Weber Newsletter – Blooming Where We are Planted

It has been a very busy season over the last six months, relocating the family and the ministry to Hamilton.
225239_10150574379080162_811515161_18689811_2176041_nGod has opened door after door with favor and gracious provision.  We are enjoying living in and developing our Community House just a little west of downtown Hamilton. Right now there are just three of us living there (four when Hannah comes to visit), but we are preparing rooms for interns to come and join us in our work at the Urban Monastery.Just a little ways away, GOHOP is sharing donated office space (thanks Hughson St. Baptist!) with True City and Micah House.  And we have Prayer Spaces there, at Living Rock, and in the East Barton neighborhood as well as our Prayer Space in Waterdown.

The Prayer Truck
One highlight of the last few months was the Prayer Truck.  For two weeks this summer we converted a UHaul Truck into a sacred space,P1010871 parked it in the downtown core, and had a fantastic time praying for and with folks in the neighborhood.  P1010930Many people who would not normally come into a church, came to the Prayer Truck to communicate with God through painting, collaging, and origami, and to receive prayer themselves.  It was very exciting to host prayer on the streets of Hamilton, and we are already dreaming and praying about next Summer!
Prayer Resource Hub
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As we are settling into life in Hamilton, we are exploring with True City, ways that the Urban Monastery can be a resource to the local churches here.In partnership with missions agencies, we hosted a week of 24/7 prayer for World Missions in October.  Individuals from many churches came and joined our prayers for the fulfillment of the Great Commission.

In addition, we are hosting a monthly book study on the Practice of Hospitality, which is being attended by leaders and congregants of churches in Hamilton and Waterdown.  One of our participants has already turned her learning into two sermons for her congregants!   Our team also provides prayer and prophetic ministry to pastors and business leaders.  Also we are supporting and encouraging a group of young leaders, again from a variety of churches in the city.  it is an exciting group where we explore together how to shape our lives after the leadership of Jesus.  Finally, Jill is joining a team of Hamilton Pastors who will be going to Uganda in April, to teach, to learn, and to explore how as churches and ministries in the city we can collaborate in missions.  You will hear more about the Uganda trip in a little while!

GOHOP’s 10th Anniversay!

Jill-with-cake_thumbOn October the 15th, GOHOP celebrated 10 years of Partnering in the Great Commission Through Day and Night Prayer.  We are so grateful for the love and support of all of you who have carried us in your hearts and in practical ways over the last decade.  Truly we have, all together, built a place of His presence in this community, and together are being built into the loving presence of a people of prayer.

As we move into the next decade, we invite you to continue to partner with us and help to make all of our dreams for this city and region a reality.  His Kingdom Come!

Partnering with the Webers

As you all know, we couldn’t do what we do without your loving support, in friendship, prayer and resources.  We’ve seen God provide again and again in wonderful ways over the years.  I tell people that in 10 years of being missionaries, we’ve never missed rent, and we’ve never fasted involuntarily!  If you would like to partner with us financially, for our ongoing expenses or to help with the Uganda Trip, you can donate here.

What does an Urban Monastery Look Like?

People have been asking.

And we’re trying to sort it out ourselves.  GOHOP is morphing and in motion.  We’re not sure what the destination is going to look like but hey, the journey is the thing, right?

Here’s a map of our Prayer Spaces what life at the UM looks like this week. Zoom it out to see all our Prayer Spaces:

Monday:  The most exciting and exhilarating part of our job!

NOT

Administration.  Working at our new office graciously donated to us by Hughson St. Baptist Church and True City.  We share a collaborative office space with True City, Micah House, and others.  In the afternoon, we put the finishing touches on the quiet prayer space we’ve created in the office, papering the walls so we can write our prayers.   “Let’s just start with the cross and resurrection, and see what grows from there.”

Monday night:  Family night at the Community house – the residents and guests of the house eat together and laugh a lot.  Bert our parrot laughs more than everyone, chuckling his way through the meal.  After dinner we worship and pray together, then everyone does their chores in the house.  I wanted to call doing our jobs “house blessing”, but the boys thought that was cheezy, so chores it is.

