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Home > Action Zones > Politics and Social Action > Christian Action Bristol Newsletter 18

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Christian Action Bristol Newsletter 18


Progress with the Offers

The three ‘Offers and Asks’ presented on 10 November have now been submitted to the City Office and Marvin has formally accepted them.
Good progress is being made on two of the offers.
  • Jonathan Lee is leading the homelessness initiative, and I’m sure all of you will be aware of the church led winter night shelter proposals for January. Do please try to make sure that the details are shared with your churches and church contacts as there is still a need for more volunteers to help with this.
  • Work is underway with the breakfast club ‘Offer’ with Jon Dobson in place for one day a week supporting the Council in assessing the need and how best the church can respond to this.
Work on the third offer – the City Fund – is also underway and we hope to be able to update you on this soon. Other ‘Offers and Asks’ are emerging – including one around social prescribing and another linked with provision of family support.
The ‘Offers and Asks’ have been endorsed by the 8 CTGB senior church leaders (‘Presidents’). They have also endorsed plans for a week of prayer and fasting to be held over the period 18 – 25 January. Following the meeting at City Hall, and Rosie Hopley’s call to prayer, we have been keen to see this happen and are therefore delighted that this is in place for early in the New Year. Please see below for more details. We encourage you to share this with your own network of contacts.

Fresh Vision

A week of prayer and fasting for social action: 18-25 January 2017

During the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, Together4Bristol and Christian Action Bristol have called for a week of prayer and fasting to prepare for us all for transformation of our city through engaging in social action.
  • Declare a holy fast; call a sacred assembly. Summon the elders and all who live in the land to the house of the Lord your God, and cry out to the Lord. (Joel 1:14)
  • Son of man, look carefully and listen closely and pay attention to everything I am going to show you, for that is why you have been brought here. (Ezekiel 40:4)
We hope that Christians across Bristol will pray individually and in their churches throughout the week for guidance on how we can best engage with our localities and with wider issues of social justice, seeking:
  • a fresh vision of our individual relationship with God;
  • a fresh awareness of how we can work together as Christians for the good of our communities; and
  • a sharper focus on who or what He wants us personally to get involved with, how to go about this and what resource to release to enable this to happen.
Two cross-church events are planned.
  • Wednesday 18 January 2017, 7 - 9.30 pm, Christchurch, Clifton Down Road, Clifton, BS8 4AH: Social action focus during the evening session of the Conference on City Transformation.  £5 entry fee.
  • Saturday 21 January 2017, 4 - 10 pm, City Church, Elmgrove Centre, Elmgrove Road, Redland, BS6 6AH: Burn 24/7, worship and prayer with social action focus – see below for more details.

24-7 Bristol Gathering 21 January 4-10pm

City Church Elmgrove Centre Elmgrove Road Redland BS6 6AH

A message from Ian Watt:
We are looking for people involved especially in some of the social action strands, to help us as we pray into some of the needs of the city.
During this event we will be continuing worship through the 6 hours and as part of this we have several slots where we want to share some prayer points, pray for individuals involved in key areas of the city and encourage those attending the event to pray in small groups.
  • 5-5.30pm – we will have Ed Rowberry and Rachel Molano helping us with some key prayer points for City Office, regional governance and the Mayor’s office and Cabinet.
  • 6.30-7pm – we would like to pray into areas like addiction and homelessness. Clare Fleming and others will be helping us with this.
  • 8-8.30pm – we have a further slot and I would like to focus on the vulnerable in the city.
As people are available, we can fit you in – so, if you think you might be able to attend, please let me know () what you are interested in and roughly when during the evening you think you will be around. I can then contact you and see how we can fit you in with the plan.

First Prayer for the City Breakfast

For church leaders and other Christian leaders

The first Prayer Breakfast for all church leaders and other Sphere and Prayer Network Christian leaders is on Tuesday 24 January 2017, 7 am - 9:30am, at the  Prayer Centre Hope Chapel Hill, Hotwells, BS8 4ND.
This will be the first in a series of regular Prayer Breakfasts with worship and an opportunity to pray for one another and the City. People can stay as long as they can.
This has the full encouragement and support of the 8 CTGB senior church leaders.

