Heart of the Community Gift Day – Total So Far

Thank you so much for all those who responded at the Gift day.

So far, we can report that £343,000 has been pledged. Most of this is lumps sums with some as monthly donations.

This is an incredible result! God is SO good.

The St Michael’s Church Centre Trustees at their meeting on Monday decided that we should pay off one of our Mortgage loans to the amount of £115,000.

This was mentioned on our Gift Day leaflet as an aspiration and will save us £20,000 per annum in repayments of capital and interest.

There is more work to be finished in the Old School Rooms, The Church building and the Church centre.

Do pray for the Trustees as they seek the Lord’s wisdom on the priorities of these works.

Those who have pledged:

Please transfer your donation via BACS or set up a standing order to

St Michael’s Church centre -HOTC

Sort code: 30-62-32

Account number: 34805560

Reference: your surname. Cheques can be payable to St Michael’s Church centre -HOTC.

Do contact us with any queries.


Heart of the Community Gift Day

The Heart of the Community project (HOTC) is central to our plan to be a welcoming, thriving, sharing community that is truly living to make a difference.

Our ambitions

Create St Michael’s Centre (SMC)

Refurbish and protect the church building

Upgrade the facilities at the Old School Rooms (OSR)

Support our mission partners in the UK and overseas

Our inspiration

“Enlarge the place of your tent, stretch your tent curtains wide, do not hold back, lengthen your cords, strengthen your stakes. For you will spread out to the right and to the left.”

Isaiah 54:2-3


We are thankful to God for what has been achieved so far…

The St Michael’s Centre is open and welcomes over 23,000 people each year.

Last year’s gifts enabled the balcony to open.

We serve church groups, uniformed organisations, local and regional businesses and many more.

The Charity Commission has recently agreed to our request to release assets held in Trust to repair and improve the Old School Rooms.

£120k has been donated to mission.

We have allocated investment for the improvement and preservation of the church building.


The things we need to deliver to remain compliant each year…

Regular gifts help to pay the mortgage. The repayment of capital and interest is £155k per year.

Meet our tithe to mission commitments of £45k in 2018.

These are partly met by existing monthly giving. We need another £120k annually to properly cover these two commitments.


What we believe we are called to do for the community…

Complete the next phases of the SMC building

1. The office suite upstairs – to alleviate current office over-crowding and create more meeting space

2. The arches corridor – completing access to four large meeting rooms and storage

3. The new kitchen – adding catering and hospitality to the St Michael’s Centre

These three elements will cost in the region of £650k

Pay off a section of our mortgage loans early £115k


What we are asking now…

Gift Day was 13 May 2018

We are continuing our journey of faith with the Heart of the Community project. It’s not too late to pledge a new donation or increase your giving level.

Please pray about what you are able to give

Together, we can each play our part and complete the project. We can make even more of a difference across our community and beyond.


This appeal is an invitation…

to everyone who belongs to St Michael’s.

Those who haven’t been able to give yet…

Some of us haven’t been in a position to support the project financially before. Now we can pray about how much we should give.

Those who are new to St Michael’s…

Maybe you’ve only just heard of the project. Maybe you are here because of the project. Now is the time for you to consider your level of giving to become part of it.

Those who are able to increase their giving…

Some of us are in a better financial position than when we committed to give to the project. We can pray about how to increase the amount we give.


Pledge form and GiftAid

To make your pledge to the project please pick up a Gift Day Pledge Form from the church or download your copy here. Please return your completed pledge form to the church office by the Gift Day on Sunday 13 May 2018.

UK taxpayers can also complete a simple GiftAid form, which means the government will donate an extra 25% on top of your giving at no cost to you or the project.

If you would like to know more about any of the Heart of the Community project, how the money is spent, or help with ways to make one-off donations or arrange regular giving, please contact the church office.



St Michael’s Church Centre Limited

Registered Charity in England and Wales 1149601

Heart of the Community project

The Heart of the Community project

The Heart of the Community project is an amazing, ambitious piece of work, which is absolutely central to our life as a church. It’s an audacious plan to take our vision of living to make a difference to a whole new level. And everyone is invited to play a part in making it happen.


Four key ambitions

The Heart of the Community project has four specific aims, which can all enable our lives to make even more of a difference.

Create a spacious modern meeting place in the centre of the community

Restore our historic church building for generations to come

Upgrade our existing community rooms

Fund outreach and anti-poverty projects locally, nationally and internationally

Each of these four ambitions is included to help us fulfil our vision of living to make a difference, through discipleship, outreach and serving the community.


