Karen and I welcome you to the website of St Michael's Church, Stoke Gifford.
We're a lively, growing Anglican church on the outskirts of Bristol. We're an outward-looking church "living to make a difference" by being a "Christian heart at the centre of the community".
Throughout this website you'll find three values surfacing time and again: discipleship, outreach and serving the community. We're passionate about these three activities as key features in the Christian life.
We're committed to making disciples locally, to inspire others to do the same regionally and to work for transformation nationally.
Enjoy exploring the website. We love to build friendships in church, develop community, seek God and step out in faith. Pop in and see us at our Sunday services for worship, teaching and prayer. Or in the week, why not visit our fantastic coffee shop?
We've recently produced a set of short video clips about the life of the church and our ambitious Heart of the Community project.
Taizé offers an opportunity for quiet reflection in the midst of our busy lives. This will be a service of simple music, scripture reading and silence, designed to help us enter into the mystery of God’s presence. The service has no formal leadership, no announcements, no sermon and few words are spoken. One enters in silence and becomes aware of an inviting reverent space; a space for people to find the quiet place within, and in their own way, God.
The silence and absence of distractions are reminders that prayer is an experience of trusting God. Simple songs are sung repeatedly, giving them a reflective character. A scripture is read, followed by silence, allowing words to find a pure tone of truth in each person’s life. It is a simple, and for some, highly personal, form of worship.
You are warmly invited to come along to experience this peaceful time with God.
Friday 21 March
St Michael’s Church
Church open from 7.30pm, service begins at 8.00pm
For more information please Contact Annie Hepburn (0117 9599270) or Caroline Sweetnam (01454 772986).
We have three people – Will, Jade and Ivy – who are going to be baptised during our evening celebration on Sunday 30 March. Everyone is invited come along and support them. These services are always incredibly joyful events.
Sunday 30 March
St Michael’s Church
If you haven’t been baptised yet and are thinking about it, please speak to a member of the church leadership team.
We have recently started a weekly parent and toddlers group and a weekly crafts club in Cheswick Village. (Cheswick is the growing community of new homes next to the MOD at Abbeywood in Stoke Gifford.)
This term St Michael’s Primary School are getting behind Buy a Brick and will be supporting us by asking pupils and their parents to get involved by buying bricks and helping to raise funds. The main hall in the new church and community centre will be a wonderful resource for the school, providing space for the whole school community to meet together, and to host events for all parents and families. If you are a parent/carer with a child at the school, look out for the buy a brick stand by the cake stall on Friday 14 March.
Each week we publish this little newsletter online and we print hundreds of copies on paper to hand out at our Sunday services and celebrations.
But during Lent 2014 we are taking part in the Carbon Fast initiative as a church – trying to reduce our carbon footprint by 40% for forty days. As part of the fast, we are reducing the number of printed copies of the notice sheet by more than half – and asking some congregations only to use the website for their church news.
Thank you for being one of those who took the time to find the church news online.
Work on rebuilding the north wall is progressing well, and is due to complete on 16th March. In addition, the steel frame work is pretty much completed now, and construction of some internal block walls and conservation arches are underway. Work on the brickwork and external stonework is due to start shortly. Although there is still some delay to the programme, the professional teams are working hard to reduce this.
Thank you to those who continue to pray for the project. At this time please pray in particular that the funds needed to meet the imminent shortfall will be made available at the right time. We thank God that He promises His spring-time ‘rain’ of blessing. “Ask the Lord for rain in the springtime; it is the Lord who sends the thunderstorms. He gives showers of rain to all people, and plants of the field to everyone.” (Zechariah 10:1)
Buy a Brick
This term St Michael’s Primary School are getting behind Buy a Brick and will be supporting the project by asking pupils and parents to get involved by buying bricks and helping to raise funds. The new main auditorium of the church and community centre will be a wonderful resource for the school, providing space for the whole school community to meet together, and to host events for all parents and families.
This year at St Michael’s rather than giving up chocolate for Lent, we’re aiming to give up carbon.
The Carbon Fast is a national church initiative. How can we join in? Many are giving up their car commute and walking, cycling, using public transport or car-sharing instead. Some are changing all their light bulbs to low energy or increasing loft insulation in their homes. Even turning the thermostat down by 2 degrees will make a difference.
On Saturday 8th March Revd James Wilson will be speaking about the carbon fast at the Saturday Breakfast.
Many church members meet regularly in smaller groups for conversation, bible study, prayer and discussion. These life groups provide a chance to get to know each other better and to grow together in our faith. Very often they also provide excellent cake. (More... )
Alpha is a relaxed, fun and informative way to share your thoughts and explore the meaning of life. 18 million people have done the Alpha Course around the world. It’s designed primarily for people who don't go to church or who haven't been to church in a long time and are interested in the Christian faith. (More... )
There are always opportunities to volunteer within the life of St Michael’s. It’s one of the best ways in which we can fulfil our vision of living to make a difference. If you have a talent for gardening or music or hospitality (or just about anything) then there’s probably an opportunity for you to make a difference. We would love to hear from you. (More... )
This is church for those who find sitting still and being quiet unthinkable. Once a month we throw open the doors of Messy Church on a Wednesday afternoon. It’s for primary school children and their families. Fun, paint, craft, noisy singing, cutting, sticking, playing and making a mess are actively encouraged. (More... )
Many people find a more traditional approach to worship most helpful. Our 9.00am service each Sunday morning is well suited to those who enjoy the hymns and liturgy of the Anglican tradition. And on the first Sunday of each month we gather for Evensong at 5.00pm. (More... )
There’s always a stack of activity on offer for young people at St Michael's. Joel, Jimmy and the youth team are constantly on the look out for opportunities to have a laugh, try something new and to demonstrate that being a Christian means life is more exciting, not less. (More... )
If this choice of activities feels a bit demanding, then the Old School Rooms Coffee Shop may be just what you're looking for. A relaxing meeting place in the heart of the village, which serves the most delicious range of drinks, cakes and light lunches. The Coffee Shop is the place to take it easy. (More... )
This is a just a small selection of the opportunities to belong that we provide as a church. You can also browse a full list of all our regular activities or keep up with news of the latest events organised by members of St Michael’s Church.
Prayer is central to everything we do at St Michael’s. It’s about putting our trust in God’s safe hands. There are daily opportunities to pray, and to be prayed for, as part of the life of the church and our desire to serve the community.
A short time of prayer is held at 9.10am every Monday in the Old School Rooms, and on Wednesday and Friday mornings in the church building. Everyone is welcome to join us to pray.
Prayer in church
At most of our church services there is an opportunity to receive prayer for you or a friend whether for healing or any other need. The person leading will usually offer anyone the chance to be prayed for towards the end of the service.
More in-depth listening and prayer ministry is available during the week at our prayer surgery. Please contact us for more details.
How to pray
This is one of the key topics for discussion on the Alpha Course. If you would like to explore questions like this, and any other issues of life, in a non-pressurised, informative discussion, the Alpha Course runs three times a year at St Michael’s. Everyone is welcome.
The way Jesus taught his friends to pray
Our Father in Heaven
Hallowed be your name
Your kingdom come
Your will be done
On earth as it is in heaven
Give us today our daily bread
Forgive us our sins, as we forgive those who sin against us
Lead us not into temptation
But deliver us from evil
For the kingdom, the power and the glory are yours