Connected in Christ, Changing Communities
Ron Hamilton, Conference Minister
I was privileged to attend the installation service for Rev. Mark Booker at the Park Street Church in Boston last month. It was a great service of celebration as the church anticipates a new generation of ministry under the leadership of their new pastor. I am encouraged that the church is prayerfully seeking new ways to engage in her community.
I was struck by the fact that this historic church is located across the street from the Boston Commons. This 50-acre park is a gathering place for people from the city and the greater Boston area. It is located on the historic Freedom Trail, [a unique collection of museums, churches, meeting houses, burying grounds, parks, a ship, and historic markers that tell the story of the American Revolution and beyond.] The church throughout its long history is representative of the greater community.
As a few years ago, we used the acronym “CCCC” to describe our mission. We said that the ministry of the CCCC can be described as “Connected in Christ…Changing Communities.” Our fellowship is anchored in the conviction that Jesus Christ is the head of the church. We also understand that the ministry of the Conference is carried out by our pastors and churches in the communities in which they are located.
Church planters often begin their ministry by identifying the significant community gathering places and praying over them. I recall a humorous story where the police approached a car parked in a school parking lot one evening. The windows were steamed up and the officers pounded on the door, asking “What’s going on in there?” They were surprised to find four believers from a new church who were consumed in prayer for the school and their community.
Just as the Boston Commons reminds the Park Street Church of her mission to the community, there are people and places in each of our communities that remind us of our mission where God has planted us. It may be a school, a park, a city building or a shopping center. I encourage you to take time to pray about your Kingdom mission as you see these places.