Welcome to St Paul’s Tongham

By Revd Claire Holt

It is lovely to have a shared magazine and to get to know more about each of our churches! I am Claire, the vicar at St Paul’s where I have been part of the church family here for the past 9 years, whilst the church is just over 150 years old. I love the mix of all ages worshipping God and serving together. We like to encourage all to have a go at things and don’t mind mistakes!

We have a mix of services from traditional communion services at 8am and mid-week, through an informal Sunday service at 10am and then Messy Church monthly on a Thursday evening. Though most of this has been online recently or in packs!

We have good links to St Paul’s infant school and have seasonal events for children e.g. Exploring Christmas and Exploring Easter. Our aim is to be for all in the community, so we also have our monthly Fellowship lunch for retired, small groups for adults and events for all ages.

Our Sunday 10am service has groups for children and we love families worshipping together at our family services and as part of our groups online. On Sunday evenings we have a group for teens called The Hub.

We have a passion for the environment and supporting people in need (see later articles!).

And finally, we support a few local charities and mission organisations, including Step by Step and Phyllis Tuckwell. But our main mission link is with Blythswood Care. We have been linking up with a project in Romania as part of our services, collect shoe boxes for them and have a member of our church working for them which means she has been able to visit with her family – and excitingly we have been invited to take a group out there when it is possible to arrange too!

Our vision is to be a “growing community of faith” – welcoming and including all and helping everyone to encounter God’s love for themselves. We aim to resource people to live out their faith in everyday life, reflecting on God in the ordinary and everyday, and thinking about how we can serve Him wherever we are.