Do you struggle with church unity?
Is your church making a difference?
Inspirational account of God moving in east London
Part of global city transformation movement
A call to church partnership
Effective and relevant local mission
Contains practical advice
A passionate call to unity’
Rev Roger Sutton, Director of Gather and Movement Day UK
At a time of political and societal fragmentation and economic uncertainty, it is easy to take a dim view of the future. But, beyond controversy and the confines of party-political lines, a dynamic global unity movement is on the march. Expressed in increasing numbers of local church partnerships that seek to be relevant to the places they are in, the unity movement is to be found in growing numbers of towns and cities on every continent. Dr Jonathan Oloyede of National Day of Prayer UK says, ‘A new era has come for the church and it is the age of the kingdom of God. In this epoch, Christians will move beyond the walls of church buildings into local communities, homes and relevant spheres in society.’
Jesus in Town is an account of how this unity movement is being expressed in east London through Barking Churches Unite. In this initiative, churches in Barking and Dagenham joined together, first in prayer and then in practical action, to minister to the community, by discovering where there were local needs. They then began working together to meet these needs, providing services that the local council recognise as filling a vital gap. In working together rather than alone, the Christians in the town have had a major impact.
The book is in three parts. The first is the story of how God gradually envisioned and enabled Barking Churches Unite to establish local ministries. The second part contains resources and practical advice about establishing ministries, a challenge to church leaders about working together, some biblical teaching and practical stories as examples. The third part is a selection of documents: church audits to discover what giftings are present among the people, guidelines for outreach events, and some prophetic words. There are many stories of God’s leading and provision, and of many ‘coincidences’ and leaps of faith, and boldness, as we read how God has led Mick, the instigator of Barking Churches Unite. There are struggles and humour, testimonies and challenging questions in the form of common objections to churches working together.
Elizabeth says, ‘I wrote this book because it seemed like an unprecedented and very special time and had to be recorded. The book is primarily for Christians in other towns, to inspire them to try similar ventures for God, to first seek Him in prayer and then to push on doors as He leads, asking Him where the churches can fill a need. The reader will also be challenged and surprised at the way God “joined the dots” in order to bring His people together to achieve His purposes. Jesus told us to go out into the world, not to stay in our churches and expect the world to come looking for us.’
What reviewers say:
‘This book very helpfully underlines the key tenets of the growing city transformation movement around the world. This is a passionate call to the unity of the Body of Christ, underlined by sustained prayer that results in effective strategic incarnational mission. This story of God’s activity in Barking is being replicated in Dallas, Mumbai, Berlin, Sunderland, Pretoria and many other cities around the world. God is working for social, cultural and spiritual kingdom transformation of all cities and places. Get this book and catch the vision and be part of this extraordinary move of God.’
Rev Roger Sutton, author of Gathering Momentumand Director of Gather (www.gather.global) and Movement Day UK (www.movementday.uk)
‘This book is a powerful challenge to put Christian unity into action. It embraces all that is great about churches praying and working together, but it goes much further – it pushes Christians beyond their church-shaped boxes and out into their communities, where they truly belong and where they can bring hope. In this book, Elizabeth and Mick not only show their passion for unity, but they also show that unity should always have purpose, reaching out and bringing change. Packed with practical suggestions, I highly recommend this book for all unity movements who want to see real, sustainable change in their places.’
Ian Mayer, author and entrepreneur working with community leaders for social transformation
‘As true salt and light, we are the spice and seasoning for the world to “taste and see that God is good”! This is the spirit of this fantastic book written by Liz with such humility, vulnerability and clarity. May its contents change the way many believers engage more widely with the world, in the true love and spirit of Jesus.’
Dr Jonathan Oloyede, National Day of Prayer UK
Jesus in Town by Elizabeth Mednick (ISBN: 9781912726028) is published by Instant Apostle and is available on 18th April 2019 from Christian bookshops, bookstores and online retailers. Non-fiction, 256pp, £8.99.