Welcome to the first blog on the new Brentor Church website! This has been a really exciting week for us, with the new solar powered lights being blessed by Bishop Nick on Sunday.
The bishop’s sermon made me think, too, about what we as a church are about. Yes, of course the Church is the people – but the church as a building still has a role. Bishop Nick (suffragan bishop of Plymouth) said that a church like ours serves three purposes…
Firstly, it is “a history book in stone”. Think of all the people who have contributed to the building – in a few years, we’ll be celebrating the 900th anniversary of St Michael’s, and all of those generations have left their mark on the building.
Second, it’s that “shining city on a hill” (especially true in our case!) – a beacon of hope and faith for all who see it. This is, of course, what we’re called to be, and there’s a reason the Church of England‘s strapline is “A Christian presence in every community”. The church (building) is the visible symbol of the Church (as a body), and thus the redeeming presence of Christ, in every community in the country.
And finally, it’s a place of sanctuary – somewhere to come away from the world, if only for a while, to hide and shelter, reflect and pray. At St Michael’s, for example, we have an open prayer book, and the prayers are added to our regular prayers of intercession. We have even had people who have spent the night in the church, after being benighted on the Tor in bad weather. Of course, the new lights will hopefully make it even more welcoming!
So how does this link to this, our new website?
Well, our aim is that all three aspects of the church should be reflected here. There are sections (and there will be blogs too!) on the history of the churches, the Church, and the parish.
In terms of our faith, hopefully this will shine through everything we do – and our presence in the online environment is another way of making a shining beacon in cyberspace, all alone in the night (guess the reference…!).
Finally, we want to provide a place of sanctuary – with prayer resources, help and assistance if you need it. This is not a place for bitter disagreement or offensive statements, nor is it somewhere to mock other people. Comments should be constructive and kind, or else not made!
This is a very exciting time for Brentor Church – and we’re hoping you’ll join us on the journey!