Everyday Church – One church in multiple locations
In 2013 Everyday Church was born out of the coming together of three Baptist churches: Kingston Baptist, Southfields Baptist and Queen’s Road Baptist. Over the last ten years, through times of growth and an international pandemic, we have seen God do so much amongst us, both in Southwest London and across the globe through our Online Venue.
Ten years since the beginnings of Everyday Church it seems an opportune time to give an update on where we are right now in each of our current Venues, and to identify some key prayer points. As you would imagine, summarising all that is going on across multiple Venues takes more words than the average blog and even then, I will be skimming the surface. Hopefully these summaries will stir your faith and your prayers.
Our Croydon Venue goes from strength to strength. We have over the last eighteen months tended to refer to Croydon as a Venue Plant, but we should now treat it as a fully-fledged Venue. Erich and Elisabeth Radtke lead the Venue with wonderful faith and a lightness of touch. They are natural pastors and evangelists, with a huge heart for those within and without the church. But it is by no means just about them. Croydon now has four Life Groups led by a great team of leaders, and a separate team lead the monthly Prayer on the Streets ministry.
As a Venue they hosted an Alpha course last term and they are about to move into their new building at Matthew’s Yard in the middle of Croydon. This will enable them to go from meeting monthly, to meeting twice a month. The new building is a huge answer to prayer and has been received with much thankfulness. Moving to two meetings needs more volunteers and it has been such a joy to see people step up across the Venue. Everyone who Elisabeth and Erich have asked to pick up an area of responsibility have responded with an enthusiastic “Yes!”
Croydon Prayer Points
- That the move to the new building goes well and facilitates more kingdom impact in Croydon.
- For the restarting of kids work and creche on a Sunday.
- Breakthrough in healing and salvation when they are praying on the streets.
- That visitors feel able to join the church and are naturally incorporated into Life Groups.
There continues to be a Life Group in Kingston, led by Mary and Dave Young. Simon also meets regularly with Dave and Mary Young, Tracey O’Shea and Noline Matemera to chat and pray through the future of Kingston. The Elders met in February 2023 to prayerfully discuss the future of the Kingston Venue, and agreed that given all that God had placed in our hands in Kingston, we should start to actively pursue a relaunch. Over the last eighteen months we have seen Kingston as fallow ground. Ground that has produced much fruit historically, and will do so again, but needs a season of rest and recovery. Our sense in February was that it is time to start ploughing that fallow ground and seeking God for next steps.
As part of this process, we invited anyone who was interested from within Everyday Church and in other local New Ground churches to come and pray with the Elders in the Kingston building on April 4 2023. Forty-two people attended and there was a huge rise of faith in the room. Lots of ideas were shared and Simon is now in the process of prayerfully reviewing those ideas. On May 9 2023 we spent another session praying both in the building and in the local community.
Kingston Prayer Points
- Wisdom for next steps and the timing of those steps.
- A leader/leadership couple who feel called to serve in Kingston.
- That more individuals across the Everyday Church family and the New Ground family would feel called to play a part in the Kingston relaunch
On April 16 2023, whilst our geographical Venues focused on local vision, we started a 12 week process of data gathering for our Online Venue. During the service that week we specifically asked those engaging in the service to let us know if Everyday Church Online was their primary church. We are repeating this call as part of the service for a 12-week period. Alongside this, Darren Parker, our Online Venue Leader, is drilling down into all the various data points around our Online Venue community.
We have no doubt that our Online Venue is doing good around the world, and this is evidenced by the emails we receive and which Darren often includes in the monthly update. However, after nearly eight years of Everyday Online it makes sense to do a full review. We want to make sure we are making the most of the resource we have and that what we produce is equipping the saints and preaching the gospel around the globe. We will feedback results from that review in due course.
Online Prayer Points
- That our Online service and digital material continues to take the gospel to unreached and closed communities.
- That the 12-week data collection window gives us a true idea of who we are serving and how we might serve and equip them more effectively.
- For the amazing volunteers who serve the Online services and the Online Life Group week in and week out.
(If you would like to receive the monthly update about our Online Venue please email firstname.lastname@example.org)
Sundays and Life Groups continue to be healthy in the Venue with over 75% of the Venue playing an active role in a Life Group. Adam Bream, our Southfields Venue Leader, has built a great leadership team and established a rhythm of leadership meetings for Ministry Leaders and Life Group Leaders.
There was a small but fruitful Alpha course from Christmas to Easter resulting in salvation and baptisms. Adam and the team are praying into and working on developing a culture of mission across the Venue.
Adam continues to build great links with St Cecelia’s School, and together with the school chaplain, we run an after-school youth club in the building every Thursday.
Adam will be going on Sabbatical for July and August 2023. He is looking forward to a season of rest and reflection and I have no doubt it will be good for him, and therefore good for the Southfields Venue.
Southfields Prayer Points
- A great sabbatical for Adam.
- The ongoing development of leaders and teams to ensure that Adam’s time is spent on the right things moving forward.
- That the Southfields Venue would continue to grow in relationship whilst also seeing many more from the wider community find faith and a home within that community.
Our Sutton Venue Leadership team is led by David and Amanda Featherstone. One of the Venue’s great strengths is their sense of community and pastoral care. It is no surprise that when people find them, they tend to stay. Recently they have seen people joining them who are seeking God, some from the Hong Kong Chinese community and some established Christians who are new to the area. They have also seen growth amongst those in their 20’s.
The Sutton Venue continues to build ever deepening links with Sutton Community Works and a good number of members are actively involved in one or more SCW ministries with the local community. On Good Friday, as some Sutton members joined the Good Friday service, others took part in prayer walking in Sutton town centre. Some simply walked and prayed for the community, whilst others engaged people in conversation and offered to pray for people on the streets.
We are also developing the Sutton Eldership Team and on the April 30 2023 David shared with the Venue our desire to see Gary Chan join the Sutton Eldership Team.
Since its launch, our Sutton Venue has met at Sutton Grammar School. This has been a huge blessing. However, there are some challenges around accessibility and the team are working hard to improve access to the school as part of our commitment to be inclusive to all.
Sutton Prayer Points
- Smooth and successful eldership process for Gary Chan.
- The ongoing issues around accessibility.
- Continued growth in the youth ministry in the venue.
On the first of August 2022 Tim Maton was appointed as Wimbledon Venue Leader. This was an answer to prayer and I am delighted to let you know that after nearly nine months of commuting, Tim and Caroline have now moved into the area. Thank you to all of you who prayed, first for Tim’s appointment and then for houses to sell and be purchased.
Tim has worked incredibly hard, as have the Wimbledon Leadership Team. We are looking to broaden the Eldership Team in Wimbledon, and to keep developing volunteer leadership in every area of church life.
Highlights in the Wimbledon venue over the last few months would include:
- An excellent Alpha course, including a Holy Spirit weekend away, all brilliantly led by Andy Tuck.
- Baptisms on Easter Sunday.
- The establishment of a supervised creche twice a month.
- The development of three great Everyday Kids teams.
- The establishment of bimonthly Sunday morning and Friday night youth activities.
- Tim Maton and Sean Hammond attending the New Ground Racial Diversity Network training.
Wimbledon Prayer Points
- That those attending Alpha would make the step into faith and baptism.
- Wisdom for the current eldership process.
- That those who attended the recent membership course would become fully integrated into church life.
- Wimbledon is still understaffed, with vacancies in the areas of Administration and 0-18’s work – please pray that current interim plans would work well and that God would provide the right people to fill these vacancies on a permanent basis.
I hope you found this update helpful and that it fuels your faith for what God has in store. Thank you for playing your part in the life of Everyday Church.