Dear JohnPaul Church Family
As we move towards our ‘Coming Home Mission’ on 9,10,11th June, I wanted to thank you all for your support and your encouragement over the past few weeks.
It has been a difficult time for us, with two notable families leaving from St John’s. We are grateful for their service and are sad to see them go.
Looking forward, we are building a church for the future where all are welcome and all can play a part, however small that part might be. We need to build a new type of church that has strong foundations with a clear focus on reaching out into our communities. As part of this, we will put more emphasis on our Connect groups and working in teams.
This is why I am so grateful for those who have stepped up to work in schools as governors, for those who are piloting the Kintsugi wellbeing group, for those who are just kicking off the new toddler group and the new dominos club at St Paul’s.
But let’s not forget those who have kept the church going for years, taking leadership through the PCC, running our children’s work, our coffee mornings, our guides and scouts, our services, not to mention all the background work that ensures our churches as beacons in our communities.
Families joining the church
As families leave, others have joined us in both churches and we already have a number of people using the START material to learn about the faith or to have a spiritual MOT. Jill Lamont recently told me about a lady who had approached her about a baptism, who then had brought her whole family to church. Over the months, they have become part of the church family and are now learning more about the Christian faith as part of a START group online with other young families.
Vision – what sort of church to we want to be?
Many of you will know that Tony Hindle from St Paul’s and Janet Robinson from St John’s have joined me and other teams from around the diocese to do the Leading Your Church into Growth training at Whalley Abbey. This will conclude at the end of September when we will move into a period of Vision planning.
I want to encourage the whole church, not just those who lead, to take part in the Vision planning process as we work out what sort of church we want to be for the future. The LYCiG team will provide a mentor to support this process.
Mission – Coming Home!
There is still a little time to get your tickets for the Cricket Match, Breakfast, Pamper Afternoon and Sunday Services in both churches. Please join us to hear Bishop Jill Duff, one of the rising lights in the Church of England. She is a fab speaker; both challenging and encouraging. Just follow the link to book your tickets:
Over the Summer
Many of you will be taking breaks over this period and we have all been enjoying the stunning sunshine. However, behind the scenes, people will be working on the following:
- A new website that is more accessible to non- technical people
- New screens at St Paul’s in the main church
- A better way to control the heating remotely at St John’s
- The installation of the new boiler at St Paul’s
- Further work on the repairs at St John’s working with our new architect, John Pickup
- The Fabric team at both churches will be developing a ‘spec’ for new digital church signs that allow us to promote the services and outreach events of the church.
- And finally, we will be starting to advertise our new family services at St Paul’s at 5pm on the second and fourth Sunday of the month.
Can you support our ministry?
Thank you so much for your support. We could not fulfil our God-given vision without your generous offering of time, talents and finance.
Along with other churches in our diocese and throughout the Church of England, we have now joined the Parish Giving Scheme (PGS), a simple way to give regularly or make a one-off donation to support our ministry.
Would you consider giving through the Parish Giving Scheme? Just click the link below to set up a regular donation or make a one-off gift that will go directly to our church. https://www.parishgiving.org.uk/donors/find-your-parish/
With every blessing as you enjoy our beautiful summer,