FUSION WHITLEY (READING)
The team has said goodbye to our mate Kim Anderson (bottom center) who has returned to her native USA. Kim had been spending part of her time in Reading working with our team for many months and has been a valued Fusion team member since 2013. We will miss her bubbly personality and servant heart!
Anika and Claire have been helping the Anglican churches in Whitley to run a second Dealing with Depression Course, which finished just over a week ago. Six people were redoing the course and they were joined by ten new participants. It has been encouraging to significant movements towards fellowship and community being taken by a number of people.
The Reading Team also represented Fusion Y&C at the Whitley Step Up Fair, an event that showcased local volunteer based community organisations. The public came out to see various ways they could get involved and kids were also presented with fun activities like face painting and craft. Below are snippets from the Reading Chronicle reporting on the event!
Our fundraising Quiz Night on May 22nd was a huge success! Together we raised £528! There were also multiple people who filled out Response Cards indicating their willingness to volunteer for our office! We're so pleased to have already been joined in the office by one young lady, a uni student on her summer break.
Starting this month, the youth workers of various organisations and churches in Whitley have decided to gather once a week for a time of worship and to pray for the young people in the community. We are also meeting to develop a broad strategy for mission with and to the young people of the community.
FUSION LANCASHIRE (Preston & Leyland)
The regular weekly youth programs run in Lancashire at the moment are the Youth Cafe at St. Matthews Mission, Preston and the faith discipleship group, Talk n Tucker at The Base, Leyland.
"Talk n Tucker is beginning to take off, all be it slowly," reports Andy . "We have 8 kids on the books now and we had 6 attend last week. Although quite young, they are enthusiastic and contribute well to the bible slot. They are getting used to finding verses in the bible and taking turns reading the verses.
Last week ‘Jack’ remembered a long memory verse without looking which was nice to celebrate. They’re favourite game is ‘Animals’. It's a frantic game where 3 people have to make up the characteristics of an animal or object – everything from mosquitoes to toasters!"
At youth cafe the team has a new male volunteer – Stuart, who attends Andy’s church. We have been praying for another male leader in the youth work in Preston and Leyland, so Stuart is a real answer to prayer. He has run a Scout group in the past, so Stuart has plenty of youth work experience, which is great!
Andy also shares, "We will be completing a video project in October over three Saturdays. They will be recording a song and recording a pop video. The theme is poverty." This will be a great opportunity to get the young people engaged with a relevant issue in creative and hope bringing ways, all while investing in their lives with positive role modelling.
FUSION WHEATLEY (Associate Centre)
In Oxfordshire the Fusion Wheatley team is busy preparing for their annual Summer Holiday Club, a highlight of the year for many children, teens and their families in this village just outside of Oxford.
Wheatley Community Church
This new church is an initiative of local Christians, fully support by Wheatley's Anglican and United Reformed Churches. After a decade of ongoing youth, children and community outreach, supported by Fusion, it became clear that Wheatley was ready and in need of a community church which could welcome in an support individuals and families with little to no previous experience of church life. Thanks to the hard work of a committed bunch of friends in fellowship, the Wheatley Community church is off to a great start.
Below is a snippet from their latest newsletter that was sent out earlier this month:
Format for Sunday Services - We're experimenting!
We are experimenting with different styles for Sunday morning services. Last Sunday, we had a slightly more 'cafe' styled church service (pastries, coffee and sitting around tables') and have had very encouraging feedback about this style. Here are a few snippets:
"it felt like a big home-group."
"'I thought today’s set up was less formal and more friendly than the usual ‘church’ set up, more like café church … the round tables also made it easier to chat to others, "
"Having pastries at start is great but fresh pastries would be better! Sitting around tables is totally the way to go"
"I have not left a service for a long time being so challenged about my relationship with God. The handout bringing together various scriptures on a subject was, and is, so helpful. – lots more like this please. "
If you'd like to find out more about Wheatley Community Church you can visit their website by clicking the button below!