Working together as the Body of Christ


Minutes of the 93rd Quarterly Meeting

Held at Christ Church, Bayston Hill on Wednesday 18th November 2015

The meeting took place the same evening at the AGM

Opening Prayers were said at the start of the evening by the Rev Tim Lomax

1.      Apologies

There were 17 apologies.

2.      Minutes of the last meeting

Accepted. Proposed by Nicola Craddock. Seconded: Ivan Hacking

3.      Matters arising

City of Sanctuary: Secretary had written to the Mayor of Shrewsbury and Town Clerk of Shrewsbury Town Council, asking that Shrewsbury become a city of Sanctuary for refugees of the conflict in Syria. Had a reply advising that the response to the Syrian Refugee Crisis is being dealt with by Shropshire County Council. Secretary will write to the Cabinet member responsible.

4.      Forthcoming events

Shrewsbury Christmas: planning is going well. A lot of people have volunteered to help out. Many thanks to all the churches for providing information about their Christmas services. Leaflets listing this information will be given out on the day.

Meeting agreed a rough draft of the advert. Decided that each church would be allowed to promote one service per advert. Total cost for 3 adverts: £360 plus VAT (£432)

5.      Try Praying

A proposal document was presented at the meeting (attached). It is hoped that the project will be launched: 11th April 2016 (week after Easter). The following motion was proposed and passed: That Churches Together whole heartedly support the Try Praying Project for Shrewsbury.

6      Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

Will start with a joint service at 7pm on Sunday 17th January at Christ Church Bayston Hill. Will close with a joint service at St George's on Sunday 24th January. Further details to follow.

7.      Any Other Business

A letter about the Churches Together lent groups has been sent to all the clergy. Please contact Andy Carson if churches would like to participate.

Climate change march is taking place in London at Sunday 29th November. Coach travel from Shrewsbury is £25 per person.

There is a proposal that a Passion Play, celebrating the Easter story take place in Shrewsbury Town Centre in April 2017. Meeting expressed an interest and would like play to take place.

Question was asked about arrangements for the homeless during extreme cold weather, in light of the fact that there is no night shelter in Shrewsbury. Meeting advised that at such times the Ark and Council work together and permission is given for the Ark to be open at night.

8.      Date and Venue of Next Meeting

Wednesday 24th February 2016:   URC

Talk by Shrewsbury Church Disability Forum

Tuesday 10th May:   St Chad's

Talk about Christian and Muslim relations

Daniel Kawczynski MP has been invited to September Meeting.

After refreshments Father Stephen gave a presentation on the recent Talking Jesus survey. A snap shot of the findings are:

57% of people in England identify as Christians (9% are practising)

  • 41% of practising Christians attribute their faith to growing up in a Christian home
  • 40% of people do not realise Jesus was a real person who actually lived. One in four 18 to 34-year-olds thinks Jesus was a mythical or fictional character
  • 43% of people believe in the resurrection
  • 66% of practising Christians have talked about Jesus to a non-Christian in the past month
  • 72% of practising Christians feel comfortable talking to non-Christians about Jesus
  • 31% of 18 to 34-year-olds felt more positive about Jesus after such a conversation
  • 44% of practising Christians credit their friends for introducing them to Jesus
  • 17% of practising Christians said a spiritual experience they could not explain was a key factor in them coming to faith.
  • Spiritual, loving and peaceful are the words most commonly used to describe Jesus
  • 36% of practising Christians say talking to a Christian about Jesus was important in their coming to faith










