The Six Villages
Since 2017, our Parishes have been working together in partnership as a formal Mission and Ministry Unit - building on the collaborative and supportive covenant of our six churches which was formed in 2014. Our clergy and lay ministers are licensed to serve in each of the six parishes.
We are currently in the process of developing this even further, in a proposed reorganisation of the six parishes into a single united benefice. We expect to establish a joint church council to oversee our growth and direction as a group of six.
There was a Service of Commission for the Mission and Ministry Unit on Sunday 15th October 2017 at St Mary's Church Sheering.
The Bishop of Barking and the Archdeacon of Harlow commissioned the covenanted churches in their new formal partnership.
At the time, Mission and Ministry Units were a new concept within the Chelmsford Diocese.
They were part of Bishop Stephen Cottrell's "Transforming Presence" initiative:
We want to see more church for more impact in the lives of our communities.
Our ministry strategy is our way of ensuring this can be achieved.
Ministry belongs to everyone. Every Christian has a vocation.
We need priests to lead and serve the people of God.
Mission and Ministry Units are our way of ensuring that every community is served, that resources are deployed strategically and that there is room and incentive for growth. It is about taking positive steps to ensure every church flourishes, growing and nurturing local authorised and licensed lay ministry, and being realistic about the challenges and constraints we face and then ensuring every church has a plan for growth.