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Weekly Prayer Focus: Orchard Baptist Church, Colchester

Week 40

Orchard Baptist Church, Colchester is a friendly church in the outskirts of Colchester with people from a diverse range of life experience and ages. At present, we have people from Ghana, Ukraine, Nigeria, USA in fellowship with us, which brings us great delight and rich blessings. We are a church which likes to laugh (and sometimes cry) as we share life together as we worship God.

We have a relaxed style of modern worship and a lively Sunday School. In our older group, we use art to discuss faith and pray about the things that challenge us, while our younger group does a mixture of games, storytelling and crafts to help memorise important stories or teachings from the Bible.

In the past year, we have been listening to God and asking his wisdom for our future. We have completed the process of becoming a Charitable Incorporated Organisation (Hooray!) and watched as the Lord has added to our numbers naturally through calling a good number of new people into the church. These arrive with a variety of needs which require careful prayer and thinking. Some are from our local area and others not: for example, our Ukrainian families.

We believe that God is also challenging us to widen our vision to include provision of a community outreach room at the front of our church. This has involved negotiating the removal/repositioning of stored materials and furniture out of the building from our longer-term letting clients, an ongoing tidying of our own resources, and relocating our older Sunday School group. This has gone amazingly smoothly and we are thankful to God for answered prayer. We still have decoration and some minor building work to do, but we are hopeful that this will happen in the next few months.

Our weekly activities include a lively Toddler group, Table Tennis, Crafting, homegroups and our Discovers groups. Our hall lettings are additional to this and very busy and we need to think through how we balance our own building use with the needs of the organisations that use our building. We have a CAP Lifeskills course beginning late September and we pray that God will bring joy and mutual support to those attending during our cost of living crisis.

PRAYER NEEDS

  1. That we grow closer as a fellowship to God and to each other, mindful of life’s joys and challenges.
  2. That our decorations and minor building work are done within an appropriate timeframe, mindful of the challenges this brings.
  3. We would like our homegroups to be places which attract new people and that we become more able to disciple our newcomers as well as our established members.
  4. That we do not take on more than we can manage with the number of volunteers available.
  5. That we are able to be a church which is able to display the rich diversity of talents and giftings that the Lord has given to us across the whole fellowship.

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