new horizons JESUS HOUSE IN 2012
Welcome from the
Senior Pastor W
elcome to this 2012 edition of our Annual Report in which we present an overview of our activities in our 19th year of existence. 2012 was a year of significant milestones for the United Kingdom, highlights of which were the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee and the London Olympics and Paralympic Games. As a church we engaged in a variety of new activities and expanded our focus as we sought ways of better serving our congregation and community, local and international. This direction is reflected in our theme, New Horizons. Some of these initiatives included our first women’s conference, a seminar on the Church aand disability, provision of shelter for the homeless in our
local community over the critical Christmas period, and the launch of a food bank which serves our local community . After a sevenyear interval we held our second ‘Heart and Soul of the Church’ conference to empower local churches. On the international front we partnered with the Samaritan’s Purse on their Operation Christmas Child Project by providing 8000 gift-filled shoeboxes for the disadvantaged children of Liberia, West Africa. These and other activities are detailed in this report and demonstrate our continued commitment to reach out to the underprivileged in our society and to provide opportunities for growth and service for our congregation. The section on finance reports on the resources received by
the charity and how they were expended. Our activities are made possible through the support of so many and I would like to express our deepest gratitude to all those who have contributed financially and otherwise to our work in 2012. The results presented here are a direct consequence of your sacrificial giving. If you would like any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact us at email@example.com
Senior Pastor Jesus House for all the nations
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Contents Senior Pastor’s Welcome.....3 Contents................................4 Introduction..........................5 In • • • • •
Pursuit of God..................6 Watch night Service Setting the pace for the year The Pursuit of God Conference Rabbi Lapin at Jesus House Pursuing God’s presence in worship • The Festival of Life 2012 Discovering Purpose..........12 • Farewell reception in honour of the Archbishop of Canterbury • Three Churches, One city – United for Pentecost at Earls Court • The Heart and Soul of the Church Conference • The Uncommon Woman Conference • CARE for the Family event • Do You See Me? The Church and Disability
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• The Marriage Week • International Justice Mission Visits Jesus House • The Oasis Network Conference • Raised Up in Christ Talent Show • Schools Easter Art Competition • The Tribe of Judah at Cambridge Maximising Potential..........22 • Maximising Your Potential Sunday • The Emerging Leaders’ Breakfast • Reaching Kilimanjaro’s summit • Supporting Youth involvement in Church Social Responsibility - Tearfund Transform Project • Jesus House Movie Premiere – Halima Impacting Lives...................28 • Operation Christmas Child Project • The Colindale Food bank • Christmas Lunch on Jesus • Spreading Christmas Cheer
• Celebrating Life – Honouring our senior citizens • Barnet Youth Business Incubator • Christians Against Poverty Launch • Week of Serving • The Home Makeover Project • Jesus House Football Academy • Jesus House celebrates the Queen’s Jubilee • Remembering air crash victims • Sheltering the homeless • Ministries Profile – The Jesus House Prisons’ Ministry The Engine...........................40 • Pastors’ Appreciation Day • Changes to the Pastoral council and leadership team Facilities..............................42 • The Jesus House Expansion Project - Completion of Phase Two Finance Report...................45 • Financial Report
Introduction One of our core values can be summarised by the phrase “People matter”
rom the origins of the church founded in a prayer group of about twenty individuals in February 1994 - right through to the present time (with a congregation strength of over 2500 people), our quest has always been to make a difference in the lives of the people with whom we come into contact. This is what drives us as we serve our congregation, our local community and the wider society. Jesus House is made up of people from diverse backgrounds, with approximately 38 nationalities represented in our congregation, thus making us a house “for all the nations”. Jesus House is a parish of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG). Itself founded in 1952, the RCCG has grown
to become a world-wide denomination with over 6000 parishes spread across all continents under the leadership of the General Overseer, Pastor Enoch A Adeboye. Since its humble beginnings in 1994, the activities and progress of Jesus House serve as a constant reminder that God can use the seemingly insignificant to make a difference in the lives of people. We have a firm understanding and appreciation that our gifts, time and resources are only valuable in the context that they are able to make a difference in someone else’s life. Our primary pursuit is a deeper knowledge of God and a closer relationship with Him. Through our relationship with God, we recognise that no one was created to be insignificant and that everyone must be
encouraged to discover their purpose on earth and maximise the innate potential placed in them, in order to positively impact the lives of those around them - particularly the less fortunate. Our passion for the growth and development of the individual is reflected in the vision of the Church and we are committed to making a positive impact in our local and international communities. Whatever your background, culture or race, at Jesus House you can find a home for yourself and your family, and an environment to grow purposefully. So join us as we ‘pursue God, discover our purpose, maximise our potential, while making a difference in our local community and the world at large’.
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In Pursuit of God T
he bedrock of our Christian Faith is our relationship with a God who showed His love for humanity through the death and resurrection of His son Jesus Christ. For us in Jesus House, our overarching response to this act of love continues to be a heartfelt pursuit and deepening of our relationship with God. This pursuit informs and drives everything we do as a church. The Pursuit of God is also our
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acknowledgment that we are unable to accomplish anything without the leading and direction of our Sovereign God. It represents a way of life in which Godâ€™s guidelines for living, as documented in the Bible, form the basis of everything we do. Our goal is that as we deepen our relationship with God, we become more and more like Him and can then better serve as His representatives to a world in need.
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In Pursuit of God
Watch Night Service I
Setting the pace for the year
w a s ushered in at the traditional Watch night Service as over 3000 worshipers gathered on 31st December 2011 to mark the passing of the previous year and to look forward to the one ahead. The solemnity of the occasion was not lost amidst the celebratory
atmosphere. It was a night for humble thanksgiving and for renewing our commitment to and covenants with God. Leading the Church in declarations of allegiance and submission to God and His purpose for our nation, Pastor Agu Irukwu as senior Pastor gave a word of prophecy that the Church in UK would have greater relevance and visibility in 2012.
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n preparation for the year ahead, Pastor Agu embarked on a 21day retreat which was a time of total solitude and stillness when the distractions of everyday living were eliminated; this provided the right setting for a focused search for direction for the church through prayer, fasting and meditation. Emerging three weeks later on Sunday 29th January, leaner, greatly challenged and brimming with excitement, he brought an inspirational message of hope, which set the tone for the coming months. Declaring that 2012 would be a year in which the results of individual and collective efforts to seek God would be multiplied, he urged the congregation to follow hard after God and, like the early Church of the Book of Acts, to seek divine grace and power in increasing measures. He reminded the church that whilst â€œthere is a price to payâ€? the benefits to be derived far outweighed any momentary sacrifices that are made.
The Pursuit of God Conference
he Pursuit of God conference was born out of a vision to facilitate a gathering of people who hunger for progressive intimacy with God, who want to explore new depths of sincere worship and who long for an outpouring of God’s Spirit. The Scriptures refer to the Church as a ‘house of prayer for all nations’ and the theme for the 10th anniversary of the Pursuit of God conference - The Praying Church reflected this responsibility which is most fully realised in a church whose mission it is to take the good news of salvation beyond its walls and into the community thereby effecting change. Between 4th and 26th June 2012 a sterling line-up of speakers highlighted the endless benefits in prayer and the opportunity it presents for the Church to partner with God and be instrumental in actualising social transformation. The speakers included Reverend Joe Olaiya, President and Founder of the Living Faith Foundation; Dr Okey Onuzo, Associate Pastor of the National Headquarters’ Church of the Foursquare Gospel Church in Nigeria; Pastor Leke Sanusi, Senior Pastor of the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Victory House, London and a trustee of RCCG (UK) and Debra Greene, Director of City Links, which forges unity between churches and cities towards the goal of community
transformation. An unbroken chain of prayer for the nation and government was established for the duration of the conference which was brought to a fitting close with a special anointing service on 26th June.
Rabbi Lapin at Jesus House
ur pursuit of God has birthed a hunger in us for the knowledge of who God is and what His expectations are for His creation. The quest for continued growth and revelation has seen us partner with organisations possessing an expertise in these areas as well as inviting leaders in specific disciplines to share from the wealth of their knowledge to help us achieve this objective. The visit of “America’s Rabbi”, Daniel Lapin, on 7th October, marked a first for us as an organisation. While we have enjoyed the privilege in past years of the presence of individuals and organisations originally rooted in the Jewish faith, who have subsequently subscribed to the Christian faith as the fulfilment of God’s promise to the nation of Israel, this visit marked the first of an Orthodox Rabbi to Jesus House in a speaking capacity. Given its orthodox nature, the Jewish Bible, known to Christians as the ‘Old Testament’, can often appear to be an indecipherable puzzle for those of non-Jewish extract, and we considered Rabbi Lapin’s visit as crucial to helping us understand historical Jewish elements key to the Christian faith. Rabbi Lapin is a noted rabbinic scholar and best-selling author, and is known internationally as America’s Rabbi. His ability to extract life principles from the Bible and transmit them has brought countless numbers of Jews and Christians closer to their respective faiths. He is also the cofounder of political advocacy group The American Alliance of Jews and Christians. He spent the day speaking to thousands in attendance at Jesus House’s services about the Bible’s definition of prosperity, highlighting that the creation of wealth is not designed for selfindulgent or self-gratifying purposes but to place us at the service of others: in serving customers, and attending to clients and associates. His rabbinical insights were enjoyed by hundreds more listening in on our online facilities, as he took the congregation on a down-to-earth and practical journey of Jewish scholastic insight.
