Annual Report 2021-22
It remains my honour and privilege to lead LWC, the team here are a true blessing and I want to recognise and thank all of those who serve so diligently, with passion and creativity. Michelle and I are thankful to the leadership team for granting us an extended break in February and March, the chance to step back and let the load lift off our shoulders was amazing. Pastor Ben and the leadership team looked after the church so well, and as we stepped back in God confirmed to me some of the areas that I personally needed to grow in, and release in the next season.
I very much feel that God is calling me to continue to raise new leaders and empower others, where I have opportunity to do so. This will involve me releasing some key areas of leadership and governance to allow others to step into my shoes and grow.
"In a faith filled, dynamic setting like ours things very rarely stay the same for too long"
In this new season I sense that God has something greater for our church, and we are in the process of discovery, the steps I am taking now are in readiness for our tomorrow. In a faith filled, dynamic setting like ours things very rarely stay the same for too long, and I love that. We want to see new people stepping out, new creative ideas and LWC moving into new areas of opportunity in our community and beyond.
Many years ago now, God spoke to me about a ‘city standard church in the town’. In many ways we have grown to become that church, with high quality leadership and presentation, far-reaching missions work, and we have become a resource to our local community that is beyond our size on paper.
God has gifted top quality people to the house, and I want to see as many people as possible released into their gifting. At times, over the years that has meant having faith that raises above the current reality and continuing to trust that God has more for the body of Christ than has already been realised. God is good, He is faithful, this is His Church. I am believing that we will see many more dear souls saved and lives transformed, who then go out and reach others for Christ. I believe our church will continue to grow and develop in every way when Christ is at the centre, when the gospel is preached and lived by the people. When our beliefs, words and actions align, the body of Christ is a force to reckoned with.
Like any church community we have weaknesses and areas to grow in, but we must also celebrate the good things; great worship, youth and children’s work, a culture of welcome and hospitality. Our groups are growing in depth and quality of relationship and people generally seem happy to be in church! Please don’t underestimate these things, we make every effort to maintain a healthy and honest environment, true to the word of God, we give little space for personal agendas and keep church politics off the table. This health begins with our leadership and should then trickle through every area of the church, I want to thank the LWC leadership team for their heart for God, His people, and His house. It is my honour to serve with you.
My prayer is: ‘God continue to grow your church, show us new doors to walk through and help us to love each other as you love us’
May God Bless you
In some ways the year has been a much more ‘settled’ one, for which we are very thankful. We have on register around 70 regular names and of those around 30 can be expected to attend each week. This year alongside our Sunday mornings, the team has once again been able to hold the Scream Event, Holiday Club and Christmas production, in person!
"The children reveal so much of God to us through the noise, chaos, and mess."
None of this could be possible without our dedicated volunteer team and just as we have welcomed back past team and new team, we also welcome conversation with anyone else who may have considered being part of Kids. The more team we have the more we can serve our children and their families in a wider variety of ways.
Having said that this year has been more ‘settled’, we don’t want to settle! There is so much more we can do and hope to do, and so much more for all our children to discover in their relationship with God. It is an honour to be a small part of that with them. The children reveal so much of God to us through the noise, chaos, and mess. These little people have passionate hearts, and we love seeing them grow, and hearing what God means to them.
Tots and Babies
First, I would like to start by giving a heartfelt thanks to all on the Tots and Babies team. Thank you for your commitment & dedication in providing such a wonderful facility to the very youngest of our church family.
"It is so nice to see a varied age range of volunteers on our team as each one brings a special something"
Thankfully this year things have started to feel much more like ‘normal’ with far less challenges. We have now moved back to providing basic teaching for our Tots through craft activities. We have also been provided with a new sound system so our children can enjoy music while they play.
While in the last year we have seen some volunteers move on for various reasons, we have also seen new members join our team. It has been especially nice for us to have more of our young people from Limitless Youth join us. They have shown real commitment in serving on the Tots and Babies programme each Sunday and have all settled into their roles amazingly. It is so nice to see a varied age range of volunteers on our team as each one brings a special something.
A special thanks goes to Barry who has decorated our room for us this year, providing a bright and welcoming environment for the children. We really want it to be a place where the children are happy to be, and I think it is testament to this when we see them happily coming in to Tots & Babies each Sunday.
"Some made first time decisions to follow Jesus and others encountered God in ways they had never done before"
The last year has been one of continued rebuilding and further development of Limitless Chorley. The number of young people actively engaged in our programs has increased with around 50 registered and 25-30 in regular attendance at our Sunday morning sessions.
Alongside the growth of the youth, our youth team has grown to 8 and I really want to honour those who have come on board and committed to investing in the next generation. You are all doing such an important role and it really is a team effort.
We’ve continued to run our monthly ‘Friday Night Socials’ which have been so important in helping us to maintain a healthy social element to our youth group and a space to invite friends, which many have done.
Here are a few other highlights from the past year:
- Our youth room has been redecorated and refurnished creating a fresh and modern space which everyone loves to use
- We hosted Limitless One a regional youth event which saw hundreds of young people come together and our very own youth hosting and serving across the whole event.
