Mission in St Peter’s parish

On Sunday 21st August, the congregation at St Peter's was asked to think about which areas of our life we should be focusing our efforts on first in the coming months and years.

Each member of the congregation was given three post-its and asked to use them as 'votes' by sticking them on the posters labelled with the three different areas of our church life they thought we should prioritise.

There were 14 areas of church life to choose from and the headings on them had come out of conversations PCC members have been having about our mission and vision as a church. This was a chance to see if the congregation and the PCC had identified the same opportunities and shared the same passions.

Here's how the post-its landed:

Rank order Area of church life Number of post-its
1 Develop work with young people (11-18) 37
2 Respond to social needs in Shaftesbury (support Open House, Women’s Refuge…) 36
3 Establish a C of E presence in the newer housing (fellowship? Services?) 30
4 Increase work with families 28
5= Extend our work with children 18
5= Grow our music ministry 18
7 Develop our links with local schools 14
8= Extend our prayer ministry 12
8= Strengthen our healing ministry 12
10 Update St Peter’s building (more space / flexibility) 11
11 Plan for a new church / hall / offices in new part of town (10-20 year project) 9
12 Renovate St Peter’s Hall 8
13 Expand communications (Facebook…) 4
14 Increase our weekday activities 2

If you start grouping the different headings together, then you can have endless conversations about how they should fit and whether it’s right to add them like that. But one set of clusters looks like this:

Growing younger: Families, young people & children (97)

Develop work with young people (11-18) 37
Increase work with families 28
Extend our work with children 18
Develop our links with local schools 14

Reaching where we don’t yet reach (enough) (75)

Respond to social needs in Shaftesbury (support Open House, Women’s Refuge…) 36
Establish a C of E presence in the newer housing (fellowship? Services?) 30
Plan for a new church / hall / offices in new part of town (10-20 year project) 9

Worship, prayer & spirituality (42)

Grow our music ministry 18
Extend our prayer ministry 12
Strengthen our healing ministry 12

Other (25)

Update St Peter’s building (more space / flexibility) 11
Renovate St Peter’s Hall 8
Expand communications (Facebook…) 4
Increase our weekday activities 2

Our conversation about our vision and mission at St Peter's will be continuing over the next weeks and months, so watch this space...