On Mission in London
Trevor Archer explains how generous partnerships within the M25 have led to the planting of a new church in London.
It’s been six years now since the idea to plant an Independent Evangelical Church on the South Bank in London was conceived. A group of seven London pastors from FIEC – including Jonty Allcock and myself – met over a year or so to pray and discuss how the idea might be put into action.
In 2014, as plans for the launch of The Globe Church took shape, Richard Coekin from the Co-Mission network approached us to see if Co-Mission and FIEC might work together to help plant the new church under the leadership of Jonty Allcock.
Co-Mission began in 2005 as a network of churches (today there are 23 in total) committed to working together and with others to play some part in reaching London with the gospel by forging generous co-operation in planting new churches and revitalising failing ones. FIEC’s partnership with Co-Mission has proven to be a happy and fruitful one.
From the outset, The Globe has been part of both FIEC and Co-Mission, benefitting from both the national focus on the former and the London focus of the latter. The church has also received resources from both networks and contributed to the life of both networks.
The finances and personnel to help launch and maintain The Globe Church has largely come from the seven London FIEC churches, as well as other FIEC and non-FIEC churches around the UK. Meanwhile in the past three years Co-Mission has provided workers under Planting Scheme – most notably Mike Sohn and Sam Gibb – at no cost to The Globe and at great benefit to the church.
Being part of both networks gives The Globe Church the benefit of the support, advice and practical resourcing of the two groups, one having an exclusive focus on London, the other a national perspective. It is not hard to see how easily this partnership fits with our vision to focus as a church on Bankside – Londonwide – Nationwide – Worldwide.
As Pastor of The Globe, Jonty Allcock benefits from the fellowship that the weekly gathering of senior Co-Mission leaders for prayer and networking provides, whilst also enjoying the support of many of the original seven FIEC pastors through his involvement with the FIEC London planning group.
This helps keep the two networks aware of each other’s plans and challenges and has also proven the catalyst for more church planting, not least that of Hope Church Vauxhall this past September.
In a very real sense Hope Church is the fruit of the kind of generous gospel partnership which both FIEC and Co-Mission are passionate about. Eighteen months ago, London City Mission approached FIEC to see if there was any way in which The Globe might help re-establish a church at their Vauxhall Centre. The existing partnership with Co-Mission made it an obvious avenue to explore and very quickly a plan to re-launch a church was formed.
London City Mission would provide the building and some start-up funds; Co-Mission would provide additional funds to help support the calling of a pastor, Sam Gibb, via their Co-Mission Planting scheme and Westminster at One ministry. FIEC shared the cost of completing Sam’s training at Oak Hill College via the FIEC Training Fund. Meanwhile The Globe Church organised the co-ordination, supervision and management support to see the church launched.
So, 6 January 2019, the first Sunday of the New Year provides us at The Globe with a timely opportunity to celebrate the partnership between FIEC and Co-Mission that has not only brought about The Globe itself, but in God’s goodness seen us play some part in the creation of Hope Church Vauxhall.