Presentation given at Pentecost: Power to the People! on Sunday 25 May 2015 by Andy Blakey of All Saints Centre, Grays, part of TCF

Andy B Pent 1Thurrock Faith Action Audit

Why did we do it?

  • To show to ourselves, the church, and to the borough’s council and agencies, that the local impact of Faith Communities – of which the church is the major stakeholder – that over 1000 volunteers are generating over £1.5 million in input to Thurrock’s wellbeing.
  • One local project has made it into Cinnamon Network’s national promotional video – Thurrock Lunch Club.

In the Community

This some of what the church is doing in Thurrock:

  • Foodbank
  • Bar’N’Bus (youth bus teams)
  • Thurrock COACH network (mentors)
  • CAP (Christians Against Poverty)
  • Thurrock Lunch Club
  • Open The Book (Bible presentations in priamry schools – needs coordinator)
  • Celebrate Recovery
  • Thurrock Celebrates
  • Freedom in Christ
  • Playgroups and Pre-schools
  • Community cafes
  • Community Forums / Big Local

Andy B Pent 2Learn from history

“Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it” – Winston Churchill

  • The Clapham Sect (Wilberforce etc.) were insultingly called the Clapham Saints. Why? Because goodness was seen as weak and irrelevant
  • William Wilberforce said: ‘God Almighty has set before me two great objects – the suppression of the Slave Trade and the Reformation of Manners’, by which he meant the reform of the morals of Britain
    • However, Wilberforce is only known for one thing – the abolition of slavery – although he did so much more with over 50 other significant outcomes
    • Most of England had become unchurched by the 18th century
      • People were talking about the death of the church owing to crime, drunkenness, sexual immorality
      • Wilberforce was determined to draw people back into the Christian faith
      • He didn’t just want people to return to a Christianity limited to church on Sundays
      • He wanted a societal embrace of Christianity that would change the whole fabric of British society
      • What he really wanted to do was to reform manners – not social customs, but the way in which people thought of virtue
    • Nowadays we might call that a project for making goodness fashionable
  • Royal proclamations: Society for the Reformation of Manners founded 1692 and re-established in 1787

John Wesley said, “Unless God has raised you up for this very thing, you will be worn out by the opposition of men and devils. But if God be for you, who can stand against you.”

Andy B Pent 3God is on the move!

  • Big Local has £1m to spend in Grays Riverside!

Prayer points

  • That we may continue to have favour with God and Man
  • To be Unlimited in our thinking (Eph. 3:20)
  • Prepare for the move of God (Is. 54:1-4)