Jesus put another parable before them, saying, “The kingdom of heaven is like a grain of mustard seed that a man took and sowed in his field. It is the smallest of all seeds, but when it has grown it is larger than all the garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds of the air come and make nests in its branches.” He told them another parable. “The kingdom of heaven is like leaven that a woman took and hid in three measures of flour, till it was all leavened.” Matthew 13:31–33
God can do great things from small beginnings. In fact, Jesus teaches through many parables that this is the normal way his kingdom functions. Throughout the history of the church we see this pattern time and time again. God takes the humble efforts of his people and does great things. Whole movements have begun through a simple prayer service. Whole nations have come to faith in Jesus through the efforts of lone missionaries. Over a billion people identify as followers of Jesus, and it all started with twelve disciples and a few thousand folk in Jerusalem.
And God has done great things here at All Saints! We began as a small group meeting in someone’s home, and have flourished into the wonderful community we are now. All Saints began as a church plant trusting that God was calling us to mission in the world, and now we are sending out another group to plant a new church.
I’m excited to announce that The Table will begin weekly worship on January 12th at 4:30 pm. As many of you know, we’ve spent the last few months in the discernment and planning stages. As we’ve gotten closer to launching, 25 members of All Saints have committed to forming the launch group and begin worshipping together on Sundays! We will initially meet in the chapel of Galloway House (located behind the main All Saints building). This is a wonderful space for our initial size, and there is something truly poetic about returning to the chapel where All Saints worshipped many years ago! As we grow, we plan to eventually move over to the main building, worshipping alongside All Saints as an evening congregation.
So, what have we been doing the past few months? Well, like a seed germinating and growing its first roots in the ground, there are a lot of unseen things that need to be in place before a new church is planted. For the last few months, we’ve worked hard on building a vision for our ministry, solving logistical challenges, and researching ways to connect with our community. I’ve had immensely helpful phone calls and meetings with Anglican Church planters around the country, and recently visited an innovative church planting movement in Chattanooga, Tennessee. We’ve also been hard at work building a website, logo, and all kinds of materials a church needs. We had productive time working with the vestry on a 2020 budget for The Table, and they have been immensely helpful in getting us headed in the right direction. Most of all, we’ve spent time in prayer to seek the Lord’s direction and encouragement as we prepare to begin.
It has been wonderful to know how many of you have been praying for us! Please keep praying for God to guide and bless this new ministry. We are very excited to begin worshipping together and welcome new folks into the Anglican way of following Jesus! Once we’ve been meeting for a bit and gotten into a rhythm, I’d love for folks from All Saints to come check it out. But please, don’t everybody show up at once, or we won’t have room for you all!
12/23/2019 08:24:38 am
Father Nathaniel this 'seedling' of All Saints: under your expert guidance and direction; with ongoing nurtured prayer and support from your team; as well as from the All Saints' congregation and our community; The Table has every component it needs for successful growth and a self-sustaining ministry. I share your joy and excitement about its launch on January 12.
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The Rev. Nathaniel Adkins