Healing on the Streets was birthed and pioneered by the Causeway Coast Vineyard on the streets of Coleraine in Northern Ireland in Easter of 2005. Adopted by many churches the Healing on the Streets model has spread around the world. It’s a gentle, non-confrontational way of connecting with people on the streets of our cities and introducing them to Jesus.
Alan Scott reports that over the last 20 months almost 4,500 people have come to faith in their Northern Ireland community. That’s an average of around seven people a day.
Alan has some reflections on what is happening:
Our greatest impact is among those people - and in those areas - that historically have been difficult for churches to reach: the urban poor are most responsive. There seems to be particular favour among those who have never encountered faith, those struggling with addiction, single mothers, long term unemployed, those living on council estates and those wrestling with systems of poverty.
Unfortunately conversions on street don’t necessarily result in discipleship.
Disappointing levels of church connection: the miracle question has not led to massive connection. Whilst almost 4500 people have come to faith, we estimate that just under one seventh of those have connected in local churches.
Read the full report.
Let’s celebrate what God is doing through Healing on the Streets, not just in Coleraine, but in all the other churches they have inspired and trained.
I’m impressed that Alan is tracking the impact of the ministry in conversions and disciples. He’s also reporting the drop-off between the two and wondering how the gap can be closed.
Let’s just soak this in for a minute, a local church goes out into its community and offers to pray for people and share Jesus. Consistently, every week for 20 months people are coming to Christ.
Now here’s what we all need to do, before you start theorising about the gap between conversions and disciples, go and do likewise. Follow their example, follow Jesus’ example, and find people far from God. Offer to pray for them. Ask them if they would like to know more about Jesus.
Then we’ll talk about narrowing the gap between professions of faith and discipleship.