- We hosted Limitless Oxygen an equipping day for over 40 youth and kids workers from across the North West
If you looked at the news you’d believe that no young people are interested in faith anymore but as a team we are determined to create an environment and culture here in Chorley that bucks that trend.
It really is a privilege to lead the young people of this church and I am so blessed by what God is doing in and through them here at Living Waters and look forward to encouraging and releasing them to grow more and more in their faith over the next year.
Worship and Production
Year on year the Worship and Production Team step up in level in every area and I would like to thank every member for serving God through this ministry.
The team has continued to grow (particularly in the area of production) and we continue to serve those who can’t attend in person through live stream. The livestream has continued to grow with YouTube reaching over 660 subscribers – many of whom are notified when we go live each week. On average our weekly online livestream reaches 160 views. This continues to be a window into the church for those moving into the area or looking for a church to call home.
"We are expectant that God will do great things this coming year, we are vessels of His choosing and we count ourselves blessed"
This year our focus is investing in people to see them grow in the ministries in which God has called them. We have started a series of training sessions in areas such as Worship Leading and Video Production, which will form part of a wider development plan. These have had input from Pastor John, members of the Leadership and members from the teams themselves.
The heart for serving using music, media and technology as a tool to express a heart of worship and gratitude is evident in this team. We are expectant that God will do great things this coming year, we are vessels of His choosing and we count ourselves blessed.
I want to begin by saying thank you to Marie Walker for all the time she has served in Cafe Connect, Marie decided it was time to hang up her apron in February after many years working as a volunteer and then Joint manager. We are grateful for her input, time, and consistent service.
"We had our biannual visit from environmental health in March and maintained our 5* rating"
Cafe Connect continues to serve the church and community on Tuesday and Fridays and provides meals for everyone who collects a food parcel from LW Storehouse, this provision has seen a gradual increase over the past 12 months but again has doubled since July. During our open hours every Friday a local community initiative called ‘Talking Tables’ meet in the café, and once a month Chorley Churches Together ministers group meets for breakfast.
In addition, the cafe has served some church groups that meet in the building during the week, either during cafe open hours, or by opening an extra day to accommodate larger groups. We have also provided ancillary additional catering services for outside groups.
The cafe space and provision of drinks and snacks post Sunday morning service continues to be well used and has supported oversees missions. Thanks to all our Sunday morning volunteers who provide an excellent service. Cafe Connect also thanks a local business who supplied and fitted a new extraction system in the kitchen free of charge, this was a great blessing.
We had our biannual visit from environmental health in March and maintained our 5* rating and have introduced new menus and installed new signage.
Finally, a big thanks to all the staff and volunteers who have worked extremely hard each shift, especially over the last 6 months since Marie finished. We appreciate all that you bring contribute and the way in which you serve.
This year seems to have passed with amazing speed, it is by the grace of God and the faithful support of His people that we have been able to continue the support to our Missions:
The work in India headed up By Pastor Prince and Meera has continued well but with many restrictions due to COVID, although most of the work is now back to some sort of normality. The children have now returned to their schooling.
LW theological college has been able to take residential students again and is continuing working online as well. The graduation of the students took place earlier this year. Our prayer is that the students who have completed their courses will go and make disciple’s and there will be fruit for their labour.
Pray for all the churches that we support in The Punjab, Orrisa and Kerela and look forward to a year of blessings for all the LW team in India.
"We are blessed at LW by being able to reach so many people with the gospel"
We have been blessed to see the work in Zambia continuing to thrive this year under the leadership of John and Judith Kiseba. The community feeding program is now feeding over 30 families a month. They now have 9 churches in the Copperbelt region and 2 schools accommodating over 500 children.
The work of LW Bible School launched in Zambia under the umbrella of LW India is thriving and has gone into its 3rd year of students who have gained recognised certificates.
Pastor Moses and Ruth head up the work in Monrovia and surrounding area. They run a school and several churches. LW support is to their family for needs like Food education and medicine. Pray for Pastor Moses as he goes to Freetown, Sierra Leone to plant a church.
We are blessed at LW by being able to reach so many people with the gospel:
‘Go into all the world and make disciples’
Thank you to all those who have been part of this amazing work.
LWC Groups have been newly launched this year. We have seen great success in a relatively short time with 11 groups already up and running. The groups consist of 5-20 people gathering in leaders homes or a designated room at church. They are either weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly, meeting to share food, fellowship, social activities and prayer.
Lots of people have signed up and are enjoying being part of a ‘small family’ within a large one.
The groups have formed a wide variety of choice, and have connected people by creating space for fun, food, fellowship, and faith, meeting new people, and forming new friendships.
"We thank God for all our group leaders for the excellent work and dedication they are showing"
The groups are all thriving. Individuals are being nurtured, equipped, and released to be used by God. We hope to launch more in the future, giving more people the opportunity to lead and many more to attend.
We thank God for all our group leaders for the excellent work and dedication they are showing.
The full Finance Officers report will be emailed to all church partners prior to the Annual General Meeting.