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Making the new Deanery work for church growth
Churches and service times
What do we do as a Deanery
Growing through the year in Hereford Deanery
Following two terms of fruitful cross-benefice working on a deanery-wide training programme, exciting ideas are being woven together to give shape to our summer term programme, which will be published shortly.
A link to the current spring training programme
We are fortunate in having some excellent speakers and church leaders visitng Hereford in April and May -
- Canon John Armson will speak about Isreal and Palestine
- Ishmael and Irene Smale will be leading a quiet day
- Ven Bob Jackson will lead an evening on growth in rural churches
- Revd Beatrice Brandon will lead a training day on the Christian healing ministry
and much more besides - do come and join us!
Hereford Deanery Mission statement
"To promote Christian worship, mission, prayer and service throughout the Deanery"
We will seek to fulfill this vision through:-
the mutual support of the clergy chapter,
to be achieved by meeting regularly for fellowship, friendship and good administration
"And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works" (Heb 10:24)
the dedication of Deanery Synod to this shared purpose, to be expressed through
- a developing sense of unity
- effective reporting from Synod to PCCs and vice-versa
- the adoption of agreed policies wherever possible
- sound financial management
the engagement of the whole network of congregations and church members in a pattern of mutuality, which may be displayed through
- the sharing of good practice with regard to mission, worship and finance
- the offering of suitable training resources on a Deanery-wide basis
- a dedication to "bear one another's burdens" (Galatians 6:2)
You can download this Mission Statement as a .pdf file
This Deanery forms a loose federation of 48 Anglican churches covering over a third of the population of the county!
From Bodenham in the north to Little Dewchurch in the south, and from Bridge Sollars in the west to Woolhope in the east, taking in the city-based churches such as St Martin's in South Wye, and Holy Trinity in West Hereford, and, of course, the Cathedral, we really are a living demonstration of "unity in diversity".
For some time now we have been exploring the best way of sharing our ministry resources, and working together in service and mission, across this wide range of communities.
Following the decision to merge, we are developing a long-term strategy for more effective collaboration, so that all our communities may benefit though the pastoral care, Christian worship, prayer and friendship that lie at the heart of the living Church.
Making the new Deanery work for church growth
At The Synod in June 2010 the Rural Dean presented a proposal for every parish, benefice and group to discuss, to encourage churches and groups of churches to think and plan towards the future in four main areas of work - renewing our spiritual roots; engaging with the local community; adding skills through training; and a renewed approach to stewardship and finances. Within each category the Rural Dean listed a few suggestions, which he made clear were in no way intended as a menu of options, but rather as discussion starters.
The text presented can be downloaded here. The document is called the "Deanery Stewardship Programme".
The proposals were:
To be real it must be local - what is appropriate for your parish / benefice / village?
We would urge that every church community, at a suitable level, gives thought and attention to each of the following, with the hope that some fresh steps are able to be taken, or some current work is given additional resources.
a) spiritual roots
a parish day of prayer; prayer triplets; establish a study group; a parish prayer diary; the "Faith Comes by Hearing" material; a church or parish "away-day"
b) engaging with the local community
something to write to people about / invite them to Come to Church Sunday; a "baptism-plus" day; renewal of wedding vows invitation; an All Souls' memorial service; a parish picnic / bonfire; a "search the parish registers" session
c) adding skills through training
identify at least one aspect of the church's ministry which could be strengthened through training and resourcing lay members
planning and delivering all-age worship; linking with your local primary school; reading lessons and leading intercessions in worship; running a home group; pastoral visiting / hospital visiting; leading public worship; baptism preparation and follow-up
d) financial resources
a fresh looked at planned giving - annual renewal or starting a new scheme; tax-efficient schemes; teaching materials on Christian approaches to giving; the place of a Gift Day - and maybe not just financial!
Hereford City or Hereford Rural
Click the links above for full list of Churches and Service Times
What we do
The network of churches is supported through two interlinked ways of working. The clergy group - the Chapter - meet each month for training, information exchange and mutual support.Their recent activities have included a retreat at Llangasty, and hearing and responding to a seminar paper of the ethics of assisted suicide.
The wider group of both clergy and lay members, the Deanery Synod, meets four times a year, and these meetings are normally a mixture of information and education, together with necessary admin and business.
Some examples of the wide range of topics covered:
At our meeting in September 2009 the Synod heard about ecological issues, and particularly about the work of two Christian charities working in widely differing ways. 'A Rocha UK' works in conservation and similar projects, whilst 'Eco-Congregations', as the name name suggests, start from the local gathering as church. See www.arocha.org.uk and www.ecocongregation.org to learn more!
In November 2009 we heard an introduction to the work being done in and around Hereford to address issues of homelessness and drug addiction, with speakers from DASH (Drug Advisory Service, Hereford) and the Herefordshire Council's Homelessness Unit.
(For those who would like to see them, the report that was collated from the background work prior to merging the City and Rural Deaneries is available here (text of report) and here (statistics and charts))
Of course it was recognised that if this merger is to be effective for the Kingdom of God it needs to be more than merely managerial, or simply about staff and money. We understood that we need to address issues such as church strength, and lay ministries, and to do all these things with an underlying spiritual purpose of making Christ know in a culture and context that appears to know little, and care less, about not just our Christian heritage, but also about the joy of living faith.
Our next Synod meeting Tuesday 21st May 2013 at 7.30pm. Venue: The Bishop's Palace, Hereford
Minutes of the last meeting are available here: February 2013 minutes
Deanery Synod report on Stewardship
Sharing the costs of mission and ministry
Synod in February 2013 heard how the Diocese is seeking to reshape its financial models so that there is better communication and understanding about how each parish can best support the whole work of the whole Diocese.
Against that background, and reflecting the local changes in the last two years to create our new united Deanery, Synod has established a working party to help the Treasurer interpret this new Diocesan model into something fine-tuned for the parishes and groups of Hereford Deanery.
In both contexts questions are being asked about what "fair share" might mean? Who pays for clergy training, and their pensions? Should parishes be, in effect, "levied" for the stipend of their resident clergy? What about central Diocesan team costs - how should they be divided between Deaneries and parishes?
Expect some energetic discussions as these ideas are debated - and as decisions are taken!
Street Pastors in Hereford
Initial paperwork has now been signed, and at the date of going to press (19th March 2013) the first 18 Street Pastors have been selected and are about to start training, and over £10,000 of grants have been given to get the work underway. We expect the first teams of Pastors to start their on-street work around the end of April 2013
To read the latest on this exciting project you can download information here
To register your interest as an individual or as a church please send an e-mail to email@example.com
At the same address you can ask to be sent a PowerPoint presentation about the project
Healing on the Streets (HOTS) Hereford
This exciting ecumenical project was launched locally in January 2011, and each Saturday saw a group of Christians kneeling in prayer in High Town, Hereford, and then inviting those passing by to come and experience a loving touch from God in their lives.
There have been some very moving testimonies of how people's lives have been transformed by loving encounters with God through the gentle, caring, prayerful touch of these moments.
After a winter break, and time for the teams to re-group we expect the HOTS team to be back in High Town from the start of June 2013 - every Saturday throughout the summer
If you would like to read some of the stories from HOTS then please visit one of these websites and follow the links to HOTS
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