What is the Spirit Saying to the Churches?

We’ve had 48 responses to date for which we’re very grateful.

Here’s a summary of what was written in those responses:

  1. Zoom is appreciated especially the Team’s speedy adaptability to that, and there is an element of surprise expressed at how people have found this spiritually nourishing – sitting in front of a screen.
  2. Generally people want to get back into a church building – missing a ‘sacred’ space, atmosphere, presence of choir.
  3. People missing other people – face to face contact, sharing of the Peace, singing together.
  4. Many have missed the physical receiving of the Bread and Wine.
  5. Some have missed being able to serve in their usual roles; others have felt released from those.
  6. Several commented on now being able to ‘attend’ with ill health or disability - and especially being able to hear well has been an advantage on Zoom.
  7. Many commented on how they have liked seeing clergy all together as a group, as well as the Benefice joining together.
  8. Many commented on having such a great variety of sermons and having all clergy participating on Sundays, as well as young people reading.
  9. Many answered with a Bible verse / passage that had been important to them during this time. Others had found some poetry important to them.
  10. Pain and hurt was expressed by several people at our churches not opening sooner when other places have already done so – some expressed anger and frustration about this.

Going forwards, we will be reflecting on all of the above and also:

  • What the bigger picture is at present and looking ahead across the Anglican church as a whole and within the Diocese
  • Connections between the sacred and the secular, especially how we continue to create sacred spaces in our homes and places other than a church building
  • As we move forwards into a new phase of our Christian lives, how will we continue to give attention to the rhythms and patterns of prayer and worship? What will this look like?
  • Continuing to reflect carefully on the opportunity of this time and if called to do so, adapting to how the Spirit leads

Please continue to give us feedback; it is greatly valued.

We’ll be sending out some more questions soon.

A question to ponder on in the meantime: What would it be like for you if at a 9.15am Sunday Service you had the opportunity to ask questions of the preacher during the sermon?

Safeguarding: who to contact in an emergency

If a child or adult is in immediate danger or requires immediate medical attention, call the emergency services on 999. If there are concerns about their immediate welfare, don’t delay: call Children and Adult’s Social care on 0345 050 7666 or the MASH Out of Hours Emergency Duty Team: 0800 833408

Also please inform your Parish Safeguarding officer, Alison, on 07884 074812 or her Deputy, Sarah Jane, on 07506 515 952 or Pauline on 01993 648136 that you have contacted them.

Safeguarding: who to contact with concerns

For all safeguarding concerns please immediately inform your Parish Safeguarding Officer, Alison, on 07884 074812 or her Deputy, Sarah Jane, on 07506 515 952 or Pauline on 01993 648136. You can also email concerns to safeguarding@witneyparish.org.uk

If you need to contact the Diocesan Safeguarding Team on 01865 208295 or Richard Woodley on 07391 868478 or Lisa Wilkins can be reached via lisa.wilkins@oxford.anglican.org or 07341 866832.

Year Review

The Year Review contains reports from all the churches in the benefice and many of the activities that take place. Year review 2019 with cover

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