Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough

Encouraging Christians in Wokingham Borough to Engage with their Communities

Tag: events

Open Space Evening September 2016

This autumn Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough is hosting an  go to site Open Space evening on Thursday 22nd September 2016 at Wokingham Town Hall.

This is an informal evening for churches and christian groups across Wokingham Borough to share their successes, find out about other local activities and encourage each other.

Organised and hosted by Faith in the Community Wokingham Borough, there will be music, drinks and nibbles and lots of opportunities to catch up with new and existing friends and colleagues.

Get the date in your diary now, you don’t want to miss this event.

Open Space Flier 220916 final
When: Thursday 22nd September 7.30 – 9.30pm
Where: Wokingham Town Hall Market Place, RG40 1AS
To reserve your place email mbarlow.fitc@gmail.com

How to… be missional at your #PokeGym

Emma has written about #PokemonGo and the fact that many churches, including their own St Nicolas Earley, are now a #PokeGym or a #PokeStop.  This is a missional opportunity we all need to embrace.

pokegym poster portrait

It is extremely likely that your church is a #PokeGym or #PokeStop and this is great news for churches, because all of a sudden there will be all sorts of people coming to battle online.  There will be kids, tweens, teenagers, young adults, older adults and families all coming to your church to play #PokemonGo.  There will be lots of people at your church hanging around out of choice and most of them probably won’t be members of your church or even people who have ever stepped through the doors.  This is a mission opportunity……

http://llmcalling.blogspot.co.uk/2016/07/mission-of-pokegym-pokemongo-church.html

 

 

Home for Good: how you can help

On Sunday 5th June 2016  Woodley Churches Together invited Bethany Hare of Home for Good Reading and Wokingham to speak at Praise in the Park.  Rather than summarise her inspirational talk, we have decided to share it in it’s entirety.

logo

Hi my name is Bethany Hare, I am the project worker for Home for Good Reading and Wokingham.  For those of you who don’t know Home for Good is a christian charity, we are raising awareness of the need for local foster and adoptive parents we want to find a home for every child who needs one and we believe that the Church can make a difference. Home for Good are also encouraging Church’s to offer support to foster carers, adopters and their children.
I want to start by asking you three questions which I want you think about throughout my talk

Do you believe God Loves you?

Do you believe he has a plan for you?

And how do you share God’s love with others?’
My talk today is going to be based on Jeremiah 29 verse 11 ‘for I know the plans I have for you, declares the lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.’
Now I don’t know about you but there have been several occasions in my life when I have doubted and questioned this. I would love to be able to turn around and say yes throughout my life I have been certain God loves me and has a plan for me, plans for welfare… however I would be lying. When I am going through difficult times, I have turn to God and said ‘right ok…where are you? Now would be the perfect time for you to share my plan with me…’ It got me thinking that If I struggle to come to terms with this as a Christian then imagine how the vulnerable children in our society would react to the idea that God loves them and has a plan for them. The children who are not able to live with their own family and are living in uncertainty, who are waiting for a family, a place they can have stability. The fact God has a plan for them and does not want to harm them would be very difficult to grasp unless the love of God is demonstrated too them through others.
A foster carer recently shared with us that when things seem particularly demanding These words of Joni Earekson Tada inspire her in her fostering.  ‘But God didn’t send a greeting card to show His love, He came Himself. He didn’t just tell us He loved us, He gave up His own life on our behalf. You can talk and sing about love until the cows come home. But at the end of the day, real love means sacrifice.’

I have been a social worker for almost 7 years now and although there are challenges and difficulties I enjoy it. 3 years ago I got baptised and a lady came up to me and said to me ‘God has given me a picture for you. It’s a picture of stepping stones. God wants you to know he has laid a path for you. You don’t need to be afraid he has cleared the way.’ Ironically a few months later I was off work due to personal reasons unsure if I could ever face being a social worker again. I doubted what I was supposed to do and what my plan was…this was the time I was referring to earlier about shouting to God and asking him to shed some light. I decided to go back to social worker however began working supporting and assessing adopters and foster carers. I was happy in my role and had no plans to move. At the same time several members of my church including the youth workers had it on their heart to set up a support group for foster carers and adopters. We had a meeting to discuss this and at the end we prayed. Both the youth workers said to me they felt I should contact Home for Good and see if they have any jobs. Little did they know the job description for Reading and Wokingham Project worker was just being finalised. I applied for the role and on a Wednesday I found out I had an interview, on the Thursday I found out I was going to be made redundant at my current work place and on the Friday I found out I had the job for Home for Good.
This is my testimony of God’s love for me and his plan. Although I still go through difficulties and have no doubt I will continue to face struggles I hold on to God’s plan for me and declare that God will pull me through.

I am sure there are many others who are able to share how God has showed his love for you and have amazing testimonies and others who would say I haven’t experienced that. God has shown his love for us time and time again although sometimes when things are difficult it is hard to remember this. But it is written down for us as a constant reminder.

