£1.2m grant for diocese-wide plans supporting growth

Southwell & Nottingham Diocese has been granted £1.2m from a national strategic development fund established by the Church Commissioners.

The ongoing mission of the diocese through its 305 churches is sustained through the generous giving of church congregations, as well as careful management of the diocese’s assets. The grant from the Church Commissioners, which is spread over five years, will help to enable the diocese to support a range of new opportunities related to its strategic focus in ‘Growing Disciples – wider, younger and deeper’.

This will include developing ‘Resource Churches’ around the diocese that will be equipped to help plant or graft new worshipping communities reaching out to many more of the 1.2m people who live in the diocese.

Grants awarded around the country

The funding will also help with establishing a Younger Leadership College that will train and commission 1,000 younger leaders (age 15-18) over the next seven years. Andy Wolfe, presently Vice Principal at Nottingham Emmanuel School, was recently appointed to lead this initiative as Dean of the new College.

A new city centre Resource Church in Nottingham will also receive some ‘seed-corn’ funding, particularly towards equipping a venue for meetings and activities.

The Bishop of Southwell & Nottingham, the Rt Revd Paul Williams, said: “I am thankful for the visionary approach taken by the Church Commissioners in supporting real growth across the Church of England. I am clear that there is nothing better anyone can do with their life than be a follower of Jesus Christ.

“Right now, for many, there is a sense of living in a time of uncertainty, yet there is immense opportunity for congregations to make an even bigger difference helping to create strong communities in which everyone can flourish. This additional funding will help us to develop our core ministry in parishes alongside some innovative new projects.”

The £1.2m is part of £7.8m awarded to projects in nine dioceses by the Church Commissioners and Archbishops’ Council as part of the Church’s Renewal & Reform programme, focused on church vitality and growth in a wide range of communities.