NEWS

We enjoy showing reports from grant beneficiaries on this page. If you have received a grant from any of the charities in the Fellowship of St John group, we would love to hear your stories and, if you agree, publish them here.

Tom McLean, Ordinand at The College of the Resurrection, Mirfield
(St George’s Trust)

Thank you for the grant of £350 you kindly made that helped me to spend a month this summer in Seoul, South Korea as a placement as part of my formation for ministry in the Church of England.
Whilst there, I spent time engaging with a number of projects. One area of focus was the cathedral there, working with the clergy and ordinands, and also with the diocesan staff whose offices are in the vicinity. This gave me the opportunity to explore what an Anglican identity means in the Korean culture – a context where Christians are only 25% of the population and to be an Anglican is rare amongst that, as well as observing the work of ministry in a detailed manner.
I was also given the opportunity to spend some time at a number of different social action projects run by the Diocese. These included a homeless shelter, which across a number of different facilities is one of the largest in Seoul; several ‘sharing houses’, community projects to work with the disadvantaged in their home communities centred around the space used by the same community on Sundays for worship – these work especially with the elderly and the disabled; and a ‘shalom house’, a project that works mostly with unregistered migrant workers to help them avoid exploitation at work and to provide basic medical support, as well as language and other support to aid integration. I also made a trip into the Demilitarized Zone separating the north from the south, and heard much about the engagement of the Church with the process of moving towards reconciliation – a challenging proposition in a conflict where both sides still desire victory, even if the methods are now cultural and economic rather than military.
The final major aspect was to spend time with two religious communities in the diocese, the Community of the Holy Cross and the Society of St. Francis. Both of these enabled me to think a little about the place of an intentional community in the ministry and mission of the Church, and to recognise that many of the difficulties that this involves have components that exist across cultures – the hesitancy prompted by the need to commit the whole of one’s life to living alongside others under a communal Rule is not just a Western tendency.
I hope these experiences serve to provide much material for continued reflection over the months to come, as I continue my formation for ministry. I also the bonds of friendship developed with clergy, seminarians and laity will bear fruit in the continuation of the mission of God through the Anglican Church across the world. I thank you again for your generous support in enabling me to be undertake this trip.

Erith Deanery Youth Trust, report from Laura Webster, Deanery Youth and Children’s Work Convener (Fellowship of St John)

The following are a list of the activities that I have been involved in as part of my role working for Erith Deanery Youth Trust:
OPEN CUPBOARD MORNING – The Deanery have some children and youth resources held in a local church which are there for the churches to use. One morning we laid all the resources out, served tea and cake and invited the churches to come and see what we had available. Several churches were represented and we spent some time sharing our experiences of our work.
FEBRUARY – A Deanery church ran a Doug Horley Praise Party which was attended by over 100 children and their families. I was involved along with another local Christian group in publicising and supporting the event.
MARCH – I ran an event to thank all those involved in Youth and Children’s work within the Deanery. It was a chance to meet up, make friends drink tea and eat cake. While we chatted we shared experiences from within our practice. There were 27 leaders from most of the churches in the Deanery with some bringing several from the different ministries they are involved in.
MAY – I organised a Children’s Festival in a local School. All children from the Deanery Churches were invited. We had 40 children join us. Many leaders from the other churches were involved in the planning and running the event on the day. Another local Christian organisation supported the event in the worship group and as a speaker at the end of the event.
Pray Love Bexley – a bus moved around the borough as a mobile prayer space. I arranged for there to be specific slots for children and their families to come on-board and experience the multi-sensory prayer space. I promoted this across the Deanery.
JULY – Spark in the Park is a week long summer project for children and families run by several churches in the local area which I support. Several of the Deanery churches are involved and I have encouraged those in the other churches to be part of the team – although that wasn’t possible this year.
OCTOBER – I ran a Family Light Party in the church I am part of. I had tried to find another Deanery church to host so we could have a joint event however no other church was sure anyone would come. So I ran the event in my home church and invited the others to join us.
Throughout the year I have met up with those involved in running the Children’s and Youth work in the Deanery churches. I have offered support, encouraged the use of the Resources from the Deanery cupboard as well as my own. I have supported one of the Deanery Churches Messy Church with worship and speaking.
I have negotiated to borrow the Godly Play resources that are used by a local Christian schools work organisation.
I have publicised Diocesan training events as well as other events that may be of interest and passed on information to those working with the children and young people in the local churches. I have publicised the borough joint youth worship event within our churches of which 3 regularly send young people.
I have visited the Youth Groups run within our Deanery and I am arranging to visit the work done with children on Sunday mornings and within Toddler Clubs. Throughout the year I have attended various training events and conferences to keep abreast of current practice which I can feed back to our churches.

