In 2015, HeartCry was privileged to be introduced to Mez McConnell, director of 20Schemes ministries and pastor of Niddrie Community Church in Scotland. The mission of 20Schemes is to plant and revitalize churches in the poorest communities (schemes) in Scotland through the training and sending of indigenous church planters and other ministry workers. HeartCry has been given the opportunity to come alongside 20Schemes and financially support some of their church planters. Pete Stewart and Pete Bell are working together to plant a church in the Barlanark Scheme in Glasgow, Scotland. This is their most recent missions update with some specific ways that we can be praying for them.
Vision and Purpose
Recently we have been fleshing out what it is going to look for us to ‘live in community’. We discussed what being a ‘healthy church’ in Barlanark would look like. This was a hard topic for some of our group, particularly around our teaching on baptism & membership. We are still working through the biblical imperative and benefits of these and how they provide helpful structure for us as a group as we reach out, and for the people in our scheme as they look in.
We have started to look into a number of ways we can engage with our community better and so hope to trial a toddlers group and an ‘English language’ class pre-summer. We are also taking on a planting bed to support a project being run by the Calvary Centre (where we are now based). We pray that these will enable us to be visible as a Christian community in the wider community as we make disciples by proclaiming the gospel. We also plan to meet every Sunday for lunch to deepen our relationships with each other.
God continues to bless by adding new people, Christians and non-Christians, to our number. Over the past month Cal, Cate and Paul have regularly been at a mixture of our Monday night meetings, morning prayer times and Harper Church Services on Sundays. Cal and Cate are non-Christians who the Lord seems to be drawing to himself and Paul professes faith but being in a wheelchair struggles to get to a church. Praise God for them!
Pete and Cara have also got a new house to rent in the scheme from mid-May. They are excited to see how God uses this as they live out lives on mission for Jesus in a new home.
Barlanark Takes on America
On 31st March we left for our EPIC 18-day adventure which took us to Washington DC, Bardstown/Louisville, Kentucky & Cleveland, Ohio. We shared of our work in 4 churches, spent time with brothers and sisters who regularly pray and care for us and attended the ‘Together for the Gospel’ conference alongside 9000+ others in gospel ministry. 20Schemes as a whole had many encouraging meetings & a series of great events to encourage workers in our type of communities. And our families had a ball. The boys loved it and the support we received from our extended family and friends whilst there was IMMENSE. We are deeply thankful to all who made it possible. We pray that the energy that’s been replenished and the many things we learned will help us ‘make Jesus known in Barlanark and beyond’.
So how can you be Praying for us?
- Pray for unity in our group particularly around membership / baptism and as we seek to engage with our community.
- Pray for the community in light of the death of a young lad (18) from a suspected drug overdose.
- Pray for Scott & Stephanie [a young couple from the church] as they get married in May and need a house.
- Pray God would save many of the 3,800 lost people in Barlanark