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In Pursuit of God
Pursuing God’s presence in worship
he importance of worship as an element of our pursuit of God cannot be overstated. Worship is a means by which we express the worthiness of our Lord; our actions are motivated by our reverence for and honour of Him. Our overarching intent as a church is to continuously facilitate an atmosphere that promotes the presence of God and the unhindered move of the Holy Spirit. At regular intervals, certain artists who are similarly
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committed to a focused pursuit of God’s presence are invited to assist us in our quest. On Sunday, 5th February, Yolanda Brown, the UK’s premier female saxophonist and MOBOaward winner demonstrated the dynamic power of the saxophone as an instrument of worship in an emotional exhortation to our God and King. A few weeks later, renowned songwriter and
worship leader Terry MacAlmon - who declared Jesus House to be his ‘church of choice away from home’ - led the congregation in a worship and prayer session during which he asked the Lord to ‘revive the nation.’ Ushering in the Lord’s presence with songs including: “I Came to Worship You” and “Even so, Come Lord Jesus Come”, he concluded with a fitting declaration and acknowledgment that all power belongs to God.
The Festival of Life 2012
he London Festival of Life is a bi-annual programme of prayer, worship and teaching, organized by the Redeemed Christian Church of God and hosted by the General Overseer Pastor E A Adeboye. The first of these events was held in April 1996 and it has since become one of the largest nondenominational gatherings of its kind in the UK, with over 40,000 adults in attendance. It is a unique event that brings together people of diverse backgrounds, ethnicity and
denominations, who have a common desire to pray. Held at the Excel Exhibition Centre, London Docklands, the all-night programme includes prayers for the nation, the government, the family, and statutory bodies. Each year there are two Festival of Life events in London, in April and in October, hosted by the General Overseer of the RCCG, Pastor E.A. Adeboye. The theme for the event on 20th April was ‘Arise and Shine’; the speakers included Reverend John Partington, national
leader of the Assemblies of God. Worship was led by the Festival of Life Choir and guest artists Chevelle Franklyn, reggae gospel artist and one of Jamaica’s leading psalmists and Muyiwa Olarewaju, gospel singer and worship leader who is renowned for his cross-cultural worship music with elements from Africa, the Caribbean and Asia. The following event held on 26th October and themed ‘A Second Touch’ featured various guest speakers including Reverend Canon Dr Martyn Atkins, General Secretary of the Methodist Church.
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DISCOVERING Purpose A t Jesus House, we believe that everyone was created by God for specific purpose(s). Part of our role as a church is to help individuals along this path of discovery, where, in pursuing God, they also discover the reason for their existence, so that they may live meaningful and fulfilling lives.
As an organisation, we also find ourselves on a collective journey to discover the full extent of the role(s) the church is best suited to play in our local and international communities. We believe in the importance of each individual being a part of
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what the church does in serving our community and therefore facilitate an environment in which everyone can be challenged to discover their role in order to be able to lend themselves in selfless service to others. We also recognise that we cannot fully discharge our responsibilities as a church without partnering with other like-minded churches. We therefore seek to establish crucial links as we take the gospel into our community and play our part in ensuring that justice, fairness and equality are championed in accordance with biblical principles.
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Farewell Reception in honour of the
Archbishop of Canterbury T
he objective to see a unified Church has seen us play an influential role in bridging the gap between churches of blackmajority attendance and the more orthodox expressions of the Christian faith in the United Kingdom. Jesus House is a member of the Evangelical Alliance (the largest and oldest body representing the UK’s two million evangelical Christians bringing Christians together and helping them listen to, and be heard by, the government, media and society), and often facilitates the Alliance’s work in establishing cohesive events within the Church body in the UK. In this vein, Jesus House, alongside the Evangelical Alliance, hosted a reception of UK black-majority church leaders in honour of the outgoing Archbishop of Canterbury, The Most Reverend Rowan Williams following his 10year tenure as head of the Church of England and spiritual leader of the 77 million-strong Anglican Communion. 14 | New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012
The reception on Wednesday 14th November was organised in conjunction with Faith in Britain which supports families and strengthens communities in Britain, and formed part of a series of farewell events to mark the end of his period of service to the nation. It recognised the remarkable achievements of a man who had faithfully served the nation through some of its most difficult challenges. The guest list included bishops, priests and representatives of faith organisations, as well as family members and friends of the Archbishop. Speaking on behalf of the African and Caribbean community Pastor Agu thanked the Archbishop for allowing the black majority churches to send him off: “We just want to say thank you, for many, many years of service; as is customary in African and Caribbean cultures, we want to send you off well, and let you know how much we appreciate you, and that our prayers are with
you as you go into a new season.” Responding, Dr Williams told his gathered audience: “We are in the middle of a big crisis of trust in all our institutions, when you think of politics, the BBC, the churches suffer from it as well and I think part of what the church has to do here and in many other parts of the world is create a really trustworthy public culture. To create people whose characters command trust because they are faithful, because they are dependable, because they are truthful and that’s what we are in the business of nurturing in the churches. We are trying to build Christlike character; Christ-like character is nothing if it is not a reflection of the truthfulness and faithfulness of God. So when we try to build that sort of character I think that is our biggest contribution.”
Three Churches, One city
United for Pentecost T
he Church of the Bible was one body of united believers and not a collection of denominations as we find today. The New Testament insists on the unity of the Church and in comparing it to the human body encourages the co-operation of all its members as they work towards a common goal. For the third consecutive year, Hillsong Church, Holy Trinity Brompton and Jesus House came together for a night of praise and worship, on Friday 18th May, as part of the UK’s Pentecost Festival 2012. Pentecost commemorates the impartation of the Holy Spirit on the early apostles (Acts of the Apostles 2) and is regarded as the birth of the Christian Church. Running from 18th to 27th May, the Pentecost Festival, which is the largest Christian-led festival in London, unites churches across the country, highlights the multiculturalism and diversity of the Christian faith and encourages Christians to reach into their communities with the message of the gospel. Over 17,000 people gathered at the Earl’s Court Exhibition Centre, London for an evening of worship. The leaders of the three host churches, Gary Clarke (Hillsong Church), Nicky Gumbel (Holy Trinity Brompton) and Agu Irukwu (Jesus House, London), collectively spoke on the rebuilding of the modern Church in a significant demonstration of unity: “We are sons and daughters of the King therefore we are brothers and sisters in Christ” – Nicky Gumbel; “Let the shout of the King be released.” – Gary Clarke; “The only hope of this nation is the Church of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ.” – Agu Irukwu New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012 | 15
The Heart and Soul of the Church Conference
he mission of the Christian Church is to be vehicles of hope, encouragement and counsel for a world in need of God. We also believe that the role of the local church is to serve as representatives of God in helping to meet the needs of people in our communities. To this end, we at Jesus House are passionate about seeing the 21st century local church rise up to its task of becoming ‘change’ agents and catalysts for restoring wholeness in communities. This passion fuelled the birthing of a conference in 2005 called ‘The Heart and Soul of the Church Conference’ that sought to equip local churches in order to discharge their responsibilities in their communities.
The vision for the Heart and Soul Conference is to facilitate a learning environment in which tried and tested tools that make a church effective in its mission could be presented to and made available for other churches and parachurch organisations. The aim of the conference is to equip the local church to better serve the community and to act as a vehicle for social
Guest speakers at this conference included Dr Tony Rapu (who planted Jesus House in February 1994), Pastor Tola Odutola, Senior Pastor of Jesus House, Baltimore USA and Dr Samuel Chand a change strategist and expert on church leadership development and vision execution.
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After a seven year interval, Jesus House once again welcomed churches from across the United Kingdom, Europe, North America and Africa, to its 2nd Heart and Soul Conference which took place between 5th and 7th July 2012. This year’s conference focused on key areas such as the youth, children’s ministry, women’s ministry, managing church finances, leadership, how to change our world, building a healthy church, building strategic partnerships and impacting the local community, all delivered in formats that included workshops and open sessions.
The Uncommon Woman Conference
sthers’ - the women’s ministry at Jesus house has a mandate to ‘raise women of virtue who influence and transform lives through the honourable exercise of God-given authority and wisdom.’ Understanding that some of the most impactful contributions to society’s well-being are from ordinary people who decide to make a difference within their sphere of influence, Jesus House hosted the first women’s conference in its 18 year history between 20th and 21st July. Aptly themed ‘The Uncommon Woman’ a powerful line-up of speakers encouraged the 750-strong delegate body to realise their key positions as potential
influencers in society. Conference host, Pastor Funke Adeaga defined the uncommon woman as someone who does not baulk at the prospect of walking an unusual and sometimes less-trodden path. Reverend Celia Apeagyei-Collins, Founder and CEO of the Rehoboth Foundation, which offers leadership development consultancy and mentoring training, introduced the uncommon woman as someone whose understanding that she is made in the image of an all-powerful God translated to whole-hearted service to Him which caused her to impact her world positively. Taking up this
thread Pastor Abby Olufeyimi (Parish pastor of the Builder’s House, Croydon and trustee of various UK based organisations including Empowering Widows for Development and Christian Family Concern), shared her experiences as a young widow with remarkable openness; she encouraged delegates to embrace challenging circumstances as an opportunity for growth and service. Pastor Sola Irukwu, who heads Church Social Responsibility at Jesus House, highlighted the endless opportunities to contribute to the healing of our broken world. The enduring message from the conference was that everyone can and should make a difference.
