CW78: Growing Together resources section

Each edition of Country Way magazine contains a pull-out resources section. Here are a selection of resources designed to help you grow together in your rural community.

CW78 Online Exclusive: That they may be one – unity through cricket

Since 2013, the Pope and the Archbishop of Canterbury have both acquired their own cricket teams. Fr Eamonn O’Higgins is manager of St Peter’s XI and I am lucky to be the manager of Archbishop Justin’s XI. We have played five times since 2014 and presently the score is 4-1 to the Anglicans. In 2015, I flew to Rome with a team made up of ordinands and priests. Here is my blog from that trip…

CW78 Online Exclusive: Growing a Compassionate Community

Corfe Mullen is a village on the edge of Wimborne in rural East Dorset. It has a population of 10,500, of whom a good percentage is older retired people.

A core principal of what we do is providing a form of radical hospitality to marginalised groups of people. These activities provide a doorway for carers as well people with some form of dementia to re-integrate and connect with people and services at a very challenging time in their journey. Dementia is sometimes referred to as a living bereavement; as such it’s seems important to provide a safe and sensitive pastoral base at this crucial time. This work is part of a wider more inclusive vision of growing compassionate communities.

CW78: Growing Together

What do you think of when you hear the word ‘growth’? Perhaps you think of the children in your family and their development from dependent babies to capable, creative teenagers. Maybe you’re a gardener, lovingly tending seeds from germination through potting on to planting out. Or you might be a rural entrepreneur watching a business you dreamed of become a reality.

CW78: Harborough Resourcing Church

Back in January, St Dionysius, one of five churches in the Harborough Anglican Team, launched its first new congregation. The 9:15am worshipping community is a new weekly, all-age led congregation aimed at helping people know more of God’s love, calling and purposes from Monday to Saturday, as well as on Sundays. Over 80 people of all ages gathered for the first service, around a quarter of which were new to church. This is the first of what we expect to be a new congregation, with the expectation of forming other new congregations somewhere in the Team roughly every year for the next six years.

CW78: Lambing service in a barn

Brooksby Melton College’s Hall Farm was the venue for the 10th annual Lambing Service for the Upper Wreake Parish. The congregation arrived by tractor and trailer and after the service enjoyed seeing the new born lambs, piglets and calves.

CW78: Missional Listening

We live in a changing world in which it can seem like inherited models of church and mission are no longer bearing the fruit they once did. As we struggle to find ways to attract people to our services, is it possible that we have become so accustomed to speaking the gospel to the world, that we have lost the importance of listening to our world?

CW78: Plough Sunday at St Stephen’s, Sulby

In January a heart-warming service was held in St Stephen’s Church, Sulby, on the Isle of Man. Sulby, with its population of 400 people plus a few wallabies living wild in local grasslands, nestles at the end of a winding glen where the Manx mountains descend towards the agricultural Northern Plain. The church is one of three chapels commissioned two centuries ago by Bishop Ward to serve remoter rural parts of the Isle of Man.

CW78: Where’s the growth?

At the beginning of the year I was asked a lot about A Vicar’s Life, the BBC TV series which followed a number of clergy in the Diocese of Hereford. People outside the church asked, ‘Is that really what the Church does for people?’ People inside the Church asked, ‘Yes, but where’s the growth?’

CW78: Young people taking a lead in mission

The Talking Jesus research found that one in six young people want to know more when a Christian friend talks to them about Jesus. In response, young people are being encouraged to pray for six friends, asking God for opportunities to talk about Jesus with them.