Vicar's Column - September 2018
St John the Baptist Parish Church
The common vision for the Diocese of Oxford is “Called to be Christ-like” captured by the strap line: Contemplative, Compassionate, Courageous. This is played out in many areas in our life at St John’s, either in reality or as an aspiration.
Considering the second element, we aim to be a caring community, modelling the compassion of Christ. Following the example and teaching of Christ to “love our neighbour”, as a church, we are called to respond to the needs of our congregation and community through the ministry of pastoral care. Towards this end, some years ago we established the Pastoral Visiting Group (PVG), which consists of volunteer members of the church, trained and commissioned to carry out this task on behalf of the church. The group, having recently seen some comings and goings, is now comprised of Revd David Ramsbottom, Gillian Gyenes, Jean Butler, Christine Rees, Willoughby Jones, Carol Cain, June Todd, Ann Cottrell, Carol Frost, Julie Richardson, Julie Cavell and myself. David Butler has now stepped down from his role after many years of faithful service, for which we are grateful.
To recap, the role of the PVG entails:
- Keeping an eye out for regulars at church so that no one is overlooked.
- Responding to requests for home visits or suggesting a home visit where appropriate.
- Delivering pastoral cards from the church.
- Welcoming newcomers and following up; including a visit if desired.
In fact any interaction between people can potentially be an opportunity for pastoral care and sensitive listening.
The PVG also needs your help. We are not always aware of people’s situations, so can I encourage you to keep an eye out for one another. If you are aware that someone is ill or notice someone has been missing from church a while then do let us know and it may be right for you to contact that person as well. Different groups within the church also play an important part in looking out for their own members. Of course there may be times when we need to respect a person’s desire for space and privacy but it is important that no one is neglected just because they have slipped off our radar. You are welcome to request a visit for yourself when needed – we need to love ourselves too.
Rev Dr Lisa Cornwell
Church Office (firstname.lastname@example.org )
- 01344 761521
Find St John the Baptist Parish Church
Waterloo Road, Crowthorne, Berkshire, RG45 7NT
There is ample parking along Waterloo Road, and around the back of the Church on the unmade road Church Street.