Plans are coming together to set up Winchburgh Community Church in West Lothian.
A group of church members from St Columba’s in Edinburgh, who live in Winchburgh, have been meeting for regular community groups and bible studies. They have been seeking a leader to make the move from meeting as a church community group to being set up as an established church congregation. The process is known as church planting.
Their aim is to live out and share the good news of Jesus in that community.
Robin Silson was appointed as the church plant leader last August. He and his family - his wife and their three children - moved to Winchburgh last September.
He said there is much happening now to build a core team of people to get the church plant up and running, ready for the launch at Easter 2023.
Robin said: “Over the last few months we have developed a clear vision, identity, and philosophy regarding what ministry at Winchburgh Community Church will look like. Incorporated into that is the acknowledgement that each one of us is uniquely gifted to make that vision a reality as we serve Christ together. The Lord is constantly surprising us, often showing us we possess gifts we didn’t even know we had. Our life experiences, backgrounds, personalities, and work have shaped us to be instruments in the hands of our Redeemer.”
“We are a small team of 14 adults and 9 children,” said Robin. “Please pray that we continue to grow in relationship with one another and have unity around the Gospel and what that looks like at different stages of life. We’re like a family that mucks in together.”
Robin has spoken about the plans for the church plant in coming months.
He said: “We’re meeting once a month now. We’re planning to take a break over summer and then resume when the schools go back when we’ll meet once every two weeks. We’re aiming to meet every week from October with the view to formally launching at Easter next year.”
There are several points for prayer for the team and the area. They are thankful for all those who are part of the core team and are looking for more people to join them.
Robin added: “Pray for the community in Winchburgh. It is a rapidly expanding area and has a mixture of new people moving in and people native to the area. Pray for opportunities and courage to share faith so that many would come to know Jesus as Lord and Saviour. Pray also that the Lord would send labourers for the harvest in order to grow our team with locally committed believers.”
“We are building towards launch. We are currently having monthly worship service in our house but give thanks for the provision of a bowling club function room to meet in the Autumn as we move towards weekly services. In addition, there are many practical details that need sorting. Pray that we would be wise and know the Lord's guidance.”
Robin is currently on staff at St Columba’s and has undertaken training with other apprentices and ministers in training. He has also joined the intensive church plant training programme and is working towards ordination.
He has shared about how God has brought him to Winchburgh.
Robin, who is originally from a small village in Yorkshire, came to faith at the age of 25. However, following a move to London and becoming a member of a small local church, he began to understand what it meant to live as a disciple of Jesus. He also met his wife in London and moved to Scotland in 2018 as they have a heart for being involved in gospel ministry north of the border.
“We are passionate about introducing people to Jesus, why we all need him and what it means to follow him in day-to-day life,” he said.
Do pray for Robin and the team as the church planting plans continue.