Love Dudley

AS-ONE – A VISION FOR THE FUTURE

The pandemic of 2020 and its consequential impact has carved its mark on all of our memories. Suffering in so many shapes and forms has touched the lives of individuals, families and communities in countless nations across the globe.

Hard to believe though it is, a year ago this month our country entered a total lock down. Much of normal life as we had come to know it came to an abrupt halt as we all closed our doors in the hope that this would stem the pandemics progress. It was during this period, in the face of such adversity, that many of us experienced a renewal of community spirit as street by street, neighbourhood by neighbourhood individuals collaborated together to support one another. Communities organised themselves locally to care for the vulnerable, feed the hungry and distribute essential medical supplies. The hope of human connectivity shone brightly in face of one of the darker moments of recent history.

The possibility of establishing this level of community connectivity as a shared ‘new normal’ has inspired many of us.

Maintaining and building upon this renewed community spirit has become the foundation of the AS-ONE initiative that has recently started in Dudley. Motivated by a the universal call for us to love for God and people, many of the church family’s in the Love Dudley Network have committed to a vision to see strong and vibrant relationships built street by street in their local neighbourhoods.

The AS-One initiative has potentially four stages:

  • A high profile banner campaign. Very shortly you will see large banners go up around the borough with a simple message of ‘fil your street with friendliness’.

 

  • Congregations will be invited to host a Community Memorial Service in order to provide a space for our neighbourhoods to collectively mourn their common sense of loss and spend time in reflection.

 

  • The organisation of a ‘Back Together Celebration’, with a mission to create a positive legacy of communal connectivity. Local people from each street will be invited using the As One brand and, when they get to the event or party put on by their local church, they will be invited to share a table with their neighbours street by street. With an agenda of ‘friendship, fun, belonging and offering a helping hand’, friendships are formed, isolation begins to be addressed, practical help starts to flow, the generations come together and the street begins the journey of being ‘filled with friendliness’.

 

  • The final stage is encouraging participants on their tables to discuss how they could be the nucleus of starting a Street Association led by the host church.

 

In a post-modern secularised society the hope of the Gospel we all share finds its greatest traction within the context of human relationships. We are called not just to know and care for those in our own church families but also for our neighbours. Together, working collectively and collaboratively we aim to fill the streets of Dudley with friendliness!

If you want to know more about this initiative, please email office@as-one.uk  or visit www.as-one.uk.




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