Thursday, 1 April 1999

A Time to Listen

We are living in changing times.  Some change is for the worse but some is also for the better and as Christians we live in hope.  The world is changing and if the Church doesn’t change as well it will become (if it is not already) a museum piece: in which case some people may find it curious but most will write it off as irrelevant.  The challenge to us is to be true to what it has always meant to be the Church whilst at the same time keeping up with the times and maintaining (or regaining) our relevance.  The PCC has decided to conduct a ‘Feasibility Study’ of our life, as a Church set within its local community.  The basic idea of the study is to do the following:
  Research and Describe:  Ourselves as a Church and the local community round about us.

  Analyse:  What we discover about both and the relationship between them

  Make recommendations:   on how to move forward
A small ‘steering group’ (myself, Andrew Hill, Lynn Beardshall, Edna Kaye, Greg & Dawn Nicholson) has begun meeting to think how we can go about this.  We will be receiving help from Rachel Ross, the Diocesan Social Responsibility Officer.  In the long run the more people who get involved the better.  It is about all of us: living as God’s people, and interacting with the wider community.
 ‘A time to listen’ sums up what we need to do.  Listening to ourselves and to each other: what do we believe, what is important?  Listening to people that aren’t regular members at church or who wouldn’t ‘darken our doors’: what impression do they have of us, what image do we present?  Listening to God: how does he want us to move forward together?  So, watch this space and listen out for further details.  Make your point of view known to the steering group.  And above all LISTEN: find out what your family, friends and neighbours think.  Listen carefully and reflect on what you hear.

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