After six years as Durham's diocesan missioner Rod is moving into parish-based missional work. Please pray for him and the family, and send any messages to Rod.Allon-Smith@durham.anglican.org.
Earlier this week it was announced that from November I will become Vicar of Lanercost in Carlisle Diocese (Lanercost with Walton, Gilsland and Nether Denton), a group of rural parishes straddling Hadrian’s Wall country east of Carlisle.One of the features that drew my attention to this post is the desire in the group, with the backing of the Diocese and in conjunction with the neighbouring benefice, “to explore new ways of working in the countryside” (as the blurb put it) and “look at developing a Minster pattern for mission and ministry across the area”.So I anticipate more creative times ahead!
Having come to Durham as Missioner in 2004 with an initial commitment for five years, this period extended to six so that particular mission activities I’ve been involved with could come to a natural pause or completion this summer.Within this period, it’s been a genuine pleasure to serve also as Area Dean since 2008.It's now a case of going forward in parish based ministry, now incorporating fruits and insights from experience as a full-time Missioner.Jan will be able to commute to her work in North Tyneside, which can continue.So we’re both very excited about the next stage, and thankful for God’s timing and provision.
Many will remember Simon from his days as Blackburn's diocesan missioner. Do check out his request for help and email him with any info that might be useful.
Simon Bessant (once the Diocesan Missioner in Blackburn Diocese, but now a vicar in Sheffield) is looking to transform his tired old parish halls into a parish centre fit for the 21st Century. Simon leads a large and growing church, but one that tends to attract only open dechurched people, which he regards as being missiologically inadequate and likely to appeal to a decreasing percentage of the population in the years to come. He often compares his church to a large and growing fish in a pond that is slowly drying out! He would love to hear from people who know of churches which have sought to develop halls for community and mission. The overall aim is to serve the community through the provision of quality facilities and to create a space in which the open unchurched can begin to encounter Christ through relationships with the church community. Simon has a review group tackling this project and they would greatly value seeing various models of how this has been done elsewhere.
Laurence Keith writes with the latest from Sheffield Centre:
Good news! Earlier this year I wrote to you to let you know we were updating the Encounters website. Thanks to creativestream (www.creativestream.co.uk), our designers, and a good amount of donations from some of you we now have a new Encounters website at www.encountersontheedge.org.uk.
On this website you can:
Purchase Encounters or subscribe online, paying straight away by credit card or PayPal
Log in to get a 40% discount on all hard copy back issues
And as a subscriber you can buy a PDF download of nearly all issues, which non-subscribers can't do. Nearly all as we are missing a couple of the old issues (9, 10 & 14).
Creating your account online
The first time you go on, please create an account by clicking on 'log in' in the top right corner.
You are then given the option of signing in or creating a new account. Its very simple – just name, password and e-mail address are required.
I will be checking every day and will update your account to subscriber status as soon as I can and let you know.
All discounts and PDF issues will then automatically appear from the next time you next log in.
No need to worry - if you already subscribe you will still get your Encounters issues delivered to your door as before; this doesn't affect your subscription.
If you have any queries please let me know. Otherwise, we hope you enjoy this website and Encounters 46 on MessyChurch which will be released at the end of July.
Tom is the Program Officer for Church Planting and Redevelopment in The Episcopal Church, based in Asheville, NC, USA. Check out his blog here, and subscribe to the feed to be kept in touch with Tom's work and network:
"Do more in mission, do it together, do it in word and action". Here's news of the HOPE launch and details of how to keep in touch with this initiative. Roy Crowne writes:
We were thrilled with the number of people who were able to join us on that occasion. The launch was an amazing and historic event. The Leadership Team and I really felt that it was significant and that God is truly with us as we continue to partner together with the Church of the Redeemed in the UK.
It would be great if you could sign up on the website and show your interest in becoming part of Hope. Together we will move forwards and encourage churches to sign up as well, so that we can see significant growth from where they are now to where they could be in 2014, as we engage in missional activities.
Let’s pray that God does some amazing things.
Roy Crowne Executive Director www.hopetogether.org.uk Please visit our new website HOPE TOGETHER, 8A Market Place, Rugby, Warwickshire, CV21 3DU. 01788 542782
It was clear to me at the Missioners Conference (what a great time we all had by the way) that there are still quite a few folk who have not really heard about or grasped the vision of ‘Leading Your Church into Growth’. So I thought I’d write with the business details. We are a team of sixteen, drawn from across the country and the traditions. We are united in our passion to see men and women come to Christ and to help His many local churches to grow. Everyone on the team has had loads of experience of growing a church, many of us have long and deep histories of ‘Fresh Expressions’ as well as ‘Parish Church’.
Our ‘front door’ course is a four day residential for clergy and key lay leaders and is followed by a whole series of further events and resources to enable and inspire the local church. Nothing works for everyone, but it appears that L.Y.C.I.G. does work for an awful lot of churches of all types.
