By clicking on the links below you can find out what was discussed at last year's
Annual Meeting. Please note that the information given here may not be up to date now!
These meetings are open to everyone, so look out for the details of the next one.
The minutes of the meeting of 17th July were signed as an accurate record with one amendment to item 33v: "man-hours for the Food Bank are provided by
people from various churches". There were no matters arising from the previous minutes.
i) Annual Accounts: CR reported that the most significant change is that REinspired-Woodley has transferred to WPLT so the funds relating
to them have been transferred. CTB - the third of 3 years' subscriptions will be paid soon. 'New Neighbours' provide an information pack for new
residents, so the cost of the photocopying will increase as houses in the new developments become occupied.
ii) Budget 2013-14: The Christmas card budget has increased because we are planning to have more colours this year. The sound system for Praise in the park was cheaper this year but may not be next year, so more has been allowed. 'It's your Move' books are included.
iii) Subscriptions: CR requested that all subscriptions be paid by the end of November. He will send requests by email.
Proposal: Proposed by CR, seconded by MC: "The meeting accepts the accounts and the budget." The propsal was agreed unanimously, with thanks to the Treasurer.
Christ Church: Two Poverty Forums have taken place, and gone very well. Rob Wilson is coming to the third one. The recent Harvest celebration
went well, with a whole day of activities ending with Young@Heart all about growing Brazil nuts in Brazil. Messy Church is also going well and Holiday
Bible Club went very well with about 50 children each day. 28 teenagers came back to help and MN ran a group for them. There will be a Concert from the
Woodley Spring Gardens Brass Band, with singers from St. Joseph's College, in aid of church project, at 7:30pm on December 7th.
Woodley Airfield: We have recently decided to start using recorded music on alternate weeks for a trial period: this allows the musicians to have a break and also reduces the workload on the audio team. Our numbers are still low but spirits are high: there is a lot going on. We are building up to Christmas, with invitations coming in to go into schools with the Herald Puppets.
Eden: They were delighted to have a Baptism in the sea at Bournemouth in the summer. The BBQ's went well, with a few people coming along from the neighbourhood. Some of the young people have been gradually moving inward from the fringe, including some young men - which is very encouraging.
Emmanuel: Two things in particular to report: the joint youth club with St. James has had some baptisms by full immersion and some good discussions. Their first ever Messy Church will be this Sunday. It is hoped that some of the Mother & Toddler group will attend.
WBC: They have just had their annual meeting, at which two more members joined the leadership team, bringing the total to eight. Some of their young people went on a trip to S. Africa to do a house-building project. They are now committed to going back with Urban Saints - they feel that they have learned a lot. The church is trialling monthly combined services in the morning, instead of two separate services. They are still without a minister; the procedure is in progress which presents some suggestions every 6 weeks or so for consideration. No candidate so far has seemed suitable.
St. Johns: not represented at the meeting.
St. John Bosco: The main event recently was the end of "Living our Faith" year. There were lots of events, ending with a retreat at the Abbey - a wonderful resource. It has been a very interesting year and has reaffirmed the vision of the church for some people. In November they hope to run a virtual Creation Walk in the church, using photographs etc. Bishop Philip came to do the new Communions recently, but they have had no other contact with him just yet.
St. James: Messy Church continues to thrive, with numbers steady thanks largely to Linda and the team. Earlier this year they ran an Alpha course: the group was small but worthwhile and has led to a new housegroup. They face a couple of challenges: two people were training as ordinands and only one has remained after ordination. Also the roof is still a problem and will cost a significant amount to fix.
Woodley Airfield Church: They are working on a new puppet show for Christmas, which they hope to take into local schools. Working without a Lay Employee has been challenging, but members are discovering gifts to enable them to do it. The congregation is still small, but this is not a problem. The relationship with Christ Church is maturing well - the two churches work together and increasingly help with each other's projects. The hope is that something similar might perhaps develop with St. Johns, although it is acknowledged that the two churches do things in very different ways and the opportunities will be different too.
Money: St. James have agreed to give £800 for this year: they would like to know how much is likely to be asked for next year. CC & WAC have already agreed to give £800 this year: WAC have also agreed the same for two more years, followed by a review. WBC discussed it on Tuesday for the first time: the answer is likely to be yes but not yet. St. JB cannot increase their giving at present: they are running at a significant deficit at present, hoping for improvement next year. They will give the same as last year. Emmanuel is in the same position. Eden have asked LG to talk to them first about the work and then they will decide what they would like to do. St. Johns was not represented at the meeting, so their intentions were not reported.
