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The APCM beckons: come to Support, Challenge & Celebrate

From Team Rector, Revd Dr Jeremy Worthen:

I guess it’s some kind of historical accident that the Annual Parochial Church Meeting (otherwise known as the APCM) normally falls in Eastertide. After the joy of celebrating the resurrection, we have to do some rather uninspiring work around church governance. I’m conscious you may be tempted to stop reading now!

There are perhaps three broad attitudes churches can take to the APCM. One is to regard is as rather tiresome bit of church bureaucracy that we just have to get through as swiftly and painlessly as possible – and with the minimum of congregational participation.

Another is it to see it as something that needs to be taken seriously as the major event of the year in terms of church governance. It’s normally the only time when all church members get to have some direct input in this area, by their comments at the meeting and their votes for PCC and Deanery members (and, in the preceding meeting, for Churchwardens).

A third is to try to make it an annual opportunity to come together as the body of Christ in this place to give thanks for God’s working amongst us in the past year, to strengthen our bonds of fellowship with one another, and to seek God’s guidance for the way ahead.

Which of those attitudes would you like us to be taking in Ashford Town Parish?

I guess for me it’s definitely the second rather than the first, and I’d love to mix in something of the third as well. This year, we’ll be doing that by hearing from each church community about where they want to celebrate signs of God’s kingdom in their midst. It’s so important to earth the formal tasks of our APCM in the experience of our family of churches in living out the gospel week by week.

We’re also aiming to make all reports available well in advance, so we can maximise the amount of time for discussion and minimise the talking from the front.

Do please join us if you can at Willesborough Church on Saturday 29 April, 10am to 12 noon. Come to support, come to challenge, and come to celebrate!


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