July 2009


The church is getting up to 2000 years old. Our church is 99 year old, though the worship area is about 10 years older. It an important distinction. We, Christ Church Rayleigh (Formerly Rayleigh Congregational Church ) are 99, some of the building that we happen to use is older.

It does cause some confusion, when people see the foundation stones at the front of the building, they assume that the buildings equal the church.

The Church is far more than buildings. The church is people. You people and me people. It is comprised of living breathing people. Cranky people, annoying people, loving people, caring people. In the bible the apostle Paul calls this the body of Christ. We are Christ’s body in our society, in Rayleigh. And over 99 years God has used us. Sometimes we have allowed God to move us and change those with whom we have come into contact, sometimes we have refused to allow God to work in and through us. That is the history of the a group of people called to worship and pray and serve together.

In 2010 we will celebrate 100 years of the life and worship as a congregation. The Centenary Committee is putting together a programme that will celebrate the 100 years of history of a people called by God to be salt and light to the people of Rayleigh. We are planning to have events throughout the year, though some are regular events that will just rebranded, so it shouldn’t be too busy. The point is to give thanks to God for the way He has worked, challenged and cared for us over the generations.

But also, to point a finger forward to the future. The history of Christ Church United Reformed Church wont stop in 2010. It will go on. I wonder if the big question will be is the future full of God or full of our struggles to avoid God. My guess is that as it has happened in the past, it will be a bit of both – and God will still be forgiving us and encouraging us to move on with Him. Whether it is for another 100 years I don’t know. But I do know that God has still more to do with us and in us. He isn’t finished with us yet.

July 2009