Witnessing Church aware of its Mission
Just from what you have already read, you can hopefully get some idea of how we see ourselves, our mission and how we are trying to be the best kind of Church for our area in achieving this. Bulwell is a vibrant Church to be a part of. What is important though is that we never allow ourselves to become complacent. Therefore, to maintain this sense of life and spirit and to ensure it remains a place within which all can grow and flourish we are constantly seeking ways to improve and develop. In this context we have a Ministry Group and a Mission Group. Within this, every so often, we pause to invite all to join together to reflect on where we are and to share ideas as to where we want to be, and what we might do to get there. We remain open to new ideas and initiatives where relevant and have the courage to take properly considered risks.
Recently we have successfully and creatively led our Church through the challenges of the Covid pandemic. Currently we are carefully journeying back towards ‘normality’. With the arrival of our new Minister we believe it will be just the right time for us to once again encourage everyone who is involved in making Bulwell URC the Church it is, to gather together, pray and re-imagine what we can be and how. We need to continue this Spirit-led momentum and are looking forward to welcoming a Minister who can help us do this, surrounding it by both prayer and action.
A Worshipping, Witnessing Church that is good to be a part of
We see the way we worship, in its broadest context, but particularly on a Sunday, as crucial to our own personal spiritual growth and wellbeing and the success of our witness as a whole. As part of our move to mission, as outlined above, we have spent a considerable amount of time considering and evolving our worship, especially on a Sunday morning. Whilst we do not feel we have ‘got there’, we have made significant strides in achieving worship that is uplifting, sustaining and challenging, whilst maintaining a broad appeal and relevance to modern day people and life within our particular community.
We also remain open to exploring and experimenting with new ways of worship.
At its spiritual and practical heart,
therefore, Bulwell is first and foremost a worshipping and praying community, but one which believes that these are only truly seen by putting them into action. Faith witnessed through deeds, as James 3:14 reminds us, ‘walking’ and not simply ‘talking the way’.
To this end a strength of Bulwell is its friendliness, the welcome people receive and the practical and pastoral care we provide, at every level. In this way we are able to express the love of God on a personal, ‘extended Bulwell URC Family’ level, also contributing on a weekly basis to local charities such as Shareware, Foodbank and Framework (for needy families and the homeless). Yet we are also a caring Church globally, through our support of Christian Aid, the Bible Society, Shoebox type campaigns, the Joshua Project in Malawi and as a Fairtrade Church and outlet.
Together with all of this, and crucial to its ongoing success, is our commitment to being a learning and creative Church. It was Michelangelo who said on being complimented on the Sistine Chapel, ‘I am still learning…’ and this sense of remaining open to God’s possibilities and his continuing creation is at the heart of who we are and who we can yet be. We are a confident Church open to change and experimentation if it is felt it will take us further forward. Therefore, we are constantly seeking to learn from God, His Word and the people and experiences around us, from each other, from other Churches and from formal training. As Michael Angelo didn’t say, but might have done, in striving to be the best we can be it is important that we seek to ‘know what is possible and then do what is realistic’!