Our mission at St Mary's is to share the life-changing love of Jesus, serving our whole community
Sharing Jesus and serving the church community
We believe that as the Church grows in our love and understanding of Jesus then we will be better equipped and motivated to share the life-changing love of Jesus with others. As well as our regular services, we have a number of small groups, fellowship groups and youth groups which help us strengthen our faith and our love for each other. Further details of these groups can be found elsewhere on the website.
Sharing Jesus and serving the local community
Within the local community we look to share the love of Jesus through our relationships, our words and through providing practical help and support.
Sharing Jesus and serving the worldwide community
Further afield we look to share the love of Jesus by providing prayer, financial and practical support to others who share our vision. This may be those called to a specific ministry nationally or internationally or those living or working in their local communities.
St Mary’s is committed to supporting specific mission activities through our financial giving. Recognising that God blesses us more than we could ever imagine we have an annual gift day and these funds are directed towards other projects that provide opportunities to share the life-changing love of Jesus with others.
To read more about our Mission Partners, please click here.
In addition to those ongoing partnerships, the church family also supported the following other projects financially through our Gift Day in June:
Innovista (www.innovista.org) is a small Christian charity based in Oxford. They focus on leadership development for young church leaders – in places like Barton, Blackbird Leys and Abingdon as well as Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Russia.
By identifying, training and supporting young leaders, more mission activities are taking place in deprived and hard to reach places.
They are equipping others to lead and replicate mission projects similar to St Mary’s, but in churches that don’t have the same level of resources. It was wonderful to be able to support them and help them make a difference.
Trinity Room Makeover
The Trinity Room (behind the old organ pipes at the north-east corner of the church) is currently used weekly not only for our Sunday morning creche, but also for two outside groups which serve the needs of vulnerable adults on our community.
As well as needing re-painting, the room is currently furnished with stained second-hand carpet tiles and old furniture, which falls well short of the kind of expression of the love of Jesus that we would like to extend to those we serve. Our project intends to repaint, to re-carpet and to refurnish the room with comfortable tub chairs.
Bibles for Burundi
Burundi is one of the poorest, hungriest and unhappiest nations in the world. A new and much needed Kirundi version is ready to be printed, but at present the Bible society does not have sufficient funds to produce them.
£35,000 will produce the first print run of 5000 Bibles which will help to equip leaders with their own Bibles.
We were happy to support this project to equip others to learn and share God’s word in their own language.
More information on this project can be found here – http://www.simonguillebaud.com/bibles-for-burundi/
Pandemonium in the Park
As part of the North Cotswold Mission week, we wanted to bless the local community by putting on a Fun Day on The Common, entirely free of charge. We had such a great day! ‘Ace’ of the 1990’s tv show Gladiators (Warren Furman) set up an arena for contests with him, there was soft play, family portraits, bubble football, nail painting, hair cuts, CV writing, crafts for all ages and storytelling workshops. Along with live music throughout, we also provided 550 hot lunches (hog-roast and BBQ) and 1000 pieces of cake.
By providing a few hours of fun things people can do as a family and community, we’re were hoping to break down misconceptions about church and to show that knowing Jesus makes a difference to all of us, not just a select few and that all are loved by God. By having so many different things to do, we served the community by providing them for free for a day and encouraged them to join us for other things we do.
‘Audiovisual (AV)’ – definition: possessing both a sound and a visual component.
Both components are important in communicating, and both contribute to our church experience – worship, teaching and fellowship. We have invested in our audio, now it’s time to invest in our visual…
The proposed ‘enVision’ project will enable our ageing analogue projector and damaged screen to be upgraded to digital (HDMI) and widescreen format and tied-in to high-quality digital images relayed to flat-screen TV monitors that can be seen around the church – increasingly necessary as our congregation grows. Cameras will enable baptisms, drama, nativity plays, preaching, Remembrance parades, etc. to be seen by all wherever they are seated.
The new visual system will work in tandem with our new sound system (‘reSound’ project) to enhance our services together and increase accessibility. Also, it will equip St Mary’s to perform other roles within the community.