In 2018 the diocese set up Pattern Church. Its aim was to grow quickly and to plant new churches. One of the foundation principles of resourcing churches is that they should be churches which plant churches. It is part of their DNA.

For some months, Raymond, Sally at St Andrew’s and, more recently, our respective PCCs have been meeting with members of the diocese and leaders at Pattern church to discuss the possibility of a church plant in the SN25 area. There are not many venues around. Community buildings are very thin on the ground. Buildings which can be hired are prohibitively expensive.

In the end, we settled on St Francis School as a possible venue if the school authorities were happy. After discussions with Mrs Farrell, the Headteacher, that plan has been given the green light. Paul Freeland who is a Planting Curate at Pattern will be starting a new church plant in St Francis on Sunday September 12th.

We need to keep this venture in our prayers. The future looks uncertain as far as Covid is concerned. Of all the times to start a new church this is definitely not the one anyone would have picked. But whatever the weeks ahead bring, the plan is to start in September.