Charles writes: October 2012

Faringdon is growing. More and more new houses have gone up, new people and new families are moving in, and some of our schools are now full to bursting.

We are noticing the effects at All Saints’. We have a noticeable rise in the number of families asking for Baptisms, a number of them living on the new estates, and some bringing large numbers of children with them. Our Welcome Afternoons are full of newcomers to All Saints’, and it’s lovely to see many new faces on a Sunday.

It’s an exciting time for us, but all the more important that we are ready and prepared to welcome new people and families who come to us. We have reorganised our Sunday Special children’s groups  this autumn to enable us to welcome families better, and we are delighted that several people are taking on a leadership role for the first time.

But once again…you can probably guess what’s coming…yes, it is our buildings, and our lack of facilities that are holding us back. More than ever before, we are desperate to get these Barber Rooms built and up and running.

Good progress is now being made. We are well on our way to getting our “Faculty”, which is the final approval from the Diocese, and now we have Planning Permission we have started applying for grants. Thanks to the wonderful response to our Appeal, combined with our legacy, in terms of finance we are 90% there.

But there is still 10% to go…! Another £70,000 would get us to our Appeal target. We hope a good part of this will come from grants, but we still need to raise a significant amount ourselves.

There are three things we can do to achieve this.

Firstly, there will be some of us who missed the Appeal this Spring, and have not yet had a chance to pledge. Another dozen gifts or pledges could make a huge difference. If you would like to pledge and have not yet had the chance, then please don’t delay! Do take an Appeal brochure from church, and think and pray about it. Many of us are pledging over five years – it’s amazing what a small amount per day will build up to over five years. And don’t forget to fill in the Gift Aid part if you’re a taxpayer…Thank you!

Secondly, many people have suggested fund-raising ideas. Now is the time for us to put these ideas into practice.

Thirdly we can pray. God has blessed us and has been our strength throughout this Appeal, but we need to continue to pray for God’s help right through to the end. We have restarted our monthly Appeal Prayers on the first Tuesday of the month from 8.00-9.00pm at church. Do join us if you can, or pray at home, in Home Groups, and anywhere else!

We are having a special focus on the Appeal in the month of October, from Sunday 7th October at our Harvest Festival, through to All Saints’ Sunday on 28th October. We would ask especially if new pledges and fund-raising ideas could be offered by Sunday 28th October.

Finally, do spread the word. Let’s talk about it and share it – and make this month of October be a time we all do our part and, together, take this Appeal through to the finishing line!

With many thanks for all your support,