by Ron and Kim Henry
Those of us who have been here since the beginning of Apostles Anglican Church have continually observed the grace and love of our heavenly Father. The handful of original “charter members” can verify that none of us had a clue what God had in store for us when we started. At every turn God provided just what we needed often before we even knew we needed it!
One example of God’s provision was the building where we meet now. When we started gathering as a little fellowship back on June 29, 2006, we didn’t even have a place to meet for evening prayer. Central Baptist Church allowed us to rent a room in their fellowship hall for $50 each time we met. Fortunately, we had several prayer warriors asking for God’s guidance and blessings. At the time we had no priest, no building, no bank account, no by- laws, no charter, no Bishop, and no vestry. However, we knew we each felt God’s presence and love and we felt He wanted us to walk in faith and trust Him.
Within a few weeks, the Associate Pastor of Central Baptist Church (CBCB), Robert Bowman, was talking to Ron Henry and said that Central Baptist was buying the Mars Hill Baptist Church property on Robinson Road to establish a Christian Ministry Center. CBCB was looking for partners and Robert encouraged Ron to come and tour the building. At that time, our group was getting counsel from a priest, Reverend Mervyn Dunn, and a Deacon, Chris Cairns. The committee at Central Baptist had a few questions concerning our beliefs. While Chris was explaining our beliefs, Ron was talking to individuals in our group to get a consensus concerning commitment for the property. And we were praying for guidance. As the committee at Central Baptist Church spoke with Chris and prayed for direction, they felt they were being led to partner with our group. And after much prayer, we felt led to accept their offer.
We met for the first time at the church on Robinson Road on September 10, 2006 at 4:00 for ALPHA training and evening prayer. By this time, God had provided a priest, Reverend Chris Cairns, who was ordained on November 11, 2006. Chris immediately insisted that the group have contemplative prayer before every decision was made. Those early decisions, such as where to meet, the mission and vision statements, when to publically launch the church, were always unanimous. God was also steering us to affiliate with the Anglican Mission in the Americas (AMiA), which could provide oversite.
Along the way, God also provided people with gifts and talents and other clergy and staff. When we look back, so many details that didn’t appear to be significant at the time have been pieced together to form a beautiful tapestry of God’s love and a body of believers.
Next week we’ll share some stories of specific instances when God sent the Holy Spirit to help us with decisions.