An Interview with Pastor Simon
If I was asked the question, what is the Church at Te Awamutu Baptist all about? I would say, come and have a look. What it is that I see in everyday people’s lives that come to Te Awamutu Baptist is a community where the broken find wholeness, the sick find healing, the lonely find a sense of belonging, the poor find empowerment, and the lost find salvation. After all that is the testimony of many who come here week after week. In a nut shell this describes a community under the umbrella of Jesus Christ, and I think we are doing okay with this.
What is our purpose? That’s simple; to reach our community with our hearts, not our theology, but our hearts. In fact that is our theology; our hearts reflect the love of Jesus that in turn reflects God’s love for the world.
How do we do that? Three things spring to mind. Word, Sign and Deed; we build the community around the authority of God’s word by the empowering Holy Spirit, we reach outside ourselves in faith for the Signs of his presence in our lives, and we intentionally focus ourselves on the marginalized, the outcasts and the needy that are all around us.
How would you define your church? Firstly, it’s not mine, it’s Jesus’ church, and it belongs to the community who call on his name that choose to gather here week after week. As a description of how that community functions I think I would best describe it as a place where everyone is welcome to come, where grace is really the foundational quality we live by, and where we want to grow into being all that God wants from us, individually and corporately. At the front of this is our mission, to reach into our community first and foremost with our hearts.
To close, if you had to label yourselves, what would that be? Well, we are a Redemptive Community who passionately love Jesus, and all he stands for. Which funny enough are those inside and outside the doors of the church.