The Children’s Pilgrimage to Walsingham, 2015 (The Holy Childhood)

CRIBS


























“After a long but exciting six-hour journey on the mini-bus, we finally arrived in Walsingham on Friday 6 March. We were all quite tired but we were all very excited as we knew we were going to have a great time; and we did.! We first went up to the holy shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham to pray and to find out a little bit of the history of Walsingham and about what Mary said to Richeldis. On Saturday we woke up early, as we were too excited to sleep in. After breakfast we walked the Holy Mile, which was very painful for those of us who chose to walk it barefoot, but on the whole it was fun as two of my new friends (who weren’t walking barefoot) were very supportive and cheered me on. It was also fun because when we were parading through the streets of Walsingham we made as much noise as we could and we made up our own song for mighty, mighty Chichester, which attracted lots of attention from the people in Walsingham!
When we came back from the holy mile we went to the Shrine Church for a service of ‘cleansing’ where we received the waters from the Holy Well. Following lunch we changed into our ‘Spring Your Life’ t-shirts for it was time for the bouncy castles! We had so much fun on the bouncy castles and we made friends with quite a few of the children from other parishes. There were also fake tattoos that we could have, and we could even have our faces painted! Lots of us did crafts and made gifts for our friends and family. It was amazing! After dinner we went back to our rooms and changed into our disco clothes and did our hair, for it was time for the disco! We danced for a while, and then the DJ announced that there was a competition for the best/craziest dancing and the top three would win a big balloon! Even for those of us that didn’t win a balloon, we didn’t care because we had such a fantastic time singing and dancing at the disco anyway.
On Sunday we were all very sad to be leaving, as we had had a lovely time at Walsingham. but first we had the Children’s Mass in the Shrine, then lunch and then we went to the shrine for one last time for a service of Benediction and sang our theme song, ‘Water of Life’, and said our goodbyes to our friends in the other parishes. Our time at Walsingham was great fun and I will remember it for the rest of my life. For many of us it had been our first time there and, for me, it definitely won’t be the last! Walsingham was amazing and everything we did there was wonderful. I can’t wait until my next visit!”
Hannah Carmichael, aged 11

“One of the best things about the Children's pilgrimage to Walsingham is getting to visit the Shrine of Our Lady. It is very special to know that someone built that for Mary. You get to light candles for anyone that you want to pray for and you feel that you are thinking of them or supporting them wherever they are. You get to meet other children from different places and you soon feel at home. The food is delicious, they do great meals which make sure you don't go back with an empty tummy. On the Saturday afternoon you get to go on bouncy castles and there are many fun arts and crafts activities to do as well. This year on the Saturday morning I did the holy mile walk where we meet at the Slipper chapel, then in your groups you can take off your shoes and socks and begin the mile walk. This year I managed to do the whole mile completely barefoot!. We do this to worship God and have a fun time. The disco on the Saturday night is amazing, you get to dance to your favourite songs and there are fun prizes to win.
I'm really glad I took the time to come to Walsingham, as this is my second year running and it was the best time yet!”
Ruby Fuller, aged 11

Behind Sacred Doors - Summer and Autumn 2015

The Fellowship supports projects that seek to engage in new ways of mission and looks to be a seedbed that can develop models of evangelisation. It was in such a spirit that we supported the Behind Sacred Doors initiative in partnership with East Haringey Deanery, Diocese of London and Bruce Castle Museum, Tottenham. Running from July to October 2015 Bruce Castle Museum are hosting a lending exhibition from the churches in and around Tottenham. The exhibits include a mediaeval memorial brass, a font cover designed by Sir Christopher Wren, an eighteenth-century Beadle’s staff, silver work from the C17th to the C21st, paintings and embroidery. Many of the items are very rarely seen. Tottenham is one of the economically poorest areas of Britain and yet the exhibition shows a great cultural and historic inheritance, as well as the Church’s continuing support of the arts. The project included the commissioning of a film that tells the story of church design made by young local film makers. The film lasts 20 minutes and can be seen on-line at the exhibition website. Over the summer and early autumn there are a series of events associated with the exhibition – talks, art workshops, family activity days and supported visits for school children and students.

The exhibition was formally opened on 11 July by The Mayor of Haringey and The Rt Hon David Lammy MP.

