The vision of our church
is to make a difference wherever we are
as we share faith for life.
In 2009 we collectively made a decision based on this vision:
...that in five years time we are living out our life at St Mary’s in the following five ways…
by celebrating our faith in Jesus
through our ‘worship’ in the widest sense;
by welcoming people and helping them
to belong to our church family;
by becoming a healing community
in which people find a place where they are helped in their pain and struggles;
by equipping disciples
‘to make a difference wherever they are’;
and by delighting in sharing our faith
in relevant ways.
Through a Diocesan initiative called GAP (Growth Action Planning)
we have been seeking to fulfil this vision by taking one step at a time.
GAP 2010 themes.
To further develop our vision of ‘making a difference wherever we are’.
We set out to explore ways of finding out where individuals are,
their needs, gifts and passions and how they could be supported.
(This theme ran though all our teaching and learning and will be picked up more specifically in 2011.)
During the year the church set up a Christians Against Poverty (CAP) partnership.
CAP is a national debt counselling charity.
We ran seven courses and are now expanding into the area.
Learn to listen to God more
We ran another 24/7 prayer week
building on the experiences of the first 24/7 prayer week (in 2009).
Learn to kindle a greater fire in our hearts for God
During the summer term we made time to celebrate our faith
and be inspired by God as revealed in the Bible.
GAP 2011 themes.
Caring for God’s world together CGWT
‘Worship in widest sense’ includes creation care.
We will work towards an eco-congregation status over the next two years,
through specific targets of
teaching and learning about the Bible and the environment,
reviewing church property and management,
and challenging individual lifestyles through 'Living Lightly’.
‘Faith for Life’
Confidence and delight in sharing our faith.
We will base our studies on The Book by Tim Keller 'The Reason for God'.
Discipleship and stewardship of our time, talents and finances.
…so that we can ‘make a difference wherever we are’.
(We are still working on this theme for Autumn 2011)