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Do You See Me?
CARE for the Family event
esus House cherishes its existing relationships with individuals and organisations possessing shared values, and purposefully seeks to establish and develop new ones to better equip the church and its congregation with knowledge, expertise and skills. The church presently enjoys a fruitful relationship with national charity - Care for the Family, and lent its support to the charity’s goals by opening its doors to host one of its events. Care for the Family is designed to promote strong family life and help those facing family difficulties, and its May 24th event - ‘Getting Your Kids Through Church Without Them Ending Up Hating God’ - was designed for parents, church leaders and youth workers to address the challenges faced when seeking to make the Christian faith relevant and more attractive to younger generations. The event’s objective was to highlight obstacles
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and provide suggestions for successfully navigating them. It was attended by a strong Jesus House contingent, as well as representatives from across the Christian spectrum. Featuring live worship from Phatfish, a thought-provoking play by the Saltmine Theatre Company, and sessions taken by Rob Parsons, prolific author and founder of Care for the Family, those in attendance were also treated to a selection of workshops and books on how to build a healthy family lifestyle. A parent summed up her experience of the conference with the following statement: “My many threats have only worked on some occasions, but [haven’t] yet yielded a heart to want to know the God that mum serves. At last there is hope; there is a way through Christ, that we can win back the hearts of the youth to the heart of the Father.”
his was the question asked by this conference, the first of its kind at Jesus House, to support the process of recognising and sensitising the church community to the issue of disability and to our obligations to work towards an all-inclusive Church environment that is welcoming to all sections of society. Held at Jesus House on 3rd November 2012, the conference was sponsored by the Children’s Directorate of the Redeemed Christian Church of God UK. Riding on the successes of the 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games, this was an opportune time to raise the profile of disability within the church community and to show a commitment to positive action in enabling the full inclusion of disabled people (who number approximately 10 million adults and 700,000 children in the UK) within church life.
Advocating Justice for the Oppressed International Justice Mission UK visits Jesus House
The Marriage Week ‘M
arriage Week UK’ is a national event celebrating marriage as the foundation for family life. It provided an opportunity for our collective introspection as a church and was an appropriate time to run events that helped to explore the quality and depth of our marriage relationships within the church. During the week, which ran from the 12th-18th August, TightKnots, the Jesus House marriage ministry, organised a series of activities designed to celebrate the goodness of marriage, reminding the church of the institution’s origins in God, and drawing their minds back to how we were expected to live out our marriage relationships in honour of Him.
Throughout the week, couples received e-newsletters with tips and advice on building and maintaining strong marriages. T’The church was also treated to an open forum question and answer session hosted by Pastor Agu for both married and single people on the subject of marriage. The programme also included an ‘Appreciate your Spouse’ day, during which married couples were encouraged to find creative ways to let their spouses know that they were loved and appreciated. The week ended on Saturday, 18th August with the Couple’s Ball, a themed romantic evening which was attended by over 350 couples, designed to give couples a deserved romantic night out away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.
ne of the major thrusts for us as a Church this year was to increase our support for the poor, the marginalised and the disadvantaged. Our Lord Jesus was an advocate for the poor and oppressed to whom He had a special mission. In what may be referred to as His mission statement, He laid out His purpose thus: “...to preach the gospel to the poor; to heal the broken hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and recovery of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed; to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.” (Luke 4:18-19). As a church that strives to operate as the representatives of Christ on earth, we are mandated to seek ways of responding to the needs of those who are living under the crushing weight of oppression. To this end, the congregation was introduced to the work of the International Justice Mission (IJM) which secures justice for victims of slavery, sexual exploitation and other forms of violent oppression. The organisation works in various communities in 12 countries to secure tangible and sustainable protection for victims of injustice through implementation of national laws via local court systems. On Sunday, 9th of September, Terry Tennens, the founding executive director of IJM UK division spoke to the congregation at Jesus House of the ways in which the church could respond to the needs of the “violently oppressed” and alleviate the plight of those in extreme need in the developing world. The congregation was obviously touched by the graphic stories of some of the victims of oppression worldwide but also encouraged by accounts of how many of such victims had been saved and restored to wholesome lifestyles. In response, some members made monetary contributions to the work of IJM while some of those in the Legal profession enquired about how they could assist the organisation’s work.
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RUC Talent Show
Supporting lone parents
The Oasis Network T
he Oasis Network is a Jesus House group that offers support to parents bringing up children alone due to various reasons. The group welcomes all lone parents - male or female, from different backgrounds, cultures and ages, and offers an opportunity for networking and support, both emotionally and practically. On Saturday 1st September 2012, the group hosted a mini-conference which was its first major event. The theme was “A Message of Hope” and the keynote speaker, Mrs Tomi Somefun, a pastor and professional banker based in Lagos Nigeria, brought a message of encouragement. Interspersed with humorous anecdotes, ‘real’ issues and challenges faced daily by lone parents were addressed with candour and simplicity. 20 | New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012
Feeding back on the day, several delegates said that they found it refreshing and affirming to hear their secret thoughts and feelings being articulated by someone who could be said to have graduated with ‘honours’ from the ‘school of lone parenthood’. The evening was attended by delegates from Jesus House as well as from other parishes within the Redeemed Christian Church of God network and neighbouring churches. Organisations supporting lone parents in the community were also invited including lone parents from our local domestic abuse shelter. The Oasis Network has plans to host further events in 2013.
aised Up In Christ (RUC) is the youth ministry at Jesus House, and is one of the most vibrant sectors of the church, with a vision to develop the potential of young people in order for them to become all that God created them to be. Spearheaded by Pastor Bajo Akisanya, Director for Youth at Jesus House, the ministry comprises two groups: TM4:12, which caters to teenagers aged 13-16 years, and RUC Squad, which serves college and university students between the ages of 1621 years. Each year the youth ministry stages a talent show to showcase the talents and achievements of young people. The 2012 RUC Talent Show was themed ‘Time to Shine’. It was an awesome and inspiring evening of music, drama, spoken word, poetry and dance with a strong Christian theme. The competition winners were Irekanmi Soda in the dance category and Sophia Thakur and Ricky Akinmoyo for the spoken word.
esus House seeks to positively inspire individuals to excel in their gifts and talents, and the annual Easter Art competition organised by the church’s community team plays an active role in creating opportunities for the younger members of our community. 2012’s competition was inspired by the message of Easter and the upcoming Olympic games, and themed ‘Circles of Light’. The purpose of the competition was to highlight the significance of Easter to other members of the community. More than 100 pupils from schools in the borough of Barnet took part, including St Mary’s and St John’s primary school, Bishop
Douglas and St James secondary schools.
The competition judges included Rob Noble, a local art buyer and seller; Hannah Uzor, a professional artist; and Pastor Chizor Akisanya, artist and writer, and the pastor in charge of Jesus House’s creative ministries. Entries spanned a wide range from the traditional to modern depictions of Easter eggs, bunnies, flowers, families and friends, as well as innovative artistic depictions of new life from the sacrifice of Jesus in the Easter story. The winners were announced during the Easter Sunday service and received their prizes in a presentation ceremony at their respective schools.
The Tribe of Judah at Cambridge
he Bible in its entirety is the story of God’s love for all mankind, and we believe that the Church of God (the body of Christians) should be a multicultural, multi-racial, multi-lingual and multi-national gathering of believers whose worship, even if diverse, is firmly embedded in a foundation of spiritual truth. We also believe that the employment of various styles of worship adds a richness and depth as we seek, as one unified body, to render to God the worship that pleases Him. To this end, we regularly embrace opportunities to collaborate in worship and prayer with other churches and ministries both locally and nationally. Jesus house is itself a multi-cultural church with over 38 nationalities represented.
In July, our worship and music ministry (the Tribe of Judah) joined in a special Waterman’s Service at St James’ Church in Hemingford Grey, Cambridgeshire, as part of the celebrations for the annual village regatta. Their appearance was on the invitation of Dan Forshaw, the worship minister at St James’ Church, who himself had spent a period of time at Jesus House between December 2005 and January 2007 doing a study placement, as part of the requirement for his degree in Theology, Music and Worship at the London School of Theology. Leading both morning and evening church services and hosting an afternoon workshop, the Tribe of Judah presented different worship styles in a practical demonstration of unity in Christian worship.
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Maximising Potential J esus House seeks to create an environment in which people are enabled to live out their purpose to the full. We are therefore committed to investing in the lives of individuals within and outside the church by creating opportunities for development in order to help people cultivate and maximise their core skills and potential.
