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VC Update and Future

Over the past year there have been plenty of things to give thanks for at Village Church. The growth of our Internationals community; the starting of playgroup within Kelvin Grove; the opportunity for Nat to run church in the detention centre; the development of the kids ministry team under Lauren and as we head into Christmas the Carols are shaping up to connect and share the Gospel with even more of our local community than ever before.

So while we want to talk about the exciting things that have been and are happening, we need to stop to acknowledge that there are also some hard things going on (the search for a new lead pastor), and that the next 6 months are going to be a time of significant change but also opportunity. It’s going to be painful for some and provide uncertainty for many, so at this time it’s worth us – even while we celebrate and remember the good things God is doing – recognising the hard things for what they are, talking about them as a Church community, and seeing the opportunities to serve in different ways.

Below is a quick update on where the search is at, and what the next few months is going to look like for us all. (Click tabs to expand on each section.)

[ut_togglegroup] [ut_toggle title=”The search for a lead pastor”] This has been a long and tricky process, which the elders (Tim & Steve) along with the Senior Minister (Phil Campbell) have been working incredibly hard at. While there is a drive to find someone as soon as possible to lead Village, there is also a desire not to compromise on an appointment for convenience. This desire brings with it challenges, but it will be better for Village Church in the longer term to have the right person rather than an available person.

So while there have been a number of applicants spoken to, the elders & Phil have felt that no-one who quite fits the Village Church model has been found yet. Please be assured – the search will continue until we find the right person, and the elders will keep you updated regularly as to how the search is going. Please pray for this.
[/ut_toggle] [ut_toggle title=”Not all tears are an evil…”] For us (Derek, Jac and the boys) this last 7 weeks is going to be a bitter-sweet time (Our last Sunday at Village is 29 November, but we’ll also be there for the carols the week after.) We love Village, and this year has been a hard one as we prepare to say goodbye to people that we love, and something that has been at the centre of our lives for so long.

But as Gandalf wisely said, “Not all tears are an evil.” As we grieve leaving Village, we’re keenly aware that Village has never been about us, does not rely on us, and God will continue to work in and through Village independently of us.

We are so thankful for all that Village has done for us and been to us – but know that when we are gone you will continue to do what we have done together over the last 7 years here, pursue & proclaim the Gospel. And so we leave sad, but full of hope and joy at what we leave behind.
[/ut_toggle] [ut_toggle title=”An Interim Period: Mitch & the VC Community”] The obvious question then is, “What’s it going to look like for VC without a lead pastor?”. Part of this is a question of pragmatics, but the bigger question is one of community.

Pragmatically, Mitch will act as the Interim Pastor under Phil Campbell’s oversight, with Nat assisting him as he takes up his new role next year. This means that he’ll organise logistics, oversee Village Church, and keep things ticking over. That’ll be a big job, and he’s not going to be able to do everything. Which leads to the question of community.

Village Church has always been about more than the people employed. It’s an Ephesians 4 (look it up) community, that’s united in Jesus, who invests in and is committed to one another. It’s a community that pushes back against consumerism, and looks for ways to serve and love instead of asking what can and should be done for them. This next few months is going to be an opportunity for Village Church to remember what it is that unites them, and what that means for those around them. United by what Jesus has done for them and who he’s made them. Committed to loving their brothers and sisters in Christ and spurring one another on to love and good deeds.

So in the coming months as we continue our search for a lead pastor, here’s what you can do:

  • Commit to Sundays. Sundays are the front door for most people to come in contact with Village, but also the point at which many of you can encourage others you know but might not see very much. It’s a really important time. So over the coming months, it’s going to be really important that we keep meeting together to welcome those who are new, and encourage each other to keep going.
  • Commit to each other. You’re probably already doing this, but it’s still worth saying. The thing that makes us a Christian community is that we’re united in the Gospel. But the thing that displays who we are is that we love one another deeply, from the heart. It’s by our love for one another that we’re known. This has never been reliant on one person, or the staff team, but over the next few months it’s going to be particularly important that we seek others out, drop them a line to see how they’re doing, and practice hospitality. We’re united in the gospel, but brought together to love one another.
  • Consider if there’s organisational stuff you could help out with. In November, we’re going to be publishing a list of different things that happen to make Village tick – bulletins, rosters, newsletters etc. – and seeing if people would be willing to own them. This’ll spread the workload in the office, and help to lighten Mitch’s load.

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And so…

If you’ve got any questions about the above, please feel free to contact the elders or any of us on staff – Phil Campbell, Derek, Mitch, Bridget, Lauren, Nat. We are all committed to seeing the Gospel continued to go out, and this community at Village continue to spur each other towards growing as followers of Jesus.