ST PATRICK S CHURCH, WALLINGTON

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1 ST PATRICK S CHURCH, WALLINGTON DEANERY OF SUTTON, ARCHDEACONRY OF CROYDON DIOCESE OF SOUTHWARK Information about ST PATRICK S for appointment of a CHILDREN AND FAMILIES MINISTER Spring 2016

2 INTRODUCTION St Patrick s is a lively evangelical Anglican (Church of England) church situated in Wallington. As an evangelical church we seek to be Bible-based in all that we do: teaching, serving, administration etc. We have almost 200 on the electoral roll, but on a typical Sunday we have ~180 at our morning service, ~50 at our new afternoon service and ~40 at our evening service. Our vision is God and our goal is to fulfil Jesus commission to make and grow disciples. We love our church and all that the Lord Jesus has given us in it. Here are some of the things we are thankful for: being a church family of all ages which is warm and welcoming; the range of opportunities to deepen our walk with Jesus though services, small groups, discipleship courses, prayer; our strong contacts with many children/young people and their families, not least through the uniformed organisations which use our church premises; our provision for older people through our Lunch Club, fellowship groups and pastoral support; the strength of our midweek small groups (LifeGroups); a strong staff team of three paid staff, three readers, and one pastoral assistant along with a post university volunteer associate; the decades-long support for God s work of mission around the world, especially, in recent years, a link with a church out in Romania to help them run a Summer children s camp; the other strong evangelical churches in our area, especially Holy Trinity, Wallington with which we have a particularly strong connection. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 2

3 THE PLACE St Patrick s Church Park Hill Road Wallington St Patrick s parish is a small residential area in south Wallington, close to the Green Belt. We have a varied mix of businesses in our parish including a girls grammar school, a fitness centre, a large garden centre, library, Health Centre and some smallholdings as well as half of the town centre (you ve got to love the CofE s parish boundaries!). Wallington is in the London Borough of Sutton. The town centre provides a reasonable variety of shops and has good transport links to Central London, while the nearby centres of Sutton and Croydon offer a wide range of businesses and services, along with shopping and cultural activities. Primary and secondary schools in the area generally have a good reputation and several especially the five grammar schools are highly sought-after. St Patrick s supports Holy Trinity Church Junior School. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 3

4 SERVICES The regular pattern of Sunday worship is as follows: 8.00 am 1 st and 3 rd Sundays Holy Communion BCP am 1 st Sunday Family and Parade service 2 nd Sunday Holy Communion 3 rd, 4 th and 5 th Sundays Morning Service 4.00 pm 1 st Sunday 2 nd, 3 rd and 5 th Sundays 4 th Sunday Family Service Regular Service Holy Communion 6.30 pm LifeTime (informal café-style service with varying formats, often addressing contemporary issues and having an interactive element). Holy Communion on some 4 th Sundays. At 10.30am children (0-14) start in the main service and then go out to their groups. Pathfinders (11-14) arrive before the service, at 9.45am, in order to share a breakfast and play games. At 4.00pm everyone stays together for longer, with adults and children going to their separate teaching towards the end of the service. Everyone stays on afterwards for a substantial tea. LIFEGROUPS We do not just meet on a Sunday for worship and study of the Bible. We also have a dozen small groups who meet regularly (mostly once a week) and we encourage all those who come to St Patrick s to join and enjoy the blessing of small group fellowship. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 4

5 SUNDAY WORSHIP St Patrick s, as a local church, has sought to hold together as wide a range of evangelical churchmanship as possible in order to witness through our unity in Jesus, but also because we learn from each other. Our success in this is reflected in the different conferences church members attend through the year: New Wine, Spring Harvest, New Word Alive, Keswick, Bible by the beach. St Patrick s is a member of the Evangelical Alliance. In September 2007 we started LifeTime, a new format for our evening service, introducing a greater freshness and informality (as well as home-made cakes and real coffee) to our worship, with attendance averaging The freer style enables us to address contemporary issues in different ways. In March 2013 we started a new service on a Sunday afternoon. This was a response to two challenges: the first was that our morning service was full; the second was that we were aware that for many people Sunday morning is a difficult time to come to church. The afternoon service has a more informal and simpler approach than the morning service. occasional events. As a church we attach great importance to prayer. Prayer meetings, usually attended by small but committed groups, take place throughout the week. MISSION Preaching is always from the Bible and is mainly done by book of the Bible or theme. Our preachers aim to make their sermons relevant and to include an element of personal application. Music On Sunday mornings we have both traditional hymns and modern worship songs, while in the afternoon and evening services the sung worship is led by the Music Group. We do not have a regular choir except at the Christmas carol service and other Local Mission Although we have many contacts in our parish, we are mindful that they are not as well developed as we would wish. However many of our members come from outside our parish, and our work with families, children and older people draws in people from well beyond our parish, some of whom join the church. Details St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 5

6 on all these groups are given below. We regularly run Christianity Explored courses and follow them up with two more courses with a view to integrating members into a new LifeGroup at the end of the year. Mission to the wider world St Patrick s has long been a strong supporter of worldwide mission and we tithe 10% of donations to mission. Active interest in our mission partners was, until recently, confined to relatively few members of the congregation, but in 2008 we decided to put greater emphasis on personal relationships with those whom we support in mission, in particular by linking each of our Mission Partners with a LIFE Group. This has been very successful in drawing more church members into taking an active interest in those we support in Mission. We have undertaken an active link with a church in Romania called ProDeo. Each year we send a team over to help with a children s camp which they run. We encourage church members to undertake short term mission trips, and help with funding them. In addition, church members give generously to specific disaster appeals and we support the annual Samaritan s Purse shoe-box appeal. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 6