We also believe that individual gifts and talents are meant to be deployed in serving humanity and therefore create opportunities for people to serve with their gifts whilst
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also encouraging them to excel in their various endeavours, becoming the best that they can possibly be in life. As another generation of Christians was introduced to concepts of service, leadership, accountability and influence, 2012 saw the fruits of previous investments begin to flourish, witnessing impressive feats and activities such as the release of our own debut feature-length movie production and a host of examples of potential being maximised.
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Maximising Your Potential Sunday
portion of the Scriptures that encapsulates our desire as a church to encourage individuals in maximising their potential is found in the book of 1st Peter and reads as follows: “Each of you should use whatever gift you have received to serve others,
as faithful stewards of God’s grace in its various forms.” (1 Peter 4:10 NIV). In July 2012, an entire Sunday service was dedicated to recognising the achievements of a number of young members of the church who had taken this injunction to heart and used their gifts to benefit society. She started writing when she was only 10 years old but her publishers had to wait for her to finish her A Levels before she could deliver her first manuscript, eventually becoming the youngest ever female signing of prestigious publishers Faber and Faber. He was raised in an environment that precluded opportunities and literally guaranteed that people did not amount to anything in life, which makes his achievements all the more remarkable. She was a mother on maternity leave, juggling a career as a business analyst with raising very young children and supporting the recovery of
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completion notwithstanding various challenges and obstacles along the way. At 21 years old, Chibundu’s achievements are staggering. During the process of getting her debut novel published she also managed to secure a first-class honours degree in History from King’s College London and in the months since ‘The Spider King’s Daughter’s’ release, she racked up more successes when she became the youngest author to be shortlisted for the Dylan
a sick husband, yet employing a creative mind and demonstrating tenacity in a difficult and competitive market.
Thomas Prize for young writers and was also long-listed for the £10,000 Desmond Elliott Prize for debut novelists.
These are the stories of three ordinary people who have stepped out boldly in pursuit of their dreams. Chibundu Onuzo, the 21 year-old author of ‘The Spider King’s Daughter’ who has taken the literary world by storm; Samuel Kasunmu, a 25 year-old who has emerged as a young social entrepreneur and author who is respected in the UK business community as a leading business man with influence across sectors; and Abigail Obar, a 37 year-old inventor of the unique board game ‘Medal Haul’, who has been dubbed ‘mother of invention’. These three were presented to the congregation at Jesus House on Maximising Your Potential Sunday (15th July 2012) as examples of ordinary people who took an idea from conception through to
Growing up, Samuel Kasunmu saw first-hand the difficulties experienced by minority groups attempting to break into the labour market and whilst still at University he set up Elevation Networks which is a student-led social enterprise that helps make young people from under-represented groups more competitive in the labour market. Elevation Network has over 8000 members across the UK and has worked with a range of organisations including the BBC, Deloitte, Barclays Capital, IBM, the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales, and has secured partnerships with the Olympics and Channel 4. Abigail’s dedication to her dream is noteworthy.
Her board game ‘Medal Haul’ was inspired by the Olympics and features an athletics track on a board with different sporting events. It is a family game and imparts lessons on fair play, the dangers of taking performanceenhancing drugs and triumph over adversity. Self-funding the first production batch of the game, she set out to attract the interest of retailers and market the product without any assistance from established companies. During the yearlong process, she gave birth to her third child, held down a full time job and cared for a convalescing spouse. The game’s release has seen Abigail poised to attract the attention of the UK toy industry. She has certainly captured the interest of David Smith, founder of ToyTalk.co.uk, an online magazine covering the world of toys in the UK and writer of the book ‘100 Classic Toys’. David remarked that: “Abigail has some way to go until she can take her place in the pantheon of great toy and game inventors, but I find it incredibly admirable that she has come so far on her own. While so many in the industry are just looking to wheel out another tired-looking range of licensed products, Abigail has created something entirely new.” All three, long standing members of Jesus House, were showcased by Pastor Agu as examples of people who were using their gifts to serve others.
Emerging Leaders’ Breakfast
he Emerging Leaders’ breakfast, held at the AJW Marriot Hotel, Park Lane, London on Saturday 8th September, was part of a programme of activities spearheaded by the Youth ministry at Jesus House and aimed at preparing 16-21 year olds at Jesus House and our wider network of churches to live productive and meaningful lives thereby contributing to the well-being of society. The programme was designed to instil a sense of value and worth in the young people who received invitations based on recommendations from their pastors or youth leaders. A carefully selected panel of speakers led by renowned relationship expert and founder of ‘Make It* Happen’, Mr Matt Bird, shared their knowledge and experiences with a view to challenging and inspiring the audience of young men and women. ‘Make It* Happen’ creates value for organisations by turning big ideas, audacious goals and unique opportunities into reality through innovative and impactful campaigns and events. The other speakers were Faber and Faber’s youngest ever signing and author of ‘The Spider King’s Daughter’, Miss Chibundu Onuzo, multi-award winning gospel artist Michael Ayo (also known as ‘Faith Child’), author and motivational speaker Sotonye Deru and Cambridge undergraduate Leke Abolade. Following on from the event’s success, a range of similar meetings have been planned for 2013/2014, to further support the equipping of our youth for responsible living.
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Supporting Youth involvement in Church Social Responsibility Tearfund Transform Project
Reaching Kilimanjaro’s summit
esus House’s key objectives include creating an awareness in the congregation that each person has the capacity to change the world and helping to channel the talents, passions and skills possessed by the individuals who pass through our doors towards areas in which they can help transform lives. We encourage them to give the best of whatever they possess, no matter how little the potential for making a difference seems. Mount Kilimanjaro is the highest freestanding mountain in the world, and the highest point in the continent of Africa, and Jesus House member Dembi Olufon braved the elements and obstacles to climb to its summit in a bid to raise funds for Kids Company (KidsCo), a London-based charity that provides practical, emotional and educational support to vulnerable inner-city children. Only 30% of people who attempt to climb Kilimanjaro make it to the top but Dembi held on to the belief that her faith would see her safely within the group that achieved their objective as she sought to improve the lives of others less fortunate than she was. Undeterred by the challenging terrain, the threat of electrical 26 | New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012
storms, temperatures of minus twenty degrees, and the risk of altitude mountain sickness, she embarked on the 13-hour trip from London and submitted herself to hours of trekking and hiking following early starts and only a few hours sleep. The climbers were supported by a team of 74 men – a chief guide, nine assistant guides, two cooks, 11 chief porters and 51 porters – one of whom was to come to Dembi’s rescue when she slipped during a climb. His intervention prevented her from falling further just moments after she had watched a fellow climber fall and roll downhill. Despite freezing conditions and the threat of flooding, Dembi was one of the 18 climbers (out of a total of 20) to make it to all three summit points – Gilman’s, Stella’s and the highest, Uhuru Peak. Asked to sum up her experience, she said: “I’m feeling a little nostalgic. The trip really is over. We’ve walked, climbed, hiked and even crawled, but we all got to the top, and boy, does it feel AMAZING! Now all we have to do is get off this mountain.” Dembi exceeded her initial target of £3000 and was able to raise an impressive £4,640 in support of KidsCo, her chosen charity.
art of our desire as a church is to see our young people transformed for good and equipped to transform the world around them. To this effect, we offer our support in their charitable and other life-changing activities. In 2012 members of the Jesus House congregation supported teenager Ayobami Akinlaso as he volunteered on a group project in Tanzania with the charity ‘Go MAD’ (‘Go Make A Difference’). ‘Go MAD’ operates through Tearfund, an international development agency, and has been carrying out missionary work in Tanzania since 1994, building water tanks, simple housing structures and helping in local orphanages. The primary aim of this particular trip was to provide basic necessities like water and shelter for the inhabitants of a community, where clean drinking water is not easily accessible. Its inhabitants are unable to drink and wash in the available water without the worry of disease. Other activities in which the group was involved included building toilets for the local community and a visit to an albino sanctuary which is home to several albino children whose particular circumstances make them vulnerable to attacks and persecution from the wider community; Tanzania is thought to have the largest albino population in Africa. As he interacted with various members of the community, Ayobami was increasingly touched by the generosity of people who had so little. Describing one experience during which a villager invited them into her home he said that it was: “very poignant as, even though she didn’t have much by our standards, she still rolled out the red carpet treatment [for us].” The trip had a lasting effect on him and awakened a desire to seek other opportunities to assist in improving the lives of those less fortunate than himself
Jesus House Movie Premiere – Halima
he first feature length movie with a full cast and production team comprised entirely of members of Jesus House was premiered with two screenings on Saturday, 15th September. This development moves the church into a new phase in its life as a cinema centre for faith revival films. The 90-minute film ‘Halima’, produced by Moving Images (a Creative Arts Ministry in Jesus House) in partnership with Volunteer Movies Studios (VM studios), is about friendship, fraud, faith, retribution and redemption. According to the director, Bosun Sadare, who has no previous film-making experience, the script was inspired
by the challenges faced by young Africans in the diaspora: “The movie takes you on a journey of fun, hardships, choices and power plays, vanity and realities, until the real master plan for the redemption of a soul is unravelled”. Bosun is clear that this is not just another Christian movie: “The vision is to create movies that challenge the popular way of thinking in society; movies that will not be categorised as ‘Christian’ thus excluding potential audiences who need to hear the gospel most. The film presents the gospel in a new light that some may never have seen before and creates a platform for the audience to express their thoughts.”
