A splash of colour: redecorating the small hall

This week has been a busy one for some of us at DCBC – we have started redecorating our small hall. The exposed brown bricks have been transformed with a lick of paint (well, actually about 10 litres of it) and we have brightened up the room with some re-upholstered chairs. There’s plenty still to do – but already the space looks a lot more welcoming for the different church groups that use this room during the year. This room is used for our weekly children’s work (Heroes and GB) for church meetings, and can be hired out. It is also used for our Christmas Fun Day and Fair (get the date in your diaries now – Saturday 30th November, 10am-12 noon).


Focus on the local community: Handcrafted Projects

Over the past couple of months at DCBC, our regular church services have included short presentations on a whole range of topics, including Open Doors and the Baptist Missionary Society. The purpose of these presentations is to raise awareness of issues affecting Christians in our local community and around the world, as well as promoting ways in which we can actively support these causes.

The first presentation looked at the issue of homelessness in the UK and what can be done locally to support those who find themselves homeless or vulnerably housed for whatever reason.

An organisation that works locally is Handcrafted Projects, which renovates houses for and with homeless people and provides training in a variety of skills (such as woodworking, bike maintenance, and basic cooking skills). One of our church members has volunteDSC_1031ered with this charity for about 2 years and he helped us to support this organisation by running a fair after the service at which woodcrafts could be purchased or commissioned.

You can find out more about Handcrafted at: https://handcrafted.org.uk/

A Watery Miracle! (Cafe Church 4/8/19)

At August’s café church service (the first Sunday of each month at 10.30) we heard the story of Jesus feeding the 5,000 from just 5 loaves of bDSC_1024 (2)read and 2 fish. By doing a quiz on different types of bread, we realised just how fundamental it has been throughout human existence (and how important it remains today too). Talking about this story was a wonderful opportunity to reflect on God’s provision for his people – providing them with exactly what they needed at the right time.

If that wasn’t miraculous enough for one week, we then heard that Jesus had gone on to walk on water! (Unfortunately not all of our origami boats managed the same feat.)

The servicDSC_1027 (2)e was followed by some delicious sandwiches and a time of fellowship.

The next café church service will be at 10.30am on Sunday 1st September.


Thoughts from the Minister: The Nazareth Manifesto

The Spirit of the Lord is on me,     
because he has anointed me     
to proclaim good news to the poor.
He has sent me to proclaim freedom for the prisoners     
and recovery of sight for the blind,
to set the oppressed free,
to proclaim the year of the Lord’s favour.’

‘Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing.’

Luke 4:18-19 & 21b

God in Christ did not just come to save souls for heaven; he also came to bring shalom and flourishing here in this life

Nicholas Wolterstorff, “In This world of wonders.” Page 55.

Two sections of the gospels are often called manifestos; “The Sermon on the Mount has been called “The Kingdom Manifesto”. The other section is that which is found in Luke 4:16-21, and it has been called; “The Nazareth Manifesto”.  It is the section in Luke that we will be considering in this piece. I presume the term manifesto is used because the quote, predominantly from Isaiah 61, is used by Jesus to speak of his mission.

Jesus in using this text also draws attention to the nature of his person.  At his baptism Jesus is declared as God’s son, resonating with Psalm 2, and therefore King.  Jesus is the one in whom the Father is well pleased, drawing on the servant of the Lord in Isaiah 42:1. The section from Isaiah 61 while not belonging to the servant songs of Isaiah, (Is. 42:1-4; 49:1-11; 50:4-9; 52:13 – 53:12) can be described as like a servant song. Finally the proclamation of God’s word by the one spoken of in 61:16:21 resonates with the prophet who was to come found in Deuteronomy 18:15 & 18.  Luke uses the titles and the texts that contain them in such a way as to reveal Jesus as the bringer of God’s salvation.  The one who could declare the year of the Lord’s favour because he was God come amongst his people, in the person of the Son.

