Emmanuel is a lively evangelical church which caters for a range of ages, with a weekly worshipping congregation of about 350. There are many activities through the week providing for babies (withtheir parents and carers) all the way through to retired people.
Over several decades, we have evolved from a conservative evangelical position to be a more open evangelical church. We hold a breadth of individual views, grounded in a core position which takesthe Bible seriously, and which longs to bring people into a relationship with Jesus. We want to grow through effective evangelism.
Our Sunday services are relatively informal and often seek to engage us in fresh and creative ways.They use a variety of contemporary and more traditional worship styles supported by able musicians and an innovative audio-visual tech team. We are a church that is willing to try new ideas.
Preaching, teaching and prayer are very important to us. We are blessed to have many good preachers who apply biblical teaching in a relevant way. Homegroups, prayer groups and Bible studies are also important.
We have an Associate Vicar, a non-stipendiary Curate with PTO, 5 lay readers, 3 Southwark Pastoral Auxiliaries, a staff team of 6 and hundreds of volunteers.
There is a tradition of strong children’s work which draws in large numbers each week and alsobrings many adults to us who might not otherwise come. Events such as our Mayhem holiday club and creative Christmas services attract significant numbers from the local community. Our ministry to older people is also growing.
Pastoral care of church members and parish residents is shared among many people, including the clergy and a small pastoral team, and with home groups playing an important part. Although it is a challenge, as for many larger churches, we encourage all church members to exercise care for one another as members of the Body of Christ.
We have a desire to continue to serve those in our community who are vulnerable. We have teamswho serve with passion the homeless, women who do not speak English, the frail elderly, and those with additional needs.
The church building houses the staff team, church office and clergy office. There is a newlyrefurbished and extended Emmanuel Centre building across the road, which is used for church activities as well as community hire.
Emmanuel is a large, lively evangelical church with much potential for growth. We long to be re-energised by a vision-builder, gifted preacher and collaborative leader. We are 12 miles south of London, with an Electoral Roll of 373, a strong tradition of ministry to children and families, and community service to the vulnerable. We want to grow in depth and to love more radically and deeply as we share the good newsof Jesus.
Emmanuel has many strengths and is a happy community. For example, we are a well-resourcedchurch with a large team of talented and committed volunteers. We are a congregation that responds enthusiastically to projects and challenges. We have a strong tradition of families’ and children’s work over many years. The quality of much that we offer is high and, for example, our Christmas services, and our children’s holiday club are well-attended. Emmanuel has a lot of potential for growth.
We also recognise that there are some challenges to address and opportunities to enable. In this period of prayerful waiting and discernment we sense:
We are in need of a renewed vigour behind a clear and prayerful vision for the gospel,
grounded in scripture, which actively engages with modern culture – alongside continued
social action. We feel we are trying to do too much, and may have become too activity focused.We are a bit tired and maybe even lukewarm. New people have often come from
other churches, rather than being new to faith. We want to change!
The need to increase our emphasis on intentional discipleship, nurturing new Christians,
and exercising the gifts of the Spirit. We struggle to retain people, such as older teenagers
and the early-twenties (and their parents), as they transition through different life stages.
Unity is important to us. In renewing our vision around the gospel, we want to maintain ourunity whilst holding together some different theological views. We know that this may not always be comfortable, and recognise the challenge. We also value the range of worship styles and breadth of activities we engage in, yet this diversity has meant we have become fragmented and this has contributed to the loss of a driving purpose at Emmanuel.
The need to grow in how we welcome and receive everyone, recognising the value and
worth of each person, irrespective of their background or previous life experiences. Some
people still find it hard to belong (and not just newcomers). We have some way to go to
here, and we need to be nurtured and helped to accept, include, care for and love everyone more radically and deeply. While we are increasingly diverse as a congregation, we are still some way from being truly representative of our local area. We long to be more so and for people in the parish to see us as “their” parish church.
There is plenty of opportunity and desire to invigorate the change and growth we deeply want to see. While we know we have challenges our love of God and fellowship with each other has held us together. The PCC is united, committed and looks forward to collaborating with the new vicar that God calls to Emmanuel.
We are looking for a:
CPAS is an evangelical patron with involvement in the appointment to 688 benefices. www.cpas.org.uk
To view our microsite visit https://jobs.churchofengland.org/cpas/
If you have any queries contact the patronage team at CPAS
Kathy Burch firstname.lastname@example.org 0300 123 0780
The closing date for this post Midnight on 3 December
Visits and interviews 20 and 21 January 2020