And finally,” the news anchors utter at the end of their broadcasts when at last they get to share an item of good news. Finally, an antidote to counteract the seriousness and negativity of the previous news items. Finally, something to put a smile on people’s faces…

In the midst of the challenges of the last six months, the weariness, the constant pace of change and, for some, inestimable pain and suffering, the words of Psalm 119:68 thankfully remain true, God is good, and He does good things.” His goodness is more than a tag on to our lives meriting a five-minute slot at the end of a hard day; He is goodness personified. 

Jesus declares in John 5:17, My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I too am working,” and this has been so evident here in Wales in recent months. At a time when the Church could have retreated, the Kingdom has been advancing. In a time when the ekklesia could have lost confidence in the Gospel, many people are more willing than ever to share their faith and respond to both the physical and spiritual needs of our nation. 

"Finally, something to put a smile on people’s faces…"

Many of our member churches have shown extravagant generosity in supporting existing projects. Take for example RCCG’s Garden of the Lord church, who have raised funds for charities across Cardiff that work closely with the homeless, elderly and those in need such as Age Cymru, Llamau, Huggard and Cardiff’s Foodbank.

Other churches have quite literally been feeding the hungry. In the market town of Abergavenny, Gateway Church received a call from a headteacher concerned that children would not have a hot meal while the school was closed. Gateway also heard that the NHS night staff at their local hospital needed a hot meal, so for 11 weeks throughout lockdown, volunteers prepared, packaged, labelled and delivered around 1200 cooked meals each week, taking into account specific needs and allergies. They have continued to bless their community by supplying 80 local children with school bags and stationery sets as they return to school.

In Ynys Môn, Capel Goleudy partnered with TLG to bless 81 families on low incomes or free school meal backgrounds with a Parcel of Hope,’ a delivery of a home cooked meal, dessert and a kids activity sharing a message of hope in Jesus. It was also this church who instigated #PrayingForAnglesey, a song and video uniting Christians across the island. Consequently, a beautiful bilingual rendition of Stand by me’ was recorded, showing Christians from various churches holding Praying For Anglesey’ signs. The video has already been viewed online by over 16,000 people!

And finally… be encouraged by the account of New Life Church Llanfair, a new church plant in mid Wales who, having been unable to launch their first Café Church on 5 April have been meeting over Zoom to pray and encourage one another. A group of local teenagers have connected through JAM online and Sweaty Church, which has now morphed into Junior JAM’ – a chance to connect, play games and listen to Jesus. Prior to the rule of six’ being imposed, 26 people between the ages of 9 and 90, gathered to enjoy a socially distanced picnic together with a short time of sharing around God’s word.

These stories are not taken from mega churches with huge resources, they are testimonies of the people of God loving God and loving their neighbours — people who have not become weary in doing good’ (Galatians 6:9) despite the challenges of the day.

So, what stories of good news have come out of your community? How can we make it a priority to share stories of God on the move as our first response in hard times?

"Many of our member churches have shown extravagant generosity."