The vision of our church
is to make a difference
wherever we are
as we share faith for life.
The building work started just before Easter 2017 and should be completed for handover at the end of this year.
Over the past few years there wasa growing conviction in the congregation
that our present buildings on the Church Road site were no longer 'fit for purpose'.
The proposed plans were unanimously approved by the Local Authority (October 2014)
and passed by the Diocesan Chancellor at a Consistory Court (July 2016).
The building work started in March 2017.
Our thanks to the support of so many people as the new building will enable us to fulfil the vision for a 'fit for purpose' building
around the five themes of our vision (Worshipping, Welcoming, Healing, Equipping and Sharing).
The Dioceasan Chancellor, David Turner QC, stated,
‘I have concluded the petitioners have established their case
and I intend to grant the faculty sought for the works proposed.
The church has a proven track record of community involvement and activity,
a ‘heart’ for the village and its life and affairs
and a desire to do better that which it already does.
I am satisfied the public benefit to be obtained from what I am wholly persuaded
will be an exciting, gospel driven, community facing, fresh chapter at St Mary’s...’.
The Faith Building Brochure from September 2013.
The plans have been evolving over the past few years
and all the developments can be seen on this webpage.
Faith Building Updates
The Consistory Court July 2016
The completion of Phase 1 and MayFest May 2015
To read before and after the Gift Day on 24th May 2015
The church will be set up as a 'House of prayer'.
There will be a prayer trail with several prayer stations around the church building.
Come and stay for a while to pray.
We will also be handing out cards to the community and friends offering prayer for any requests.
Please print out a card above or forward the link.
This is going well and ayone can bring the items listed on the page.
This is scheme linked to our eco-congregation status
and brings in support for the 'Please mind the gap' initiative.
1) The building work is progressing on Phase 1 - inside the church building.
The main work is focused around heating and seating.
We plan to move back into church during May and celebrate with a St Mary's MayFest week of activties for the church and community. May 10th-17th.
2) We are now asking builders to tender for Phase 2 of the work - the new hall, meeting rooms and office.
We plan to move out of our present halls and Holmleigh sometime after Easter.
The office will relocate to The Centre in Saughall Massie Road.
Other activties will be in various venues around Upton.
3) 'Please mind the gap' has been launched this month, to help us address the financial gap between what has already been pledged and donated and the final bill for the whole project. Several different ideas have been suggested that are beyond the Gift Days planned for the entry back into the church building this summer and the return to the new halls early next year.
a) FB Prayer events at The Centre 7.45-9.00pm
11th Feb: Part of the Church Prayer Meeting
11th March , 8th April , 6th May
13th May: Evening ‘Celebration of return to church during MayFest week.
17th June , 15th July
b) Charity on-line giving - The link to St Mary's Upton Faith Building Project My Donate is provided so we can pass the link to those we know who may be intertested in contributing to the project.
You may know people who have passed through St Mary's years ago who may want to give a thnk offering for all thery received whilst here; or there may be family members who would be pleased to support our work with children, youth or seniors.
c) 'Recycle for good causes' - working with the St Mary's Eco-Group
d) Talent challenge - with £10
You might like to report back to Helen Bray or Beth Gardner with your ideas - perhaps they could be used to inspire others.
We are very keen to manage the number of events and initiatives and ask that any ideas or suggestions are passed to Helen Bray or Beth Gardner.
Please note that any sponsored activities can be used to best effect outside the church family, firstly to spread the potential pool of supporters and secondly give us the opportunity to tell more people about why we are engaged with making our buildings 'fit for purpose' to fulfil our vision. Ongoing sponsoring events and activities within the same group of people are tiring and can have a negative effect after a while.
Our thanks to the LXS band for their music evening in January and for the support raised for the FB Project.
There will be two Faith Building Gift Days within the next year, both will be in gratutude and celebration of the progress. The first will be after our the entry back into the church building this summer and the second will be on our return to the new halls early next year.
The PCC decided to give a 'first fruits' offering outside the church to mark the start of the work. Firstly to Wirral Christians Against Poverty (£5,000) and the second will be about £15,000 for an overseas project, this is still under discussion. We are giving 10% (a tithe) of our entire support for the project to other projects and this first gift is 10% of that 10% as we start the work.
During September The Chief Planning Officer, after extensive consideration of planning matters, recommended that the plans be approved. The report to the Planning Committee included the following...
Conclusion: The proposals will result in a modern church and community facility which has a simple design and appearance to harmonise with the existing buildings and landscaping on site. The additional floorspace is accompanied within additional parking spaces. It is considered that the proposals satisfy the requirements of the relevant national and local planning policies.
