there is no dress code. Not quite the church that I grew up in, however I love it. I know that I'm meeting some great Christians and I'm growing with God during the service.. so what else could ya ask for? Oh yeah, a gorgeous setting in an old church.. that'd be nice too!
Queen's Gate at night
HTB is a massive community with 10 services across three churches every Sunday. There are over 60 pastorates (what we would call bible studies or small groups, but each of the groups has about 30-40 people!) The original church, HTB Brompton Road, has been 'picking up' smaller churches who are at risk of closing their doors. The HTB support helps the church stay alive as well as bring even more people into church on Sundays. They run all kinds of programs for kids, youth, and adults as well as service work with the elderly, homeless, and imprisoned. I love this church because I feel like they have grown massively over the years, yet they have not lost their vision of what Christ wants them to do.
Carly and I went to our first pastorate last night and it was great. A bit of worship, a bit of prayer, and a bit of community.. exactly what ya need when you're 3,900 miles from home!