Roger writes: “Last week I went to visit the EQUIP group which meets in Chester and consists of Anglican clergy from North Wales. John Benson, who leads the group, recently spent a week praying for North Wales. John reports as follows:
“I recently spent a week in Moelfre on Anglesey, praying, seeking the Lord’s direction, and reflecting on the Church in Wales. This arose from a growing burden for the advance of the kingdom of God in Wales. Moelfre was the location of the shipwreck of the Royal Charter in 1859. More than 400 people on board lost their lives in a ferocious storm. The villagers of Moelfre rescued about 40 survivors, and this marked the start of the community’s proud history of heroic sea rescues.
Moelfre today has two large lifeboats and a small boat used for rescues close to shore. In the Lifeboat Station you can see the RNLB Kiwi, poised at the top of the slipway and ready to launch out to rescue those in peril on the sea.
There is another lifeboat in the Seawatch Centre. The RNLB Bird’s Eye used to be in active service in New Quay, but it is now permanently housed as a museum exhibit, cut off from the sea. The paintwork is starting to deteriorate and the cracks between the wooden planks are showing. It looks like a lifeboat. It has been used as a lifeboat – it was launched for 89 rescues between 1970 and 1990 and saved 42 lives. It is no longer seaworthy. It is no longer fit for purpose. It is no help at all if you are in peril on the sea. It is just a museum curiosity.
Perhaps that is a picture of many of our churches today. They look like churches. Some have had fruitful ministries as churches. But today they are as useful in saving the lost as that retired lifeboat at Moelfre. When did we last see someone come to a living faith in the Lord Jesus Christ in our churches? Last week? Last month? Last year? I can’t remember when this last happened …
Jesus said, “For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.” [Luke 19:10] He did not wait for the lost sheep to come to him. He went out to find them. Luke reports that in the early church, “the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved.” [Acts 2:47]
Finally, this is what I believe the Lord said to me while I was in Moelfre praying for a breakthrough for the kingdom of God in the churches of North Wales:
I am here
I can do this
I will do this
I have heard your prayers
I will answer your prayers
Your own eyes will see what I will do
Watch and pray
It would be good to hear back from anyone who also has a prayer burden for this part of the world.”
Posted 22nd October 2019 by Alison Morgan
A Rooted in Jesus team has just returned to the UK from Ghana, where we had been invited by Bishop Felix Annancy to provide the first small group discipleship training for the Diocese of Koforidua. It was a first for Rooted in Jesus too, as Ghana becomes the 17th country to introduce the programme.
110 joyful participants turned up to the conference, held in a secondary school in the little town of Kwabeng. We had a wonderful time, with much dancing, singing and laughter as well as a lot of hard work all round. We also attended two celebration services, each lasting nearly 5 hours, and visited Cape Coast Castle, one of Africa’s largest former slave trading posts. That wiped the smiles off our faces, but we were restored by the forgiveness and hospitality offered to us by everyone we met. We are grateful for the opportunity to serve our friends in Ghana, and we continue to pray for the new group leaders and for the diocese as it follows through on its determination to grow.
One of the highlights was talking to Augustine, a young man who started off by explaining that he hadn’t wanted to come to the conference at all, and then….. We’ll leave you to read the blog report to find out more – click here.
It goes without saying that we are immensely grateful to all who made this trip possible – to David Archer, Colin Cooper and Max Cross who joined the team, and to their churches; and to those who offered the prayerful and financial support which underpins everything we do.
To find out more about Rooted in Jesus visit our website.
Posted by Alison Morgan, 6th September 2019
We write every so often about Rooted in Jesus, so we thought it was time for an update on our EQUIP programme. EQUIP aims to support church leaders, who are invited to join one of our regional groups which meet 3 times a year for a one day seminar.
After each session the group leader, either Roger Morgan or John Benson, follows up each participant on a one to one basis, usually paying them a visit at their homes and sometimes making a contribution to the church at the same time. What we do in these personal visits varies from person to person, and quite often people have problems to share with us. The morale of church leaders is very important but can be hard to maintain. It is a privilege to support so many people at the coal-face of local ministry.