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Impacting Lives T hrough our Pursuit of God, the discovery of purpose and the maximisation of innate potential and opportunities, the aim of the church is to transform, for the better, the lives of the people with whom we come in contact and to make a lasting and progressive impact in the lives of those within our reach locally and internationally. In doing so, we aim to introduce a practical Christianity that extends its arms to people regardless of creed, colour, belief or socioeconomic grouping, and seeks, to help in addressing those needs that we are equipped to meet. In this way we strive to bridge the gap that exists between God and the world He is longing to reach, by meeting the needs of the underprivileged in our immediate environs,
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equipping them with necessary skills and abilities to better their own lives, or celebrating their achievements and contributions to their communities. We see ourselves as representatives of God on earth (His hands and feet) and therefore look to extend our hearts to others in far-flung parts of the world, letting them know that they are not alone in their fight for a better quality of existence and hopefully equipping them to ensure that our own impact simply sets off a ripple effect until the world as a whole can be seen to be a better place. In all these, the ultimate aim is to point people to a God who sees, cares and helps His people and to facilitate meaningful personal relationships with Jesus Christ His son.
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Sending love in a shoebox: The Operation Christmas Child Project
ollectively, the Church is charged with the responsibility of taking the gospel message, with practical demonstrations of Jesus’s love, to various parts of the world. In 2012, Jesus House partnered with Samaritan’s Purse on its Operation Christmas Child ‘love in a shoebox’ Project to bring joy to thousands of underprivileged children in Liberia, West Africa. Samaritan’s Purse is an International relief organisation which provides physical and spiritual aid to victims of war, poverty, natural disasters, disease and famine. Since 1993, the project has brought hope to children in over 130 countries through gift-filled shoe boxes in a practical expression of the love of Jesus. Jesus House supported the 2012 target to deliver the 100-millionth shoebox to a child by providing in excess of 8000 shoeboxes filled with gifts in the run-up to Christmas. Pastor Sola Irukwu, head of Church Social Responsibility at Jesus House provided the background to the Church’s 30 | New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012
involvement: “I read about Operation Christmas Child in our church magazine and thought it would be great for Jesus House to get involved; we originally thought we would do 5,000 shoeboxes, but we were told that 8,000 boxes would fill a container and I thought it would be great if we could do that instead.” What started out as a thought burgeoned into a movement of hundreds of people in the church who were united in one goal – to make a child’s Christmas memorable whilst sharing the love of Jesus Christ. After several weeks of collecting, filling, wrapping and packing shoeboxes, the loading day finally arrived and dozens of volunteers from the church turned up to load the 20-foot container and send it off on its long journey to Africa.
Overwhelmed by the response of the church, Simon Barrington, UK executive director for Samaritan’s Purse, who was there to help load the shoeboxes said: “It’s absolutely incredible that from one church in their first year of being involved in Operation Christmas Child they’ve really caught the vision for the programme of making a difference for children who otherwise wouldn’t have got a present. But they’ve also caught the understanding that this is about showing God’s love to children in need in countries across the world.” These gifts have the potential to open the door to the transformation of entire communities as the local Church recognises its unique opportunity to serve as an agent of change by meeting the needs of society’s poor, marginalised and vulnerable members.
The Colindale Food bank
he Manna Project’ was set up six years ago as one of Jesus House’s community initiatives geared towards helping the poor and needy members of the community. The aim was to provide and distribute food to families in crisis within the Grahame Park area of Colindale, an estate which had been identified as one of the most underprivileged in the borough of Barnet. The project involved asking members of Jesus House to donate items of groceries which were then taken to our shop front premises – the Novo Centre - on the Graham Park estate. Over the years, this initiative served to bridge the gap in providing food for those in crisis on the estate. However, in 2012, we realised that the need to feed families in crisis was borough wide. After much research and consultation we decided to partner and work alongside the Trussell Trust which works to empower local communities to combat poverty and exclusion. The Trust enabled us to set up a proper food bank in the middle of last year that would serve a wider area of need within the borough. This enlargement of scope also necessitated the change of name of the initiative to ‘Colindale Food Bank’. The benefit of working with the Trussell Trust is
that we are able to use a well tested and successful administrative mechanism, which allows us to plug in to their national marketing and advertising campaigns in the form of national food drives with supermarkets. At present the Colindale Food Bank works closely with twenty referral agencies within the borough, to refer the growing number of families in crisis to collect food parcels from us. We are also partnering with other churches in the borough to set up distribution centres which cater for the needs of the communities that we serve. We have regular food donations from churches and individuals and also work closely with supermarkets to collect food from shoppers. The food donations are initially stored in a warehouse and sorted according to food and date type, they are then transported to the food bank located at the Novo Centre on the Grahame Park Estate for distribution on Thursdays. During the transition period from Manna Project to Colindale Foodbank the following testimonials were received from users of the service: Testimonials from people who have benefited from the Manna store “I think Jesus house is doing a very good job, my food collection day falls on the same day my
benefit runs out, so I’m really happy.” “When I found out about the Manna store, I didn’t believe I could get food for free. When I came into the store, my first reaction was: Wow! this is just like going to Tesco for free.” “I’m really grateful for the support I get at Manna store. Food prices are so expensive now, so the support I get from the store is really helpful.” “The staff at the Manna store are really helpful; they also assist in helping to pack our shopping, and go as far as taking it to our house. For instance, Irene who was heavily pregnant couldn’t lift her shopping, so one of the volunteers carried it to her house.” “I have been benefiting from the Manna store for the past one year; it’s a huge relief to know that when my budget is really tight, I can get food for free from the Manna store.” Tite Pollyn, the Novo Centre Manager (where the Supermarket is located), remarked that: “Almost everyone who came to the store was shocked and excited. They found it hard to believe that they could get food for free, in these difficult times. Most of the customers were astounded but very happy to receive free food.”
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Christmas Lunch on Jesus
ver 150 volunteers from Jesus House braved the very wet weather on the weekend of 21st and 22nd December to assemble and deliver Christmas hampers to some of the most deprived families in the borough of Barnet through the Christmas Lunch on Jesus (CLOJ) initiative. Since its inception in 2007, over 10,000 hampers have been delivered to families in need at Christmas, with the event attracting over 250 volunteers from different churches who provide much needed help through the various stages of the project. The CLOJ initiative was pioneered
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by Jesus House as the sole contributor and executor in 2007. Since then, the church has increasingly partnered with other churches in the borough in order to reach out to more underprivileged members of the community as well to exemplify the principle of serving the community together in unity. For the 2012 CLOJ, the number of partnering churches had increased to 25.
meal we believe every family should have. The CLOJ project is supported each year by local councillors, MPs and the Mayor’s office.
Each Christmas, hampers containing items with a street value in excess of £40 are delivered to around 2000 families in the borough to enable them to give their families the kind of Christmas
Ladies from the Abigail’s Court ministry, which cares for the elderly, also delivered hampers to twelve residential homes and further lifted their spirits by singing Christmas carols.
One young mother said, on receiving her hamper: “I am a single mum on benefits with children and a young baby. I really appreciate the hamper because I haven’t got enough money to celebrate this season.”
Spreading Christmas Cheer
olunteers turned out in large numbers for the 2012 ‘Spreading Christmas Cheer’ project, which took place from Monday 17th to Friday 21st December, with hot cups of tea, coffee and pastries at the ready for commuters in and around Barnet train stations as they made their way to work and school. Volunteers from over 33 churches in Barnet, including Jesus House, took part in the project at their local underground stations. Spreading Christmas Cheer was started by Jesus House in 2004. The aim of this initiative was to practically demonstrate Christian love by going out of our way to bring a smile (and warmth) to the hearts of train commuters on the cold winter mornings. Starting at Brent Cross station, which is our local train station, we served hot beverages and pies to hundreds of commuters during the week-long project between the hours of 7am and 11am. In 2012, the Spreading Christmas Cheer project had expanded to cover 13 train stations within the borough of Barnet and served in excess of 5000 commuters.
One volunteer said: “It was amazing seeing the number of people that came out to help and it was good to see the commuters being cheerful as well. A lot of them would even ask why we were doing what we were doing and it allowed us to tell them about Jesus.” At several stations, including Brent Cross and Mill Hill East, there were also reports that people had committed their lives to Jesus, as a result of this practical demonstration of God’s love. Agatha Okafor, the Spreading Christmas Cheer project manager, said: “We had so many good stories this year, which reaffirms to us that God is really doing something in this borough and beyond; and this tells us that this is a fantastic project to be a part of. “We just hope that through what took place at these train stations, the love of Christ was able to shine to the fullest.”
