Vicar’s Viewpoint: February 2017
I was once again amazed at the number of people who came to our Crib Services on Christmas Eve. Across the three services we had over 1,100 people come through our doors (and at the 5pm there were many who had trouble getting anywhere near the doors!)
I greatly rejoice at being the vicar of a parish where so many people are keen to come to church to celebrate the great Christian festivals. As I shake everyone’s hand on their way out, I sense a feeling of genuine warmth and goodwill towards the church. This gives me hope and encouragement that what we do, all the services, the pastoral care, the outreach, the work in schools and everything else, is valued and appreciated. It also gives me the confidence to make a general appeal for support among all the residents of our parish.
It is a common misconception that parish churches receive financial support from the government and the central church institutions. They don’t. Our costs amount to £230,000 a year, all of which has to be covered by donations, fundraising and hall-hire income. Regular members of the congregation generously give over £80,000 per year. But we always struggle to make ends meet.
This is why we now make an annual appeal to all our regular attenders to commit to a ‘planned giving’ scheme. It is also why I would now like to ask those of you who may not come to church regularly, but who wish us well, to consider supporting us through regular (or one-off) donations. Any amount, no matter how small, would be hugely appreciated.
If you would like to donate, please click here. Or for more information please contact our Planned Giving Officer, Ms Susannah Clark.
Thank you and best wishes,