Hello from sunny Sydney! I’m typing this from my brother-in-law’s place in Erskineville. I’m here using the library at Moore College to try and get a book manuscript finished (this one is on the death of Jesus). And I’m using some of the quieter pace to move forward with a few larger projects for the church. The family is joining me next week for two weeks of holidays and friend catch-ups on the East Coast (Susan is from Sydney, and I lived here for four years, so we have lots of good friends over this way).

I’m taking some of the time to glance forward to next term, so I wanted to loop you in a little on what’s coming up. Here are some things to highlight:

Studying Galatians

Paul’s fiery freedom cry—his letter to Galatia—will be our main Bible book for Term 3. It’s a very exciting and wonderfully liberating message of what it means to live out of the grace of God.

Sam Allberry 14 August

Sam Allberry, author of What God has to Say About our Bodies and Seven Myths about Singleness, will be in Perth in August for a series of engagements. We’ll have the privilege of having him preach at Prov City on Sunday 14 August!

Gospel in Four Meals and the Re-Launch of Prov Local Mission

We’ll be running Gospel in Four Meals again in Term 3, starting on Tuesday 9 August at 7:30pm. I’d love you to be thinking and praying now about who you might invite along. It really is a good little course- lots of fun and a great way of introducing people to the Christian message.

Introducing people to Jesus will be a big focus this coming Term. As I look at our church I see two things: First, lots of individuals doing great stuff being on local mission for Jesus. And secondly, I see that we are not really on mission together as a church. The first keeps me encouraged. The second one (us not really being on mission as a church) is on me, and that’s something we’re working on. The good news is that a small group of people from across our congregations have spent the better part of this year thinking and praying and ask the Lord the how we could do mission better together. We think we’ve got a way forward! And we can’t wait to share it with you, have you help us refine it, and then together we’ll be on mission as a church!

Communicating Vision, Decision-Making, & Financial Standing

Something else I’ve been thinking about is how to better communicate with the church on matters such as our vision, our decision-making, and our financial standing. A very strong value for me and for our church is to be as transparent and open as possible in our we run as an organisation. I am very keen that we are run well, and that decisions, church finances, and forward planning get as much time and and space as they need for people to engage with them. I don’t think crowding everything into the Sunday service is the answer. And long reams of text probably aren’t the answer either (is anyone still reading this?!).

Our Prov Belong course has been brilliant in the regard! Through Amy’s hard work it really has become an amazing induction course into our church, and people who have joined us through that course are very well set up to know how things work around here. Ironically, that’s probably a harder question to answer if you’ve been around for a while. To address that, I want to start experimenting with some online options (such as an Ask Me Anything on Zoom), and perhaps some in-person forums. It will take me a while to get the settings right, so do feel free to chime in with ideas. I reckon we’ll get there. I might just need your help on the way!

See you in about three weeks as, on Sunday 17 July, we kick off in Galatians!

Lots of love,

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