In Attendance


The Abbey

Rev Paul Firmin


Bayston Hill Methodists

Rev David Jones


Belle Vue Methodist

Nicola Craddock                        Diana Harmer

Rev. Sarah Wood



Deacon Fred Beddow


Christ Church, Bayston Hill

Ivan Hacking                        Jacqueline Hacking

Rev Tim Lomax                        Ian Peake


Holy Spirit

Gill Leah                        Rev. Mark Salmon



Catherine Maxfield                        Fr. Stephen Maxfield

Dennis Onion



Margaret Mapp                        Rev David O'Brien


St Chad's

Gareth Ingham


St Georges

Richard Ankers


Trinity Churches, Meole Brace

Rev Phil Cansdale                        Charles Ruxton



Dave Treweeke                        Phil Ramsbotham


Café Church

Don Smith





Deacon Ron Ball                        Cathedral

Rev. Mark Chadwick                        St. Chad's

Norman Davies                        St Giles

Rev Tim Harwood                        URC

Janet Hocking                        Crosstalk

Beth Holgate                        St Chad's

David Holland                        URC

Judith Howland                        Oxon

Fi Iddon                        Trinity Churches, Meole Brace

Jenny Knapp                        Christ Church, Bayston Hill

Rev Andrew Knight                        St Giles

Lisa Knight                        St Giles

Dave Matthias                        Barnabas

Katherine May                        St Peters'

Canon Jonathan Mitchell                        Cathedral

Rev Murray McBride                        St Georges

Andrew Wright                        Christ Church, Bayston Hill




















TryPraying is:

-         a ready-made resource

-         a project for all the churches of Shrewsbury, working together

-         an invitation to people who ‘don't do religion' to try Christian prayer


The premise is that God is open to anyone who prays, and that prayer could be the very first step in someone's journey into faith (rather than reserving it for those who have signed up and joined a church).


The resource is a booklet, well-produced and written in ordinary language, guiding the reader on a 7 day prayer experiment. There are versions for adults, young people and children, as well as an app for phones and tablets - see


The project entails:

-         sharing the idea and resource among Christians in Shrewsbury

-         trying it ourselves, as a way of praying for a week, and so that we can speak to others honestly from our own experience

-         inviting friends and acquaintances to have a go themselves

-         accompanying this with a simple reminder (the words ‘Try Praying') advertised around town (e.g. on buses, in papers, on banners)

-         being available to accompany those who feel they would like to follow their experience up (by trying other prayer materials and/or by connecting to a church).


Leaders from almost every church in Shrewsbury have given positive responses to this proposal. The idea met with enthusiasm at the CTIS meeting on 29 Sept 2015, following which a group of representatives was formed to develop the project. They met on 9 Oct 2015 and minutes and a timeline for the project are attached. The next meeting will follow the forthcoming CTIS meeting and additional representation is encouraged.


The project is a one-off and invites participation from all CTIS churches (as well as one or two not currently signed up to CTIS). The financial cost is in the range £50 - 400 per church; more significant is the commitment to spend some time sharing and using the resource in preparation for the April 2016 ‘going public'. We are also looking for some outside funding which would help to boost the scale and quality of the paid-for advertising.


It would be a great encouragement if CTIS were able to minute a resolution in support of this project. This could help with funding applications as well as being a fillip to individual churches as they work out their own part in the project.



Charles Ruxton

Salop Area Prayer Resourcer (C of E)

16 Nov 2015


Churches Together in Shrewsbury

Minutes of the AGM Meeting held on Monday 22nd September 2014

At Oxon Church at 7.30pm

Attendance:-   Fiona Iddon (Trinity Churches, Meole Brace) Beth Holgate (St. Chads)Norman Davies ( St. Giles) Dennis Onions (Orthodox)  Gill Leah (Holy Spirit Harlescott) Andrew Wright, Ian Peake, Lexie Wright, Ivan Hacking, Jenny Knapp(Christ Church, Bayston Hill)   Fred Beddow,  Jonathan Mitchell (Cathedral) Andy Carson, David Jones (Bayston Hill Methodist)  Tim Harwood, Dave Treweeke, David Holland, Phil Ramsbottom  (United Reformed) Diana Harmer (Belle Vue Methodist)  Richard Ankers (St. Georges)   Dave Matthias (Barnabas) David O'Brien, Margaret Mapp, Sheila Astbury, Jenn Lewis, David Glover, Keith Weston (Oxon) Sarah Wood (Methodist) David Farnham (Energy Smart Consultancy) 

1:-        David O'Brien welcomed us and opened the meeting with prayer.

