He [Christ] is, moreover, the head of the body, the Church…

Isleworth Congregational Church Rev. Antony W. Ball The Church

by Rev. Antony W. Ball

That image of Christ as the head of the body, the Church, is one to which St. Paul returns over and over again in his letters – it was clearly one of his favourites. In his first letter to the Corinthian Church he comments that “There are varieties of gifts but the same Spirit” and goes on to explain how the Holy Spirit has distributed different gifts to different people, but that all are necessary to the building up of the Church and no one gift should be thought of as ‘better’ or ‘more important’ than any other. We’ve noticed this happening in our own Church – more and more services are being led by Phil. & Caroline, Elizabeth and Sally rather than just by visiting preachers or by myself. Pastoral visiting (which I used to find especially difficult when I was the Pastor) is now being done by Elizabeth and by Phil. & Caroline. Mary now does the refreshments after morning services. No one of these gifts should be thought of as being ‘better’ or ‘more important’ than any other – they all have to be done by someone in order to keep our Church alive and active.

Elsewhere in this newsletter you will find an article by Sally giving notice of a meeting straight after morning service on 14th July (there is also reference to it on the Deacons’ Page) at which we’ll try to discover how other people worshipping with us might react to these suggestions and, hopefully, make further suggestions of their own. This will not be a ‘Church Meeting’ as such – all are welcome, whether Church Members or not – and we hope and pray that we’ll get some ideas that will carry us forward as a Church.

Talking of Church Members and Church Meeting, we’ve recently had to lower our quorum1 number from eight to six in order to have enough Church Members present and voting to take the necessary decisions – you probably already know that any Congregational Church must, by definition, be entirely governed by its Church Members. Becoming a Church Member involves making a ‘Declaration of Faith’ at a Communion Service and carries with it an obligation to attend every monthly Church Meeting unless prevented by employment or illness. If any readers are interested in Church Membership, please do discuss the possibility with one of our deacons.

1 A quorum number is the minimum number of attendees required for decisions to be taken.

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