FIVE YEARS OF C3 MUMBAI: THE JOURNEY SO FAR
If you come to C3 Mumbai on Sundays or follow us online, you'll probably know that we recently celebrated our fifth birthday. It's a pretty significant milestone, and as we look back on the journey so far we can see God's grace and faithfulness at every step of the way.
It's hard to believe that just over five years ago C3 Mumbai existed only as a handful of people hanging out at the home of pastors Rachel and Ryan Waters. In those early days the Waters, fresh from Australia, started to form a community by inviting people for dinner, praying with them, and hearing them out on the phone or over coffee. Eventually, with the help of a small team of volunteers, they began putting together weekly church services in a conference hall in India Bulls. From there C3 Mumbai moved to its current venue, Studio 10, via a small room in Mahalaxmi misleadingly called The Warehouse and a claustrophobic preview theatre with squeaky fold-down seats in Famous Studios.
The journey of the past five years has not always been smooth. There have been trials and disappointments. We have had moments where we have not known whether we would be able to afford the next month's rent. We have had deals with venue owners fall through. We've faced numerous bureaucratic hurdles. But the Lord has been with us through it all, and His provision has exceeded our expectations. We now have a spacious well-furnished venue that is available to us seven days a week! This means we can personalise the space and use it for events beyond the Sunday service. It also means we no longer have to haul the sound equipment in and out every Sunday!
Thanks to the permanent space at Studio 10, C3 Mumbai has been able to grow and put down roots. We now have a good-sized group of committed volunteers, several connect groups across the city, and a community development initiative called the Hope Collab. We have also recently started a monthly prayer and worship night.
C3 Mumbai is now a tight-knit community made up of people from across India and the world. We represent a wide range of cultures and professions. We are entrepreneurs, artists, entertainers, consultants, NGO managers, marketing professionals, naval officers, students, educators, and more. Each of us has joined C3 Mumbai for a variety of reasons — the lively spirit-filled worship, the engaging Bible-based sermons, and so on — but there is one thing that seems to attract people more than any other: the sense of home. C3 Mumbai is a place where people are free to come as they are and meet with God no matter what their background is or where they are at in life. It is a place where each individual is invited to be a part of the community rather than a passive Sunday morning spectator.
C3 Mumbai's vision is simple. It is to help people know God, love people, and live out their purpose. We believe that loving people and finding purpose follow from knowing God and fostering a relationship with Him. We can only begin to truly love others once we have come to know God's perfect and unconditional love for us. As 1 John 4:19 says, "we love because (God) first loved us." Likewise, we only truly connect with our life's calling once we have encountered God in a personal way.
It has been thrilling to see God use C3 Mumbai to achieve His purposes in this city. We are a young church but we have already seen lives transformed and we are excited to see what God is going to do in the years to come.
To hear what people have to say about C3 Mumbai on the occasion of its fifth anniversary, check out the video below.
Or to hear Pastor Ryan talk about C3 Mumbai's vision, check out the podcast below.