The bible is the ultimate love story…it is about God’s love for each of us.  A God who is our father.  He has adopted us and has an amazing plan for us. Too often adoption is seen as a negative however it is positive. We have been chosen by our father. We are not a mistake, we are loved and cherished.

http://oceanadesigns.net/wp-json/oembed/1.0/embed?url=http://oceanadesigns.net/ Father’s Love Letter is a compilation of Bible verses from both the Old & New Testaments that are presented in the form of a love letter from God to you.
My Child…You may not know me, but I know everything about you. (Psalm 139:1) I know when you sit down and when you rise up. (Psalm 139:2) I am familiar with all your ways. (Psalm 139:3) Even the very hairs on your head are numbered. (Matthew 10:29-31) For you were made in my image. (Genesis 1:27) In me you live and move and have your being. (Acts 17:28) For you are my offspring. (Acts 17:28) I knew you even before you were conceived. (Jeremiah 1:4-5) I chose you when I planned creation. (Ephesians 1:11-12) You were not a mistake, for all your days are written in my book. (Psalm 139:15-16) I determined the exact time of your birth and where you would live. (Acts 17:26) You are fearfully and wonderfully made. (Psalm 139:14) I knit you together in your mother’s womb. (Psalm 139:13) And brought you forth on the day you were born. (Psalm 71:6) I have been misrepresented by those who don’t know me. (John 8:41-44) I am not distant and angry, but am the complete expression of love. (1 John 4:16) And it is my desire to lavish my love on you. (1 John 3:1) Simply because you are my child and I am your Father. (1 John 3:1) I offer you more than your earthly father ever could. (Matthew 7:11) For I am the perfect Father. (Matthew 5:48) Every good gift that you receive comes from my hand. (James 1:17) For I am your provider and I meet all your needs. (Matthew 6:31-33) My plan for your future has always been filled with hope. (Jeremiah 29:11) Because I love you with an everlasting love. (Jeremiah 31:3) My thoughts toward you are countless as the sand on the seashore. (Psalms 139:17-18) And I rejoice over you with singing. (Zephaniah 3:17) I will never stop doing good to you. (Jeremiah 32:40) For you are my treasured possession. (Exodus 19:5) I desire to establish you with all my heart and all my soul. (Jeremiah 32:41) And I want to show you great and marvelous things. (Jeremiah 33:3) If you seek me with all your heart, you will find me. (Deuteronomy 4:29) Delight in me and I will give you the desires of your heart. (Psalm 37:4) For it is I who gave you those desires. (Philippians 2:13) I am able to do more for you than you could possibly imagine. (Ephesians 3:20) For I am your greatest encourager. (2 Thessalonians 2:16-17) I am also the Father who comforts you in all your troubles. (2 Corinthians 1:3-4) When you are brokenhearted, I am close to you. (Psalm 34:18) As a shepherd carries a lamb, I have carried you close to my heart. (Isaiah 40:11) One day I will wipe away every tear from your eyes. (Revelation 21:3-4) And I’ll take away all the pain you have suffered on this earth. (Revelation 21:3-4) I am your Father, and I love you even as I love my son, Jesus. (John 17:23) For in Jesus, my love for you is revealed. (John 17:26) He is the exact representation of my being. (Hebrews 1:3) He came to demonstrate that I am for you, not against you. (Romans 8:31) And to tell you that I am not counting your sins. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) Jesus died so that you and I could be reconciled. (2 Corinthians 5:18-19) His death was the ultimate expression of my love for you. (1 John 4:10) I gave up everything I loved that I might gain your love. (Romans 8:31-32) If you receive the gift of my son, Jesus, you receive me. (1 John 2:23) And nothing will ever separate you from my love again. (Romans 8:38-39) Come home and I’ll throw the biggest party heaven has ever seen. (Luke 15:7) I have always been Father and will always be Father. (Ephesians 3:14-15) My question is…will you be my child? (John 1:12-13) I am waiting for you. (Luke 15:11-32) love your dad almighty God

Do you believe God Loves you?

Do you believe he has a plan for you?

Do you share God’s love with others?
God loves us and if we believe this it is our job to show God’s love to others in our society through acceptance, kindness, love and respect.
God is our ultimate father and is well pleased with us. I want you to think about what God’s plan is for you? Can you share his love in your local community or through your work?

As part of Home for Good what we want to do is reflect God’s love to our vulnerable children. It is amazing how the simplicity of love; acceptance is to children who have never experienced it before.
In Reading we have pledge to find 50 homes for local children and in Wokingham we have pledged to find 2o homes for the local children in care. These sound like a lot however, when you consider how many churches we have across Reading and Wokingham….it is not that much.
There are different ways you can support home for good
Can you help home for good come to your church to promote fostering and adoption?
Can you support those in your community who are already fostering or have adopted?
Could you consider fostering or adopting a child?
If you would like to find out more please contact Bethany Hare, Reading and Wokingham home for good Project worker.

