“And when did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you? The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.'” Matt 25:39-40
I hope you read last week’s enews. +Quigg told of all the incredible things our church has been doing recently in the form of overseas missions and discipleship. Today I want to encourage you with what is happening right here in Roanoke. God is using our people to reach out in our community and in our church.
For example, Today Bryan Musselwhite and Daniel McRae (pictured above), along with Tom Dale and Lee Henderson, leave to minister for 4 days in the Pocahontas Correctional facility. These are 4 of our own “engaging” our culture with the love of Christ. This prison ministry is called Kairos, and dozens of men and women from our church have been involved in weekend long “retreats” for prisoners. They sing, pray, speak, cry, listen and eat thousands of cookies (baked by our children!) with those serving serious time in prisons across our state. Please pray for them over the next few days.
This is just one of DOZENS of ways our church members are engaging our culture. I want to list some other ways discipleship and evangelism are happening, so you can pray and get involved. The list is long, but I encourage you to read over it and even use it as a prayer sheet in the coming months:
- Life Groups – Over 50 CHS Life Groups meet regularly throughout our valley including men’s, women’s, and teen groups. Our leaders are pastors and shepherds to groups of 10-16 (sometimes more!).
- Women’s Ministry – Women from all walks of life fill the building Thursday mornings with different in-depth study offerings every 8-12 weeks. Along with regular women’s gatherings, there’s lots of discipleship going on!
- Connection Class – We have had over 58 people join our membership class in 2016
- Club 56 – We have 30 or more 5th and 6th graders not only learn scripture, but serve regularly at the Rescue Mission and serve the Kairos ministry.
- Kids – Every Sunday evening 50 of our children gather for SNL (Sunday Night Live). They are studying scripture through the superbook material. On Sunday morning they are learning the Gospel Project curriculum. In addition, they have learned to think about others through ‘mission Sunday’ every month and recently collected thousands of dollars worth of clothes for Roanoke Refugee families.
- Masters – Our seniors study scripture, serve/pray for our school teachers, raise money for missions, and this year they are introducing a new way to disciple your young family during Advent! (More info to come.)
- Feast – Our ministry to 20-Somethings, is starting to see new growth and life with over 35-40 people coming for dinner and bible teaching each week. We are winning back the 20 somethings!
- Celebrate Recovery is seeing over 60 people every Monday night for dinner and to walk through life’s hurts, habits, and hang-ups.
- Divorce Care has walked dozens of men and women through the hurt and pain of divorce since 2012 in this 11-week course.
- Grief Share – Dozens more have discovered peace and help after the death of a loved one since last year when members started Grief Share at our church.
- Blue Ridge Fellows not only being discipled by church members, but are themselves discipling our youth and children.
- Community Bible Study – Meets in our building on Tuesday mornings and Thursday evenings with over 200 men and women from all over the Roanoke Valley.
- Kairos – Prison Ministry mentioned in opening paragraphs. Hundreds of inmates have had their lives changed dramatically after giving their lives to Christ in prison.
- Alpha – This new pilot program is just getting started, but we have 35-40 coming on Monday nights to talk about the real issues of life and who Christ really is. Pray this becomes an even bigger part of our Church outreach.
- Mom2moM – Over 70 women, many who don’t go to church, come and gain support through this fellowship every Thursday morning.
- VBS – 300+ children cascade on our building every summer. One of our biggest outreaches each year. Last year our building was filled with unchurched people for our closing Friday night outreach.
- Young Life – We continue to be one of the largest supporters of Young Life in the Valley. This year specifically Cave Spring High School has exploded with growth, seeing over 100 high schoolers gathering for “Club” every week. Campaigners, the YL discipleship group of Hidden Valley and Cave Spring, meet on Friday morning in our youth room with over 40 student leaders.
- Straight Street/Acts 2 – We support these two organizations which reach our inner city. Their unique strategy reaches students who live in difficult urban neighborhoods.
- Blue Ridge Women’s Center – This ministry gives hope to those going through unexpected pregnancies and encourages them to choose life.
- Rescue Mission – Many of our members help with this shelter for those who are homeless or struggling.
- Surviving the Holidays – Yearly outreach to those going through divorce or the loss of a loved one. Gives practical holiday “survival” advice.
- Christmas Morning Outreach – We partner with a local organization working with the homeless to host a Christmas morning party they will never forget. This year Christmas is on SUNDAY so it may be our biggest yet!
Whew… that is a lot. As we look for ways to engage our culture with Christ, consider these and jump in! God wants to use us to reach our neighborhoods as well as our world.