Entrance to the exhibition and to all events is free. www.behindsacreddoors.org

Sam Aldred, Sacristan at Pusey House, Oxford (Bernard Mizeki Trust)

CRIBS

With the financial support of the FSJE I moved to Oxford in September last year to take up the role of Sacristan of Pusey House – a chapel, library and Christian community at the heart of the catholic tradition in the Church of England. This is a job I have undertaken alongside my studies in Ecclesiastical History. The Academic Year 2014-15 has seen substantial growth at this ‘home of sacred learning’, thanks in a large part to several new appointments made possible through the generosity of bodies such as the FSJE. Congregations have increased significantly year-on-year, and we have seen a growing breadth of engagement with different communities in both the university and the city of Oxford. There are, furthermore, around a dozen young men who have been drawn deeper into the Christian life at Pusey House this last year and who are discerning a vocation to ordained ministry in the Church of England.

As Sacristan my role is centred on the chapel. Here I have been able to recruit and train a larger serving team than at any point in recent history, as well as maintaining the fabric and fittings of the chapel, to ensure Pusey House continues to offer beautiful and well-ordered services. I have been given several opportunities to preach this year and to lead the daily offices each week. Outside of the chapel I have been privileged to contribute to the mission of the House in other ways, including assisting in the library and the organisation of our two new lecture series. I have also helped as Pusey House increases its work with Oxford’s substantial homeless population.

My experience this year has led me to discern a vocation to ordained ministry, which I am pursuing through the Diocese of Oxford. I will continue both as student and as sacristan next year, and if my experience is anything like as fulsome and edifying as this year has been then I will be well placed to begin the process of priestly formation. If, however, the Church of England decides that this is not my calling then my experience of Pusey House will also have equipped me to explore other opportunities to serve the Church in a lay capacity.

The Children’s Pilgrimage to Walsingham, 2015 (The Holy Childhood)

CRIBS


























“After a long but exciting six-hour journey on the mini-bus, we finally arrived in Walsingham on Friday 6 March. We were all quite tired but we were all very excited as we knew we were going to have a great time; and we did.! We first went up to the holy shrine of Our Lady of Walsingham to pray and to find out a little bit of the history of Walsingham and about what Mary said to Richeldis. On Saturday we woke up early, as we were too excited to sleep in. After breakfast we walked the Holy Mile, which was very painful for those of us who chose to walk it barefoot, but on the whole it was fun as two of my new friends (who weren’t walking barefoot) were very supportive and cheered me on. It was also fun because when we were parading through the streets of Walsingham we made as much noise as we could and we made up our own song for mighty, mighty Chichester, which attracted lots of attention from the people in Walsingham!
When we came back from the holy mile we went to the Shrine Church for a service of ‘cleansing’ where we received the waters from the Holy Well. Following lunch we changed into our ‘Spring Your Life’ t-shirts for it was time for the bouncy castles! We had so much fun on the bouncy castles and we made friends with quite a few of the children from other parishes. There were also fake tattoos that we could have, and we could even have our faces painted! Lots of us did crafts and made gifts for our friends and family. It was amazing! After dinner we went back to our rooms and changed into our disco clothes and did our hair, for it was time for the disco! We danced for a while, and then the DJ announced that there was a competition for the best/craziest dancing and the top three would win a big balloon! Even for those of us that didn’t win a balloon, we didn’t care because we had such a fantastic time singing and dancing at the disco anyway.
On Sunday we were all very sad to be leaving, as we had had a lovely time at Walsingham. but first we had the Children’s Mass in the Shrine, then lunch and then we went to the shrine for one last time for a service of Benediction and sang our theme song, ‘Water of Life’, and said our goodbyes to our friends in the other parishes. Our time at Walsingham was great fun and I will remember it for the rest of my life. For many of us it had been our first time there and, for me, it definitely won’t be the last! Walsingham was amazing and everything we did there was wonderful. I can’t wait until my next visit!”
Hannah Carmichael, aged 11

“One of the best things about the Children's pilgrimage to Walsingham is getting to visit the Shrine of Our Lady. It is very special to know that someone built that for Mary. You get to light candles for anyone that you want to pray for and you feel that you are thinking of them or supporting them wherever they are. You get to meet other children from different places and you soon feel at home. The food is delicious, they do great meals which make sure you don't go back with an empty tummy. On the Saturday afternoon you get to go on bouncy castles and there are many fun arts and crafts activities to do as well. This year on the Saturday morning I did the holy mile walk where we meet at the Slipper chapel, then in your groups you can take off your shoes and socks and begin the mile walk. This year I managed to do the whole mile completely barefoot!. We do this to worship God and have a fun time. The disco on the Saturday night is amazing, you get to dance to your favourite songs and there are fun prizes to win.
I'm really glad I took the time to come to Walsingham, as this is my second year running and it was the best time yet!”
Ruby Fuller, aged 11