There is some new stuff in all of this, lots of contemporary application and relevance for those who want to see their fresh expressions growing. But much of it is collected common sense, Biblical teaching, re-experience and insight gleaned from doing it and learning from others who have done it.
If you want to commend us to some of your people or to come yourself there are still places on our November course, but move fast. This year we are doing a special discounted rate for younger leaders in their 20’s and 30’s. Or, if you just want more information then do give me a ring on 01274 419754. Alternatively, if you ring our administrator, Tracie, on 01274 604904, she will send you a pile of leaflets.
The Edinburgh 2010 Common Call emerged from the Edinburgh 2010 study process and conference to mark the centenary of the World Missionary Conference, Edinburgh 1910. The Common Call was affirmed in the Church of Scotland Assembly Hall in Edinburgh on 6 June 2010 by representatives of world Christianity, including Catholic, Evangelical, Orthodox, Pentecostal, and Protestant churches.
This from Guildford looks good; please pass on the news where you are.
The Parish of St Paul Howell Hill with St Mary Burgh Heath
St Mary’s Burgh Heath
We are a large evangelical charismatic church with two centres of worship and a combined average Sunday attendance of 735, based in NE Surrey. Originally a plant from St Paul’s in 2002, St Mary’s now needs to further develop the mission of this local church where 80-90 people regularly attend. St Mary’s Coffee Shop is an integral part of the mission to the local community.
We are praying for a leader who is inspired by God with creative imagination and energy to help St Mary’s achieve the following priorities:
- Encourage, empower and develop members to become more involved in the work of the Church and to take on leadership roles
- Become a more visible presence in the community by meeting people at their point of need.
- Reach out and engage with 16-40 year olds and those who have young families.
- Disciple new believers through such activities as mentoring, Alpha (or other) courses,
and small groups.
We seek applicants who, under God, are able to focus and lead St Mary's to the next level of growth as a key member of the senior leadership of the parish.
Housing is provided, located conveniently in the centre of the community.
Closing date for applications: Friday 30th July, 2010
Interviews will be held on Wednesday 22nd June and Thursday 23rd September, 2010
Full details and application pack are available for download from our website or from
I shared the details in the open session at the Missioners Conference of our Diocesan ‘Common Purpose’ from the Bishop and our ‘Mission Action Plan’ resource, and many people took copies and others requested copies when I ran out! So here are copies of both documents for those who want them.
Rachel Jordan is serving on the leadership team of HOPE. She draws attention to this one:
Just imagine churches in every village, town and city in the UK working together and setting the Gospel loose through word and action. Imagine the whole Church mobilised to reach the whole nation with the love of Jesus. This was the vision for HOPE 08 which saw thousands of Christians across the UK put their faith into action and reach out to their communities in all sorts of creative ways, with tremendous results. HOPE together is the new formation of HOPE 08, taking these values and seeking to build on them with an even wider reach. HOPE exists to make the vision possible by equipping the Church for joined-up mission. HOPE together will launch at a huge all-night prayer event called Festival of Life, hosted by Pastor Agu Irukwu of the Redeemed Christian Church of God. The event, taking place on the 23 July 2010 at the ExCel Centre, London from 8.00 p.m., will surround the initiative in prayer and build on HOPE's partnership with the Black Majority Church. If you would like to attend this event please firstname.lastname@example.org. www.hopetogether.org.uk(live on 23 July) Lucy Cooper Communications HOPE Together London Office: 020 7207 2107 Mobile: 07810 183635 Email:email@example.com ___________________________________________________________
Just a reminder that we have a commercial tie-in between churches involved in Back To Church Sunday and the resource "Everybody Welcome" from Bob Jackson and George Fisher. Make the most of that. Thomas Allain Chapman at Church House Publishing reminds us:
The URLhttp://www.everybodywelcome.org.uk/ now links to an area of the CHP site which has on it a DVD sample clip, free downloads of some of the checklists and additional materials, as well as details of the components on sale.
The national church's wedding-show-meister Suzanne Gray sends this: contact her for more at the phone number below or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wedding show resources update
It was good to meet some of you at the Missioners Conference and talk about the mission opportunities presented by Church of England stands at wedding shows. Below is some more detail about what's on offer- it would be much appreciated if you could pass this information onto those in your diocese who you think might be interested. For more information you can contact me on 020 7898 1465.
Wedding show packs:contains everything a couple needs to know about getting married in church, gift wrapped in ribbon to make it stand out from all the other information couples will pick up at a show (picture below). Costs start at £60 for enough resources for a half day show- more information from Suzanne on 020 7898 1465.
Professionally produced displays:these banner stands are available free of charge for wedding show stand holders, and are very busy during wedding show season so early booking is advisable. To book a stand call Suzanne on 020 7898 1465.
Prayer cards:we trialled the offering of prayer at the National and UK wedding stands in Autumn and it was very well received, both by couples who are planning a church wedding and those who have booked a civil ceremony. These cards, which can be produced on your computer printer, are an easy way of recording enough information so you can pray for the couple in the week leading up to their wedding. If you'd like the file please contact Suzanne on 020 7898 1465.