This year EQUIP has expanded on a number of fronts:
Membership is open to any church leader within easy reach of one of our regional hubs. The composition and location of the groups inevitably changes as people take up new appointments, but this year we have been able to welcome a number of new members. There are now 5 regional hubs, meeting in Kent, Leicestershire, Berkshire, North Wales and Somerset. The Somerset group launched this year and we meet in Bridgwater. 50 church leaders are now involved, up from 40 last year. The groups are cross-denominational, and it is a joy to have Anglican, Baptist and Methodist leaders meeting together to consider the challenges of ministry and to support one another in prayer.
EQUIP is founded on a simple question: “What do church leaders need to be able to do if they are to lead their churches into a deeper experience of God and also into numerical growth?”. Each of our seminars takes a single topic which will help ministers to grow both in their personal walk with the Lord and in their role as church leaders; each participant is given a booklet setting out the main principles and offering suggestions for good practice. Often it turns out that someone has a great deal of experience to share on a particular topic, and when this is so we invite them to take the lead.
So far this year the topics the various groups have covered are: Breathing life into Sundays, Managing time, Prayer Ministry, Revive us Again and Transforming Preaching.
Growth never happens in a vacuum so, keen as we are to help church leaders, we are also looking for practical ways to serve their churches. We love helping churches to plan and run local missions, and of course we are always willing to help lead training courses and to preach. Our most recent initiative is to put together a series of 5 seminars for church members, covering the following topics:
1. The Holy Spirit – the source of life and power
2. Developing a strong prayer life – both individual and corporate
3. Prayer ministry – praying for others
4. Evangelism – ministry to the community
5. Becoming messengers – ministry of the word
We are currently piloting this course in Durrington, Wiltshire, and we are extremely encouraged by the response. The Saturday morning sessions have been attended by up to 26 church members, some of whom have had no direct experience of ministering to others; many say that they have been going much deeper with God than they’ve been able to do before. The Lord seems very willing to pitch in; it’s all about having the confidence to let him!
If you would like to order a copy of one of our EQUIP booklets please let Jessica know – some of the topics are listed below. If you are interested in finding out more about EQUIP, either through joining an existing group or helping to start a new one in your area, please contact us. And if you are an experienced church leader who would like to help us expand our reach please do get in touch!
The following EQUIP booklets can be ordered from the office at a nominal price of £2.50 including postage:
All Age Worship
Breathing Life into Sundays
Delivering the Word of God
Developing New Leaders
Management of Change
Prayer Meetings and How to Lead Them
The Work of an Evangelist
Posted 19th August 2019 by Alison Morgan
New donation facility
We are very grateful to all who support the ministry of the Mathetes Trust either in the form of single donations, or by regular standing order. We had been using BT’s free charity donation facility on our websites, but this has now closed. We’ve looked carefully at the alternatives, and have decided that the service offered by the Charities Aid Foundation is the best one for our purposes. The new donate button is shown below, and it connects to our CAF charity page https://cafdonate.cafonline.org/10163.
If you do not yet support us financially but would like to do so, the CAF page offers various options for both one-off and regular donations.
Making a difference – what we do with your gifts
As a charity we travel very light, but we are nonetheless dependent on your support both for our ministry in the UK and for Rooted in Jesus in Africa. Our ministry continues to grow: in recent weeks Roger and Katy Morgan have run a prayer weekend for a church in Oxfordshire, Alison has spoken at a village outreach evening on Science & Faith in Derbyshire, and Mike Cotterell has taken a Rooted in Jesus team to the Diocese of East Ruwenzori in Uganda. Our EQUIP ministry with church leaders is expanding – we are now working with 50 churches across the country. Richard Scott and Roger are planning a further parish mission in Kent for 2020, and we have other church weekends and preaching engagements in the diary. We have more Rooted in Jesus conferences planned for later this year and for next year, and we are currently working on seven new translations of the Rooted in Jesus books! We have also just published an updated edition of the Rooted in Jesus Team Manual, which is used by team members and host dioceses to introduce and support Rooted in Jesus. News from dioceses already using Rooted in Jesus continues to be encouraging – visit our news page to find out more.
