On August 22, 2019 a new initiative took place on the British Isles South District: the Pioneers gathered!

These are a group of people at the cutting edge of pioneering ministry in the United Kingdom. They came together at the District Family Holiday for some training, conversation, team building, testimony and prayer; also, to be exposed to the wider district family. Many hadn’t met each other before and weren’t aware of the others’ ministries. It was like numerous small flames gathering together to form an inspirational raging fire of ministry.

Each ministry was at a different point on the journey towards becoming a fully organised Church of the Nazarene.

One is embryonic: a pastor had stepped out of healthy church ministry to simply start prayer walking around a housing estate to seek the will of God for the next step in ministry.

Another is a closed church building that had been kept open as a community facility and managed by a Nazarene church member. Her sense of calling and vision has grown and the beginnings of worship and discipleship are taking place weekly.

Another is a coffee house facility with over 30 community groups using their space, now planning membership classes for their first members.

Also in attendance were the leaders of a Korean church plant, which is using the chapel of Nazarene Theological College-Manchester and now has over 100 in regular attendance; it is running a compassionate ministry to destitute asylum seekers in partnership with another already established Church of the Nazarene.

Two Portuguese-speaking church plants at different stages of development joined us, plus a Hungarian-Roma congregation; a fledgling Sudanese group; and the beginnings of an addiction recovery group.

After sharing testimony and prayer requests, other participants in the family holiday came forward to lay hands on them and pray for God’s blessing and anointing.

All these ministries face significant challenges, even obstacles. There has been, and undoubtedly will continue to be, much heartache and persevering hard work. However, despite, and sometimes precisely because of this, inspirational seeds of hope have been planted and are bearing fruit.

This article is written by Rev. Carl McCann, District Superintendent, Britsh Isles South District and previously published in the October 2019 edition of Where Worlds Meet.