Wherever it is in the world, each Hub includes a variety of integrated activities. At the heart of many of those activities are often a group of people who are committed to each other, to the community and in many instances to following Jesus Christ and his way of love, forgiveness, relationship and hope for the future. Sometimes those relationships are formalised into a more specific 'church' structure. In other locations those relationships are less formalised and completely non-institutional. In all cases, the vision to be inclusive and provide the opportunity for those who want to engage with or without a faith is a key characteristic of Oasis.
Spolight on Oasis Church Waterloo
Oasis Church Waterloo is a community of ordinary people exploring life together, where everyone is welcomed. Our mission is simply this: to be an example of what an inclusive community, living Christ’s way, looks like and acts like. We aim to support one another in the joys and struggles of everyday life and to build a safe and inspiring local neighbourhood here in Waterloo.
Over the years, our vision has led to the development of Oasis Hub Waterloo, which includes our church congregations, Oasis Playspace (our children’s centre), the Oasis primary and secondary schools – Johanna and South Bank – and a huge range of other community projects including a community farm, two choirs and various children’s and youth football teams. Every week we also help to put food on the table for struggling families through our Foodbank, offer support to people burdened by debt through our debt advice service, and work in St Thomas’ Hospital A&E with vulnerable young people who have been impacted by violence.
In short, Oasis Church Waterloo is group of people from all walks of life who are committed to serving God and one another and to ensuring that Waterloo is a place where people are happy and proud to live, learn and work alongside one another, where every person is valued and is empowered to reach their full God-given potential.
Spolight on 'The Rhythm of Life'
Oasis Church in South Africa
Oasis in South Africa has been grappling with the same questions Oasis people do everywhere: How can we best share life? What brings real transformation, in our lives and that of our communities? We rediscovered that real life change happens in relationships rather than formal lessons or teaching. We have been influenced by many and have made new friends in our search for ways to facilitate, develop language and practices for life-changing conversation: global groups like the Oasis family, Renovare, NieuCommunities and The Simple Way. Our greatest influence, though, has been from a South African faith community called Kleipot. Kleipot generously allowed us to develop their rule of life into our Rhythm of Life – a way of life shared by all the faith communities at the heart of our hubs. These are places where we remind ourselves that we need transformation ourselves before we can bring it to others, that we need to experience the good news that we seek to share. Our rhythm is a means to an end: creating and sustaining small groups of people who are transformed to love and follow Jesus more closely at the heart of all we do in hubs.
Other than the life it has brought to Oasis, it has been shared with other communities across and beyond South Africa. It has also given birth to a social enterprise that works with companies and churches to implement discipleship and wellbeing programs – including providing all the material for a national TV programme with a weekly sermon, daily devotion and active online community.