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Honouring our senior citizens
ne of the most effective ministries in Jesus House is the Abigail’s Court – a group of ladies who have dedicated themselves over the years to caring for the elderly citizens in our local community. The Bible teaches us to honour and to value older people rightly, and at a time when society tends to seemingly turn its back on those advanced in age, the church has an opportunity to reach out in love to a group that is often marginalised. The members of Abigails’ Court serve by regularly visiting the old people’s homes in our borough. They spend time talking to, encouraging and
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engaging many elderly residents, some of whom have sadly been forgotten by relatives. Once a year, in honour of these senior citizens and in recognition of their past contributions to society, Jesus House hosts a Celebration of Life event, organised and hosted by Abigail’s Court. The 2012 event took place on Saturday 4th May. Over 400 senior citizens from 50 care homes in the boroughs of Brent and Barnet were welcomed to the church by volunteers of all ages with a single white rose and treated to a
slap-up meal. The special guests this year were His Worshipful, Councillor Michael Adeyeye, Mayor of Brent and his wife, MP Matthew James Offord for Hendon and Teresa Villiers, MP for Chipping Barnet. Expressing her delight at the event’s success, Mrs. Stella Jackson-Obot, head of Abigail’s Court said: “The Celebration of Life banquet is an opportunity to extend our love to the elderly in our community who we know don’t often get a chance to come out of their care homes, so a dinner and dance makes a welcome change from everyday life.”
Barnet Youth Business Incubator
lthough the majority of young people in Barnet are presently in education, employment or training, there are approximately 3.6% who are not (compared with 6.4% nationally). Research suggests that this disengagement of those who fall into the ‘Not in Education, Employment or Training’ (NEET) category can lead to them becoming negative contributors to the community by way of nuisance and crime, leading also to increased criminality, welfare dependency, housing and a wide range of social and economic consequences. In response to this, the Barnet Youth Business Incubator (BaYBI) was launched as a Jesus House initiative to provide an alternative path for these young people. The incubator (BaYBI) takes NEETs and other young people who may have lost their way or are at risk of doing so, or those who are unsure about their future prospects and gives them the opportunity to start their own businesses. They are also given educational support, training and mentorship and shown how to write business plans, create a website and trade as an actual registered business. In a short space of time, the BaYBI project has gained several clients from socially and economically deprived Grahame Park Estate in the Colindale ward, with existing business ideas such as: a music studio, manufacturing a car which houses a bed, and the creation of an interactive paintballing venue for young people.
Christians Against Poverty launch
he recent economic decline and the subsequent rise in the cost of living across the UK resulted in a dramatic reduction of disposable income in the borough of Barnet. Although known as a fairly affluent borough, even resident middle income families have felt the force of this fiscal reality, with sudden job losses and collapsed investments dramatically altering the lives of the affected individuals. In response to this, Jesus House collaborated with North West Church to start a debt advice centre under the umbrella of national charity, Christians Against Poverty (CAP). CAP aims to show God’s love in action by providing sustainable poverty relief through debt counselling, advice and practical help. The centre, which is based on the church’s premises, works in three main ways: to manage clients’ domestic budgets, set up CAP accounts from where bills and debts can be paid, and address severe debt, bankruptcy and insolvency problems. Since its opening in the middle of 2012, the centre has been fully booked with clients from all walks of life, and has been welcomed by other agencies working in Barnet, many of whom are now referring people to it. At the end of November a launch event was held; the Mayor of Barnet, a London MEP, and the CEO of Barnet homes came to hear about CAP’s work. A number of other charity workers and church leaders were also in attendance.
Run by Jesus House in partnership with Elevations Network, and with the assistance of trained professionals, it serves as a frontline response to catch the NEETs before they slip through the gap and potentially fall into a life of crime, or end up as another statistic. New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012 | 35
Week of Serving
s God’s agents, the Church is charged with a responsibility to lend a helping hand where possible in an increasingly fractured society. This is done through activities that allow members to serve the local community in diverse ways. 2011 was a very difficult year in the UK with unprecedented displays of wanton destruction and looting of property recorded across the country. Faced with the biggest civil disorder to hit mainland Britain in several decades, the Prime Minister proclaimed the “moral collapse” of society. Whilst there were acts of mayhem and destruction, there were also acts of selfless heroism by individuals who were determined to fight against the breakdown of their communities. In the aftermath of the riots in London which
had left thousands of people homeless and hopeless, the ‘Week of Serving’ was initiated by Jesus House in the borough of Barnet to encourage Christ-like love and service in the local community. The church teamed up with members of the community to make a difference and to restore hope and trust through simple acts of kindness. Two weeks in May and August respectively were designated as Weeks of Serving in 2012 and teams of volunteers performed various community-based acts of service for residents in the borough of Barnet, such as trimming hedges, mowing lawns, sweeping pavements and clearing rubbish. One resident who had her front garden tended and weeds cut said; “I am so grateful for the work that was done, this would normally have cost at least £200”. Job Onuh who project-managed the event, said: “Local residents in Barnet just can’t understand why people would give up their time to do this. This is about showing God’s love in a practical way and it’s even more fun because we get to go out into the sun and do some good work.”
Home Makeover Project
n Saturday 11th August 2012, towards the end the August ‘Week of Serving’, the church’s Community Action team with the support of the Facilities department put smiles on the faces of two Barnet residents. Single mom Juliet Ruocco and her 15-year old daughter who had recently experienced challenging times had their home renovated as part of the ‘Home Makeover Project’ which was inspired by the popular TV show ‘Extreme Makeover’ in which deserving families are treated to free home improvements within a specified time. Dressed in overalls and old t-shirts, volunteers from the church demonstrated their decoration, room arrangement, design, cleaning and cabinet making skills to help make the family’s home more comfortable in just 10 hours. Mrs Dolapo Oluteye, Facilities manager at Jesus House, was on hand to deliver the project and ensure quality control. One volunteer said: “It was a real opportunity to lend a hand to a lone parent family in need in our community”. Expressing her delight, an excited Julia Ruocco said: “Thank you so much. You guys were so wonderful, professional and friendly; I still can’t believe this is my new home!” The newly refurbished rooms included new cabinets, carpets and furniture.
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Celebrating the Queen’s Jubilee
Jesus House Football Academy
hirty young people aged between 8 and 16 were cheered on by their parents as they received medals and certificates of achievement after completing a two-week football academy organised by Jesus House on 17th August. The Football Academy is one of many summer activities organised yearly to engage the young people during the long summer holidays. The Academy imparted skills applicable to all areas of life through soccer drills. This life-skill approach saw a number of nonathlete achievers invited to speak to the participants: they included music artiste Otty Warmann, fashion designer Shola Dada, and young entrepreneur Ronke Adekanmbi. All three advised the budding stars to put their talents to use in blessing others, adding that success should be
viewed by the value they have added and not by fame or material wealth. Ileola Akintimehin, aged 9, one of two girls who attended, said, “At first I thought it was going to be quite hard, being a girl, but I grew into it and I have enjoyed it so much.”
n Sunday 3rd June Jesus House joined the nation in celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee, with Union Jack bunting flapping from the gates as congregants arrived for the special Diamond Jubilee service. The service celebrated the 60th year of HRH Queen Elizabeth II’s coronation as Defender of the Christian faith and Head of the Commonwealth. The church joined with the people of Great Britain and the Commonwealth to applaud 60 years of dedicated service, and to pray for God’s continued grace over her life. Children from Kidz First, the Jesus House children’s ministry, came dressed up in the colours of the Union Jack or a national outfit from one of the Commonwealth nations. The Worshipful Mayor of Barnet, Councillor Brian Schama, and his wife attended as guests of honour. Visitors from countries in the Commonwealth, most of whom were dressed in their nation’s traditional attire, also showed their support by attending.
Ileola’s mother, Ms Folake Adama, echoed her daughter’s sentiments, adding, “She has really grown, her character has become much stronger.” At the closing ceremony Paul Sevier, who ran the academy, said, “We have found a gradual change and progression of attitudes in the children. They can see that football can be used as a springboard to nurture their character. We are training the children to win.” New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012 | 37
air crash victims
he Apostle Paul’s letter to the Romans (in verse 15 of chapter 12) places an injunction on the Church to “mourn with those who mourn.” Jesus House embraced this injunction following news reports from Nigeria on Sunday 3rd June of the crash of a commercial aircraft. Dana Air flight 992 travelling from the nation’s capital Abuja to Lagos had crashed into a residential neighbourhood in the Iju-Ishaga locality of Lagos, minutes from landing. All 153 passengers and crew on board were killed, as well as an indeterminate number on the ground. Hundreds gathered at Jesus House less than a week later - on Saturday, 9th June - to pay tribute to the victims, and to pray for the families and loved ones they had left behind. Given Jesus House’s origins in the city of Lagos, and the role it plays in the black-majority church community in the UK, it was fitting for the church to conduct the memorial service. However, the crash had an additional impact on the church. Two of its committed members, both of whom had relocated to Nigeria to further their careers, had been present on the flight. On Saturday 9th June, the Jesus House family stood shoulder-toshoulder with a grieving community to honour the lives of those who had passed away.
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Sheltering the homeless
ccording to Crisis, the national charity for single homeless people in the UK, 5678 people slept rough on London’s streets in 2012. In response to revelations by the Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) that 2,181 people sleep rough on any given night across the country, Jesus House embarked on initiatives focused on addressing the issue of homelessness in London. In April 2012 we partnered with several churches in Barnet to support the Emergency Night Shelter programme started in 2003 by a group of churches in the Finchley area of the borough of Barnet. Working in cooperation with Homeless Action in Barnet, these churches offered night shelter during the coldest months of the year for people who would otherwise be sleeping on the streets of the borough. Jesus House joined the scheme in 2012 which required a group of seven churches to ‘own’ a night each over the Christmas period, during which there would be provision of a hot evening meal, warm overnight accommodation and a cooked breakfast the following morning for up to 15 homeless guests who had yet to find a permanent home. The guests came from a range of countries which included the Philippines, Hungary, Romania, Poland, India, Germany and Spain. From 24th December 2012 to 3rd January 2013, during the cold Christmas period when most shelters were closed for the holiday season, several rooms in Jesus House were converted into a dormitory, lounge and dining space for our guests. The additional facilities provided included a laundry and health check service.