2017 Global Aware Conference

Gender Equality: overcoming poverty through transformation and partnership

The 2017 Global Aware conference will focus on gender equality and the impact it has on communities across the globe.
You’ll meet likeminded people who care about people and planet, gain knowledge of the specific issues encountered when tackling gender equality, and be inspired to bring about change in your life and the lives of others.
  • When: 4 February 2017, 9.30 am - 1 pm
  • Where: Woodlands Church, Woodlands Road, Clifton, BS8 2AA (registration from 9am)
  • To Register: click here
Please email Jenny Foster () if you would like some flyers to advertise the conference, letting her know how many you would like and where we should send them.

Further Details and Flyer Download (Link active until 04/02/17): Click Here

Homelessness Prevention Services

The Council are in the process of commissioning homelessness prevention services in Bristol.  The initial consultation took place in the Autumn, and they are now consulting on the proposed services.  This is our last chance to provide input – the consultation closes on 10 February.

City of Sanctuary

Bristol City of Sanctuary are thinking about organising a summer 'Round the Downs' event with music and picnic in July, plus possibly another public event in refugee week in May.  We also would like to have a presence in the programme for the Festival of Ideas.  If you would like to find out more about the City of Sanctuary or contribute to any of these activities, please get in touch with Forward Maisokwadzo ().


A message from Alison Paginton:
I would like to tell you about an event called The Rehabilitation Marketplace. This will have ‘stalls’ run by our 12 partner charities who work with prisoners and (hopefully) four from the local prisons. These organisations will make up the Marketplace.
  • When: 7 Feb 2017, 6:00 - 7:30 pm (light refreshments will be served)
  • Where: St Agnes, Thomas Street, St Pauls, Bristol BS2 9LL
Sixty-One (sixty-one.org) is a Bristol Christian charity whose objective is to inform, enable, encourage and support the churches and Christians in greater Bristol to be able to support prisoners and ex-prisoners.
The Chief Constable of Avon and Somerset Police, Andy Marsh, will be attending and speaking about the role of community in reducing crime and reoffending. Of course this is an area in which the church can play a significant role.
As you can see, this is an important event, and we therefore hope for really good representation from churches across the city and surrounding areas. The aim is to provide an opportunity to find out what rehabilitative work is happening in the greater Bristol area, and how the church community can engage more effectively. For example, all exhibitors have been asked to have information about volunteering opportunities.
Below is a link for a two minute video intended to be shown in notice slots in church services or at group meetings. We would very much appreciate it if you could circulate this message in your church.

Further Details and Video (Link active until 07/02/17): Click Here

And Finally ...

Some people from Bristol recently attended the Movement Day gathering in America, linking city unity initiatives from across the world.  In 2017, this event is coming to London, and it would be wonderful to have a significant number from Bristol taking part. So please put the dates in your diary: 6-7 October 2017. If we have enough people, we might organise a coach.  More details will follow as soon as we have them.
The West of England Baptist Association have an excellent page on their web site: “It’s all happening in Bristol” (www.webassoc.org.uk/its-all-happening-in-bristol/) with details of many of the events and opportunities coming up – do have a look.
The Council want to find out about your attitude to alcohol so they can raise awareness of alcohol issues in Bristol. The survey closes on Monday 30 January 2017 Please pray for a prayer meeting in Thornbury on Friday 20 January. The Mayor, Helen Harrison, is hosting a prayer breakfast for local councillors from across South Glos between 7 and 9 am. Please pray for people to respond to the invitation, for the event, and for what might develop out of it.
A new report on Public Faith and Finance highlights the role and contributions of faith organisations in responding to the financial crisis and austerity politics. A new report on Public Faith and Finance highlights the role and contributions of faith organisations in responding to the financial crisis and austerity politics. It is based on research carried out by Dr Therese O’Toole and Dr Ekaterina Braginskaia at the Centre for the Study of Ethnicity and Citizenship at the University of Bristol.
In a context of welfare retrenchment and increasing financial exclusion, faith organisations, including from minority faiths, are not just plugging the gaps, but setting out alternative and often innovative approaches to welfare and economic justice. And finally finally, Cllr Don Alexander reports that as a result of the advert in the last newsletter, he now has a shadow. If anyone is still interested, there are bound to be more opportunities to take part in this scheme - please see the Council's web page.