Church at the Margins Stories
The story of how a South London church is partnering with neighbours to provide weekly meal kits for hundreds of families across the London Borough of Southwark. Watch the video here.
Telling the story of how Trinity Methodist Church, Clacton-on-Sea is providing a day centre for people in need of a hot meal, companionship and professional support from practitioners offering advice on housing, employment and mental health. Watch the video here.
The Gathering and Sunday Supper @ Bridgeway Dave and Pat are volunteer pioneers. They have demonstrated how serving the needs of the community and being unafraid to test ideas leads to deep relationships in Christian community. Dave has been involved in developing local ministry around the subject of food for several years, beginning with a foodbank and community café, which developed into Sunday Supper. The vision for Sunday Supper began with a few Christians meeting every Sunday evening at Pat’s house. “A few Christians were meeting every Sunday evening at my house for a shared meal, chat, worship, and prayers. I would open the door and welcome whoever arrived, and somehow, we always had enough food, and folk would stay to pray and sing. We used the Youth Alpha materials which prompted good discussion and we prayed for our friends and neighbours. A Summer barbeque attracted fourteen people, who we had prayed for over the years”. Read the full story here.
The Trinity Centre in Cardiff is an outreach project of the Methodist Church, based in premises which have been at the heart of local communities for over 100 years. Since 2013 the Centre has been exploring exciting ways of meeting the changing needs of the local community – providing in particular a base for work with refugees and asylum-seekers. Read the full story here.
Supporting families through the school holidays. With recent news reports indicating that increasing numbers of families struggle with paying for food and other necessities during the school holidays, Morvyn Sanderson, Youth Worker for the Darlington Methodist Circuit, shares how The Well in Darlington is supporting the local community over the summer months. Read the full story here.
Selby Street Mission is located in one of the UK’s most deprived areas and according to Andy who has been attending several times a week for 13 years, “is the heart of our community.” The Mission provides friendship, meals, support for people living with addiction, food and clothes banks as well as worship and bible study classes. The Minister, the Revd Andrew Stead says, “People are drawn to this place because they want to serve church at the margins. We have got to stay in these areas because God loves them.” Hayley, a member of the Selby Street Mission explains why she keep coming to the Mission, “It’s the people and it’s the prayers and it’s the presence of other people accepting you for who you are.” How can we create spaces for people to be vulnerable about their circumstances? For Eunice it is about “Acknowledging the gifts of people experiencing poverty, believing that poverty contradicts the will of God and celebrating becoming a community where friendship is nurtured, and the love of God is experienced.”
Freedom Project in Derbyshire was set up in 2008 to support people who are struggling with poverty in Bolsover. Since then the project has grown to cover the North East Midlands and Yorkshire with 14 support centres offering debt counselling, skills for getting back into the workplace and the chance to encounter faith. Speaking ahead of a recent family fun day (click to watch the video) in the town hosted by the Project, Mark North, CEO, said: “These kinds of places give people the opportunity to connect but also helps them to build confidence and worth and hopefully is an opportunity for them to reflect on who Jesus is.” The Church is resourcing Christians to develop this work, including courses on how to begin a church at the margins, community organising and a webinar on offering a warm space this winter for people unable to afford heating in their homes.
Street Banquet is a district and Connexionally-funded NPNP project in Birmingham City Centre. You can read more about it via the link, or watch the video.