It may not be Home for Good that God has placed on your heart but I would love you to come away from today thinking about What has God placed on your heart? What is your plan?
I want to finish by reading Jeremiah 29 verse 11 again and declaring it over all of you. ‘for I know the plans I have for you, declares the lord, plans to prosper you and NOT to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’

 

Below is a video of the last segment of Bethany’s talk; we hope this inspires you to pray about what God might have put on your heart and to share with your friends and neighbours.

Bethany Hare, Home for Good at Praise in the Park Woodley 2016

How to… Facebook

social-media-connecting-the-world

buy brand provigil online What is Facebook?

Facebook is a community where people use their authentic identities.  A personal profile is for non-commercial use and represents an individual person.  The people in a church would have their own Facebook profiles which should reflect their lives closely; it is with these profiles that people interact with other people, pages and groups.  In order to start a Facebook page or group you must have an identity as yourself.

 

Facebook Pages

Pages are for organisations to share their stories and connect with people.  When you start a Facebook page for an organisation you are required to confirm that you are an approved representative of that organisation.   You customize Pages by publishing stories, hosting events and starting conversations. People who like your Page and their friends get updates from your Page in their News Feed.

Pages are predominantly about sharing information although some will include discussions, reviews and chats.  Facebook pages are used much like websites and should be kept current and encourage interaction and sharing of the posts onto individuals’ own timelines.

 

buy actonel canada zip Facebook Groups

Groups are spaces where you can keep in touch with people by sharing updates, photos or documents.  In order to create a group you become the administrator.  Most groups will have at least two administrators and a number of other people who can ensure that the group is used appropriately and rules adhered to.  This is not a difficult thing to achieve until the size or activity of the group grows large.

Groups are places for discussion and sharing, depending on the type of group.  There are public, private, closed and secret groups.  Open groups can be read by anyone but you must be accepted as a group member before you can post or comment; closed groups can not be read by anyone except the members, who have to be approved to join; secret groups are not shown in any lists or searchable systems and members have to be invited to join.  It is important to choose which sort of group you might like; for example a prayer chain group would most likely be closed but a church chat group would be open.

Most churches will have several groups within their church, these might well be expected to be replicated on Facebook.  Identifying the groups and their admins and keeping these supported is an important thing for church leaders to undertake.

 

social media speech bubble

What are the benefits of Facebook?

Share Information
Facebook is a cross generational social media platform which appeals from teenagers through to the silver surfers in retirement.  It is often used by families to keep in touch and share news and photographs.  Facebook is used to share information both about personal lives and interests; for example people might share charity events they are involved in or campaigns they are supporting.  Individuals will share articles of interest onto their timeline so that their friends can see them; in this way news can spread rapidly.

Events
Facebook events are an excellent way to tell people about something which is going to happen.  By creating an event for the community fun day and inviting all your contacts in that community you have immediately told them about the event.  You can also share events into community groups or ask people to share events with their friends or invite their friends.  This is free to use and extremely effective with those aged 30-60 who tend to be the most connected on Facebook.

Chat
Facebook discussions, debates and other chat are becoming increasingly popular and allow groups of people to share their interests and opinions as they might do in real life.  Many churches find that discussions about sermons continue through the week and that prayer support can be requested and provided without the need for a central point.  However this requires that administrators are active and watching out for any arguments or additional needs beyond that of Facebook.

Networking
Facebook has fostered networks and friendships across the world, taking on the role of discussion boards before it, enabling strong bonds to form.  It is a fact of our current society that people do not necessarily live near to people they wish to socialise with and Facebook enables these relationships to continue and develop.  Charities and Churches are able to receive and give support to members who are geographically displaced and this is an important aspect of an organisations’ life and mission.

 

social-media

How to get onto Facebook

If you don’t have a Facebook account, you can sign up for one in a few steps:

  1. Go to www.facebook.com.
  2. If you see the signup form, fill out your name, email address or phone number, password, birthday and gender. If you don’t see the form, click Sign Up, then fill out the form.
  3. Click Sign Up.
  4. Once you sign up, you’ll need to confirm your email address or phone number. They will send you either an email or a text message to help you confirm your account.
  5. Spend time connecting with people and pages and groups you know and learn as you go.  Most people are more than happy to help new users find their way if you ask for help.

 

Online Mission

Online Mission: Would you like some training?
We are putting together a one day workshop to increase your confidence and use of social media. We are keeping the cost of as low as possible and expect it to be £25. This day will be entirely practical, allowing participants to learn from the experience of creating a video, uploading it to YouTube, Tweeting about it and sharing it on Facebook. Fill in the form below if you would like to be kept informed or have any questions about what the day.