Revd Trevor Hahn - Advocate E-mail: Trevor
My name is Trevor Hahn and I am the minister of Christ Church URC, Clacton-on-Sea and Dovercourt Central LEP and I have been appointed as the Synod Representative for Church Growth and Evangelism. I am excited about partnering with God in building His kingdom, sharing the good news of Jesus Christ and making disciples. God has a plan to use us, His church, in fulfilling His mission, to make God and His love known in the church, in our communities and beyond.
I have always received encouragement from hearing good news stories of evangelism, growth and new life so do please contact me and let me know what is happening in your communities and do get in touch if you would like to share or ask anything.
Church Growth and Evangelism in the light of the recent EU Referendum vote.
We live in unprecedented times. After a generation of EU Membership Britain has voted to leave, to take back control, exert our own authority, and initiate our own ‘independence day’ as one politician has proclaimed. Precisely what that means at the time I write no-one yet seems to fully understand. There is tremendous fear, trepidation, uncertainty and, if media reports are to be believed, an increase in hostility and division, as foreign nationals are apparently being subjected to calls by certain members of the public to ‘go back home,’ ‘get out, we voted leave.’
But in these uncertain and for some unpleasant times perhaps we as Christians can remember our true identity and citizenship. Our identity is in Christ and we are citizens of heaven. Yes there is great diversity in the Kingdom of God, but we are all one in Christ, irrespective of language, ethnicity, skin colour, or nationality on our passport.
Download: In light of the EU Referendum Article
United Reformed Church’s Vision 2020
We proclaim that:We will be more confident to engage in evangelism, proclaiming the good news of the kingdom of God with friends, families and strangers, through story and action. We will be a growing church with an increasing membership.
Quite a challenge! Evangelism and Church Growth are a crucial part of our response to the good news of Jesus Christ. Jesus himself commands us: “Go, then, to all peoples everywhere and make them my disciples: baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, and teach them to obey everything I have commanded you. And I will be with you always, to the end of the age” (Matt. 28:19-20).
The HOPE project which could enhance the mission in your synod. You may well have come across HOPE before as many United Reformed churches have got involved in recent years beginning with HOPE08 in 2008. In 2018 the Archbishop of Canterbury and other church leaders are encouraging local churches to participate. HOPE seeks to unite churches of all denominations to use words and actions to make Jesus known. All the major denominations are involved, including the URC. What is hoped is that churches in towns, villages and cities will work together in new or existing projects using the HOPE logo and so portraying unity in Christ.
As always, we feature topical events and famous faces alongside stories of faith from a range of different people. You can preview the HOPE magazine – the website we’ve designed for magazine readers who want to find out more. Order copies of HOPE for ALL while stocks last.
Download: HOPE2018 Synod Update Report.
Free Evangelical Resources available to each church in the Synod from Billy Graham Evangelical Association
The Billy Graham Evangelical Association in the UK have produced some FREE EVANGELICIAL DVD films which we want to put totally free of charge into the hands of churches to aid and equip them to evangelise. There are currently two films made - with a third due to be released in Nov 16. These films are approx. 25 minutes long and consist of very powerful testimonies. They are very well made and can be used with youth, men's and ladies groups, mother and toddler groups and older people.
For every church, organisation and household, don’t miss your free DVD of the new film coming this October. Pre-order now! View link below to watch My Hope UK’s 2015 film, Second Chance, featuring Chris Llewellyn from Rend Collective. Christians can share the Gospel message with friends, family, colleagues and neighbours using one of several evangelistic films. They feature life-changing testimonies and powerful messages of hope from Billy Graham and Franklin Graham.
View: MY HOPE UK
My Hope UK with Billy Graham is a national initiative to encourage and equip the local church to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ
This initiative, to coincide with the 60th anniversary of Billy Graham preaching at Harringay, gives churches the opportunity to connect with people who may have attended a Billy Graham rally in the past. It involves a series of 30-minute films with testimonies, and a message from Billy Graham, that can be used by local churches.
"My Hope UK with Billy Graham is a nationwide effort to reach people across the United Kingdom with the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Through this outreach you can present others with powerful testimonies and a recent message from Billy Graham. Let's work together to share Jesus with a world desperate for hope.
Although the 60th anniversary has passed the material is still relevant and the initiative continues. The mission remains the same 'to reach people across the United Kingdom with the gospel of Jesus Christ. No matter how you use this resource, remember that My Hope begins and ends with prayer. View website for some practical steps your church can start today. Website: My Hope UK
Church Growth & Evangelism Resources
Alpha is a ten-week course, usually including a meal, for churches to run that introduce people to the basics of the Christian faith in an open friendly and informal environment.
Christianity Explored has produced a number of courses and resources available to help people explore Christianity asking the question, 'One life. What's it all about?' Further resources include a course on discipleship, an answer to the question 'What is Christianity?' and responses to some of the tough questions we face as Christians.
Website: Christianity Explored
A Season of Invitation is a national ecumenical initiative. Not only is it a resource to help churches invite and encourage people back to church, for a special 'back to church' service in September, but also has resources to continue the 'season of invitation' through resources for Harvest, Remembrance, Advent, and Christmas. There are even tailored resources to include children and help them engage in evangelism and invitation.
Website: A Season of Invitation
Fresh Expressions is an ecumenical initiative to form new and changing church communities for a changing world.
Website: Fresh Expressions
GEAR, the Group for Evangelism and Renewal in the URC, provide resources and events to help churches and individuals engage with evangelism. In 2013, GEAR has produced two Vision 2020 booklets to unpack the themes of Church Growth and Evangelism.
Website: GEAR Website: Gear2020 Booklets
Hope Together has a vision for churches to be working together in mission across the UK. Their website is packed with ideas and inspiration, including a 'season for invitation' resource to engage with people throughout the year and resources for all ages, children and young people.
Website: Hope Together
Hope 2014 is an ecumenical initiative to encourage churches to work together to transform communities with the good news of Jesus Christ. Watch the promotional video which is still just as relevant for today. What is HOPE towards 2014 Video Link
Greater Love - As part of HOPE's focus on 2014 as a year of mission, HOPE and HOPE's partners have prepared resources to help churches to mark the centenary of World War 1 at the heart of local communities.
Website: Greater Love
LICC, The London Institute of Contemporary Christianity, has a host of resources to help churches make ‘whole-life disciples’.
Messy Church is 'a way of being church for families involving fun.' It's 'values are about being Christ-centred, for all ages, based on creativity, hospitality and celebration'.
Website: Messy Church
Scripture Union provides resources to help churches share the good news of the gospel with children and young people, including Children's Holiday and Midweek Clubs, Sunday school materials, schools work and much more.
Website: Scripture Union
Vision 2020 was adopted by the URC’s General Assembly in 2020 and is a framework to inspire and support mission across the denomination.
Website: Vision 2020