Community Shop and Cafe
Most of you know me, for those that don’t I’ll give you a little introduction
I’m Lynn Pitcher married to Albert we have two wonderful sons David and Tim
I am Grandmother to Jacob, Ruby and Rosie
And been part of this church since 2006.
Six years ago we felt lead to up sticks and go on an adventure to New Zealand. Before we got to old! Our adventure lasted four years.
While in NZ I volunteered in the salvation army family store, if any of you know the family stores in NZ they are big and every town has one. They are a real blessing to the community and raise money for all the community ministries the Salvation Army run, as well as providing low cost donated goods for the community.
Soon after starting with the store in Timaru I secured the post of assistant manager, and worked in that post for 3 1/2 years receiving training in managing people, communicating with people and having a strong customer focus, in a Christian environment.
I really enjoyed the time and experience gained there and a year before we returned I had a real vision from God and a ﬁre in my belly.
‘To help people in my own back yard’ and to open a community shop for my local community.
On returning 22 months ago I took my vision to the leaders which they recognised. I didn’t think the time was right and put my vision on hold, but every time I thought about it or talked about it I would have a real stirring in my heart and belly. ‘This vision I felt was from God’
On the closing of Noahs Ark I had a stirring again and a quickening in my spirit, but to be considerate to Sam and to show compassion I had to shelve it for awhile. But it just kept coming back time after time. After having a few sleepless nights, prayer and a few conversations my vision started to grow bigger, and what was a vision to open a community shop had now grown to a cafe as well, serving low cost, low risk, low priced food along side the shop which will sell low cost clothes, toys, books etc
I took my vision again to the leaders and to the trustees and my vision was seen and has been approved
So early 2018 we will be opening ‘Christian Life Community Shop and Cafe’
which will be a window to the church serving and being a hub which all the community can access and use
The shop will be managed by me and run by volunteers you, the items for sale will be donated by you and others in the community, the community helping the community, we will have a play cafe, hopefully a dementia cafe, a cafe for the over 60’s, possibly an Internet cafe? In fact we will be open to other suggestions if days and time and volunteer allow. Signposting to other organisations i.e. CAP, Parenting classes, Alpha, marriage courses the list can be endless helping needy people in the community. Prayer for those wanting it, friendship and somewhere for the lonely in the area to go for a friendly chat. statistics for hereford say 1 in 5 elderly people are lonely.
We will exist to serve the community and funds raised will be used for community projects New and existing
So your part in this exciting new project!
How can you help! Pray for the project, donate good re-sellable items, contributed to the setup costs.
Give your time, consider being a volunteer either in the shop or cafe, to help sort and price, to serve teas and cakes, or something on toast, to come alongside people to chat or to be a listening ear. To run a play cafe, to organise other cafe groups!
And I’ll will be wanting some willing volunteers to paint out the shop ready for shop ﬁttings
You may think! Oh No! not another charity shop. I know, every town is full of them, but they all raise vital funds for their charity. This will be a charity shop, but will be called a community shop, people will come before productivity and it will exists to serve and bless the community and to Glorify God in so doing
So lovely people I do hope you can see this vision to ‘Helping people in your own back yard’ and will come alongside in whatever way you feel you can.
If you have any questions I’ll be available in the foyer to answer if I can.
Our church vision is! God Centred, Connect, Grow, Reach I believed this to be part of the church vision to connect with people to reach them and see them grow into being God centred
God Bless You. Lynn Pitcher