We ploughed through a Vestry (PCC) Meeting last night which lasted over two hours, but on reflection, there was much to discuss and little time was wasted.
It's heartening that our new hall is almost completed now and we are planning to move in on 28th August. Plans are afoot for a big party on the 29th, and then we have a Confirmation on the 30th with Bishop Idris coming. There are grounds to believe that we may be successful in one of our grant applications, which means that we can have new furnishings for the hall, plus a number of laptops to turn one of our meeting rooms into a cyber cafe for the town centre.
The hall has cost us upwards of £330,000, and with the credit crunch, and the fall in value of our share portfolio of around £100k, the congregation are certainly feeling the squeeze! However, the faith within the Vestry that God will ensure we manage to see this through, with a full time ministry at the end, is unshakable!
We also endorsed the installation of new boilers for the church which should keep us warm enough for many years to come.
There was lively discussion on the swine flu pandemic, and how we should respond to recommendations made by the C of E, which seem to be endorsed by the College of Bishops. There was strong feeling that we must not abandon the common cup just yet, but that higher standards of hygiene, including alcohol-based rubs, should be introduced for all who minister at communion time. This will obviously be under review as things develop, or don't!
It's wonderful to be in charge of a congregation where so much is happening, and where there is real excitement about future ministry and mission. We now have to pray that we can afford it all, and have the necessary folk to make it all happen. In God we trust - and God has never let us down up until now!