Acts 435 Giving to anyone who has need

It was a privilege this week to welcome some of our advocates to Bishopthorpe Palace for our annual Advocate Gathering to share stories of lives changed, look at best practice and ask important questions. We spent much of the day in workshops focusing on how to connect with those in need, how to grow, and how to communicate requests and thank you messages effectively. I ended the day with a Call to Action – and used a triple A battery as my visual aid. It was fun to see the advocates wondering what on earth a battery had to do with it!

Many of you will know that the Acts 435 Head Office team is very small – I work 3 days a week and Rhona, our Administrator, works 1 day a week (both spread over the whole week). With less than 1 full time post between us we are limited in what we can do to spread the word. I focus on particular target areas where we are really thin on the ground – these currently include whole countries like Wales, regions like Oxfordshire, and cities like Leeds. Yet we find many advocates get involved because they have heard about Acts 435 through another Acts 435 church, or sometimes because the advocate has moved church and taken Acts 435 with them!

So my challenge to each of our advocates is to Add Another Advocate. If each advocate adds another advocate and then the new advocates in turn add another advocate we will achieve a wonderful natural pattern of growth. Better still, new advocates will have heard from people actually using it at the frontline how it works and why it is a blessing to so many which will really set them up for success.

So what does the battery have to do with it? Well – bear with me … The AAA stands for Add Another Advocate and I see each advocate as containing some of the energy of the Acts 435 vision and its ability to make a difference in people’s lives. A battery sat on its own does not show that energy until it is connected into something such as a radio, toy, torch, etc. As advocates (and donors and other supporters) connect with other churches and local charities, their energy and enthusiasm for Acts 435 will be released and flow.

Many of our advocates are already doing this, but this week we have invited every advocate to think of one church or local charity that they can target this year to get involved with Acts 435 – anywhere in the country so it can be a church where relatives attend, or where they lived in the past, not necessarily somewhere local to them. I encouraged them to take a post-it note and write down that contact name, pop it in their diary or stick it on their fridge and then act to Add Another Advocate.

If you are reading this blog and love what Acts 435 is about, can I encourage you to do the same, whether that be another advocate or another donor to support the requests for people in need. And if you forget … well next time you are replacing batteries in something, it is my prayer that it will trigger a memory of this blog and that you will renew that plan to recruit someone else to the Acts 435 team.

Advocate Gathering 2016
Advocate Gathering 2016