Jesus House covered three days of the week (Sunday, Monday and Tuesday) with other days covered by Northwest Church in Colindale, RCCG Open Heavens in Edgware, St. Peter Church of England in Edgware, and RCCG New Life Assembly in Hendon. It is apparent that homelessness is on the rise. This term includes those classified as ‘the hidden homeless’; not sleeping on the streets, but rather, on friend’s sofas and with no place to actually call home. The number in London is in the high hundreds; the figures across the UK are significantly higher. This has prompted churches and organisations alike to try and find ways and programmes in which to support the homeless back into a ‘decent’ way of living, through such similar projects. Ayo Adedoyin, Head of the Community Action Team at Jesus House, said: “As a church body, we must seek to become the answers to the prayers of even more marginalized people in our society as we are the ‘hands and feet’ of Jesus. There is so much that we can do to drive the agenda in this area, as both local and national governments pull back, and even deny, the real scale of the problem.” Economically, the picture for 2013 remains the same if not worse with reports that we are in the throes of a triple-dip recession. Homelessness is likely to be a growing problem for many years to come and Jesus House will continue to participate in the homeless shelter projects for the benefit of our local community. Our long-term focus will examine the possibility of opening a year-round emergency shelter.
The Jesus House Prison ministry
he Jesus House Prisons ministry assists in fulfilling part of our social responsibility as a church. We have a God-given mandate to support the work of the Prison Services, Young Offenders Centres and Immigration Services by assisting in the rehabilitation process of the inmates. This responsibility is highlighted in Scriptures as follows: “…Lord, when did we see you …in prison and go to visit you?” 40‘The King will reply, “Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.” (Matthew 25: 37–40 NKJV) The church’s involvement in prisons dates back to 2004 when a team of volunteers led by the late Pastor Ify Irukwu began supporting the work of the chaplaincy at HMP Bronzefield, Ashford, Surrey, shortly after it opened in June of that year as a top security prison for women. Since then the ministry has expanded and Jesus House is now in two other institutions: the Harmondsworth Immigration Removal Centre, and HM Prison Aylesbury, a young-offenders institution for long-term male inmates between the ages of 17 and 21.
The team works with the relevant chaplaincy to support the inmates in their Christian walk by helping to provide an environment for spiritual growth, donating resources such as bibles and books, and running seminars and other events to help with their spiritual and personal development. In October 2012 Jesus House was invited by the Diversity and Equality team at HMP Bronzefield to participate in the celebrations for Black History Month. At present the work of the ministry includes a letter writing service to inmates, the provision of Christmas gifts to the children of inmates and practical support to resettle newly released offenders in the community. The church’s long term goals include the expansion of its work to additional prisons. Testimonials from the prisons “Thank you, thank you, thank you for Sunday. There has been some very positive feedback from the young men ‘as if you were speaking direct into each heart’ - thank you.” – Malcolm Hunter, Anglican Coordinating Chaplain HMYOI Aylesbury.
“Once again may I thank you and the management team at Jesus House for all your support. A more formal letter of thanks will be coming shortly.” – Simeon Sturney, Community Chaplaincy Project Manager, HMP & YOI Bronzefield. “I am immensely grateful to all of you for your ministry here at Harmondsworth. It has brought gospel hope to many. Please pray that over Christmas, this hope will be given to even more detainees. Pray also, that we will be able to continue recruiting volunteers with a love for Jesus and a passion for sharing this with others.” – Patrick Wright, Chaplain & Religious Affairs Manager, The GEO Group UK Ltd, IRC Harmondsworth. “Firstly I would like to say a massive thank you to you and your team for coming in to sing and play at our carol service on Tuesday. Secondly another massive thank you for the children’s gifts you kindly donated. I will ensure they are given out wisely and any that are left will be kept for another special occasion. We really do appreciate all your support and the kindness shown. Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.” – Jackie Smart, Manager IRC Colnbrook. New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012 | 39
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esus House has a pastoral council that has as its remit spiritual oversight and leadership for the church. The Pastoral Council is made up of 16 pastors, each with a clear role and responsibility for overseeing specific areas of church life, with Pastor Agu Irukwu at its helm. Consisting of individuals from backgrounds as varied as Law, Medicine, IT, Music, Sales and Marketing, Pharmacy and Business, the Council members bring a wealth
the engine of skills and experience to their roles, which ultimately benefit the church body. The churchâ€™s administrative activities are coordinated from within the Church Office with a dedicated team of 50 full-time employees who function under clearly defined sections and divisions in order to meet the organisationâ€™s objectives.
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Changes to the Pastoral Council and Leadership team
n April, Pastors David and Bolanle Ojeh, who were responsible for the church’s Pastoral Care and Teaching ministries respectively, took on a new appointment as Pastors at one of Jesus House’s early church plants, The Milton Keynes Tabernacle, Milton Keynes. Also during the year, there were additional appointments to the church leadership as follows: 42 | New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012
Mr Ayo Adedoyin and Mr Ademola Sobogun were ordained to the office of Assistant Pastor – Mr Sobogun was subsequently posted to head one of the RCCG church plants ‘House of Glory’ in Bedfont; Mr Ndiadia Musenga and Mr Olayemi Olanrewaju were ordained as Deacons, and Mrs Onengiyeofori Sobogun and Mrs Funmilayo Gibson-White were both ordained as Deaconesses.
Having served as Assistant Pastors for seven years, Mrs Funke Adeaga, who oversees the Women’s ministry; Mrs Adenrele Runsewe, who heads the Children’s ministry; and Mr Mark Menda, who pastors the French church, were elevated to the office of Full Pastor.
cross the parishes of the Redeemed Christian Church of God worldwide, a week is designated every year to appreciate the work of the pastors and their service to their churches and congregations. In this respect we are following the Bible’s directive to honour our leaders: “Now we ask you, brothers and sisters, to acknowledge those who work hard among you, who care for you in the Lord and who admonish you. Hold them in the highest regard in love because of their work.” (1 Thessalonians 5:12-13. NIV) In 2012, the Pastors’ Appreciation Week ran from 12th-19th May. At Jesus House, the week culminated in a service on Sunday 20th May which was dedicated to highlighting the diverse roles of the pastors and their contributions to the development of the church. It was also an opportunity to reflect on the early life of the church and its journey thus far. Church office staff who had played a key role in the history of Jesus House were also acknowledged by Pastor Agu. Mrs Tinuke Aderemi, the longest-serving member of staff, who presently manages the Festival of Life office spoke to the congregation about the early years.
Pastoral Council (pictured on opposite page, l-r from top to bottom)
Agu Irukwu Senior Pastor
Sola Irukwu Church Social Responsibility
Children’s Ministry & Counselling
Youth & Singles Ministries
Pages Bookshop & Creative Ministries
Mark Menda French Church
Marceline Menda French Church
Vera Omonedo Church Plants
Above: Caricatures commissioned in honour of the pastoral council for Pastors’ Appreciation Day.
Prayer & Senior Pastor’s Office Counselling
Senior Pastor’s Office
Evangelism & Prisons
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Jesus House Phase 2 Expansion Project
fter the euphoria of the move to the new auditorium in March 2011 â€“ a project designated as Phase One expansion, the church embarked on the second phase (Phase 2) of the expansion project of its facilities in 2012. Phase One was the conversion of a previously disused warehouse adjoining the (old) Jesus House auditorium which had housed the church since its move to Brent Terrace in 2004. The newly converted hall (current Worship Centre) now provides a modern, fully equipped 1600-seater hall where the main 44 | New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012
services and functions of the church take place. Having moved to the new auditorium, the Phase 2 expansion involved converting the old auditorium in order to create larger ancillary accommodation to cater for the needs of a growing congregation whilst also providing facilities that would benefit the local community. The Phase 2 expansion created more classrooms for the children and young people who attend the church, as well as a chapel for varied functions such
as weddings, group meeting rooms, a new hospitality suite, a fully equipped mother and baby room and other facilities such as a music recording studio. Phase 2 also involved the provision of additional toilets (which have been hailed as the highlight of the expansion project). These additional facilities have enabled the church expand the scope of its activities and its service to both the congregation and the local community.
financial report New Horizons: The Jesus House Annual Review 2012 | 45
his finance section of the 2012 Annual Report contains important information on Gift Aid, the report by the Trustees of the Charity and a summary of the financial activities for the 2012 financial year. Grow your giving with Gift Aid As a UK taxpayer, your donations can gain an extra 25p for every £1 you give. The Gift Aid scheme allows us to claim the basic rate of tax you have paid on any donation you make. Even better, higher rate tax payers can claim additional tax benefits for donations they make to charity, which you can keep or pass on to any charitable organisation. Simply indicate how much you have paid into your Jesus House Account when completing your tax selfassessment form. Each year, we claim an extra £500,000 in Gift Aid on behalf of Jesus House donors which makes a world of difference for the amazing work that we do. It’s very easy to join the scheme; simply fill a Gift Aid declaration form and help us keep an accurate record of your giving by completing the offering envelopes/referencing your direct transfers correctly. Important Gift Aid Information You must ensure you have paid enough Income Tax and/or Capital Gains Tax to cover the amount that Jesus House and all the charities you donate to will reclaim for that tax year. Do note that council tax and VAT do not count. Thank you for your continued support!
