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FINAL REMINDER: General Assembly events about discipleship happening soon

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In the absence of a physical General Assembly due to the Covid 19 crisis, a number of virtual events will be taking place next week to bring people together from across the URC. Simon Peters, Walking the Way Project Manager, explains why you should get involved with these, and how they can help us consider whole-of-life discipleship amongst the challenges of today’s world.

Given the importance of gatherings in the URC, bringing people together to share in fellowship and worship, listening and learning, ultimately making decisions and building the Church together as a community, it is a real shame that the General Assembly cannot meet physically this year.

However, as many have sought to remind us during this time of lockdown, church buildings may be closed, but the Church certainly is not!

To help us all maintain a sense of connection and encouragement from each other, a number of events will be taking place next week to which everyone is invited. Each one will help us to explore something of what it means to be a disciple of Jesus in these times, especially given the many challenges which Church and Society face alike:

  • General Assembly Worship will take place on Saturday 11 July from 10.30am to 12pm to enable the whole Church to share together in prayer, indicting the new Assembly Moderators and General Secretary. This service, including a sermon from Revd Dr Barbara Glasson, Former President of the Methodist Conference, and a statement from John Bradbury, our new General Secretary, will focus on discipleship, and challenge the URC to consider what it means to truly be a disciple of Jesus today. The event will be available to view here.
  • Do Black Lives Matter in the URC? A crucial question which will be explored with Karen Campbell, the URC’s Secretary for Global and Intercultural Relations, Wale Hudson-Roberts is the Justice Enabler for the Baptist Union of Great Britain, and Patricia Akoli, Theatre and Youth Community Work specialist and life-long URC member. This will take place on Tuesday 14 July 2020 from 2:00pm to 3:15pm. Please contact us if you’re interested in this event.
  • A panel from the URC’s educational visit to Israel and the occupied Palestinian Territories (IoPT) share more of their experience from last year’s insightful time in the Holy Land, opening up questions around justice, equality, inclusion, unity and peace. This will happen on Tuesday 14 July from 7pm to 8.15pm. Contact us if you’d like to join the discussion.
  • A ‘New reality, same mission’ session will be held to help unpack the content of the URC’s ‘New reality, same mission’ booklet, looking at the Mission of God and how we can continue to engage with it in a post-Covid world. This will be held on Wednesday 15 July from 2 to 3pm. Please sign up here by Monday 13 July to book your place.
  • A Celebration of Children’s and Youth Work will give everyone a chance to learn more about the fantastic work which our children, young people, families and workers have been doing to equip whole-of-life disciples, especially during lockdown. This event is on Wednesday 15 July from 7pm to 8pm. Please sign up here to join in.
  • A live link with Bethlehem will enable us to engage in conversation with author and keynote speaker, the Revd Dr Munther Isaac, Pastor of the Christmas Lutheran Church in Bethlehem and Academic Dean at the Bethlehem Bible College, a key guide for pilgrims on last year’s URC educational visit to IoPT. This will happen on Tuesday 21 July from 7pm to 8.15pm. Please contact us to be part of this.

I hope you’ll be able to join us for some of these events over the coming days. If you are able to come, please let us know what you thought, what you learned or picked up and what this means for your life as an everyday disciple of Jesus. Together, we can support each other as we continue to Walk the Way and live the life of Jesus today.

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