finding the treasure

Listen to this very wonderful monthly series of podcasts from the Estates Theology Project, part of NECN’s partners at the Estates Evangelism Task Group.

Click here to hear the first one from Wythenshaw in Manchester: Finding the Treasure – Good News from the Estates

Today a fifth of the Church of England’s 12,500 parishes are estimated to be ‘estates parishes’ meaning that they include at least 500 social housing homes, however, half of these ‘estates’ currently have no Church of England Worship centre within them.

Over the last two years, to try and address this, the “Church of England’s Estates Theology” project has been pairing up local ministers, vicars and priests, with academic theologians. This podcast series is showcasing this work and how the project has helped churches and their neighbours to reflect on what gifts God has given them to share together.

In this episode, presenter Liza Ward travels to the Wythenshawe estate in Manchester to to learn how a new project brought William Temple Church closer to those in their local community.

small pilgrim place

One of our member Churches, St Michael’s LEP on the Gospel Oak Estate in Hall Green, Birmingham, has become a Small Pilgrim Place.

There are full details of it here , and the Small Pilgrim Places website is here

Are any other Estate Churches places of pilgrimage? (I can think of Penrhys in South Wales).  It would be great to get some pilgrimages going …

estate leadership pilots

As part of the Allchurches Trust Grant to build national support for Estates Ministry, we have two local Leadership Pilots beginning, one in London and one in Birmingham.

The Birmingham Pilot began last night with 17 people from outer estate and inner city anglican parishes gathering for a Learning Group that will Deepen Formation and Leadership.

The London Pilot begins soon – click here for details.

The Pilots are quite different and there will be a deep evaluation of them carried out by Church Army.  We hope that this will be of value to the wider Church, and that all denominations will find ways of enabling people on estates to express all their gifts.

We know that local leadership is one of the key themes for estate churches.  Our National Conferences next year will explore this.  Details of dates and venues coming soon.

Please pray for all those involved in the Learning Pilots.

lives not knives resource pack

Church of England Birmingham and NECN member Pauline Weaver have produced an excellent resource pack to help Churches respond to knife crime, with a request that every Church in Birmingham promotes awareness of knife and violent crime on a Sunday.

You can read and download the pack here.

 

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 https://www.christianmeditation.org.uk/index.php/apply-for-a-grant/wccm-cuf-grants

 

Cafe Church at the Risen Lord

We’ve been running a Café Church in the Parish of the Risen Lord in Preston, a typical inner-city parish, since October 2018. I had arrived as vicar of the parish and was impressed with the weekly Work Club which was hosted by one of our churches, St Matthew’s Mission, and had been run by a group of keen church members for some 5 or 6 years, During that time they had formed some good friendships with many of the clients. The group were keen to introduce these people to Jesus and a few years ago they began a home group with the aim of inviting Work Club clients along. This didn’t really take off and so In June 2018 we discontinued a small Sunday morning congregation at St Matthew’s Mission and launched our mid-week Café Church in the same place where Work Club meets. We thought it would be easier for Work Club clients to come to familiar premises.

Café Church meets at 7pm on a Wednesday evening and is very informal. We start with a meal, move into introductory discussion about some life experience or another which opens up the theme for the evening. The theme has often been the Bible passage which was the basis for the previous Sunday’s sermon or at times we have used the ‘Unlock The Bible’ material. There is no sermon as such, but rather discussion, feedback and summing up by the leader. We tend not to use too much printed material and rely often on the Lumo Gospel Dramas which we download from Youtube. For the first couple of months we had just 2 or 3 work club or fringe members attending, but over the winter these dropped off and for around 6 months almost the only attendees were church members with numbers as low as about 8. We thought that the weather probably was the main deterrent! But we persevered and over the last couple of months numbers have steadily increased to around 14-16 with around half of them non-church people. So, just at the moment we are feeling encouraged as fruit now seems to be coming from this ministry. Please pray for us! Thank you.

– Alastair McHaffie

Resources from Knife Crime Workshop

Pauline Weaver from the  Kings Norton Team led a Workshop on Knife Crime at the Birmingham Conference.

Please find the Resources from it here:

Lives Not Knives resource pack final

Appendix 2 Safe Spaces Flyer FINAL

appendix 1 service for lives not knives

 

Finding solutions to poverty – locally, nationally and globally.

A national ecumenical Christian social justice charity, Church Action on Poverty is committed to tackling poverty in the UK. Working with churches and with people in poverty themselves it seeks to find solutions to poverty, locally, nationally and globally.

The website features lots of sources of help for community capacity building and empowering people on the margins to have their voice heard and to work for change.