Vacancy: Children and Family Worker South East London

St Luke’s Downham, an estate church in South East London is looking for someone to enthusiastically develop and enhance our ministry to children, parents, and carers (and potentially youth), enabling all to encounter God’s love. A vital part of this role will be to give significant focus to developing our outreach, discipleship and support of children with autism and special educational needs, and their families.

Salary: £22,000 for 35 hours per week

Closing Date: Midnight Friday 24th January 2020

For info please go to our website:

advent news

Dear Friends,

We are making some changes at NECN to help us increase the amount we can do and to make us more effective.  This post is to update you on this and to ask if you can play a part.

People.  Andy Delmege has stepped aside from our Board and is now our Executive Director.  Our funding from Allchurches Trust means he is able to give two days a week to NECN and is concentrating on building up and supporting a national network of Estates and Urban Groups.

Andy Delmage NECN Exec Director
Andy Delmage NECN Exec Director

Christine McAteer is our half time Support Officer, ensuing that everything happens behind the scenes.

NECN Support Officer
NECN Support Officer


We have a new Chair and Vice Chair.  Lynne Cullens is our Chair.  Lynne is Rector of Stockport & Brinnington and a member of the C of E’s Selection Oversight Group, Estates Evangelism Task Group and the Archbishop of Canterbury’s Commission on Housing, Church and Local Community.  A former CEO, she was born in Ordsall, Salford and blogs on issues of culture and the Church at

Chair of NECN
Lynne Cullens Chair of NECN


Sara Barron is our Vice Chair.  Sara is an accredited Baptist minister and until recently she has had a pioneering ministry on a large council estate near Portsmouth where she lived for 16 years. Sara is a trustee of Incarnate Network, NECN and Estates Evangelism Taskgroup. Sara works half time as development worker for CURBS, which resources, trains and supports children’s workers in urban and estate areas. Having recently moved to Looe in Cornwall Sara is spending a year of missional listening in this new context before embarking on pioneer ministry in Looe. Sara is married to Barney, also a Baptist minister, and they have four children.

Sara Barron CURBS
Sara Barron CURBS



In order to work effectively, NECN is structuring itself around a number of Workstreams.  These are:

Groups; Partnerships; Resources (responsible for conferences, scoping resources, commissioning where there are gaps); Finance and Fundraising; and Communications.

Each one of these will be Chaired by someone who attends NECN Trustee meetings, and will meet several times a year, usually by phone or skype.

Each Workstream will be responsible for deciding how it will contribute to delivering the NECN Vision and Strategy.

In a year, we will review whether we have capacity to open new Workstreams around Children and Young People; Leadership; and Planting and Pioneering.

Playing a Part.

We need people who have estates and estate churches on their hearts, who have experience and skills, and who have time and commitment, to play a part in this.  This is an important role in seeing estates enabled to become fully alive in Christ and in ensuring that there is a thriving, growing, loving church on every significant social housing estate in the country

If you feel drawn to helping NECN in this way, or can recommend someone who can help, please contact Christine on 0121 426 0436 or and please keep us in your prayers.

Other News

Please keep an eye on the website and Facebook and Twitter streams for updates on all things estate church.

If you have any estate church jobs or other news you would like us to share, please email Christine.

We will have news of our National Conferences for 2020 very soon.

If you have time, check out the first in a series of podcasts from the Estates Theology Group on Good News from the Estates


We are in the season of Advent and drawing near to Christmas, with all that brings.  A friend wrote to me this morning:

Safeguard (jealously) those moments when you can go and find the space, time and place to be with God however limited in time you are.

I pray that you may have a blessed time.  Thank you for who you are and all you do.







Urban Life Cultivating Mission

Urban Life is a Christian organisation that has developed learning programmes to help groups reflect more deeply on their mission. The programmes are designed for people who work in urban areas and on the estates.

Groups meet to learn and reflect theologically on their practice and the encounters they have had. A Masters Degree programme is also available.

Urban Life
Urban Life

Urban life currently have spaces available on Experiments in Mission in the East Midlands with a taster session on the 13th February 2020 and a full start in March. Please click here for more details.

Funding From Allchurches Trust

All Churches TRust
Logo of All Churches Trust


We are delighted to announce that this summer we were granted funding from the Allchurches Trust for our work. This is about connecting churches with their communities, particularly on the estates.

Allchurches Trust is one of the UK’s largest grant making charities. The Trust funds all kinds of churches and community organisations, especially people in need. Applications are particularly welcome from churches on the estates and in the inner cities.

If you would like to find out more about the Allchurches Trust click here. For more information on what is funded click here

Sharing the Gift of Meditation – Grants Available

Christian Meditation

Christian Meditation in the UK  are keen for more people to find out about meditation, help them develop their own personal and group practices and through this, reach out to the wider world. Through a generous legacy from Eileen Cox, a dedicated member of a group in Ealing, West London, they are inviting community members and organisations to apply for grants.

For more information about the grants available and how to apply please visit


Urban Ministry in Church of England Birmingham

Dear Sisters and Brothers,

We are writing to invite you to a Consultation on Urban Ministry at Bishop’s Lodge on Thursday 3rd October at 10 am finishing with lunch.   In recent years, we have had an Estates Group and an Inner City Group.  This has worked well, but there is no longer capacity from inner city colleagues to continue convening that Group at the present moment.  Also a number of colleagues come to both, and national CofE estates strategy makes no distinction between inner city and outer estate parishes.

Therefore this might be the appropriate and opportune time to merge the two groups.   There are obvious benefits in working and gathering together as larger group bringing together as large a number of sharp end parishes as we can.   The Consultation will be an opportunity to look at the missional needs and opportunities  we face, to think through how best we serve one another, and to build relationships. You are also warmly invited to the following events:

Saturday 28th September, Birmingham Urban Congress, 10am – 4pm, Balsall Heath Church Centre. You can book your place by clicking on this link:

Wednesday 16th October, Birmingham National Estate Churches Network Group, 12.15 – 2.00 pm, St George’s, Newtown.

Wednesday 22nd January – Thursday 23rd January, Urban Residential, Cropthorne.

With prayers and thanks for your ministry,

Fr Douglas Machiridza            Canon Andy Delmege