'Generous' welcome in Chatham

As part of a new series of Diocesan podcasts, vicar and Mission Lead for Chatham town centre, Rev Carol Morgan, has spoken about the exciting vision for the currently disused St John's Church in the town, and the area as whole.

Since arriving last summer, Carol’s had an exciting, if big job on her hands, as the church – which has stood empty for the last 20 years – is currently a building site is prepared to serve a congregation sometime this year. She says:

“It’s been a bit of a whirlwind! I’ve fallen in love with Chatham High Street; there’s an energy and vibrancy which I think is amazing… this building could really serve the community through generous hospitality – and the best biscuits!”

In the podcast she explains that while St. John’s is part of a wider strategic plan for the area, there are things that churches not undergoing a large reordering project can take away from the project too:
“I just want to be able to meet people at their point of need…and for me it’s about people and relationships first, and the building second.  church next door to St Johns in January

Since recording the interview, Carol has been joined by a member of Church Army, Stephen Ramshaw and his wife Lynn. With her team, they have been able to plant a church in a nightclub next to St John’s. Taking their lead from the name of the nightclub,  the Tap n Tin,  the service is called ‘St Johns on Tap’.

“We are growing, and have already booked in our first baptism, with another soon. We are hoping to draw in people who wouldn’t normally want to go to church. I have a great team working with me. The energy and enthusiasm is palpable each week as we draw together to worship.

“We are feeling our way forward very much…I think it’s about each and every one of us getting out of our comfort zone and being willing to walk with other people and to serve them and serve their needs.”

Previous podcasts include an interview with Richard King, Director of Walderslade Sings! and future editions planned for each month. Visit the podcast page here.


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