Amazon Smile programme
Finally, we are pleased that the Amazon Smile programme is generating a small amount of income for us. If you buy from Amazon, you can nominate a charity to receive a small donation from Amazon, at no extra cost to yourself. All you need to do is shop via https://smile.amazon.co.uk/ instead of via http://amazon.co.uk/, and choose your charity (just once). They do the rest! Persuading Amazon to make charitable donations has to be good…
We are hugely grateful to all those who partner with us in prayer, in practical involvement, and in financial support – thank you so much! If you would like to join our contact list and receive our news updates by email do let us know – or click to follow this blog using the button on the right.
Posted 2nd July 2019
We have been hugely encouraged to receive recent news about our discipleship programmes Rooted in Jesus and The God Who is There from Southern Africa and Burundi. A full report is on our blog, but here is a snapshot:
The latest newsletter from Growing the Church in Cape Town proclaims: Discipleship takes off in the Anglican Province of Southern Africa! It carries a report on recent training conferences in the Diocese of Natal and the Diocese of Lesotho, facilitated by a team which included members from the Diocese of Free State, where RinJ was introduced last year. Bishop Martin Breytenbach has recently conducted a video interview with Bishop Dintoe Letloeyane, who tells of the impact of the programme in his own diocese of Free State. Watch it on youtube here or by clicking on the image.
Other testimonies include:
“I am totally humbled as I reflect on the weekend—words will never be enough to express what the Lord has done here! It was a wow experience. As Isaiah 43:18 says, “God is doing a new thing.” Several participants heard the gospel for the first time and committed their lives to Jesus. Thank God for Revd Trevor who preached boldly about salvation and gently challenged the people to consider inviting Jesus in their lives.” Joseph Morenammele (Lesotho)
“Each course will be rotating around the diocese over a period of 15 months. We are, with our Bishop’s support, assisting and enabling parishes to evangelize and make disciples. God is good! Three new Rooted in Jesus Adult groups, one new Rooted in Jesus Junior group, three new Alpha Groups and one new J-Life group have been formed at Parish Level.” Bruce Woolley (Natal)
Meanwhile we were delighted to hear from Elisha Acadamy in Burundi that Rooted in Jesus continues to be an effective tool for discipleship in the Diocese of Muyinga. He reports that: “Kiremba village is going to become a new parish as a result of the Rooted in Jesus ministry; in Cibare one group has completed the course and 2 new groups are now starting; the church in Danzuko has expanded through RinJ; many have surrendered to Jesus and given up idol worship in Jarama; a new church is being planted in Mukoni as a result of Rooted in Jesus.” He concludes, “the Diocese began when they had almost 25 parishes. But now after using Rooted in Jesus, more than 5 parishes have been inaugurated. This is a result of the Rooted in Jesus mission. This place is a good place for doing this ministry because many people need to hear about Jesus.” Elisha (below) is currently part of the RinJ team to the Diocese of East Ruwenzori in Uganda.
We have posted a full report from South Africa on the Rooted in Jesus blog, which you can read here. While you are there you might like to sign up to follow the blog, which means you will automatically be notified of new posts! And if you would like to catch up on recent feedback from other places do keep an eye on the Rooted in Jesus news page.
Posted 28th May 2019
Created in 2002, Rooted in Jesus has now been running for 17 years. During this time it has been introduced to some 90 dioceses, denominations and theological colleges in 16 African countries. Over 13,000 people have now been trained to lead Rooted in Jesus groups!
Many of those who have adopted Rooted in Jesus now provide their own ongoing training and support, fulfilling our vision that the programme should become self-sustaining in each province or area. We invite each diocese or network to send us an annual report, and we have been delighted to receive many testimonies to the impact that Rooted in Jesus is having as a tool for church-planting, discipleship training and ministry to families.
To read the Rooted in Jesus Annual Report click HERE.
Or to catch up with the highlights visit our latest blog post HERE.
Rooted in Jesus and the Mathetes Trust
‘Now the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain to which Jesus had directed them. When they saw him, they worshipped him; but some doubted. And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything that I have commanded you. And remember, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”’ Matthew 28.16-20
The word ‘mathetes’ is the New Testament term for our English word ‘disciple’, and the Great Commission by Jesus underpins everything we do both here in the UK and with our partners in Africa through Rooted in Jesus.
Rooted in Jesus is used to make disciples in some of the poorest countries in the world. This is made possible through the generosity of those who support the Mathetes Trust financially. If you would like to help please click HERE.
To download the Annual Report as a pdf file click HERE