Did Someone Say New Year?!

Just in case you’d missed it, we’re into 2018! Which for us at Gaines Manor has meant our annual New Year House Party, maintenance, admin and more – read on to see.

You can find out what we get up to day-to-day by following us on facebooktwitter or instagram.

Thank you so much to those of you who support me in various ways, from reading these updates, to praying, and giving to me financially. If you would like to financially support me, you can do so here.

Verse for December

Matthew 1v21: “She will bear a son, and you shall call his name Jesus, for he will save the people from their sins.”

This is probably my favourite Christmas verse, as it sums up the true reason for the season – Jesus came to save us from our sin. It’s completely mind-blowing that the creator of the entire universe would choose to humble himself to such an extent that he would become a vulnerable baby, dependent on his mother. But it’s not just a verse for Christmas, as it points to Jesus’ mission of coming to earth: saving people from their sins – something of eternal significance to be forever grateful for.

Day 316

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December brought loads of snow here at Gaines Manor and therefore the perfect opportunity for our annual Christmas card shoot, to wish our supporters a Merry Christmas.

Day 317

Being snowed in gave plenty of time to work on our newsletter, which went out in December: you can it view here (and if you’d like to receive the next one straight to your inbox, you can sign up here!)

Day 323

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Room 2 is almost finished: the ceiling and walls have been painted, window frames have been painted, kitchen is all fitted, and Thomas and Joe are very pleased with their tiling!

Day 325

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Just before we all had some time off over Christmas, the Gaines team went on tour to London to see a show; as well as showing Thomas, our German gap year, the sites of London – we even saw Prince Harry!

Day 335

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We had nearly 20 young people come and welcome in the New Year in style with us for our New Year House Party. We enjoyed a posh New Year’s Eve dinner, an afternoon of board games, a New Year’s Day walk, make-your-own mocktail with Joe as the barman, an all-star murder mystery, a film night (with popcorn), plenty of tea and cake, party cannons to launch 2018 with a bang, and of course lots of dancing! The teaching was on how Jesus makes all things new, even when we live in a broken and sinful world; it was so encouraging to hear the young people get excited about the new creation.

Day 344

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Moving Day! I’m still onsite, but now in a Rachel-sized place. I’m all settled in and enjoying calling it ‘home’.

Day 347

MMTC has started back again after a break over Christmas; in the next few weeks we’ll be looking at Genesis, sex and sexuality, men and women’s ministry, and leading Bible studies, as well as continuing to get to grips with 1 Thessalonians in our teaching practice groups.

The New Year has brought with it a fresh round of admin for me (which I actually quite enjoy!). Making sure we’re organised for the upcoming youth group weekends, as well as the various Gaines-run weekends we’re hosting in the coming months: Dads & Lads, Dads & Daughters, World Cup Fever and Supersize (check them out under ‘Camps & Events’ on our website).

Coming up…

We’re all heading off to the Growing Young Disciples Conference next week, along with around 200 other youth and children’s workers from across the country. After that, the boys will be continuing work on the new laundry room, and I’ll be making sure we’re organised for the coming year!

Please Pray!

  • That the conference would encourage, equip and challenge us for the coming year of Gospel ministry here at Gaines Manor
  • That as a team, we would be pointing each other to Jesus, when that’s easy and difficult
  • Thanks that Room 2 is almost finished
  • Thanks for a packed 2018 calendar of groups coming
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New Year – Same God

Sorry for the long silence – never quite managed to find the time to sit down and write this until now! As we start a new academic year at Gaines, with changes in team and where my time is focused, I’m so thankful to be serving the God that doesn’t change; he’s always the same, he’s always faithful: “You are the same, and your years have no end” Psalm 102v27

We’re back into the swing of things after the summer, with several groups coming to us in the next few weeks, read on to see what we’ve been up to! Thank you for your support; if you feel able to you can support me financially here.

Verse for September:

A new slot… for a verse (or two) I’ve found particularly helpful over the past month.

1 Thessalonians 2v19-20: “For what is our hope or joy or crown of boasting before our Lord Jesus at his coming? Is it not you? For you are our glory and joy.”

Why? Our treasure in heaven is seeing those we’ve had the privilege of sharing the gospel with in glory – how exciting and incredible is that?!

Day 204

After all the craziness of camps over the summer, we all enjoyed some well deserved time off and rest; which included holidays, seeing family and visiting friends.

Day 211

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I passed my Level 2 assessment! Which means we can now offer kayaking on our lake at Gaines! On assessment day we were blessed with beautiful  sunshine and lots of willing participants to be coached – you can see me in action during the kayaking session I had to be observed coaching.

Day 212

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Forum (UCCF’s annual conference for CU leaders) was a great way to kick start the year as an Associate Staff Worker in Worcester with UCCF: four days of camping in the rolling Shropshire countryside with fantastic Bible teaching and being equipped alongside the CU leaders from across the country. You can see me and Sophie (Staff Worker for Worcester) looking so excited for the year ahead for what God is going to do at Worcester uni, but a little worse for wear after four days of camping!

Day 218

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Back to work! Which for me has mostly involved lots of admin (which I actually really enjoy…). Work has also been progressing on Room 2 – have a look back at May at Gaines! to see what it looked like a few months ago; although I can’t take any of the credit – that’s mostly been Joe. There’s now a ceiling and the walls are insulated and plaster boarded – ready to be plastered, then painted – more photos to follow in my next update!

Day 230

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Wedding time! It was a joy to be bridesmaid for my friend, and be involved in their special day.

Day 232

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As a full-time team we went away for a few days together in September; it was nice to spend time with each other away from all things Gaines-related. We then dropped Zoe (who’s been helping out at Gaines over the summer) off at Cardiff uni on the way back – it was sad to see her go, but I’m sure she’ll have a great time and be back before we know it!

Day 235

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Thursday 21st of September marked the long-awaited first day of MMTC (Midlands Ministry Training Course). Three of the other guys at Gaines are also doing the course this year, so it’s good to be able to go together. Each week we travel up to Birmingham and receive Bible teaching on books of the Bible, doctrine and other topics relevant to Christian ministry. It’s exciting to be able to join with others from across the region to be equipped to better understand and teach the Bible.

Day 239

Thomas arrived from Germany to join us for his gap year; we hope and pray he learns and grows in his Christian faith as he serves God here at Gaines over the coming year.

Day 243

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We had our first of a run of four groups in at the weekend: St John’s, Lindow from near Manchester. The teaching was from Proverbs, seeing how 3000 year old wisdom is still relevant today; as ever it was a joy to be able to open up God’s Word with the young people. Other highlights from the weekend included: combat archery (the girls were pretty happy about beating the boys!), graffiti, an afternoon of very competitive games, air rifles, and a murder mystery in which they all very much got into character! Pray for what they heard from the Bible to sink into their minds and hearts as they return home.

 

Coming up…

Three more groups over the next few weekends; and various maintenance projects, particularly Room 2.

Please Pray!

  • For us to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus and his great gospel, and not to forget that the reason we run Gaines is for God’s glory
  • For us to faithfully teach God’s Word to the groups that come
  • Thanks for MMTC: it’s such a blessing to be able to receive faithful Bible teaching each week and to meet people of a similar age who also want to learn and grow in their walk with God
  • Safety for all the maintenance work taking place