After being in the circuit for four years I was walking in the garden wondering whether to ask for re-invitation after the first five years of this appointment and God spoke to me. He said ‘five more years’. So, Ali and I offered to stay in the Meon Valley for five more years and thankfully the circuit invited us. Over ten years of mission and ministry we have seen, in partnership with you, the people of the circuit, God in action: evangelism, Alpha; new leadership, and significantly the growth of our postmodern mission at the Wickham Music Festival ‘Elemental’, but essentially we have seen people becoming disciples of Jesus. Our time here, under God, is coming to an end and we move in August to Cornwall. I will become the Super of the Callington and Gunnislake Circuit.
The Apostle Paul and other church leaders in the 1st Century knew about itinerancy. We see Paul, Priscilla and Aquila (a female minster and husband team), Apollos and others, travel across the Mediterranean, Balkans and Middle East planting and sustaining new churches. (Have a look in the book of Acts around chapters 17,18, 19,20). In Paul’s first letter to the Corinthian church, a church he planted, he writes: ‘I sowed the seed, Apollos watered the plant, but it was God who made the plant grow’ 3 v 6. The early church expected and was used to transitioning from one minister to another. Such movements were not always perfect. Unity, respect for God’s call and a continuing desire to see the Holy Spirit work through the new leaders were the hallmarks of the New Testament church.
Revd. Joseph Tembo and his wife Anna will be resident in the circuit this Autumn, with Joseph is coming as minister, joining with both Revd. Arthur Cowburn who will be the Meon Valley Superintendent, and Mr. Peter Bangs our circuit Pioneer Missioner.
When you first read this letter, we will still be with you and we are sure there will be plenty of appropriate times for the circuit and churches to say farewell to us. We have delighted in missioning with you and know that God has a bright future for all of us, if we trust and obey the Holy Spirit as we follow Jesus.
Revd David Moss