Parish Newsletter - A New Group Ministry In Cheam, Worcester Park, and Belmont
If you have attended one of our churches in recent weeks, you may have heard us talking about the changes that are going to take place in our parish and beyond in the coming weeks and months. We are creating a new Group Ministry. This means that the three parishes of Cheam, Christ Church with St Philip, Worcester Park, and St John, Belmont will be working very closely together in mission and ministry in the coming years. This is an exciting step for us to take as we look to grow the Kingdom of God in the communities we serve.
One of the key aspects of the work of the Group Ministry will be to engage in Pioneering Ministry. We all know that there is an increasing number of people who have had very little contact with church, if any at all. What we do within our buildings and why we do it is a mystery to such people. We cannot expect them miraculously to come through our church doors and join in. Our challenge is to find new and different ways to reach out from our church buildings and build connections within our communities. This is what Pioneering Ministry is.
Our vision for the Group Ministry is that we will live out five key values in all the work that we do. We will be collaborative, working together in different ways to grow faith across our parishes. We will be risk-taking, prepared to let go of our expectations of what church should be in order to try something different. We will be creative, looking beyond Sunday morning church to find alternative ways to worship and bring people together with God. We will be missional, finding ways to engage with those in our communities with whom we have little contact. We will be transformative, bringing newness of life to our churches and all those we encounter in them and beyond them.
In the next five years, the Group Ministry will develop two new worshipping communities across our five churches. These communities will be part of church life across our parishes and will connect with different people in faith and worship in ways beyond how we might usually see church. In addition, we will develop a charitable project which is focused on issues of social justice and Christian activism and responds to real needs in our communities. There will be other opportunities for our churches to work together, from ministry with children and young people, to the more administrative aspects of parish life.
As a practical consequence, there will be some changes to our ministry provision. Nick will continue as Rector of Cheam, based at St Dunstan’s, with the additional responsibility of taking the lead of the new Group Ministry. There will be two further full-time roles, each of which will be responsible for one church in the Cheam Team and one outside the Team. Beth’s new role is with St Alban’s and St John’s, Belmont. Later this month, we will advertise for the other role at St Oswald’s and Christ Church with St Philip, Worcester Park. Steph Nadarajah will be joining us this week to take up a part time role co-ordinating pioneering ministry in the group. Importantly, each full-time member of the clergy will be expected to prioritise work on pioneering projects across the whole group. To allow this focus, each church will have to change their expectations of where and how their vicar spends their time and energy.
Above all, we want to raise the profile of our churches, bringing more people into contact with our work and our faith in Jesus Christ which we express through it. If we do this, then together we can grow faith, and grow God’s kingdom in this small part of the world God has gifted to us.
Dear God, your love for us is unchangeable.
You have welcomed each of us into the family of your Church.
In Jesus, you call us to be His Body in this place;
Send down your Holy Spirit upon us at this time of uncertainty and change,
to fill us with vision and energy and faithfulness in prayer,
that we may bring new life to our parish community.
Guide those appointed to discern the way ahead with your heavenly wisdom,
that we may build up your Kingdom in Cheam, Worcester Park, and Belmont.
Though Jesus Christ, your Son and our Saviour. Amen.
With love and prayers to you all.
The Reverend Dr Nicholas Peacock The Reverend Beth Lewis
Team Rector Team Vicar
We will be following the following pattern of services in the coming weeks:
8.00am Eucharist on Sundays (from 23rd May)
9.30am Eucharist on Sundays (also livestreamed most weeks)
11.00am Eucharist on Wednesdays
10.00am Eucharist or Service of the Word
We continue to have limited capacity in our churches due to social distancing. We don’t want to turn anyone away, but to be sure of a place at one of our services, please contact:
St Dunstan’s: The Parish Office (07928 833324 / firstname.lastname@example.org)
St Oswald’s: Bryan Hopper (07787 755142 / email@example.com)
St Alban’s: Carol and John Adams (07504 442279)
There will be Family Services at St Dunstan’s at 11.15am on Sundays 16th May, 20th June, and 18th July. These services are aimed at families with young children. Please contact the Parish Office to be sure of a place.
Special Services and Festivals
Ascension Day – Thursday 13th May – 11.00am Eucharist at St Dunstan’s
St Dunstan’s Day – Sunday 16th May – 9.30am Eucharist at St Dunstan’s
Pentecost – Sunday 23rd May – Eucharists at all churches
St Alban’s Day – Sunday 20th June – 10.45am Eucharist at St Alban’s
Further Relaxations to Covid Rules
The government is due to make further changes the Covid laws on 17th May and 21st June. We will closely study the announcements and corresponding guidance from the Church of England and make changes to our own approach where possible.
Prayers and Pastoral Conversations
If you would like us to pray for someone or something, or would like to have a conversation with Nick or Beth, please email them directly (firstname.lastname@example.org / email@example.com) or through the office (firstname.lastname@example.org / 07928 833324).
YouTube is available universally. For reasons of privacy, we will not be praying for people by name during our online services, unless there is a specific request to do so and permission has been sought from the person to be prayed for, or their next of kin. We know this is not ideal, but ask for your understanding.