What Happens at Gaines Manor in the Winter?!

Well quite a lot actually – even without many groups! Read on to find out what we’ve been up to here at Gaines Manor and how you can be praying. If you feel able to financially support me, you can do so here.

Verse for January

Job 38v4: “Where were you when I established the earth?”

This verse is so great because it reminds us that it is GOD who created everything we see; it humbles us to remember the Creator of the universe when we think we can o things in our own strength – God is so much bigger than we can imagine.

Day 351

conference

As a team, we enjoyed the chance to go away to the Growing Young Disciples Conference in Swanwick, Derbyshire along with around 200 other youth and children’s workers from across the country. We had some great teaching from Sam Allberry on identity, from Andy Prime on 2 Corinthians 5 & 6, as well as the doctrine of sin with Chris Stead in the Theology stream, and various seminars! So it was a pretty full-on time, but definitely helpful, challenging and encouraging.

It was also great to meet those from Yorkshire Camps (we visited them back in May – check it out here) and The Oakes, who are doing very similar gospel ministry in different parts of the country. And we even got to the opportunity to give those at the conference a chance to try out our newest activity: combat archery!

Day 359

washing

The boys have been busy clearing, prepping, cleaning and painting the new washing room, which is underneath the kitchen and will be great to start using over the coming season of groups.

Day 365

girls floor

They’ve also been renovating the Girls Floor – to open up the corridor; this has involved knocking down some walls and straightening them, before they’re re-plastered, repainted and re-carpeted. We’re looking forward to some beautiful fresh new rooms very soon!

I’ve been at Gaines for a whole year! While the boys have been getting dusty I’ve been busy doing lots of admin for the groups we have coming to us in the next few months, as well as doing some planning for our summer camps, and finding volunteers!

And our weekly visits to Birmingham for MMTC (Midlands Ministry Training Course) have also been continuing; recently we’ve been looking at Genesis, sex and sexuality, as well as continuing with 1 Thessalonians in our teaching practice groups.

Day 369

ae

It was great to be able to welcome the Students and Twenties group from Woodgreen for their weekend away. We had teaching on hope and holiness from Romans 5 and 6, which was really helpful, encouraging and challenging! There was also plenty of time for food, fellowship and fun, including a walk in the countryside.

Day 374

sgh

A couple of us took a road trip down to North Devon to see our friends at St George’s House (remember Neil and I visiting there in November? If not, see this blog post), as we’re running one of our summer camps: ‘The Beach’ there in the summer. And we also got to enjoy God’s creation at it’s best: the stunning Devon countryside and coastline in the sun.

Day 379

rm2(1)

Very excitingly, the coving (the bit that goes at the top of the wall between the wall and the ceiling) in Room 2 has started to go up. After that it should just be painting and carpeting before it’s a finished studio flat! Check back next time to see what it looks like.

wash up

I’m sure lots of our groups will be thrilled to know that we’ve now got an industrial dishwasher! But we just needed to have a wall knocked down first before the dishwasher and counter tops can be installed in the new wash up room. More photos to follow in my next blog.

Coming up…

Lots of maintenance: finishing the Girls Floor, installing the dishwasher and counter tops in the new wash up area, finishing off Room 2 all before our next group in 2 and a half weeks! And then we have another two groups in the following weeks in March.

A few of us are helping out with the mission week that the Christian Union at Worcester Uni are putting on; with the theme of ‘Satisfied?’ There are lunchbars most days with a talk on how Jesus brings true satisfaction to different areas of our lives, as well as evening events.

Please Pray!

  • Praise God for so many groups in the coming months, pray that we would have enough volunteers to be able to give every group a great time away enjoying God’s creation and His Word
  • For safety for the many maintenance projects we have going on, and that there wouldn’t be any hold ups to getting the work done before our next group comes
  • Worcester Uni’s mission week: that many students would hear how God brings them the satisfaction they long for
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May at Gaines!

Thank you so much for partnering with me in this gospel ministry at Gaines; even if just reading this blog, it’s hugely appreciated! I feel extremely blessed and humbled by the support I’ve received over the past few weeks, so thank you. If you feel at all able you can support me here.

Day 100

gaines road

I can’t quite believe I’ve been at Gaines for 100 days already! What better way to enjoy the beautiful evening sunshine than with a walk to the postbox?!

In between enjoying the sun, summer camp prep is well under way; decorations are starting to go up, programmes are being sorted, costumes are being sourced, teaching programmes are being finalised, and wide games are being planned among other things!

Day 102

asw

EXCITING NEWS! I’m now the Associate Staff Worker with UCCF (who work with University Christian Unions across the country) in Worcester. I’ll be doing this alongside my work at Gaines. I joined with the Midlands team for one of their team days; we were looking at the Doctrine of Creation and how that should affect our ministry to students. I’m really looking forward to being able to support particularly the committee of the CU as they share the gospel with students at Worcester Uni.

Day 106

clear out

Time for a clear out! I’ve been finding new homes for some of our unwanted items around the main house.

Day 108

yorkshire

Those of us who well enough headed up to Yorkshire Camps – they run a very similar ministry to Gaines, just in a different part of the country – so it was great to be able to encourage, support and share with the team there. As well as being shown around their amazing site, we got stuck in with helping out with a Year 3 school group they had in, which of course involved having a go on their ‘Adventure Trail’ – their newest activity. It was great to be in the teaching meetings too, which were based on the unique birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus.

Day 113

pa

Bethany and I finished emptying the PA room; it involved moving a (very heavy) piano, as well as a wardrobe, which proved to be somewhat comedic when it came to getting it up our stairs! Watch this space for what’s coming next!

Day 114

room two

Yesterday we all got VERY dusty! We were taking (smashing) down the walls and ceiling in one of the rooms, so that it can be renovated.

Coming up…

Maintenance projects mentioned above, finishing off preparation for the summer camps, and groups are back in June!

Please Pray!

  • Thanks for 1 John and the encouragement it has been to study together in morning devotions as a team – having fellowship with one another because of our fellowship with God
  • Safety for the various maintenance projects happening
  • Wisdom in how best to support the Christian Union at Worcester
  • To clearly communicate the gospel to the groups that come to us in June