The church family is committed to ensuring that our church is a living church that connects with the parish around us meeting people where they are and making God’s love and word accessible. We endeavour to do this by striving to be an inclusive welcoming church.
In the parish, we view our role to include working with local groups such as the Youth Organisations and local schools to bring them in contact with Christianity.
There is also a pastoral role for the church in the parish, such as the care of the bereaved. This pastoral role is also important within the church family including visiting members of the church who are unable to attend – offering home Communion. We recognise these areas as ones which need significant work to improve the links between the Church and the residents of the Parish.
Some of our links are:
Bexley Food Bank – The project provides emergency food and support to local people in crisis across the Bexley Borough. People in crisis obtain vouchers from frontline care professionals such as doctors and social workers exchange these vouchers for food at a foodbank distribution centre..
St John’s in conjunction with a number of other local churches have opened a distribution centre in Erith, based at Queen Street Baptist Church. www.bexley.foodbank.org.uk
The foodbank is open from 10am to 1pm on Wednesday and Saturday mornings.
If you want to give to the foodbank, we have a box in church where you can place donations of non-perishable food items. Some of the items that would be needed by the foodbank include:
- Canned soup
- Canned tomatoes
- Canned meat or fish
- Canned fruit
- Canned beans and pulses e.g. baked beans
- Pasta sauces & dried pasta
- Instant mash potato
- Cartons of pasteurised fruit juice
- Long-life milk
- Tea bags & instant coffee
- Biscuits or snack bars
Guides and Scouts – St. John’s has a full complement of uniformed organisations. We have one of the most successful Guiding groups in the District, frequently having girls waiting to join Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Rangers (senior section). The number of girls going on to become young leaders and work with the younger children is testament to the success of the organisation. They are active and very supportive of the Church. The Beavers, Cubs and Scouts are also very active. The life of the Parish is enriched and blessed by the presence of so many young people. Several of the leaders of both the Guides and the Scouts are members of the Church.
Re-instate – Re-Instate is a charity dedicated to providing employment opportunities and supporting the sustainable recovery of people with mental health challenges. Re-instate Ltd was set up by St Johns with the original aim to provide work experience and enable people to move forward in their lives following admission to a former local Psychiatric Hospital. This initiative was very much supported by the Industrial Chaplain who was then attached to St. John’s. He subsequently became their General Manager and held that position for many years until his retirement. Re-instate is still a thriving concern today and is now involving people with both physical difficulties as well as people experiencing Mental Health problems. Re-instate Ltd has used the current Church Hall for over 40 years and a representative from the PCC attends their Board meetings. www.re-instate.co.uk
The Friends – The Friends of Erith Parish Church (St John’s) commonly known as the “Friends” was founded over 50 years ago to provide financial and other support, in order to assist with the maintenance of the fabric, fittings, furniture and plant of the Church buildings of St John’s. These objectives are achieved in active consultation and co-operation with the Parish Priest, (who assumes the role of Chairman of the committee of The Friends), Churchwardens, and Parochial Church Council of St John’s. The Patronal Festival is celebrated each year with a festive service, sometimes ‘Songs of Praise,’ and sometimes ‘Evening Praise’, to which the friends are invited, followed by afternoon tea and the Annual General Meeting of the Friends in the Lady Chapel. The Friends were wound up in 2015
Christian Literature Crusade (CLC Bookshop) – We have a representative linking us with this group who have a Christian bookshop in Welling. www.clcbookshops.com
Transform Bexley Borough – A representative from the Church links us to this group whose aim is to be one Church serving the community in the Borough.
Cribs (Christian Resources in Bexley Schools) – A representative from the Church links us to this group whose aim is to be one Church serving the community in the Borough.