After 15 years the dual ministry Royal City Church and The Life Centre will cease to operate with two names and become simply Royal City Mission. The change came into effect on September 1, 2019.
When asked to explain the difference between a church and a mission, Pastor Kevin Coghill said there is no difference really. Both are about life on mission. However, they believe the name change will more clearly reflect what they are already about within their community and will help them remain focused on their values: Relationship, Justice and Beauty in downtown Guelph.
Although the congregation does have a Sunday morning service, their church building is open for ministry every day. A six day a week meal program serves 400-600 meals and the space is frequented by a great number of regulars who rely on this free service not only for their daily dinner meal, but also as a safe place to relax and interact with others after dinner.
When their existing stove, in operation for decades, finally packed it in the church was faced with a decision: either a major renovation to bring the entire kitchen up to code, or close down their meal program. Months later, the renovations complete, the meal program continues strong. As many as 70 volunteers from 22 participating churches serve the guests in the course of a given week. After dinner, relationships are built over table conversation, during ping pong matches, or card games. There is also a designated room with supplies for creating art projects, as well as a music room equipped with musical instruments. All of these ministries are possible only because of constant donations of food, supplies, funds, and the work of faithful volunteers.