Assistant at Aigburth
11 September 2011 marked a milestone in the life of Aigburth Community Church (ACC), Liverpool, as Ralph Cunnington was commissioned as assistant pastor.
ACC held its first Sunday meeting three years ago, and became independent from Christ Church, Liverpool, two years ago. Mr Cunnington was formerly a lecturer in law at theUniversity of Birmingham and more recently studied theology at WEST.
Representatives from other local churches supported, as well as Hugh Thomson from City Church, Birmingham.
During the service, Dr Jeremy Clark, elder and local GP, explained that it was about more than having another able preacher on the church’s staff. He said, ‘The main reason we wanted to appoint an assistant pastor was not for the benefit of our church, but for the benefit of others. The Lord has put us in a position financially and practically where we were able to do that’.
The church family has felt the burden of the number of people in Aigburth who don’t know Christ, not to mention people’s need of Jesus in the rest ofLiverpool, the North West of England, and beyond.
The ACC members saw that if that need were to be met, then we need churches full of people who will live and speak for Christ, and leaders trained to teach them.
The appointment of an assistant pastor is made with the expectation that working alongside Steve Palframan will give Mr Cunnington experience, so that in 3-5 years time he can be involved in starting or reinvigorating another church — perhaps taking some of his congregation with him, as well as others, maybe, from the wider region.
Justin Mote closed by speaking from Acts 20:17-35, reminding ACC what the leaders of the church are there for and what Paul’s priority was while he was in Ephesus — namely to preach and teach the whole gospel, even the bits people do not like to hear.
Mr Mote encouraged Mr Cunnington and all in leadership not to lose sight of the need to ‘pay careful attention to yourselves’, as well as to ‘all the flock’ which Jesus bought ‘with his own blood’.