2 articles from the January magazine regarding The Parish Share.
From the Churchwardens and the PCC Treasurer.
THE PARISH SHARE
Please take a moment to read this explanation of the Parish Share and its relevance for our parish.
The Parish Share is the amount paid to the Diocese of Bath and Wells common fund and it is designed to cover parish and school support, vocation training and the stipend of a full-time priest, together with housing and pension costs. The amount requested from St John’s towards these costs is £55000 for 2024 and the PCC is committed to making this contribution in full. If St John’s does not meet the full cost, we run the risk of amalgamation with another parish and/or the loss of a full-time priest.
The PCC is very aware of the tremendous generosity of our congregation, in giving both money and time towards the upkeep and running of the church. In 2023, the Parish Share paid by St John’s was £47500, which means we need to find an additional £7500 to cover the amount requested for 2024.
To be able to cover fully the cost of our parish ministry, the PCC needs your assistance. Please consider how you could help: –
If you are already a regular giver by bank standing order or through the envelope scheme, please increase the amount per month or week, if you can.
If you contribute through the envelope scheme, please consider setting up a bank standing order.
If you are not yet part of the planned giving scheme, please consider setting up a regular contribution, either by monthly bank standing order or the weekly envelope scheme.
The amounts given are strictly confidential and the Treasurer is happy to answer any questions you may have.
From Father Philip
2024 has arrived amid celebration and some trepidation. Many will be glad to see the back of 2023, a year where many basics became the price of luxuries and bloodshed dominated international news. It is our most sincere hope and prayer that those least able to cope in our world will have a more secure and comfortable 2024.
Unlike the world around us, our church’s liturgical New Year began back in November, when the season of Advent began. And unlike the world around us, we continue our Christmas celebrations until the feast of Candlemas on 2nd February. Only then will our beautiful Christmas tree and our altar crib scene be packed away for another year. So Happy Christmas everyone!
For most of January our Christmas celebration is known as the season of Epiphany. The day after the 12th day of Christmas, on 6th January, we celebrate the feast of Epiphany, when we recall the visit of the Magi to the infant Jesus. Only then do the crib scene kings finally make it from the back of the church to our stable within the altar.
For many Christians in the world, especially for the Eastern Churches, Epiphany is the time for gift giving and celebration. And we would do well to spend time this Epiphany thinking of what gifts we bring to Our Lord at this time.
Many of us offer the gift of our time and talents. We are blessed with volunteers who clean the church, arrange flowers and tidy the churchyard. There are those who volunteer in our community. And others who welcome, sing, pray and read in our weekly worship.
We also have all those who assist Guy in bearing the responsibility for the running of church. All offer gifts – gifts without which our Christian presence in the community would be severely diminished.
Like the world about us, one of the most pressing issues facing us as a church is the cost of living. Unlike many parish churches, St John’s is blessed to have one dedicated stipendiary parish priest. Sadly our ability to maintain this ministry and serve our community would be in question if we were unable to pay our financial contributions to the diocese each year.
Our treasurer has set out our considerable challenge in this edition of Church Alive. Please do spend some time this Epiphany thinking of the gift of our witness in Midsomer Norton and please do consider if you may be able to increase your regular giving. We would be hugely grateful if you could help us in these difficult times. Thank you.
We all have something to bring, it may not be gold, frankincense, or myrrh, but we all have gifts or talents we can bring to serve Our Lord. Money might be tight but as a well-loved carol reminds us…but what I can I give Him?…Give my heart…
With every blessing for the year ahead,