Tuesday:  Phyllis manning the prayer watch in our Waterdown Prayer Space in the morning.  Jill prayerwalking in the community.  In the afternoon, at the 500 James St. Prayer Space, we gather for worship and meditation on the psalms, prayer for pastors and leaders in the city.  At three, a young businessman shows up for his prayer appointment and we pray for him for an hour.  The Lord is kind, and helps us pray into his heart with love and accuracy.

Tuesday night: Spaghetti Tuesday – Community Dinner at the Community House.  Friends and strangers gather around the table.  Conversation is fun and fiesty.  Kirk cooks up a splendid spaghetti sauce.  Sometimes we bake together after dinner for friends.

Wednesday:  Staff meeting in the morning.  Checking in, dreaming, planning, praying.  Then off to Living Rock where we minister to the youth there after their Gathering, and then spend the afternoon worshiping and interceding for the next Generation in the city at the Living Rock Prayer Space.

Wednesday night:  Moving Mountains Prayer Group  – this week we are dedicating and praying through the Perkins Centre, and celebrating Abraham’s birthday with the community of young men and women that he has gathered and trained in prayer over the years.  Let them eat cake!

Thursday:  Phyllis on the wall in Waterdown again.  Jill out and about prayerwalking and at various pastors and leaders groups.  Abraham doing hospital visitation or developing young leaders.  Building relationships in the city and exploring how GOHOP can help increase prayer capacities in churches and in the city.

Thursday night:  Practicing the Way Group – meeting with a group of young leaders in the city and exploring together a new approach to Spiritual Formation (actually a really old approach, but needing to be refeshed in our lives).  We eat together, enjoy our children together, and set our hearts to following the Master.

Friday:  Team dispersed in various places – prayer for healing, meeting with friends we have made in the city through the Prayer Truck, prayerwalking.  In the afternoon we gather at the Community House, worship and mediate on the Psalms again, and pray for the ministry

Saturday:  Sabbath!

Sunday:  Ministering in various churches – preaching, leading worship.  At 4 pm we join with the Mission Services Chapel, and are looking at ways we can grow in our friendships with those on the margins in our city.    Community Dinner at Mission Services, then back to the Community House for our Book Study on Hospitality.

Our Hamilton staff of urban monastics (we miss u Tim!)

It’s a lovely season for us right now – feasting on the abundance of the Lord’s house and feeling very rich in our relationships.  Building relationships and people, rather then building structures and trying to populate them.  Desiring to be the loving presence of a people of prayer in the city.  We’re always looking to expand our circle of friends and to grow our staff of prayer missionaries, so email jill@gohop.ca if you want to join the fun!

Fasting Fashion – the October Dress Project

October is over.

I guess I can put the dress away now.

But I’ve grown quite fond of it.

This year I participated in the October Dress Project.  For thirty one days, I wore the same dress.  I mixed up the slacks that I wore underneath, and the sweaters and scarves on top, but each day, the dress was the same.  And yes, I did wash it!

“The same dress each day?  Why on earth?” you may ask.

I did not realize how pathological my clothing acquisition had become until I moved to Hamilton. Packed and hauled and unpacked boxes and boxes and more boxes of clothes.  It was ridiculous.  Really.  Sure, I bought most at Value Village

(it sounds fancier if you try and pronounce it with a French accent – just try it Valoo Veellage!).

Bottom line is too much stuff is too much stuff, cheap or not!  Shopping had become a recreational activity, and I was spending more money than I wanted to (in my more rational moments).  I decided that it would be beneficial for me to adopt a spiritual practice of simplicity, clothing-wise.

What would it feel like to wear the same dress each day?  As part of an online community of people who were adopting the same practice?

What would it be like to identify with the majority of women on the planet who only have one or two dresses – at all?

I can’t believe how much I loved it.  I loved the simplicity of not having to figure out an outfit each morning.  I loved how comfortable it was.  I loved that I spent a lot less time fussing about what I looked like.  My wallet (and my husband) loved that I didn’t spend money on clothes!  It was very liberating, and I can see why monks and nuns adopt simplicity in their clothing choices.  In culture addicted to fashion frenzy and disposable clothing, it was a refreshing change.

Interested?  Wanna join me next year?  You can check out the facebook group at http://www.facebook.com/groups/132972689585/ or read a couple articles http://www.fortmilltimes.com/2011/11/03/1765116/1-dress-30-days-more-than-a-fashion.html and http://octoberdressproject.blogspot.com/p/about-and-faqs.html