June 2018 Saint Wilfrid’s News

As with the other two churches, the May Fayre dominated the start of May – thank you to everyone from the Church who helped us to run our stalls. We have been encouraged to be realistic about what we can do and do that well rather than to overstretch ourselves trying to ‘do what we always have done’. There was a good atmosphere in our gazebos and at the end of the day we had raised just under £600.

We were also involved in supporting the Christian Aid week activities across the Parish. SWISHERS continue to be great supporters of the charity and again got involved. Thanks to them, the Charity Lunch and retiring collections we helped to raise £172 (of over £600 raised across the Parish).

The other main event in May was the PCC meeting on May 17th. The PCC met at Saint Wilfrid’s and was joined by Joanne, our Archdeacon, Andrew Hargreaves, the Mission Advisor and Victoria James, the Stewardship Advisor. They had been invited by the PCC to come and explore with us the current situation at Saint Wilfrid’s, which we mentioned in last month’s Magazine. The discussion was further focused by the report that had just arrived from the Electricians.

The annual inspection had identified that there were urgent works required on the Church lighting (costing in excess of £6,000). The Archdeacon explained that due to the nature of the Health and Safety aspects of the report there was a risk St Wilfrid’s would have to be temporarily closed till they were addressed!

The meeting was a first step in an ongoing conversation and there was an open and honest reflection on the finances, the building and the mission work of the Church. It was generally recognised that there is a lot of good work being done, mainly by SWISHERS in reaching out into the community, but the building is not fit for purpose and is a drain on our resources, both financial and physical. The finances are a cause for concern. So the challenge is how we maintain and enhance the outreach and the enormous sense of mutual support and care for one another, while addressing the finances and building problems. The ‘team’ will return to meet the DCC in July and there will be an open meeting on July 15th before a report is presented to the PCC on July 17th.

At the end of the meeting the Standing Committee approved the electrical works (which will deplete our reserves to around £5,000) and the Insurers have agreed we can continue to use the building – with the lighting isolated and not in use. We hope the work will commence in early June.

The next few weeks will not be easy for all involved as we seek to explore what the future might entail – and to do so, caring for one another, while speaking openly and honestly. Please hold in prayer all involved in this conversation and for all at Saint Wilfrid’s as we seek to discern God’s calling for us.

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