More Than Gold Under Starter’s Orders

The following has been submitted by the local More Than Gold Co-Ordinator, Avril Betts-Brown.

“Arise, Shine, for your Light has come…”

More Than Gold LogoWhoever would have thought that little Hadleigh on the North Thames coast, would ever become the  centre of the world stage, but that is exactly what is going to happen over 11th & 12th August when we welcome the Olympic Mountain Biking competition to our land.

The Bible tells us to Go out into all the world and preach the Gospel’ and now we find that the whole world will be coming to us, either through the TV or actually visiting in person. What an opportunity! Never since creation have the eyes of the world been focused on us and it’s unlikely that it will ever happen again!!

It’s something we never expected and unlikely to have asked for, but its happening. Lets take it as a gift from God – for He alone knew that we would be born for such a time as this and live right here in this place of opportunity, right at this time.. Let’s open up this gift, this opportunity, and ask Him how we can best use this time for His glory.

First of all, let’s get involved with More Than Gold, an umbrella organisation networking all church denominations, giving resources, ideas and training so that you and your church can get involved. You see, as Christians, we offer something more lasting than even a gold medal – the gift of salvation and, with it, the gift of eternal life.

We have already begun to prepare the way by

  • Prayer Meetings –               10:00 am every Thursday morning
    at the sofas at the Salvation Army Tearooms at Hadleigh
  • Praise & Intercession         07:30pm – 9:30 pm – 2nd Thursday of each month
    at the Tearooms
  • Prayer Trekking –                Uniting the churches by walking between them in unity
    Saturday mornings during February & March – contact us for more details
  • We hope to develop other opportunities after Easter to come together in different ways so we are ready to work together this summer.

Although not officially part of “More Than Gold”, the Queens Diamond Jubilee is another amazing national event. The Queen would like everyone to have a ‘Big Lunch Out’ ( with the “Queen’s Grace” – presently being written by the Bishop of London – for all to say together. Why not have a street lunch, invite the community, make it a vintage event, or make sure that the elderly have a visitor that day. We could take them a lunch and then watch the events on TV with them. This is such an opportunity to get to know, and show love to, our neighbours – and even others in our church.

Olympic torch

Olympic torch

Then on 6th July the Torch is coming through Hadleigh from Southend on its way to Chelmsford where it will be in the Cathedral all night. Immediately before the Torch Relay a Praise Bus will be coming through with locally arranged prayer batons and a cascade of prayer going our throughout the whole area. Then of course there is the Torch Relay itself, immediately after the Praise Bus.

Why not decide that your church will give out free water at that event, or cakes or have a baby-changing gazebo, do street art, sing … and much more? We can have a road full of Christians serving the community in all sorts of ways!

During the Olympics, there are many opportunities – some churches are celebrating the opening / closing festivals with a big screen at their church. Why not –

  • have a big screen event to show:- the opening ceremony, the closing ceremony or the mountain biking competition?
  • hold a concert for visitors who are staying over to come to on the Saturday evening between our competitions?
  • have a vintage tea party or fish and chip supper, or tea dance,  celebrating all things British?
  • have an “Olympic-free” Zone, a really quiet zone, a British bicycle  exhibition,

The list of opportunities is endless. Perhaps you would like to do just one thing well and then support other people in what they are doing. There is something for everyone, from making cakes to organising sports quiz nights. And, of course, everyone can pray, and we NEED everyone to pray! We need to pray for SO many things, right from the nation’s security down to the details of a local tea party.

If you and your church have an idea, then do please get in touch. We are able to come and give a talk or presentation, pass on “More Than Gold” resources and liaise with you to make a calendar of local events.

May we, as the Body of Christ in Castle Point, truly take up the “More Than Gold” Olympic verse and be able to say ‘Arise shine for our light has come for the glory of the Lord has risen upon us.’ (Isaiah 60 v 1)

In His Name and for His Glory

God bless you all! Andrew & Avril Betts-Brown

Representing “More than Gold” in Castle Point

Contact:   e:

01268 566 580
07771 558 967

Editor’s comments:

The prayer trek comes to the Temple on 17th March at 12:35pm

Downloadable documents:

Prayer trek details: The Great Church Olympic Prayer Trek v4

Prayer meeting poster: Talking to God at the Tea rooms – SA poster v2

Praise and Worship meeting poster:  Praise Worship and Intercession poster – SA

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