On Wednesday 10 June 2015 we will be having our next Plant North Yorkshire Day after an exciting last meeting in February. More details here.
Report from Plant North Yorkshire 25th February
A. Key points from the day:
1. Tim Chester reminded us from 2 Corinthians 8-9 that church-planting in our county really will be costly in every way, and yet in our generosity we can never out-give God: ‘God is able to make ALL grace abound to [us], so that having ALL sufficiency in ALL things at ALL times, [we] may abound in EVERY good work’ (2 Corinthians 9:8). As we follow Christ on his mission to win followers for him in every part of the world, we will never lack all of God’s resources.
2. Lewis Allen shared his experiences of real-life church-planting and re-planting in Yorkshire: it was wonderful to hear that God loves to see communities of light planted in the darkness, and of the gospel growth they’ve seen in Huddersfield. Lewis also reminded is of the great history of church-planting across our county–what we’re plotting and praying for at Plant North Yorkshire is nothing new: in fact, planting churches in unreached places is normal Christianity, and this is our time to take up the baton!
3. To this end, Lewis told us about Gospel Yorkshire, a new initiative aimed at helping churches to plant churches in all four regions of Yorkshire, and at raising the profile of key priority areas for planting all across the county. Plant North Yorkshire will be feeding our findings into this new initiative.
4. We spent the final part of the day praying about and looking at the different priority areas in North Yorkshire identified over the past 18 months, and concluded that, while there is great need for planting in all those places, Scarborough seems like the key place to start.
B. Scarborough: a gospel priority area
– Population: 61,750
– In addition, Scarborough boasts 2,000 students at the University of Hull: Scarborough Campus.
– Scarborough is the largest holiday resort on the Yorkshire coast.
– The town has fishing and service industries, including a growing digital and creative economy, as well as being a tourist destination.
– Scarborough is at the heart of an Urban Area of just under 100,000 residents, and the entire district (Borough of Scarborough) is well over that figure.
– During the peak season, tourism can double the population.
– 31.2% of the population are aged over 60, compared with an average of 20.9% nationally.
– Only 21.9% of the population are aged between 20 and 39, compared to 28.1% nationally.
And yet Scarborough is in desperate need of Bible-believing, gospel-centred, Jesus-preaching churches.
Our dream is to see a church-planting church planted in Scarborough to reach the 60,000 people who live there and to see more churches planted in Scarborough and across the county.
C. What next?
– Chris Haley from Bethel Church, Otley and Ilkley will be doing some more detailed research into Scarborough between now and June.
– We will meet again on 10th June
– to get training and encouragement from an experienced church-planter
– to pray and plan for planting in Scarborough
– to pray and plan for how we can grow a culture of church-planting in North Yorkshire
– to pray and plan to see churches planted in the other North Yorkshire priority areas