Behind Sacred Doors - Summer and Autumn 2015

The Fellowship supports projects that seek to engage in new ways of mission and looks to be a seedbed that can develop models of evangelisation. It was in such a spirit that we supported the Behind Sacred Doors initiative in partnership with East Haringey Deanery, Diocese of London and Bruce Castle Museum, Tottenham. Running from July to October 2015 Bruce Castle Museum are hosting a lending exhibition from the churches in and around Tottenham. The exhibits include a mediaeval memorial brass, a font cover designed by Sir Christopher Wren, an eighteenth-century Beadle’s staff, silver work from the C17th to the C21st, paintings and embroidery. Many of the items are very rarely seen. Tottenham is one of the economically poorest areas of Britain and yet the exhibition shows a great cultural and historic inheritance, as well as the Church’s continuing support of the arts. The project included the commissioning of a film that tells the story of church design made by young local film makers. The film lasts 20 minutes and can be seen on-line at the exhibition website. Over the summer and early autumn there are a series of events associated with the exhibition – talks, art workshops, family activity days and supported visits for school children and students.

The exhibition was formally opened on 11 July by The Mayor of Haringey and The Rt Hon David Lammy MP.

Entrance to the exhibition and to all events is free. www.behindsacreddoors.org

Sam Aldred, Sacristan at Pusey House, Oxford (Bernard Mizeki Trust)

CRIBS

With the financial support of the FSJE I moved to Oxford in September last year to take up the role of Sacristan of Pusey House – a chapel, library and Christian community at the heart of the catholic tradition in the Church of England. This is a job I have undertaken alongside my studies in Ecclesiastical History. The Academic Year 2014-15 has seen substantial growth at this ‘home of sacred learning’, thanks in a large part to several new appointments made possible through the generosity of bodies such as the FSJE. Congregations have increased significantly year-on-year, and we have seen a growing breadth of engagement with different communities in both the university and the city of Oxford. There are, furthermore, around a dozen young men who have been drawn deeper into the Christian life at Pusey House this last year and who are discerning a vocation to ordained ministry in the Church of England.

As Sacristan my role is centred on the chapel. Here I have been able to recruit and train a larger serving team than at any point in recent history, as well as maintaining the fabric and fittings of the chapel, to ensure Pusey House continues to offer beautiful and well-ordered services. I have been given several opportunities to preach this year and to lead the daily offices each week. Outside of the chapel I have been privileged to contribute to the mission of the House in other ways, including assisting in the library and the organisation of our two new lecture series. I have also helped as Pusey House increases its work with Oxford’s substantial homeless population.

My experience this year has led me to discern a vocation to ordained ministry, which I am pursuing through the Diocese of Oxford. I will continue both as student and as sacristan next year, and if my experience is anything like as fulsome and edifying as this year has been then I will be well placed to begin the process of priestly formation. If, however, the Church of England decides that this is not my calling then my experience of Pusey House will also have equipped me to explore other opportunities to serve the Church in a lay capacity.

CRiBS REfresh Project (Sisterhood of the Holy Childhood)

CRIBS

In 2014, a grant was made to the CRiBS REfresh project. The project had been completely renewed that year as CRiBS were key members of the group who wrote the new Religious Education Bexley syllabus. The aim was to deliver Religious Education to around 6,500 children attending 18 schools in the Bexley area which comes under the Diocese of Rochester. The grant helped to fund the provision of lesson plans, materials and the training of teachers and volunteers to deliver lessons.

Now in 2015 we are pleased to report that the newly created lessons are being warmly received (children regularly cheer when CRiBS workers enter their classroom) and workers have already exceeded the original number of schools they expected to visit, with the result that teachers, children, teaching assistants and volunteers are thinking more about what God means in their lives, and spreading the word to their friends and relatives.

Some feedback from participants:
“I have never seen the Year 5 children so engaged. The poems they wrote were inspiring.”i>
A teacher speaking about a special needs pupil in her class: “She is totally engaged when CRiBS come in, and remembers all that you have said”.
When doing a lesson on ‘self-worth’ children say things like: “I didn’t realise the class saw me like that. I feel better about myself” and “I wasn’t sure I had any friends, but now I do”.
In the longer term, pupils who received lessons from CRiBS in their primary school and remembered them during a Year 9 discussion - they were still talking about it with great animation.
Another young person, now 18, commented: “I remember Jason and everyone at CRiBS so well. I’m heading off to Uni soon, but I’ll never forget how entertaining and educational your visits were”.

 

Home | Charities | The Trust | News | Contact |Policy Guildlines
The Fellowship of St John | The Fr. Benson Scholarship | St George's Trust | The Holy Childhood | The Bernard Mizeki Grants

Company Registered in England 01830397, Charity Registration, Number 289862, FSJE © 2014