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Walking the Way News

2020 02 17rWith financial and social resources and investment running dangerously low, Desborough in Northamptonshire sits in constant need of fresh energy, new ideas and strong determination. The young adults of Desborough URC aren’t afraid to answer that call.

The church began with an ageing congregation with an inward-looking focus, but some youth leadership training, with the support of East Midlands Synod Children’s and Youth Development Officer (CYDO), Jane Henderson, opened up new ideas and possibilities for engaging with families and young people in the area. By opening themselves up to understanding and responding to the needs of the youngest in the community, the church was able to encourage more people, who perhaps wouldn’t have got involved otherwise, to see a role for the church in their lives.

Read more: Young adults lead the Way in Desborough

2020 02 10rBeing so close to the seafront and the neighbouring town of Blackpool, St Anne’s is a very popular holiday destination, bringing a whole range of people and issues for the congregation of St Anne’s URC to cater for. With the help of regional Missional Discipleship Mentor, Daleen ten Cate, this small church has been able to make a big impact on the community around it.

Like many congregations, St Anne’s faces the concerns of an ageing congregation, building maintenance, insurance costs and other areas needing a lot of attention. However, the congregation does not allow these things to get it down, pressing ahead in finding new ways to share the gospel and promote the place of the church in the life of the local community.

Read more: Second-hand boots make all the difference in St Anne’s

2020 01 27With declining memberships in both a beautiful Grade 2 listed medieval parish church and a small United Reformed Church (URC) Victorian flint chapel, Broad Chalke URC and All Saints Church of England congregations had some decisions to make about their future.

With new ministry in both churches, the congregations worked together to audit the needs of the village and tried to address them.

Recognising a number of elderly people living alone, as well as people in social housing who faced isolation, both congregations expressed a willingness to fundraise and a passion to reach out and meet the needs of their community. They both realised that there was much more they could do with their buildings, and so they started a long journey of refurbishment.

Read more: Broad Chalke: A servant church

2020 02 03rLiving the life of Jesus today means recognising and responding to God’s presence in our everyday reality. For many people, one of the most important parts of that reality in terms of social interaction, fellowship, relaxation and joy, comes in the form of the pub. And, like everywhere else in creation, God is very much there, as the young adults of St David’s Uniting Church in Pontypridd are well aware.

Church buildings and times of gathered worship are designed to help us take time out of our busy lives to focus on God and prepare ourselves to go back out into the world, renewed in ours sense of God’s call for our lives, reenergised for service and reinvigorated in our passions.

Read more: Real ale, real life, real church

2020 01 20When the chair of the board meeting asked if anyone had any other business, he certainly didn’t expect Tracy Buckby, a member of Wade Street Church in Lichfield, to reply as she did.

Plucking up her courage Tracy said: ‘Well, yes, actually. I’d like you to know that I am a Christian and a big part of that for me is prayer. So I’d like to put a prayer box in the office for people to put their requests in.’

Tracy went on to explain that it wasn’t going to be a ‘Bruce Almighty Prayer Box’ (where everything got the answer ‘yes’) nor was she claiming that her prayers were any better than anyone else’s, but she would like to offer the facility if anyone wanted to take it up.

The mood around the table was one of surprised interest, with many saying what a nice thing it was Tracy was offering. The meeting ended with a buzz of conversation about the potential of prayer and the arrival of the box.

Read more: Any other business?

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