Sara has been speaking with Rev’d Michelle Webb about how St Giles Church, Lincoln have been seeing God at work on their estate, where Michelle is Assistant Curate.
Michelle tells us of the privilege it is serving in an estate church and that God has been at work in a way they wouldn’t have seen if it hadn’t been for covid. During lockdown, instead of running a holiday club, the church delivered craft bags with a biblical theme during school holidays, the project has grown from 50 bags being delivered two years ago to around 170 in the last school break.
Michelle noticed that in reaching out to families through the craft bags that they have been able to have some amazing conversations with people who had previously been hesitant to talk about faith. She says that talking with families on the doorstep during lockdown, she found that people have a thirst to know more and to have their questions about God answered.
Conversations also highlighted problems with food poverty and social isolation during the pandemic – so St Giles and St John’s churches, working together, ran ‘Free Tea Friday’, to feed people, to give them some quality family time, and a place where they can talk and ask questions. The families come to share a meal, do some simple craft and take part in some fun challenges. With enough money donated initially to run Free Tea Fridays for the summer holidays, the churches felt God’s prompting to keep it running and through miraculous donations from local businesses and individuals have been able to carry on, to offer families this welcoming and safe space.
Michelle says, ‘It’s been a wonderful chance to meet people where they are, to serve them, to have those conversations, to talk about faith, just to be with people in the midst of all of the ups and downs of life and to be able to pray with them, that’s been a real joy.’
Watch our interview with Michelle to find out more: