Living God's Love Values - Generosity, Joy, Imagination and Courage
Living God's Love Values - Generosity, Joy, Imagination and Courage

Benefice of Bedford, St Paul
« Mission Action Plan »

Details

Benefice
Bedford, St Paul

Deanery
Bedford

Archdeaconry
Bedford

MAP Dates

This MAP was uploaded to the website on
16th May 2020

Our MAP will be reviewed next
30th June 2021

Progress

What progress are you celebrating since your previous MAP?

 We are maintaining our Anglo-Catholic liturgical and musical tradition well, while also
creating stepping stones into it e.g. through the monthly All Age Eucharist which
attracts greater numbers of families
 We are more inclusive, having finally embraced the ordained (Eucharistic) ministry of
women priests
 We are gently growing with a more inclusive ethos and tone, attracting a good number
of new faces with wider age range of people across ethnicities and ages, across the
week (see also next section)
 We have more effective pastoral care of individuals though the Pastoral Group (clergy
and lay), improved follow up of newcomers and ministry to care homes to a greater
number of people
 We are more outward looking and evangelistic, embracing LYCIG and being out on the
streets
 Our pastoral care to the community extends through our open church and Pastoral
Assistant
 We are more collaborative, sharing resources within the ‘Town Cluster’
 We do more learning and training , e.g. Pilgrim, Faith Pictures, literature; and a new
Prayer Group
 We now enjoy a much higher profile: locally through the Visitor Information Centre
(2017); in the borough, county and region as the Civic Church; and nationally
through Cathedrals Plus and Greater/ Major Churches Network
 We have improved our communications: new website, notices boards, media publicity,
Facebook
 An increase of numbers at the Christmas Tree Festival, aided by more musical
performances

How far did you meet your previous priorities?
(1 star = Not at all → 10 stars = Done)

9 stars

Where has there been less progress than hoped for?

 Trials with Messy Church and Playgroup have been less successful than hoped
 Despite best efforts, succession planning across the church has been a struggle
 Engaging a larger number of the congregation in Quiet Day/ Pilgrimage/ Learning for
discipleship is hard
 Recruitment of younger choristers has stalled
 While we have been gaining new members, as at St Albans Abbey, the culture and
pattern of regular church going over the past few years appears to have changed:
while some attend Sunday worship every week, a good number attend more
intermittently. Notably, however, financial giving is being maintained and recently
has slightly increased
 While money is often willingly given for special projects, there is less financial stability
in the General Fund, owing to increased costs
 Progressing items in the last quinquennial report has been slow

Vision

What is the vision for your Church, Parish, Team Ministry or Benefice?

‘In 2024 St Paul’s will be a church which is growing and actively engaging with the people of Bedford and beyond, by living and sharing Jesus’ love.’

Values

What are the core values for your Church, Parish, Team Ministry or Benefice?

Our VALUES and THINGS TO CARRY INTO THE FUTURE are:

• regular services and meaningful worship of high quality: inclusive catholic liturgical
style and cathedral quality of music
• special services, especially for the civic life of the borough and county
• a beautiful, historic, awe inspiring building which is well cared for
• a place of prayerfulness and peace
• good sermons and teaching which is stimulating and scriptural
• a welcoming church, open daily and a presence with the town,
• hospitality and our inclusive and accepting pastoral work, central to the role of our
clergy and Pastoral Assistant, but contributed to by the wider pastoral team and
our welcomers
• a relaxed, inclusive and friendly ambience and ethos, fostering 7/7 belonging
• good stewardship of resources
• a desire to reach out into the community with the love and Good News of Jesus

1st Priority

What is your 1st Priority to make your vision a reality?

GROWING (OUTREACH) and caring for the congregation generally

 We need to grow (more people), especially those in their 30s, 40s and 50s as well as
those who are older
 Deepening and broadening our community by engaging people in activities, including
social events
 Develop greater congregation engagement in Spirituality, faith and learning
(Our services ‘give you something to think about’)

Which of the 3 strands of Living God’s Love does your 1st Priority most focus on?
Making New Disciples

SMART Goal to achieve your 1st Priority

• Refresh the Leading Your Church Into Growth (LYCIG) tool

SMART Goal 2 to achieve your 1st Priority

• Engage in the diocesan ‘Growing Younger’ Big Conversation, aiming to reach all
generations

SMART Goal 3 to achieve your 1st Priority

• Refresh Welcome leaflet and translate into, Polish, Italian, Romanian and Asian
languages, etc
• Introduce a ‘Newcomers Group/Team’ similar in function to the current Pastoral Care
group

2nd Priority

What 2nd Priority are you working on to make your vision a reality?

FAMILIES AND CHILDREN
 We have Young Gospellers (children 3 – 11) but need to be more relevant to youth
(teens)
 In a church culture which is resistant to change, a more positive child friendly ethos is
needed
 Actively engage children more

Which of the 3 strands of Living God’s Love does your 2nd Priority most focus on?
Making New Disciples

SMART Goal to achieve your 2nd Priority

 Find positive things for children to do, e.g. roles and jobs

SMART Goal 2 to achieve your 2nd Priority

 Relay children’s contribution at the end of the Eucharist, as and when appropriate

SMART Goal 3 to achieve your 2nd Priority

 Improve display of children’s work

3rd Priority

What 3rd Priority are you working on to make your vision a reality?

MUSIC

 Need to recruit singers of all ages
 More assistance needed for Director of Music, e.g. Organ Scholar
 Outreach into schools with the aim of recruiting choral scholars

Which of the 3 strands of Living God’s Love does your 3rd Priority most focus on?
Going deeper into God

SMART Goal to achieve your 3rd Priority

 Assistant Choir Directors to take responsibility for recruitment

SMART Goal 2 to achieve your 3rd Priority

 Improve dissemination of the choir’s work to potential singers

SMART Goal 3 to achieve your 3rd Priority

 A coordinated annual music programme

4th Priority

What 4th Priority are you working on to make your vision a reality?

FINANCE

 Stabilising and increasing financial income
 Succession planning to find future treasurers

Which of the 3 strands of Living God’s Love does your 4th Priority most focus on?
Transforming Communities

SMART Goal to achieve your 4th Priority

 Reliable future proofed accounting system to cope with change of personnel
 Build wider donor base towards Pastoral Assistant Fund., e.g. grants, trusts

SMART Goal 2 to achieve your 4th Priority

 Build wider giving base towards General Funds
 Education about the real financial position. In particular:

 To challenge popular assumption that St Paul’s is a wealthy church!
 To build trust that money is well used
 To encourage better stewardship

SMART Goal 3 to achieve your 4th Priority

 More proactive fundraising

5th Priority

What 5th Priority are you working on to make your vision a reality?

COMMUNITY
 Outreach into the community with the advent of a new curate in July 2020 with
experience of Pioneer Ministry and the refreshing of the Cluster ministry in the
town
 Commitment to Creation and addressing Climate Change (Fifth Mark of Mission)

Which of the 3 strands of Living God’s Love does your 5th Priority most focus on?
Transforming Communities

SMART Goal to achieve your 5th Priority

 Set up pioneer ministry with the help of the new curate

SMART Goal 2 to achieve your 5th Priority

 Reshaping of present Cluster Town Centre ministry through collaboration of Vicar and
Curate of St Paul’s (Pioneer Minister) with the Priest Missioner based at St Peter’s.

SMART Goal 3 to achieve your 5th Priority

 Further address St Paul’s carbon footprint, e.g. draughts, long term alternative energy
strategy

MAP published at www.stalbans.anglican.org/maps/?id=25213
Print Friendly, PDF & Email
  • Going Deeper into God
  • Making New Disciples
  • Transforming Communities