Summary of decision: Having regards to the individual merits of this application the decision to grant Planning Permission has been taken having regards to the relevant Policies and Proposals in the Wirral Unitary Development Plan (Adopted February 2000) and all relevant material considerations including national and regional policy advice.
Recommended decision: Approve
The Local Authority Planning Committee members requested a site visit before making a decision.
At the planning meeting in October, the committee unanimously passed the proposals.
We plan to start Phase 1 (inside the church) in January 2015 for 16 weeks;
Phase 2 (the halls) would follow once we have the nessesary Faculty permission.
On a different subject...
(8th July 2014) EXTRAORDINARY GENERAL CHURCH MEETINGS: All Electoral Roll members of the church and those who have contributed financially to the Faith Building project are invited to join one of three identical meetings this coming week. Tues 15th or Wed 16th July 7.45-9.30pm in church or Thurs 17th July 2-3pm in Holmleigh. The topic for discussion is “How much space for how much cost?”. The Quantity Surveyor has made a detailed breakdown of the costs of the building work and concludes that the final figure is more than the current budget. So we need to consider if we should postpone or adapt any part of our plans to keep to our agreed budget, or increase our budget to keep all our preferred options. Please come pre-prayed and ready to share your wisdom in this complex situation.
The trigger sum for pledges has been reached and exceeded. By the time of the PCC meeting last night an outstanding sum of £1,400,620 had been promised. Thank you, thank God.
Join us at the Congregational Meeting on Wednesday 13th November 7.45pm in church. It will be a time to express our thankfulness for the journey so far and to pray for courage and wisdom as we continue to step out in faith building. We will be using Psalm 122 as part of our worship. ‘I was glad when they said unto me, let us go into the house of the Lord’ (King James Version). Everyone is invited to write their immediate response to the news in up to 10 words and pass it to me via my email, the office or church wardens. These thoughts will contribute to our worship that night.
More news, views and implications soon.
4. Acts 8v14-25 'Wherever they went'+ 'Gathered and scattered'
Why I hope the FB project goes ahead"
3. Acts 4v23-37 'People, place and purpose in the name of Jesus' + 'The view from Golgotha'
Why I hope the FB project goes ahead"
2. Acts 3v11-4v4 Like Jesus at Solomon's Colonnade
Similar sermons: 11.00am with Alan Rawlings and 6.30pm with Melita Gordon
1. Acts 3v1-10 Jesus name at The Beautiful Gate
Why I hope the FB project goes ahead"
Recording of presenation at Open Village Meeting 5th Sept 2013
with linked PowerPoint
FB Small Group notes
The Faith Building Brochure
The Faith Building Pledge Form and 'Answers to Questions' notes.
Seven weeks to the Pledge Weekend on 28th/29th September 2013 and here is another of the sheets for thought, discussion and prayer.
With the linked dates sheet
Also included is the invitation to Upton Village to a meeting on 5th September at 7.30pm.
During a nine week period leading up to the Pledge Weekend on 28th/29th September 2013 we are publishing several information sheets for thought, discussion and prayer.
The Church Council met and agreed that:
1) we should reach £1.4 million (of the projected £1.8 million) in some form on the 28th/29th September in order for us to proceed to the next stage of the building process,
2) we would tithe (give away 10% of the total sum excluding VAT) the sum raised to other projects both locally and globally,
3) that the PCC should make their own pledges one month earlier to express their servant leadership and commitment to the project.
Autumn 2012 Faith Building Letters
During a six week period leading up to the Open Congregational Meeting on 28th November 2012 we published several information sheets for thought, discussion and prayer.
Q Why do we need to renew our buildings?
Q Have we decided on a plan yet?
Q Is this financial climate a good time to consider buildings?
Q How might a new building be perceived in the community?
Q Shouldn't we spend the money on people rather than buildings?
Q Why do we need this work when the church suits me and services me well enough?
Q How much will the project cost (1)?
Q How much will the project cost (2)?
Q Is spending this sum of money on ourselves justified?
Q How will the money be raised?
Q Do you feel that the church is united on this building project?
Q Where are we up to with the options for various buildings?
Q How will this Faith Building build our faith?
Q What are the present thoughts on buying more property in the village?
Q Is there a mimimum amount of work to do?
Q Is there an opportune time to make a radical change to our buildings?
Q How can we hear God on this matter?
Q How can I prepare for the Open Congregational Meeting next week?
Autumn 2012 Faith Building Audio
During the same six week period in these are some brief linked talks given during the services.