Serving the Community

As I shared a couple of weeks back, we recently had a team visit us from Trinity School of Theology, a ministry training college based out of Rugby, England, and part of the network of churches we work with in Global Horizons. They came as part of their training, but also to serve alongside us at Cornerstone in reaching out into our Belgian context.

The first day, Monday, we were involved in some work within the city of Brussels: 1) cleaning a local park and 2) spending time with our international refugee friends. With the guy refugees, we played football (soccer) in the park that we cleaned a few hours earlier. The ladies headed up a beauty day treatment for the females. The second day, we planned craft and fun activities for the refugees. While none of this seems revolutionary by human standards, it is quite amazing the doors that are opened through conversations and relationships with people living in a very foreign land as refugees. Salt was sprinkled, light was shone, and conversations of Christ were right in our midst.

The next two days, we spent time out in our local Flemish-speaking community. From picking up litter along the main street, to passing out leaflets for an Explore Faith course starting in later May, to serving in a local social services centre, all of this gave us an opportunity within our community. Again, to my knowledge, no one asked how they might be ‘saved’. But we were able to develop relationships that I believe are the beginnings of God working amongst a people that need to know the love of Christ.

My deep desire and prayer is that God continue to open doors into the lives of people in the Brussels, Belgium area, especially in our local Flemish-speaking area just south of Brussels. God has created these people and He deeply loves them. Now to see us engage in hearing God and living out His heart in this community.

Interesting Mission Statement

stc-logoHere are the beginnings of an interesting mission statement from Serve the City, a service-based project headed up by a friend of mine in Brussels, Belgium. Quite the challenge.

There’s a line in every city
that separates the rich from the poor,
the strong from the weak,
the haves from the have-nots.
It’s a street, the train tracks,
the river, a sidewalk.

On one side there is safety,
on the other there is danger.
On one side there is security,
on the other, fear.
On one side kids go to college,
work pays well,
needs are hidden behind drawn curtains
and consumable goods.
On the other life is pretty raw.

It’s time to cross the line.


See the video below for more.

Serving & Reaching Out This Week

The past two weeks have been quite busy travelling to and from the UK. So I haven’t posted many articles. I still have my Rob Bell review to post, which is nearly completed and hope to post sometime this week.

Specifically during this week, we have the amazing opportunity for a team to be with us from Trinity School of Theology, based in Rugby, England. They are here as part of their second year course work, with the view of learning some practical things about cross-cultural mission.

Still, more importantly, they are here to serve alongside us at Cornerstone, reaching into our international city of Brussels and into our local Flemish-speaking community. We have a couple of days planned to serve our amazing friends at Foyer Selah refugee centre. Then, we have a couple of days for serving and outreach opportunities based in our local area of Overijse-Hoeilaart.

I’m looking forward not only to the fruit in the lives of those we serve and reach, but also in our own.

Serve the City

Back in 2005, an initiative was launched in Brussels, Belgium, known as Serve the City. This was not the beginning of your ordinary church initiative. It wasn’t specifically about church growth or church planting or something else similar. It was something unique. Serve the City was launched to stir people towards doing just what its name says – Serve the City.

Specifically, Serve the City is a movement of volunteers around the world connecting with local opportunities to serve in their cities. Many people want to get involved in the community and help in some way, but it’s hard to know where to start or if the simple things we might do would make a difference. Serve the City organises events where volunteers can start by showing kindness in practical ways to people in need, believing that many people doing small things together can make a big difference.

In all, Serve the City was envisioned as something that would provide practical help and assistance through people serving the hurting, the poor, the disadvantaged, etc. This would all be done through small project-based initiatives. It could be painting, cleaning, serving food to the homeless, conversation, beauty treatment for women, organising cluttered spaces, etc.

Serve the City is headed up by Christians, but this is not necessarily branded as a ‘Christian organisation’. Their vision is to also draw in and involve non-Christians via the serving opportunities, and through this, see conversations start up about life, faith, Jesus, why Serve the City exists, why the Christians who are serving choose to serve, etc. It’s a doorway not only into the lives of the broken in the city but also into the lives of all types of people from all over the world, since Brussels is an international city.

Serve the City has now expanded out from Brussels, Belgium, and now exists in about 50 cities around the world. This also is quite amazing to see such happen in 5 short years.

There are 3 major serving days organised each year from the Brussels side (basically once a quarter), with smaller monthly serving opportunities provided as well. But during the summer, Serve the City hosts a week-long serving project with hundreds of volunteers from all over the world joining in to serve in the city through these practical projects and initiatives.

I’ve joined in for quite a few opportunities now and really appreciate what is going on. It’s good to give our lives to serving the broken, hurting, poor in spirit and weak. Well, we are all really in that place, it’s just that these people whom we serve usually already recognise it. It is simply amazing to see how this has unfolded for the past 5 years. I’m looking forward to more opportunities to be a part of what God is doing through Serve the City.

To understand more about what Serve the City is about, see the video below and check our their website.