2:-        There were 4 apologies including the new President, so Andrew chaired the meeting.

3; -       The minutes of the AGM September 2013 were read, accepted unanimously and signed. (proposed by Fred Beddow & Seconded by Richard Ankers)

4:-        Matters Arising

There were no matters arising

5:-        Presidents Report

This was accepted

6:-        Secretary's Report

This was accepted.

7:-        Financial Report

Only 8 Churches have returned subscriptions for this year so far.

8:-        Adoption of Annual Report

 This was passed unanimously.

9:-        Election of Officers

A new Vice-President is needed and also a new Secretary. Tim Harwood, David O'Brien, Sarah Wood and Dennis Onions were prepared to continue as Executive members, and David Jones agreed to resume his position on the Executive.



                   CHURCHES TOGETHER IN SHREWSBURY -          Working Together as the Body of Christ

Minutes of 92nd Quarterly Meeting

Held at the Barnabas Centre on 29th September 2015

Opening prayers were said by Dave Matthias

1.    Apologies

There were five apologies

2.    Minutes of last meeting were approved

3.    No matters arising.

4.    Appointments

Ian Peake confirmed as secretary.

Nicola Craddock had been confirmed as treasurer at February's meeting.

Nicola Craddock, Rev. David Jones (ret'd), Fr. Stephen Maxfield, Ian Peake confirmed as signatories on the account. Two signatories are needed on a cheque.

5.    Finance

A written was given (attached). The resolutions on the report were passed.

Agreed that bank statements be sent to Nicola Craddock.

6.    Forthcoming - events

Lisa Knight (St. Giles) has secured a tent at Shrewsbury Christmas (Saturday 12th - Sunday 13th December), which is taking place in the Quarry. We have been given this pitch for free on the understanding we provide entertainment so please let Lisa Knight know if you are able to help with either this or being a welcoming presence.

The meeting agreed to an advert appearing in the Admag in the run up to Christmas. This would direct people to the Churches Together web-site, which would list the Carol and Christmas Services taking place in the town. Churches will be approached and ask to make a £10 (minimum) donation to fund the adverts.

Meeting agreed to Churches Together having 2 stalls at next year's county show. Full details will be given at February's meeting. It was felt that the Christian Motorcycle Association dominated this year's show. Next year, the bikers will have their own stall separate from Churches Together.

7.    Situation in Syria

Agreed that the secretary would write to the Mayor of Shrewsbury and Town Clerk asking that at the next meeting of Shrewsbury Town Council, Shrewsbury become a city of Sanctuary for refugees of the conflict in Syria.

8.    Any Other Business

Meeting was reminded of It's All About the Book tour on 13th October at Barnabas. Churches Together AGM at Bayston Hill Methodist Church on the 15th and a worship event at St. Julian's on the 17th.

An e-mail of thanks from Pat Bell, volunteer co-ordinator of Open Door at the Abbey for CTIS help in finding accommodation for people helping out at the event.

Charles Ruxton spoke about the Try Praying project. A committee is looking into this.

Phil Ramsbotham asked if the subjects of "Worship for all" and "Roofbreakers" could be discussed at a future meeting. (Referred to exec). A small group is exploring the making of a short film compilation of disabled people using their gifts in a church context. If anyone knows of any church members/attendees who may be interested in being involved with the project or would like further information please contact Phil Ramsbotham. The next meeting of Exploring Disability Ministry and Mission in Shrewsbury is 24th October at URC.