News: LG reported on the last term's work in schools and on recent developments (see attached Report). She also presented a leaflet which gives a summary of what REinspired-Woodley does and includes a Gift Aid form. Please encourage people in the churches to consider giving in this way: please also continue to include REinspired-Woodley in your prayers.
ii) Churches Together in Berkshire The new edition of Together is available. One of the authors of the 'Truth and Lies' report is doing a talk at Reading University next Wednesday , Oct. 23rd.
iii) Woodley Pilot Light Trust: The counselling service has lost some counsellors, but gained some new. The Food bank has received a grant from the local police but not as much as was expected. The police believe that it is likely to reduce pressure on people to steal. WPLT are hoping to use the money to fund a co-ordinator. The Trust currently has no paid staff so they have sufficient income at present. They are also looking into the possibility of associate membership of the Trussell Trust, but have had no response as yet. WPLT is not very widely known - people need to be aware of the services they offer, so advertising might be necessary. It was pointed out that, for example, many people do not know that Food bank donations can be taken to several places: any Woodley church, Woodley Town Council or Woodley Library. It was pointed out that food allergies need to be taken into account when giving food parcels: food which the recipient cannot eat should not be included. A lot of church members don't realise what the churches are doing together, and don't know about things like Food Bank. It was thought that many members would like to do something to help, but do not know what can be done
iv) CTWoodley Christmas Cards: NJ has volunteered to take on the card this year because of MN's recent marriage and consequent pressure on his time and attention. He has a picture and is planning to use a slightly larger font than last year and to use the back of the card as well, to make it easier to read. He is hoping to have them available at the beginning of December, early enough for Messy Church on Dec. 8th.
Regular united services are often poorly attended, particularly in the evening. Mostly just regular attenders of the host church turn up. Do we need to do
something new? Do we need to discontinue the services that are not well-attended? Free2B is also not always well attended, and is predominantly 50+. It was
pointed out, however, that it is not intended to be just for young people: it is for everyone who wants to explore worship in a more informal and flexible
way. Could we have united services in the morning? It is not always very practical - eg. it clashes with Mass at St. JB, unless we have it later than our
normal services, as we do for the carnival. Praise in the Park & Good Friday services are a good witness to the community. Others would be good if people
were to attend. We need to be encouraged and stimulated - we should be empowered by meeting together. The united services have been an opportunity to get
to know one another and to communicate as well as to worship together, although it was also pointed out that working together, as we did on the mission in 1986,
is also a very good way to promote unity. People don't seem to want to attend united worship services any more (at least in the evening). Maybe Free2B has
taken over to some extent: perhaps we do not need a traditional evening worship event. Eden meets in the evening and would be happy to do more open evening
services if we would like them to do so.
Proposal: "We continue to hold Good Friday worship in the Precinct, Praise in the Park, a united service during the week of Christian Unity, a Palm Sunday service when we have a united Lent course, and maybe united carol singing in the precinct." This was agreed: it was also decided to review this in a year's time. It was also agreed that Free2B does not meet everyone's needs and is not very predictable, which may be why some people will not attend it. CTWoodley, however, fully supports Free2B and invites the organisers to come to us for whatever support they need.
i) Christmas Extravaganza: Dec. 1st. The carols at this event are now organised by the Town Centre Manager, not by the churches. MN is often asked to
'MC' the event, with a short slot for a Christmas message. The sound has often not been very good - hopefully this year will be better. Some carols are sung
but it is not a church event. It is likely to be the same as last year, with the same carols.
ii) Lent course: Yet to be decided, but one has been suggested. BW & MC will organise groups.
iii) Fundays: This needs someone new to organise them. It is a fantastic opportunity to meet a need in the community; Emmanuel, WBC & St. James' have run them in the past. They take a lot of organisation and hard work. Could it be run after Praise in the Park, with a BBQ lunch? Do we have an events organiser in any of our churches? Please pray about this and look for someone suitable to lead it.
iv) Prayer for Woodley: Next one Oct 19th, then Nov. 9th.
v) "To Jerusalem": This is a Passion play which NQ is proposing to put on at CC in Holy Week 2014. It was performed 10 years ago in WBC. It is open to people from all the churches to take part. On Nov. 26th, at 7.30pm there will be an initial meeting for anyone interested in taking part. Scripts are available to see - ask BW. Please publicise the meeting and encourage people 11+ to come. Not just actors & singers - technical people will be needed too. From all churches please!
vi) Messy Sheep Trail: 10 shops max, LG needs to check with Jacques Lherbier for permission to do it. CTWoodley agreed at the last meeting to fund the prizes, up to £100.
Craft Fair: St James' craft fair will beon November 16th, from 10:00am to 2:00pm. Refreshments will be available.