Torbay Street Pastors
Added: 3rd September 2019
Torbay Street Pastors patrol in small teams into the early hours on Friday and Saturday nights around Paignton, Brixham and the Torquay Harbourside. The Safe Place Van is situated on Torquay Harbour and a team of volunteers work from the van providing first aid, flip-flops, water and support. They also have a defibrillator on board. The pastors work closely with the door staff of the clubs, police, NHS and the Council. They have to deal with many things including charging mobile phones so relatives can be called and of course calling an ambulance should the need arise.
School Pastors patrol the streets around secondary schools for a couple of hours as the schools close, generally for two afternoons a week. The students soon get to know the pastors as they chat about their experiences at school or accept support from the pastors where needed.
All the work done by the Street Pastors is backed up by a Prayer Team. Some pray from home but most are in a prayer base ready to pray for the situations and needs as they arise. The rapid answers to prayers are truly inspiring.
More pastors and prayer support workers are needed and there will be a training day at the end of September at Winner Street Baptist Church in Paignton. Anyone from St John's interested in attending the training day should speak to John Trotman and he will be able to give more details about the work. There is a newsletter available in the church.
Trevor, who heads up the work, is currently poorly after suffering a stroke. Please pray for him.
Digital Ten Commandments
Added: 1st July 2019
According to the national press, the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, has announced a set of digital commandments for us to follow! They are as follows:
1. DON'T RUSH IN
Responding quickly doesn't mean doing so without due consideration
2. TRANSIENT YET PERMANENT
Social media updates are immediate and will outdate quickly but they can have a more lasting impact
3. YOU'RE AN AMBASSADOR
If talking about a church matter, make it clear that these are your personal opinions
4. DON'T HIDE
Anonymity and hiding behind aliases when using social media is frowned upon
5. DON'T BLUR PRIVATE LIFE BOUNDARIES
There are risks associated with personal opinions being seen as public statements
6. BE AWARE OF SAFEGUARDING
The informality that social media encourages can mean that it might be harder to maintain a professional distance.
7. DON'T SHARE CERTAIN IMAGES
Make sure you have permission from anybody who features in the image before sharing
8. STAY WITHIN LEGAL FRAMWORKS
If you wouldn't say something in a public meeting or to someone's face don't say it online
9. KEEP CONFIDENCES
Remember...is this story mine to share? If in doubt, don't
10. BE MINDFUL OF YOUR SECURITY
Don't overshare personal information
ACK St Stephen's Ngoingwa Kenya
Added: 19th June 2019
Our Reader, Jeff Hacon, and his wife Debby visited St Stephen's in Kenya early in 2019 and brought back this report.
Exeter Diocese is twinned with the Diocese of Thika in Kenya. Thika is about 50 miles north east of Nairobi. As part of this we are twinned with St Stephen's Ngoingwa, a rapidly expanding community on the outskirts of Thika city. The church was founded in 2002 when a group of 19, including 10 children, asked to become a parish.
Their first building was erected in 2010 and even though it seated 100 people, it was already too small before it was opened. The current building seats 400. They have 3 services on a Sunday morning - 7.30 am Youth (15-30), 9.00 a.m. English and 11.00 a.m. Kikuyu. The Sunday School already has over 200 children in it. Most of the growth is coming from people moving into the area but the church is very outward looking and many are coming to faith.
They are planning a church plant next year and hope to open a new building 2 km away. The minister is Rev Andrew, a very enthusiastic leader. He is helped by 4 readers. They have a robed choir and a dynamic praise and worship group, giving great variety to their services.