Finding a vision that fuels your faith

Dear UK church,

I want to wish you all the very best in what is taking place in your church communities and your families this autumn. Next week we will have the Little Angels in town and Jack Corley and his team are doing an incredible job finalising all the last details for what will be a very special occasion. Please keep the Little Angels, the staff and volunteers in HQs, and all the guests who are attending the event, in your prayers over the next week.

I am hoping to get better at reporting to all of you as I used to do maybe a year or so ago. Today in our Lancaster Gate community church we had a staff and volunteer training day. I am still doing my best to focus a significant amount of my attention on creatively developing our HQs church ministry with the team that we have here. Today was really about all getting on the same page in terms of understanding our mission and vision. As things have been developing we have been reflecting how that unless we are growing personally in spirit then our growth in numbers will be superficial and temporary.[click to enlarge the pics….]

4.50am SirBayo leads the singing

5.00am exercises

check out that posture

5.20am comparing the sermon on the mount to Peace message no.5

6.30am departing from the holy ground in Hyde Park

10am discussing their vision

10.20am what are the problems we want to find solutions to

10.40am Robert presents for the red team

Tim Read gave some v good internal guidance on how life is a mission and where we stand in a historical context. He has a good balance of spiritual insight and scientific analysis. And then after we looked at an interesting question: does God have a specific vision that He wants to plant in our hearts, for our HQs church? What do we need to do to discover it? Each of our communities is so unique and different in terms of size, people, resources, etc. we really need to pray according to our predicament and figure out how our faith is able to intersect with a concrete and clear vision that is relevant to where we are.

In our situation we are blessed with an amazing church centre at 43LG and already over the last several months a growing number of volunteers and staff. I am sure that for God he wants us to reach a point where we can serve beyond our own congregation. But right now we are still exploring how to set up an effective worship service which meets the needs of those who attend and gives them the confidence to bring their friends.

10.41am engaged and focused

10.50am Veronica speaks for the purple team

11.05am Michael puts the case for developing volunteer processes and lists the benefits of volunteering

11.14am Patrick pursuades

12.01pm group picture coming up

12.02pm almost there

12.05pm that's the group pic done

12.45pm a lot of meals to sort out

12.48pm what have we in here

In our morning program today we spoke about how developing a vision often starts with a gnawing sense of how something needs to change and then feeling called to bring about a solution to a problem. When Nehemiah was in exile in Babylon he heard how his hometown, Jerusalem, was in a bad state and even the city wall had been destroyed. Despite being in what rationally was an impossible circumstance (cupbearer to the Babylonian king) he got it into his heart and head that he should do something about his lost homeland and went on an amazing course to fulfill his dream.

When you read on page 151 of True Father’s autobiography what got him motivated to start the Little Angels, it was similar in that he had nothing, but he nevertheless felt something v deeply about making a change.

I think as we all grow up and as life rolls on there comes a point where we all want to fulfill a vision that wells up from within our heart, and create something that reflects what we stand for.

I hope you can see and feel God’s hand in your plans for your life, your family and community.

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About simoncooper

working at 43LG church community in West London

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3 Responses to Finding a vision that fuels your faith

  1. Robin Graham October 10, 2010 at 12:39 pm #

    It would be useful to learn the UK HQ’s vision and mission statements.

    It would also be good to learn how these fit within an overall vision and mission of the UC in the UK.

    There seems to be a “confusion” of vision and mission in your article. Understandable, this has been a unification challenge for a long time.

    Simply said
    Vision answers the question: Where are we going?
    Mission answers: How are we are going to get there?

    The rest is goals and strategy.

    “effective worship service which meets the needs of those who attend and gives them the confidence to bring their friends”

    This may be good strategy ,it may not be. It can be tested.
    What measures a successful D-Day landing?
    If D-Day landings do not work, what is Plan B?

    I like the DP because it explains that God has Plan A, Plan B, Plan C etc. Of course God hopes Plan A will work… but like a grandmaster chess player He is not limited to one strategy.

    Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. (Albert Einstein)

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    Editor October 11, 2010 at 1:04 pm #

    Hi Robin, thanks for clarifying the mission vision point. It’s good to have terms clearly defined. To be blunt, in terms of the UK and also in terms of our HQs church, I don’t feel we are really there yet. The one thing I have been able to do by focusing in on HQs church is simply start to be creative and a little bit free myself from only focusing on the directions from above in an organisational sense.

    Back in the spring I was talking to our HQs congregation that our mission is to ‘teach the Divine Principle and bring people to connect to True Parents’.
    Sorry…maybe that is the vision, or the goal…????not sure.

    anyhow I guess still working on these thing, and am aware that it is a process that needs time for right vision and mission statement to emerge. We do have a UK mission statement that is also in process that the trustees of our charity asked us for. will dig it up and post it in this conversation for you. and again thank u for asking constructive questions. please ask more, it helps me think.

  3. Robin Graham October 11, 2010 at 2:10 pm #

    Teach the DP
    Connect to TPs

    I do not think these belong to vision.
    I think one could ask the questions:
    Why teach the DP?
    Why connect to TPs?

    This might bring you closer to a vision statement.

    To “connect” to TPs is hard to measure
    To “teach” the DP does not mean that people are a)learning or b) practicing it.

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