9.    Date of Next Meeting

Wednesday 18th November. AGM at Christ Church Bayston Hill

After refreshments, a short talk was given by

Gordon Lamb               Community Involvement

Gordon spoke about building a Church community. The key areas to this are:

  • Build bridges so that as events develop the community takes ownership of them and explore discipleship together. For example Bacon Buddies, a monthly event in Meole Estate, where free bacon butties are given out, evolved into Bacon Buddies Goes to the Movies which goes deeper into the Christian Faith.
  • Exploring what church looks like and what it may include?
  • Listen to God as you listen to the community.
  • Love and serve each other, generously, humbly and unconditionally.

‘Church' whatever that means begins to take shape and there may show itself through missional worship and expressions of wholeness and healings.

About 20 volunteer hours are given every week.


Karen Williams            Food bank Plus

Karen spoke about the Food bank plus project, which covers three areas:

  • The Food Bank. This was founded in 1997 and was the 2nd Foodbank in the country. Between April - September 2015 nearly 8000kg of food was given out.
  • Money Advice. Which offers advice to those in personal debt. Budgeting help or form filling when applying for benefits.
  • 360 Journey to Work. A ten week course that offers support to those who want to gain employment whilst helping people gain in self confidence and building their self esteem.

About 100 volunteer hours are given every week.


Tim Compton               Shrewsbury Ark

Tim thanked the meeting for all support the churches throughout the town give to the Ark. When you take into account the volunteers, prayer support and donations, the support is priceless. The Ark is seeing an average of 25-30 people each day, burdened by debt, guilt, grief, addictions, health problems, heartache, and all other kinds of struggle in life.

A number of clients make massive progress and the Ark has recently started a prayer meeting for clients, every Tuesday morning at 8am.

Matthew 11:28 "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."

Clients may not always be aware that they are coming to anywhere other than 'the Ark', but to be able to offer this rest in Jesus' name, and on behalf of the church, is a privilege indeed.

About 120 volunteer hours are given every week.


Steve Jones                  Street Pastors

Steve thanked all the Churches in Shrewsbury and beyond for their support. The trustees of Shrewsbury Street Pastors are keen that the work of Street Pastors is founded in prayer and are after a Prayer Coordinator, to co-ordinate and supervisor all prayer matters.

They are also after Prayer friends / buddies, who will pray at home for individual Street Pastors on the nights they go out. Prayer Supporters, who will lead prayers at Central Church for 20 minutes before the Street Pastor team go out and Prayer Pastors who will pray at Central the whole time the Street Pastors are out on the streets. Working in teams of three or four. If you can help, please let Steve Jones know.

About 230 volunteer hours are given every month.

4.      Accounts for year ending 31st July 2015

The accounts have not yet been prepared. This will be done by and presented to the next meeting.

In Attendance


Dave Matthias                                            Karen Williams

Bayston Hill Methodists

Andy Carson

Belle Vue Methodist

Nicola Craddock                                        Diana Harmer

Rev. Sarah Wood


Rev. Ron Ball                                             Rev. Fred Beddow

Canon Jonathan Mitchell                             Fr. Edmund Montgomery

Christ Church, Bayston Hill

Ivan Hacking                                              Jenny Knapp

Ian Peake

Holy Spirit

Rev. Mark Salmon


Catherine Maxfield                                      Fr. Stephen Maxfield

Dennis Onion


Judith Howland                                           Margaret Mapp

St Chad's

Beth Holgate                                               Mary Palmer

St Georges

Rev. Lynn Davidson                                    Rev. Murray McBride

St. Giles

Norman Davies

Trinity Churches

Fiona Iddon                                                Gordon Lamb

Charles Ruxton


Rev. Tim Harwood                                     Richard Major

Phil Ramsbotham

Shrewsbury Ark

Tim Compton

Street Pastors

Steve Jones



Rev. Phil Cansdale                                      Trinity Churches

Rev. Mark Chadwick                                 St. Chad's

Gill Leah                                                     Holy Spirit

Rev. David O'Brien                                    Oxon

Dave Treweeke                                          URC