Team Rector’s Report to PCC
I would like to thank everyone who has been involved in the exercise of our mission and ministry over the last twelve months; for ‘keeping the show on the road’. Numbers attending worship have held steady across the Team but there is no room for complacency.
Each of our churches continued to engage with the local communities in which they are set. Other reports, and minutes of DCC meetings held through the year, show the range and scope of these activities so please refer to them for a detailed reflection on the Team’s activities.
- The programme of meetings and lunches arranged during Lent were very well attended and enjoyed, helping to raise money for Christian Aid.
- The Bridge has continued its publication throughout the year, and thanks are due to the Editor, editorial team, sorters and distributors. The number of volunteer deliverers has declined leading to a reduction in the number of copies being printed.
- The Team website continues to reflect the scale, nature and diversity of our mission and ministry.
- Churches continue to organise community events, not all aimed at fund raising but at building fellowship. ‘Ride and Stride’ in September is a means of engaging with the community in new and refreshing ways. The Saturday morning coffee at Bothenhampton continues to be well supported. Walditch has a series of events during the year. Mary’s, St. John’s and St. Swithun’s continue to be used on a very regular basis by community orchestras, choirs and groups.
- A Joint Service on the fifth Sunday of the month followed by a bring & share lunch has proved to very successful.
Mission 2 – Families/youth/children’s
The development of our work with families, youth and children was a particular feature of the last year. Including outreach to schools, the church family reaches hundreds of the town’s children.
- Tots Time continues at Church House in South Street on Fridays although on a smaller scale than in the past.
- Cupboard Love has grown throughout the year. Hundreds of food parcels have been distributed during the year as well as hampers and stockings at Christmas. Particular thanks to Lidl’s, Waitrose, Morrison’s Leakers and Nina’s for their help. Thanks to Carrie Gamble (our paid co-ordinator since March 2017). A majority of our excellent pool of volunteers are unchurched and bring an amazing array of talent and experience.
- Tots@Ten is now well established and continues to thrive
- Tuesday’s Together continues monthly at Bradpole.
- Bradpole Brunch is well established and is proving to be very popular. Minty Morning Mayhem has proved popular at St. Mary’s.
- The Churches Together in Bridport Youth Worker Council appointed Aaron Rigby (spring of 2017) to work part time with teenagers at Sir John Colfox Academy and those attending local primary schools.
Mission 3 – Occasional Offices
This continues to be a very busy aspect in the life of the Team in regard of baptisms, weddings and funerals representing an enormous amount of contact with the local community.
Mission 4 – Chaplaincy and Schools work
Members of the clergy Team continue to be very actively involved in local organisations. Chaplaincy ministry continues to be exercised at Bridport Hospital, the Royal British Legion, the Royal Naval Association and Royal Air Force Association. Revd Ayling and Moore undertake regular visits to local Care/Nursing Homes.
The Team continues to undertake assemblies at St. Mary’s School and Bridport Primary School. Revd Pete Stone is a Governor at St. Mary’s CE school and a Member of the MLT. Modern governorship in schools is a demanding and time-consuming task and this has been particularly true over the past twelve months.
Mission 5 – Ecumenical links
The Bridport Team continues to play an active part in Bridport Churches Together including playing key roles in the Lent Lunch programme, Tea & Chat and Christian Aid. Links between SMB and the Bridport United Church are flourishing. St. Mary’s and the United Church share worship together on a regular basis.
During the year, the Team met its responsibilities in regard of Fairer Share and Team expenses fully. This is a considerable continuing monetary commitment to the mission of the Church and thanks are due to all who have given so generously. Each of our six church buildings stay maintained to a high standard.
Martin Whiting (Bradpole Church) and Mrs Lorna Johnson are being ordained for different roles in June 2019 and we take this opportunity to thank all of our ordained and licensed ministers, plus members of the laity who undertake leadership and missionary roles and whose efforts bear considerable fruit. Churchwardens, officers, members of DCC’s, organists, choirs and members of music groups are also thanked whose effort is often unsung and unseen and yet vital to the life of our fellowship in Christ.– and for those doing a myriad of necessary tasks to enable our churches to function as places of worship and praise.