The following are the initial policies of Christ Apostolic Church – East of Luton.
These policies will be reviewed annually and kept up to date as the church progresses without losing our focus and vision.
- Church Name
We believe there is no denomination in heaven and that no particular denomination is a gateway to heaven. Jesus is the only way. We are however affiliated to the Christ Apostolic Church Worldwide and we believe in their apostolic based tenets. The name of our church or any eventual branch will simply be Christ Apostolic Church – identified by the street location only. It will not have any other special tag name (Mountain or Valley). A church founded and built on Christ, following Christ’s pattern and practising the Apostolic Doctrines.
- Church Ownership
The church belongs to Christ who has purchased it with His precious blood (Acts 18:28). This church is not for profit and no single individual can lay claim to it. It is a church of God that belongs to everybody. Although God has used some people to establish it, they are tools in the hand of God. This church is God’s business and everybody passing through will give an account of his or her stewardship unto God the owner. The leadership of the church can also be reviewed at any time as the need arises.
Christ is our message and heaven is our goal. Our messages will, by the grace of God, be simple gospel, true and clear, built on the foundation of Jesus. It is not the messenger that is most important; it is the message. Our messages would therefore reflect “A wonderful Jesus” and not wonderful preachers. The emphasis will not be on the letter but rather on the acts. We will encourage members to be doers of the word and see themselves as God’s advertisement.
We hope to set up a church of Christ where the right information is shared; where salvation through Jesus Christ is preached; where the bible is the standard for faith and practice; where an opportunity to serve in Jesus Name is provided for all. We do not intend to cover the whole world at a go. We are also not aiming at being a mega church but a small church with a big vision; a collection of followers of Christ who love God and each other and are committed to living holy lives to brighten the corner where they are. The New Kings James Version of the Bible will be formally adopted for use in our services. Other versions may be used by individuals for clarity so far the key message is not lost.
- Women Ministry
This is a church where everybody is encouraged and developed to be a minister. Even if our stream of faith states women cannot be pastors or elders, they still have significant places of influence where their giftedness can be leveraged and insights applied. Women have a viewpoint and understanding of the human experience that is unmatched. Women can be lady evangelists, deaconesses, Sunday school teachers, choir leader etc . Remember women in Jesus’ ministry.
It is a general belief that the church is after people’s wallet. Our intent is to make the church one without an offering plate. We want to be careful not to ask our members for donations because we do not want to bother them especially those who cannot afford to give. We would rather our member know and mature in the Lord and give when it is in their hearts to do so (II Corinthians 9:7). We believe the Church is Christ’s and the course His. He will surely provide the means for his work in his own way. Jesus emphasised the importance of even the smallest gifts when he pointed out the obedience and sacrifice demonstrated in the widow’s two mites.We will avoid debt and control our spending based on our resources. One may think our focus may be limited by finance but our vision is not. We want God to dictate the pace. What he wants is our availability not our ability. It is our wish to publish the church’s income and expenditure for members’ information on the first Sunday of each month.Although the Pastor in charge will be aware and has ultimate responsibility and accountability, he will not be a signatory to the bank account but he will ensure that adequate financial controls are in place and working effectively.
On tithing, we would not stop those who want to give in appreciation of God’s love but definitely not out of compulsion. Our stand is that Christ did not out rightly condemned the payment of tithe, he only condemned the leader’s attitude towards it at the expense of other more crucial things like mercy and taking care of the needy.
- Church Authority
Since we are affiliated to the Christ Apostolic Church, we will be subjected to the tenets and authority of the church. However, we stand on the fact that Christ is the head of the church, which he has purchased by his precious blood and therefore, the only Lord. Our loyalty is therefore first to the Lord Jesus. We will follow the earthly authorities to the extent to which they follow Christ and will encourage our members to do just that. Where the instructions of the earthly church leaders clashes with that of Christ, Christ’s will definitely prevail.
We believe there should be discipline in the church if we are to grow and be effective for the Lord and there should be no sacred cow. It should however be done in Love just as Christ will do it.
- Our Target
The great commission is to go into the entire world and preach the gospel to all nations. Our main target will be the un-churched, youths and the Family, which forms the pivot of the society
- Service Pattern
There will be no rigid pattern. All the members will be involved. All songs and hymns will be read and the meanings interpreted before they are sang. The Sunday school is considered as the Church at study and will be held as an essential part of the service and occasionally, if the spirit directs it may extend beyond the normal time and possibly take part of the sermon depending on how relevant the topic is.
- Sitting Arrangement
There will be no rigid arrangement. There will not be an elevated seat for the Pastors as it is normally practised and no segregation between sexes. The leaders, members of the worship team and those involved in ministration may sit at the front rows mainly for convenience sake. The rows will be occupied in that order from the front to the back without any gaps in the middle – for orderliness.
All members will be encouraged and supported to get involved in executing the Great Commission by engaging in sharing the Gospel of Christ to populate God’s Kingdom on earth.
- Independent Ministries:
The church has a vision and a mission that is known to all members. The church is also aimed at being one where every member is developed to be a minister. At the same time, we will encourage orderliness and accountability. If there is any member of the church that the Lord has given a vision for a ministry, that vision will be encouraged and supported only to the extent that it doesn’t conflict with the overall church vision or jeopardise the unity of the church family (WOSEM, CACSA, LOW Episode)
- 14: Appointment of Church Officers:
The bible is very clear about the qualities of biblical leaders as spelt out in Exodus 18:13-27, Acts 6:1-4, 1 Timothy 3:1-13, 1 Timothy 4:12, and Titus 1:5-9. The church will be guided by these -rules and would not allow itself to be taken over by some “Diotrephes,” 3 John 9 – or be unduly influenced by money, power or position in society. All appointees would be brought under the searchlight of the word of God. It is better not to have many officers than to have a bunch of Godless leaders.