Peasedown church sends two more members to ‘Vicar factory’

A popular community church in Peasedown St John has continued its growing trend of sending members off to theological college. St John’s Church, which has seen considerable growth in the size of its congregation over the last decade, likes to encourage all of its members to use their skills and talents, whatever they maybe, to serve God and the wider community.

Local Vicar, Reverend Matthew Street, said:

“Since 2006, Jennifer Cole, Joel Sales and Joel Mennie have left the comfortable surroundings of Peasedown St John and headed off to one of the many theological colleges around the country, making the commitment to study and enter into fulltime Anglican leadership.

Just recently, James Taylor and Adam Pitt have also left for pastures new and taken up the calling to train to become vicars.”

Statistics from 2012 show there are around 28,300 ministers licensed by Church of England dioceses, including clergy, readers and Church Army officers in the UK. In England, that’s one minister for every 2,900 people.

The church ordained 490 new clergy in 2012, with more than half ordained to full-time pastoral work.

Matthew added: “With 16,000 Anglican churches in England, our contribution here in Peasedown St John of sending five people off for theological training, and ultimately ordination, is a huge achievement.

As much as we don’t actively pray for our members to become vicars, we are immensely pleased for the calling God has put on these people’s hearts.

As well as the five who has left us, another four are in the early stages of exploration for theological training.”

With a desire to serve the community, over the last year St John’s Church has seen 12 baptisms by full immersion; the celebration of the collective service of 80 years flower arranging by two church members; the launch of the new Little Treasures Toy Library; Outreach and Community Worker, Andy Stockinger, gaining an NVQ Level 3 qualification in youth work; the morning breakfast club for school children extending to five days per week; the establishment of the new SJs charity; the launch of a new prayer Sanctuary; the continued work of the Somer Valley Foodbank (run by church members) and several successful children’s holiday clubs.

St John’s Church is part of the ‘St J’s Group’ Anglican benefice, which covers the parish churches of St John’s Peasedown, St Julian’s Wellow, St James’ Foxcote and St Julian’s Shoscombe and is named after their three patron saints.

For more details about the work of the St J’s Group, readers can follow them on Twitter, @stjsgroup, or visit their website,, which includes details of future events, the church’s work in the community, activities going on during the week and live recordings of Sunday sermons.

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