An AD2000 Movement in Every Country
Awakening 2000 was officially launched before over 50 church leaders and representatives in St Andrew's House, Sydney on Friday September 20. Previous projects were reported, results shared and future challenges faced.
One of the most moving moments came when over 50 leaders divided into groups of 3-4 to pray for the future plans and the future outreaches to the people of Australia, with the Gospel message in a language and culture they can understand.
The Chairman of the NSW Advisory Board, the Rev. Ken Cornwell, chaired the meeting which heard reports from Pastor Alan White of Forestville, viewed video footage from the various TV news coverages of the Easter Awakenings and Global Marches around Australia and were challenged by the National Co-ordinator, Mal Garvin, on plans and projects of the future.
A report from Wollongong, South of Sydney, highlighted the need of prayers for a region. It is in that area that prayer gatherings have been taking place on the mountains and high peaks surrounding the city.
Training days and central gatherings have been held as leaders and ordinary Christians have networked together, with a common goal. Other regions have seen the results and are now considering similar approaches themselves.
Within the Awakening 2000 organisation, over 100 manuals have now been produced to help churches train and prepare for a wide variety of events and outreaches.
Churches of Christ pastor, Ross Wakeley, reported on team visits to Wagga and Bathurst, with plans underway for visits to Nowra and "the bush" - country towns further West. Where ever the teams visited, church leaders came together, "as never before", to discuss reaching their area for Christ. Fun days for all the families were a success in reaching the unchurched.
"Many families would never go to church - so the church went to them," said Mr Wakeley.
Martin Wood has recently returned from South Africa where he shared the concept and training manuals with keen and eager Christians in that land, through an invitation by African Enterprise's co-ordinator, Michael Cassidy.
Mal Garvin then presented "The Next Step". He spoke of new battles taking place, throughout New Zealand, Canada and South Africa, where the Church is challenged with the need to "grow up - learning from experience".
In New Zealand plans are underway for a new and novel outreach in January 1997. In two weeks he will be sharing with leaders in Canada something of the lessons learnt and how to work together as a team.
The goal in Australia, is to reach 1 in 12 Aussies with the Gospel within the next twelve months. Then 6 in 12 the following year, followed by 9 in 12 leading up to the year 2000.
"The next two years are pivotal to the whole picture," said Mr Garvin. Without financial support and volunteers, the task will never be done.
Bishop Brian King told of plans being formed for the outreach, service to others and plans for a chapel in the Olympic village, during the Sydney Olympics in September, 2000.
"The preparing stage is past. The planning stage is underway and the performing era will commence in 1999," said Bishop King.
Michael Cleary brought the final challenge. "Behind all this is an organisation," said Mr Cleary.
"These are special times for the Church in Australia. We've been encouraged as we have reviewed videos of past events, but there's a whole new task lying ahead of us". He appealed for involvement and financial support as never before.
Regional Training Days will be held during November. Manuals will be finalised. Participants are needed for raising finance; gathering teams for prayer; media personnel or those interested in reaching the media, can be used in every town and city; regional action groups need to be formed; leaders and teams of workers are needed for local events...and so the lists go on.
The call went out for those with a heart for evangelism to become involved in Awakening 2000, which will never be achieved unless there are more workers.
The closing moment and climax of the Awakening 2000 Launch was the sight of the known and respected leaders, joining together in small groups, to pray for the nation and the fulfilment of Awakening 2000 goals - to reach out with the Gospel to those who have never heard.
For further information, details on manuals available and how to become involved, contact Awakening 2000 offices in each state.
The National Awakening 2000 office is at 688 Parramatta Road, Croydon NSW 2132,
tel. (02) 9716-8277;
fax (02) 9716-8237.
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