Jeremiah 29:5-7 (NLT)
5 “Build homes, and plan to stay. Plant gardens, and eat the food they produce. 6 Marry and have children. Then find spouses for them so that you may have many grandchildren. Multiply! Do not dwindle away! 7 And work for the peace and prosperity of the city where I sent you into exile. Pray to the Lord for it, for its welfare will determine your welfare.”
Love One Another: Happier in Christian Community
“Love one another as I have loved youWe have grown happier as a Christian community by being a more welcoming, open and accepting place to belong. Our new building layout has helped with being more welcoming at services. Being a moderately large church makes getting to know people more challenging although not everyone needs to know everyone.
GBC represents people from a wider catchment area than Godmanchester residents. This is good as long as it is not divisive.
By 2020, GBC will be a place where everyone can be involved and is affirmed for who they are and for what they do and where contributions are valued and appreciated.
What are the priorities?
Whilst a sense of community can`t be forced, it will continue to be encouraged to grow. We need to develop a sense of a “safe space” to make sure people are not excluded. People should feel relaxed in what they can offer and grow in their uniqueness. We need to ensure everyone knows their worth in God`s eyes. We need to be a place of safety, faithfulness, godliness, love, and compassion.
To avoid becoming overcrowded as a Church community, we need to proactively encourage people to join small groups which are missional communities (especially on Romans Edge).
We need to grow as a multicultural community where people of different ages and ethnicity feel happy, safe and comfortable together.
We need to develop mentoring between people of all ages
We need to build rhythm into our church programmes and especially periods of rest into our community life.
What`s the path from here to there.
We acknowledge that it takes a lot of energy and can be difficult to change some things which have existed.
We need to improve the processes by which people join small groups and for there to be more diversity in the sorts of groups available. We will find ways to make small groups a better place to belong and for them to have more diversity. We will prioritise forming new small groups as missional communities and provide legacy support for long established but unchangeable groups.
We will find ways of thanking, encouraging and affirming people in their volunteer roles.
We will help people to have a better balance of life/work/home/church.
How should we (re)allocate time, people, plant and money do this?
We will carefully reshape the church calendar to include a better rhythm of learning, evangelism, and rest over the year.
We will strengthen the oversight of small groups to encourage people to belong and yet allow time for people to minister outside their group.
We will revitalise our mentoring programme.
We will reconsider the proposal that we rename our buildings so that there is, over time, a clearer distinction between the church as a Christian community, and the buildings as a community resource.
We will continue to use the Church Weekend as a way of building and deepening relationship across congregation
 John 13.33-2