REPORT OF THE TRUSTEES
The Trustees, who are also Directors for the purposes of Company Law, are pleased to present the annual report for the year ended 31st December 2012.
OBJECTIVES AND ACTIVITIES
STRUCTURE GOVERNANCE AND MANAGEMENT Jesus House is a charitable company limited by guarantee, incorporated on 4 August 2000 and registered as a charity on 27 September 2001. It has a non-charitable subsidiary company, New Dimensions Trading Limited. It is governed by its Memorandum and Articles of Association and is managed by a Board of Trustees. Decisions are determined by a simple majority vote by the Trustees who set the strategic direction of the Charity. Delegated authority has been given to the Pastoral Board and Management Team for the day to day running of the operations of the Charity. Trustees are selected on the basis of the contribution that they will make to the governance of the organisation and the skills that they will contribute. They are provided with copies of the Charity Commission’s Guidance to Trustees and are also provided with training as and when required. Jesus House is a parish of the Redeemed Christian Church of God – a network comprised of churches all over the world. There is an Agreement for Common Purposes entered into by Jesus House with the Redeemed Christian Church of God which documents this relationship. The Trustees have assessed the major risks to which the Charity is exposed, in particular those relating to the specific operational areas of the Charity and its finances. The Trustees believe that by monitoring reserve levels, by ensuring controls exist over key financial systems and by examining the operational and business risks faced by the Charity, they have established effective systems to mitigate those
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The Charity’s objects are: “The advancement of the Christian religion worldwide;” “The relief of poverty worldwide.” These objects are charitable and operate for the public benefit. It pursues these objects by the operation of a centre for Christian worship at its premises in Brent Terrace, Brent Cross, London and a Community Centre based in Graeme Park, Colindale, London. Church Social Responsibility and Community Action are two units within Jesus House that focus purely on helping the disadvantaged and less privileged within its local community and overseas, all of the services offered through the communitycentred projects are available to the public. In determining how best to pursue these objects the Trustees have had regard to the Charity Commission’s guidance on public benefit. The Charity’s main objective for the year was: •
Strengthening and expanding the reach and impact of its charitable activities under the Church Social Responsibility umbrella to help the underprivileged and disadvantaged locally and internationally.
STRATEGIES The Charity’s strategies for achieving these objectives were: • •
Building Strategic alliances with partner organisations to execute its CSR agenda both locally and internationally. Active Fundraising to help achieve these objectives.
Significant activities that contributed to the achievement of these objectives were:
Events organised during the year to promote the Christian faith included Pentecost 2012; Heart & Soul of the Church Conference; The Emerging Leaders Breakfast Meeting; The Operation Christmas Child Project where we partnered with the Charity Samaritan’s Purse where we donated 8,000 shoe boxes stuffed with gifts for children in Liberia, as well as the support for the bi-annual Festival of Life event. Other activities to help engage with the local community included the Uncommon Woman Conference; the Oasis Network Conference; The School’s Easter Art Exhibition; Do you See Me? The Church and Disability Conference; Community Week of Serving; Local Youth Football Academy; The Home Make-Over Project; The ‘Spreading Christmas Cheer’ outreach which provided free hot drinks and mince pies to commuters at local tube stations and The Christmas Lunch on Jesus which is an annual community centered project that provides people in need in the Borough with a Christmas Hamper.
With over 650 volunteers who support and make an invaluable contribution to the operations of the Charity, some of the major departments include: • • • • • • • • • • • • •
Youth Ministry Multimedia Facilities Junior Church Music Community Action Prayer Publications IT Welfare Outreach Mens’ Ministry Womens’ Ministry
ACHIEVEMENTS AND PERFORMANCE FOR THE PUBLIC BENEFIT •
The Charity, through the departments
• • •
mentioned above organises events and meetings to promote its objects. The Charity continues to provide invaluable financial and administrative support to the Festival of Life prayer event held bi-annually. The Charity continues to provide substantial financial support to other charities (locally, nationally and internationally) operating within its objects. Grant allocation for each year is approved by the Board of Trustees and disbursement to various charities is approved by the Management Team. The Charity continues to impact lives across the globe by partnering with the Londrina State Penitentiary (PEL) Brazil to help change the lives of some of its inmates. The Manna Supermarket and Outlet shop, a food distribution service set up for those in need within the Borough and operating out of the Novo Centre. The Charity presented gifts to children in care in the Borough of Barnet. Monthly sponsorship of the Good Shepherd Homes in India. The Novo Centre is a Jesus House community development centre. It continues to expand the work it does in the Grahame Park Estate in Colindale and provides a wide range of services targeted at the different groups of people who live on the estate, ranging from children, single mothers, and the elderly. It operates as a community centre in the first half of the day, offering activities, such as job club, ESOL courses and counselling services, and functions as a youth club during the second half of the day.
RISK MANAGEMENT The Trustees have conducted a review of the major risks which the Charity is exposed. A risk register has been established which identifies the major risks by area of activity, the nature of those risks, the likelihood of the risks happening and the measure taken to manage them. The Trustees review the risk register regularly at their meetings and are satisfied that systems are in place to manage the risks that
have been identified. In particular, insurance cover is in place and the finances of the Charity are kept under review. Appropriate Criminal Records Bureau (CRB) check, supported by regularly reviewed policies are done for all those who work with children or other vulnerable groups with the Charity. Where appropriate, systems have been established to mitigate the risks the Charity faces. Significant external risks to funding have led to the development of a strategic plan which will allow for the diversification of funding and activities. Internal control risks are minimised by the implementation of procedures for authorisation of all transactions and projects. Procedures are in place to ensure compliance with health and safety of members of staff, volunteers, clients and visitors to the Charity. FINANCIAL REVIEW The Trustees consider that the Charity needs to hold reserves equivalent to half a months’ expenditure (approximately £150,000) in order to ensure the ongoing delivery of its charitable objects during an unforeseen downturn in income. The Trustees consider that the current level of reserves for the expansion is below that required and that the Charity should aim to generate more income for the project. The Charity’s principal funding source continues to be the individuals who attend services and make contributions in the form of freewill offerings, tithes and other donations. PLANS FOR FUTURE PERIODS The Charity continues to explore ways of furthering its charitable objectives in an effective manner by ensuring there is awareness of its services and getting more involved in the community. The Charity seeks to provide services and activities that meet the needs of people, this reflects its Christian ethos and beliefs in order to effect change in the moral and spiritual climate of the local Borough.
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financial Report Where did the money come from? Top 6 income sources for 2012 Budget Tithe
The Welfare Scheme Actual
The Jesus House Welfare Scheme aims to fulfil Christ’s command to “love one another” (John 13:34) and to “help the least of these my brethren” (Matthew 25:31-46). The welfare process is deemed as the “hands” and “feet” of Jesus to members of the church who are hurting or who may be going through difficult times either due to illness, bereavement, unemployment and the sheer pressures of life. The scheme has at its heart, the alleviation of poverty. The scheme seeks to ensure that no member of Jesus House is in a position where he/she cannot afford the basic necessities of life i.e. food, shelter and clothing. Although the principal beneficiaries of the scheme are JH members, nonmembers may also benefit from the scheme in exceptional circumstances. 2012 Welfare Scheme at a glance Income
Welfare - General
Welfare - Bereavement
Welfare - Educational
Welfare Funds Expenditure
Where did the money go? Top 6 expenditure items for 2012 Budget Staff Salaries (Admin and Ministry Staff)
Ministry Outreach and Expenses
The Expansion Costs
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Welfare - Widow’s Fund
Welfare - Relocation Total Welfare Expenditure
CONSOLIDATED STATEMENT OF FINANCIAL ACTIVITIES (INCOME AND EXPENDITURE ACCOUNT)
Sheet1 2012 Total Funds £
Unrestricted Funds £
Restricted Funds £
4,138,205 247,832 469
4,338,542 247,832 469
Total incoming resources
RESOURCES EXPENDED Costs of generating funds Fundraising trading: CoGS and other costs Charitable activities Governance costs
222,424 4,823,387 13,457
222,424 5,088,013 13,457
Total resources expended
INCOMING RESOURCES Incoming resources from generated funds Voluntary income Activities for generating funds Investment/Other income Incoming resources from charitable activities
Net Income TRANSFERS Gross transfers between funds
Net movement in funds
Funds brought forward
Funds carried forward
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JESUS HOUSE FOR ALL THE NATIONS 112 Brent Terrace, Brent Cross, London NW2 1LT T: 020 8438 8285 F: 020 8438 8286 firstname.lastname@example.org | www.jesushouse.org.uk