FRESHFORD LIMPLEY STOKE HINTON CHARTERHOUSE

June - the month of change

Dear Lord, as we plunge full on into June and on into summer we face a general election and the increasing threat of terror on our streets and yet we call out to you to make sense of that which makes none. We pray that through our right to vote in a democracy we will be wise in our voting and gracious in the outcome that as a nation we will pull together and accept the outcome whether we wanted it or not. We thank you Father that we are not people walking around in the darkness of uncertainty but we are your children held in your hands. May we hear your voice and my we walk in your ways, now and always. Amen.

Our Vision and Mission

The parish is one church with one vision in three places. With three, or more, places of worship what is it that makes us unique? In serving the local communities of these three villages and surrounding areas we have a functional role of seeking to connect with people, value their traditions and be available for all as and when they need us to come alongside them. However, we are also the present best hope for the growth in numbers and in depth for the Christian faith in these communities. The Church of England was once described as ‘God’s best hope for the evangelism of the nation’ because we are there in every community. We are three churches with a wide variety of styles of worship but we share one vision as one united parish. We are committed to being Disciples of Christ and so we learn together, of making Disciples of Christ so we share our faith. We are committed to see the growth of the church and so we will be looking to run an introduction to Christianity course, a family enrichment course, perhaps a marriage enrichment course, a leadership course and setting ourselves free to talk to and share our faith with others. Our children and family worker Lindy will come alongside the families in our community to see how we, as a church can support them, sustain them and help them to grow as families together whilst giving the children some forms of worship that will value them equally as children of God. Our church buildings are ancient and beautiful but are they fit for purpose in the 21st Century? We are looking at accessibility, facilities, welcome and styles of worship to connect to people today whilst valuing those with more traditional expectations. So change is afoot but not for changes sake alone but for the sake of the vision to grow the church and make disciples. Each of the churches is currently looking at forms of refurbishment to meet these aims. We want to be a church that is committed to fulfilling the Great Commission of Jesus, found at the end of Matthews Gospel. To go and make disciples of all people. We are here for the community in the community but also to bring the living faith we have in Jesus closer to the hearts and lives of those around us.