Jesus had the authority to proclaim the fulfilment of the scripture, the year of the Lord’s favour had begun.  What was Jesus intimating when he sat down and said ‘Today this scripture is fulfilled in your hearing?’ Jesus was announcing the long awaited deliverance of God’s people from all that made them less than they should be.  Isaiah’s prophetic word concerned the deliverance of Judah from exile in Babylon; however it finds its greater fulfilment in the liberation that Jesus made possible through his life, death and resurrection. Jesus was announcing the full salvation that God had promised was coming into being through his person and work.

One discussion that surrounds the text in Luke 4 concerns whether Jesus was speaking of spiritual realities, or physical realities?  The answer is the salvation God brings about in Jesus is for the whole person. The separation of the spiritual from the physical in the biblical understanding of human persons is not as easy as some think. God is concerned with the whole person.

The language at use in the text is not that of social political revolution, but of the in breaking in of the kingdom of God in liberating and saving power, this is the true renewing of the world. In Jesus the order of the new creation is breaking in. This is the new community under the sovereignty of God, empowered by the Spirit of God, coming into being as a sign and prophetic voice to a world that needs to experience the saving, liberating power of God. This new community is made up of those who accept Jesus and his message and experience the liberty of the children of God.

Those who are called to be part of this new community are also charged with proclaiming the arrival of the year of the Lord’s favour with the coming of Jesus.  We are to proclaim the message and live as those who seek to bring the good gifts of God to all.

Ronnie Wynd 2019

Time for a major spring clean!

It’s been a while since we’ve posted anything here, but that doesn’t mean it’s all be quiet at DCBC. Quite the opposite – we haven’t had a moment to think about the website.

Part of our vision for our church is to be able to provide our local community with a place to meet, socialise and worship together. And although people are more important than the building, it is useful to have a welcoming environment to meet in. For this reason we’ve been updating and redecorating different parts of the building. Thanks to everyone who has contributed by painting, cleaning, moving things (to one room, and then to a different room and back again!), building, fixing, and making cups of tea!


What are you looking forward to about Christmas?

This morning we celebrated two events rolled into one: the Girls Brigade enrolment and the first Sunday in Advent! Three advent chocolates have been consumed; we’ve all seen the advert with Kevin the Carrot; and we’re already day-dreaming about tapping a chocolate orange (or hitting it with a hammer). But is this really what Christmas is all about? Is glitter, baubles, and candy-canes the most we can look forward to? Whilst these are all great things that get us in the Christmas mood, this morning we heard a different story – that Advent is about waiting for the birth of Jesus Christ our Lord and Saviour. Join us to find out the full story during our Advent and Christmas services over the next few weeks.

Sunday 10th December: 10.30 am – normal service
Sunday 10th December: 6pm – East Durham Churches Together Carol Service (with the Salvation Army band)
Sunday 17th December: 10.30 am – café church service
Sunday 17th December: 6pm – Carol Service
Sunday 24th December: 10.30 am – Christmas Eve service


Fundraising, Fellowship and Faith

It has been another busy week at DCBC. The Girl’s Brigade had a pyjama-themed fundraising event in support of Children in Need. The girls joined in with games and crafts as they raised £98, which will go towards the charity’s vision of making sure all children in the UK are safe, secure, and have the chance to fulfil their potential.

We rounded off the week – and our 67th anniversary celebrations – by walking from Edge Court down to the Garden Gate Café at Crook Hall. All two-legged and four-legged friends were well fed and watered before tackling the hill back up to Gilesgate.



Celebrating over 60 years of DCBC

Our church anniversary service today marked the beginning of another new year for Durham City Baptist Church, as well as providing an opportunity to reflect on the challenges and blessings of the last year. In our café church style service, we thought about how many people in our congregation have made huge decisions over the past twelve months – the decision to travel to the UK; to swap one type of employment for another; or to give up work and return to studying. Even though the road is not always easy, we considered how God has been present throughout the last year, supporting us as we raised funds to repair our formerly pot-holed carpark; as we welcomed children to our holiday club during the summer; and as we started our café church services.

“I lift up my eyes to the mountains-
Where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
The Maker of heaven and earth.”

(Psalm 121)

As we look to the coming year, we are excited about continuing and growing our regular activities – which you can find out about using the tabs above – and about going wherever God leads us.