It is a huge honour to be writing to you as the newly-appointed President of the Gwent Baptist Association. Thank you to those of you who joined us for our first ever ‘online’ Autumn Council Meeting (AGM ) where we were privileged to hear from the Revd. Dr. Arthur Brown from BMS World Mission sharing news about the work in Lebanon and Chad as part of the harvest appeal.
As many before me have said, we find ourselves in ‘unprecedented times’, but I am hugely encouraged that we are not in uncharted waters. Indeed, the people of God have often found themselves in situations that required new ways of thinking and acting: from those worshipping through the journey of exodus to those worshipping in the unfamiliar context of exile. God’s promises are unchanging, and it is on this foundation we can be assured that whilst ‘lockdowns’ and closures are occurring all around us, God is still very much on the move in the lives of those in our communities.
As we consider the new nationwide lockdown here in Wales, I am mindful of the amazing work which is being done by churches and volunteer groups up and down this Association. However, I am also aware that, as this process drags on, the needs of those in our communities increase.
I have recently been approached by a volunteer group from Risca who support the vulnerable within our community and further afield. Whether it is picking up shopping, making a phone call once a week to everything in-between, these people do an amazing job and make a massive difference to the wellbeing of so many.
In recent conversations with leaders from this group, they spoke of the growing number of people they are now in touch with, across the region. People who are finding themselves in need of help or assistance – shopping, phone calls, prescription pick-ups etc. Two particular urgent needs have come to light in Crumlin where a gentleman needs a weekly shop and his bins putting out and another in Abertillery where a lady going through chemotherapy has just come out of hospital and would benefit from the kindness of an occasional telephone call and the offer to pick up some shopping.
Whilst I highlight these two particular urgent cases, more and more people are coming forward with simple needs, and it is here, I believe, we see the people of God being the hands and feet of Jesus for their communities.
Could you, or indeed someone within your congregation, help support someone in the local area with a phone call, a shopping trip or by picking up prescriptions?
If you are in Crumlin or Abertillery, could you support this dear lady or gentleman?
If you are interested in knowing more about these situations or exploring how you can mobilise the people of God to serve in the community, please do not hesitate to contact me by email – firstname.lastname@example.org – and I can help put you in touch with the appropriate people.
Please be assured of the ongoing prayerful support of all the Officers of the Gwent Baptist Association – for you and your congregations.
23 October 2020
Pastor Tim Moody, Moriah Baptist Church, Tredegar Street, Risca NP11 6BU