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SEBAStrode Crescent Baptist Church

The building which houses Strode Crescent Baptist Church is situated in Sheerness, on the Isle of Sheppey, just off the North Kent coast.  Whilst not traditionally beautiful, there are places of oasis and calm on the island, in amidst the run down houses and empty shops.  Whilst the development of a new shopping area just as you come off the bridge is good for those with cars, it is not good for the many Sheerness dwellers who rely on two legs!

Across the road from us are two terraces which have recently been refurbished and which are now being lived in by families who have a lot of social needs.  Add this to the variety of social needs we already have within the church, and we have a lively, 'real' and up-front community.  On Sunday mornings we are moving from ‘traditional’ to more ‘experimental’ with the development of 'Chatback Church' – more café style, Sunday Brunch (on the fifth Sunday when appropriate) and themed services.  Our worship style is also on the move, as we are learning to be freer, listening and moving to the voice of the Holy Spirit.  It is great fun, and so exciting to see God on the move.

We Praise God for:
  1. Our new neighbours and how open they are to the church
  2. The continued work of Nappichinos (our parent toddler group) and the ownership of this group we have seen among the grand/parents
  3. Those who have wandered in off the street needing a safe place – and they have found it in us.
  4. For the conversations that Clare has already had on the Holiday park where she is now living and recognised as 'the Vicar!!!'

We Ask God For:
  1. A clear vision on where he wants us to go in the coming year.  With Clare leaving college and coming into ministry here we are entering exciting times.  There are so any possibilities for mission in the area but we have limited resources in personnel and finance, so we need wisdom to make the right choices.
  2. Employed people to join us! – out of our worshipping congregation on a Sunday morning there are only three people who are in employment.  To have employed people would bring a balance to our congregation and boost our income. We don’t want money for money’s sake but it would be so good to be self-supporting and to employ a minister on a full time, instead of a part time basis.
  3. Human resources to help run something of value for the children each Sunday.
  4. Continued links with people on the holiday site and that folk’s misconceptions of church would be gently put right.  We pray most of all that people would be led to Jesus.

Specific Goals
  1. Our manse is now a caravan on Sheerness Holiday Park.  Clare had a call to incarnational living in this place and we have already seen God at work.  We are looking to see how this work develops.
  2. To develop and extend the work of Nappichinos and the 'Family Fun Night'.
  3. To become more like the people God has called us to be.

We are excited at what God is doing in, amongst and through us, but realise that all that is accomplished is through his amazing grace.  We are thankful to SEBA who are supporting us through our Home Mission Grant, as we realise whole-heartedly that we would not be able to support ourselves financially without your help.  It is your money that helping us do what we do.
Clare Atkin – Pastor

Click here to read more stories about how the money you give to Home Mission is being used to bring the love of God to communities around the country.
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