Christian life is lived in relationship with God through Jesus Christ. In common with other Christians in the church, we seek to deepen that relationship and to follow the way that Jesus taught.
For Christians God is understood and known as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Father: God is love, caring for creation and for every human being as God’s beloved child.
Son: God is as he has revealed himself to be in the historical person of Jesus Christ. Jesus’ life, death and resurrection holds the key to knowing and loving God, and to making sense of life, before and after death.
Holy Spirit: God is alive, loving and active today, inspiring faith, justice and truth, sustaining the life of the world, giving spiritual gifts to the church and bearing his spiritual fruit in the world – changed lives and a transformed society.
We exist to Worship God, to Connect people to Jesus Christ and, Empowered by the Holy Spirit, to continue His work in the world.
We aim to be a Ministering Community of believers, obedient to God’s Word and faithful to the Great Commission.
Our desire is to not only grow numerically as a church, but also to grow in maturity as Christians.
It is our hope and prayer that as we listen and follow God’s call in mission we will fulfill our call as the body of Christ; growing more like Jesus every day, deepening relationships and forming community, calling the lost into His kingdom, worshipping in awe and with expectation, being enabled and equipped for loving service.
We recognize that as we seek to be a truly mission-shaped church, prayer, partnerships and team building are all vital. As we pray we encounter God and are changed, our eyes are opened to new ways of seeing ourselves, others and the world around us. We must also develop partnerships within our community if we genuinely seek to connect with it in an authentic way. Finally, every project needs to be led by a core team to carry it forward. Growing a mission-shaped church requires ‘teamwork’.
As we move forward as a church in mission, and to ensure that we keep a balance within the many facets of church life in the Alstonville Parish, we have listed some biblical principles that we are committed to as we endeavour to honour our Mission Statement and reach our future goals.
As a Christian Community, we are committed to:
• We recognize that our worship goes beyond our gatherings in church and is seen in both our actions and through the offering of ourselves at all times as a sacrifice of praise (Hebrews 13: 15).
• Our priority is to worship and glorify God in the power of the Holy Spirit and to enable all generations to take part (John 4: 23,24).
• We aim in our worship and through our liturgies and music to create a spirit of awe and a sense of expectation in what God is doing in our community.
• We accept the Bible as the inspired word of God and our authority in all matters of faith and practice (2 Tim 3: 16,17).
• We seek to express biblical truth in a way that is relevant and that will lead us to grow in godliness and to honour Jesus as our Lord and Saviour.
• We recognize that prayer is an expression of our dependence on and our relationship with God (Philippians 4: 6).
• We seek to place prayer as the under-girding of all that we are as a worshipping community (1 Thessalonians 5: 16-18).
• We seek to ‘enquire of the Lord’ before making decisions and to follow the leading of the Holy Spirit.
4. Small Groups
• We recognize that small growth groups are the most effective way of enabling any individual member of the church to grow in maturity, to experience community and receive pastoral care.
• We seek to continually develop and promote our small nurture and growth groups within the church, so that within 3 years 60% of our members are also members of a growth group.
• We aim to ensure that all members are ‘linked’ to an appropriate growth group.
5. Loving our Neighbour
• We aim for the hallmark of the Alstonville Parish to be one of loving relationships, both within the church and with others we know (Mark 12:31).
6. Sharing the Gospel
• We aim to explore new and fresh ways of presenting the ‘Good News’.
• We seek to offer the wider community opportunities throughout the year to hear and experience the gospel.
• Our aim is to lead people beyond conversion into discipleship.
7. Every Member Ministry
• We seek to be a community where every member of the church is encouraged to use their gifts in the service of Christ.
• Following the example of Jesus, our leaders will seek to spiritually equip, feed and guide all members through teaching, training, nurture and modeling.
• We seek to be a generous community and good stewards of our money, goods and time (2 Corinthians 9: 6-11). We aim to share what God has given us and to co-operate with other local churches.
• We recognise that Christian healing is first and foremost about Christ. It follows the pattern he set in his own ministry. Christian healing is the whole work of Christ, in a person’s body, mind and spirit; designed to bring a person to that wholeness which is God’s will for us all.
• We seek to be a community where people may find healing and wholeness.
• We aim to be a safe place where pastoral care is available for every member.
• We seek to demonstrate to the wider community around us that God is still relevant in the 21st Century.
• We aim to be open and flexible to change if we find better ways of doing things.
• We aim to relate to young people in a culturally relevant way.
• We aim within the next 5 years to reduce the average age of worshipping church members to 55 years, by encouraging younger families to join our community.
Christian life is lived in relationship with God through Jesus Christ.
In common with other Christians in the church, we seek to deepen that relationship and to follow the way that Jesus taught.
For Christians, God is understood and known as Father, Son and Holy Spirit.
Father – God is love, caring for creation and for every human being as God’s beloved child.
Son – God is as he has revealed himself to be in the historical person of Jesus Christ. Jesus’ life, death and resurrection holds the key to knowing and loving God, and to making sense of life, before and after death.
Holy Spirit – God is alive, loving and active today, inspiring faith, justice and truth, sustaining the life of the world, giving spiritual gifts to the church and bearing his spiritual fruit in the world – changed lives and a transformed society.
Baptism – Baptism is the gift of our Lord Jesus Christ. When he had risen from the dead, he commanded his followers to go and make disciples of all nations, baptising them in the name of the Father, and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.
Baptism with water signifies the cleansing from sin that Jesus’ death makes possible, and the new life that God gives us through the Holy Spirit.
In baptism, the promises of God are visibly signed and sealed for us. We are joined to Christ, and made members of his body, the Church universal. (A Prayer Book of Australia 1995)
Confirmation – The Anglican tradition provides for persons baptised as infants to affirm and renew the promises made on their behalf by their parents and godparents, and receive the strengthening of the Holy Spirit through prayer and the laying on of the bishop’s hand. (A Prayer Book of Australia 1995)
Promises – Before God and this congregation, you must affirm that you turn to Christ and reject all that is evil:
Do you turn to Christ?
I turn to Christ.
Do you repent of your sins?
I repent of my sins.
Do you reject selfish living, and all that is false and unjust?
I reject them all.
Do you renounce Satan and all evil?
I renounce all that is evil.
Will you, by God’s grace, strive to live your whole life as a disciple of Christ, loving God with all your heart, and your neighbour as yourself?
I will, with God’s help.
(A Prayer Book of Australia 1995)