Job Posted: 4 days ago

Available until: 19th Jan 2021

Key Features


Newnham, Awre and Blakeney

Job Type:




Benefice of Newnham with Awre and Blakeney

Our three worshipping communities are relatively small but open and welcoming. offering a range of types of worship. The churches are well known in our communities and play an important role in village life, including in our two primary schools, one of which is a church school. There are no other churches in our benefice. The profile includes details of our villages and illustrates some of our community links.

Where are we?

Our rural benefice is in the diocese of Gloucester. It is situated on the North bank of the River Severn in West Gloucestershire, halfway between Gloucester and Chepstow.

What are we good at? We are looking for a leader to build on these strengths

1. We are really effective at reaching out to children and families, for instance through Messy church in Newnham, holiday clubs in Awre, outside events such as the tractor Rogation in Awre, a range of activities and clubs run by church members (as well as clergy) in our schools, especially St Peter’s, and regular All Age Worship in each church.

2. We are quite happy to embrace change. For instance, St Andrews Awre has replaced pews by chairs and an organ by a top of the range keyboard, employs illustrated power-point slides not books for all services, and arranges its furniture flexibly to allow for creative approaches to worship. Much of what we do is innovative, engaging and fun – inside and outside the church building. Our profile includes a few illustrations as does, for instance, the facebook page of St Andrews church Awre.

3. Our three churches are working increasingly closely together, for instance our benefice prayer breakfast, which – in normal times - takes place in a local pub, small home study groups, prayer groups or outreach groups. In the past we have run a number of Alpha courses and the time may well be ripe for more, given the number of new residents.

4. Across our three churches there are those who have wider Christian links, for instance through attendance at New Wine, involvement with 24/7 prayer, sponsoring Compassion children or supporting local and overseas mission, including specific families.

What are we not so good at? We are looking for a leader who can help us

1. We find it hard to turn our children and family contacts into committed disciples.

2. Similarly, we struggle to see our wide range of contacts become firstly seekers and then believers – yet very many are not at all averse.

3. We have been unsuccessful in sustaining youth work.

4. We have insufficient committed and technically astute worshippers to allow us to make the most of the opportunities we have for outreach.

5. We lack the range of committed musicians necessary to develop worship into the 21st century.

6. Our study and prayer groups attract only small numbers.


While there are challenges here, there are actually enormous opportunities to grow the Kingdom of God in this rural benefice. You will be really well supported, not least in prayer. You’ll live in Newnham in a large modern vicarage within walking distance of both St Peter’s Primary School and St Peter’s church.

If you feel that you might be called to this opportunity, you can find brief details in the Church Times (8 and 15 January) and more details of dates, the application process, the benefice profile and other associated documents on the Gloucester Diocesan web site. The key date is the closing date – 25 January. The archdeacon would be really delighted to talk with you. If you would also like to have a very informal initial chat, please feel free to contact either Martin Spoor (churchwarden of St Andrew’s, Awre on 07855 449230) or Carole Baker (PCC secretary of St Andrew’s, Awre on 07539 506225).


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