“This church at Seedfield exists to demonstrate our love for Christ, our love for each other and Christ’s love for the world.”
SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY AT SEEDFIELD
For God’s children and followers of Jesus Christ, if we are the remotest bit alive to the world we are living in then it follows inevitably that we have a social interaction with people and a responsibility to those we live amongst - to those with whom we share in the common things and experiences of life, whether we like it or not.
It is truly amazing that God delights in us - you and me - as individuals, which He has shown us at immense cost through His Son to bring us into relationship with Himself. But His love and care are not confined to us, stretching out to all mankind, to “our neighbour” (every person without prejudice).
Having received His grace, His utterly undeserved forgiveness and transforming power of His Holy Spirit, we owe all to our heavenly Father to live in His service FOR OTHERS, with great joy.
Does Social Responsibility feature in our Church Activities?
Social responsibility has been described aptly by some as the Cinderella of the church groups formed to set a lead in the life of the local church. Why should this be so?
Here are some reasons:
It means getting your hands dirty in the world … aren’t we called to be holy?
It’s very low on my list of priorities … I’ve more important ministries and commitments to fulfill.
I’ve got enough on my plate already.
It isn’t convenient.
It’s more important to be evangelizing and saving souls, which you can’t do in secular organisations.
It’s not our tradition.
Do you have any others to add? What do you think about these common excuses?
JESUS has given a standard of lifestyle for ALL CHRISTIANS to live out in the world. Here are some of His words:
You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl, Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house.
In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.
[Matthew 5: 13-16]
What sort of areas of Social Responsibility have the core group and members of Seedfield Methodist Church been involved in?
Helping families with problems.
Volunteers caring for the elderly in the community, e.g. Epworth Grange.
Forming the Seedfield Tenants and Residents Association (TRA) under the initiative of a “retired” Baptist pastor.
Supplying Harvest gifts of food and flowers for distribution by the TRA to the elderly and housebound outside the church family.
Collecting for relief and development projects in poor countries overseas.
Campaigning for debt cancellation by governments and banks and for just international trading laws for the future.
Petitions and encouraging individual letters on other social concerns.
Looking at Fair Trade and responsible life-styles for the planet’s sustainability.
Organising services in local care homes for elderly
God in His love and purposes calls all His family to shine brightly in the world by His Spirit stimulating and working in us for the sake of others.
However, there are a variety of places to serve and witness for Him in showing practical love and care, whether it is somewhere in the local community, or in the workplace for those in employment, or if one is not able to get outside much then supporting those who are on the front-line.
Do you know, have you discovered, how God has shaped you? Whatever kind of service we have been fashioned for, we need to find out and use what abilities and gifts which He has given us to the full for His delight.
If you have a passion for social justice and the influence of God’s Word and values on our society, actively consider what offering you can bring - either in helping your church fulfill her social responsibility to the local community, further afield/nationally or abroad.
It’s often the children and young people who ask the searching questions or make remarks that hit the nail on the head and stimulate discussion and ideas.
The social responsibility core group (and others) need people of passion, and the contribution of our young people; this can include group members visiting our youth during the year.
Finally one message for success: make prayer the basis for everything and live in the power of God’s Spirit.