7 PEOPLE The church family is diverse in background, and there are a good number of families with children and young people up to 18 years old. Those aged 50+ are also well represented. STAFFING Paid staff Vicar Assistant Minister - who has responsibility for Youth, small groups and service within St Patrick's. Children and Families minister (Vacancy). Part-time Parish Administrator - works 20 hours a week in term-time. Voluntary staff Three licensed readers (age range from 45 to 65). One Southwark Pastoral Auxiliary (SPA). One associate currently studying on the Cornhill Training course. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 7

8 FAMILIES AND YOUTH WORK Working with children and families has long been a strength of St Patrick s, but in the 1990s and early years of this century we, like many other churches, saw a decline in the number of children and young people attending our Sunday groups. In response to this, we appointed a Youth Worker (to work with 11 18s) and two job-sharing Children and Families Workers (working with 0 11s). When the youth worker left we appointed an Assistant Minister with special responsibility for youth as part of a move towards employing staff as enablers rather than service providers. CHILDREN S AND FAMILIES WORK At St. Patrick s there are a significant number of activities and events aimed at children and their families. These seek to connect them in a variety of ways to the church community as well as providing opportunities for deeper spiritual nurturing. In addition to the Sunday groups, we have run Holiday Clubs, Monday Fundays and other holiday activities. A Rainbow Party is held each year for 5-11s as a Christian alternative to Halloween, with around 120 children coming. There is a recognition that we have not been as successful as we would have liked in moving children from these groups to our Sunday work. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 8

9 CHILDREN Sundays Children s groups that meet during the Sunday morning and afternoon services include: Crèche (0-2s); Scramblers (3-reception). Junior Gospel Rock (Years 1-3) and Senior Gospel Rock (Years 4-6). Midweek There is a games/activities evening called SPOCK which meets twice a month. This is popular and combines a fun time with a slot for Bible teaching. YOUNG PARENTS Parent & Toddler groups meet on Monday and Friday afternoons. There are approx 90 children on the books and these groups as well as TGI s are highly regarded by the local community. TGI Thursday ( Thank God it s Thursday ) meets on Thursday mornings in the hall. It s an opportunity for mums to have a break from their small children and enjoy a variety of activities in the lounge, whilst their children are cared for by a dedicated team in the hall. They have a Christian speaker once a term. Around 20 mums attend regularly, many of whom do not attend church. Mum's LifeGroup Over the past couple of years a mum s LifeGroup has formed out of TGIs and meets on a Wednesday, during which there is a Toddler's Praise for the children. YOUTH WORK Our Youth Groups include: Pathfinders (11-14s) and 440 (14-18s). Pathfinders meets during the service, but starts 45 minutes earlier to fit in games and a cooked breakfast! 440 meets at 7.30pm after the evening service. There is also a 440 LifeGroup as well as mentoring relationships active in both groups. UNIFORMED ORGANISATIONS: We host the full range of Guiding (two Rainbow packs, two Brownie packs, and Guides) and Scouting (Beavers, Cubs, Scouts) groups, with about children in the eight groups. They are encouraged to attend our family and parade services on the first Sunday of each month, with numbers averaging 50. Several leaders are also church members. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 9

10 ADULT GROUPS AND ACTIVITIES LIFEGROUPS were set up a number of years ago and meet in homes. They are focused around studying the Bible, supporting one another and reaching out to those not in the groups. They are the core unit of our church family. MEN S GROUPS: The Men s Breakfast is held on a Saturday morning every two months. After a tasty fry-up there is a talk from a visiting Christian speaker with normal attendance between 30 and 40. A second group for men has a more varied programme, whether it be at a pub or around a BBQ. It aims to offer a relaxed social event to which men from St Pat s can invite their friends, attracting around people. WOMEN S GROUP, Women at St Patrick s meet for socials, such as the popular Pimms and Puddings evening, and also to hear visiting speakers OLDER PEOPLE are an important and valued part of our congregation and community. Lunch Club meets every Tuesday during term time, with snacks offered in the holidays. Its mainly elderly clientele come from a cross-section of the community and includes both church members and other local residents. There are around 70 names on the register with about attending each week. There are services each month which are linked to the Lunch Club. Many firm friendships have been forged offering mutual support, and a number have joined the congregation and other church activities. Staffing is provided by church members and their friends. Wednesday Afternoon Fellowship has 35 members and meets monthly to hear a speaker and enjoy tea and cakes. CAMEO also meets monthly on a Saturday afternoon and aims to provide a meeting point for people who may feel a particular need for friendship and find weekends a lonely time. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 10

11 FUN All-age social activities have been an important part of St Patrick s life over the years. During 2011 to early 2012 we had a number of activities to celebrate our centenary. Later in 2012 we had an Olympic challenge fun day, which had a strongly competitive element. In , we have had Harvest swing evenings, Hog Roasts, church trips to the seaside (~100 people), Barn dance, Open Gardens etc. St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 11

12 St Patrick s Church 2015 Page 12

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