How far we’ve come

The project was officially launched in May 2012 with the initial fundraising target of £5.8m. Members of St Michael’s Church responded to the call to give generously and sacrificially. On a single Sunday £2m was given or pledged over five years to get the project off to an incredible start.

This short video was produced after that amazing first gift day.

Since that first amazing gift day, even more people have chosen to support the project financially, and we continue to host an annual gift day, enabling each of us to review our regular giving and one-off donations.

To date (figures from April 2018) worshippers at St Michael’s have given more than £3.55m (including Gift Aid contributions from the government) to support the four ambitions of the Heart of the Community project. Those gifts, combined with a number of charitable loans from supportive organisations and individuals, have enabled us to press on with the work of the project.

Building work on the new St Michael’s Church Centre began in July 2013.

Derelict farm buildings in the heart of Stoke Gifford were transformed into our new church centre.

In September 2014 the shell of the new building was dedicated and the project was blessed by the Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby. By April 2015 the first phase was completed at a total cost of £4.51m – of which £2.04m was borrowed.

Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, visits and blesses the new building in September 2014.

Work to fit and furnish the first phase of the new church centre continued, with our reception and downstairs office areas, storage, toilets, a small kitchen, three meeting rooms and the ground floor of the auditorium (300 seats) ready to open by May 2015.

A church gathering on the ground floor of the new auditorium shortly after it opened in 2015.


Making a difference around the world

Of all the financial gifts made to the project, we’ve committed 10% to support our mission and outreach partners elsewhere in the UK and around the world.

More than £120,00 has so far been given to building and development projects that are making a real difference to the lives of people in the UK, Moldova, India, Zimbabwe and Brazil.

Children overcoming the effects of HIV and AIDS at the Faith Home in Adoni, southern India. Heart of the Community funding has enabled new dormitories, a kitchen and dining hall to be completed.

There are more details about these projects in the outreach pages of this website.


What next?

There’s much to celebrate, new opportunities to grow, serve and reach out, and plenty more fundraising and hard work ahead for the Heart of the Community project.

The Old School Rooms

The project has funded a new tiled floor throughout the foyer of the Old School Rooms. Our coffee shop, kitchen and the various meeting spaces in the Old School Rooms are used more than ever for church and community activities.

The church tower

£75,000 of Heart of the Community funds have now been allocated to the preservation of the church tower. The need for tower repairs is now an immediate priority, and protecting the medieval church building as a place of worship for generations to come has always been central to the vision of the project.

The auditorium balcony

Seating for another 160 people is being added to the auditorium in the new church centre in the spring of 2018, with the completion of the balcony. This will accommodate further growth in numbers and enable us to host more larger regional and national events, beginning with the Diocese of Bristol Connections Conference at the end of April.

Between autumn 2016 and spring 2017 we funded the mechanical and electrical work to provide heating and cabling for lighting, power and data connections to the arched barns area and the upstairs of the new centre. That means everything is in place to complete the remaining rooms as further funds become available.


Fundraising continues

Everyone is invited to play their part in the Heart of the Community project. That means hundreds of us committing to pray, to support in practical ways, and to consider carefully what level of sacrificial giving we could add to the growing total of funds raised.

At every stage of the project we’ve had to trust God as we’ve taken bold steps towards these audacious ambitions. We’re certain that God guides us and encourages us to continue towards that vision. And this faith-stretching challenge goes on.

What can I give?

We host a gift day for the Heart of the Community project once a year, and we have been amazed by God’s generosity and the faithfulness of his people again and again. But we can choose to make a one-off gift, or commit to a regular monthly donation at any time.

If you would like to make a donation, or to arrange a standing order for direct debit contributions, please contact the church office who will be happy to provide the simple forms you need to complete.

Tax-payers can also fill in a Gift Aid form which instructs the government to contribute another 25% on top of your donation, at no cost to you or the project.

We’re also delighted when groups or individuals choose to organise a fundraising activity for the Heart of the Community project. Dozens of different events have been staged over the last few years, and it’s not too late for you to add yours.

Be part of it

Some say that community spirit is a thing of the past. Our vision says the opposite. We live to restore relationships, re-build community and enable more people to come together and discover the difference our lives can make.


We invite everyone to enjoy the new facilities, spread the word and to consider supporting the project. Together we can all play a part in making this vision a reality, completing every element of the project and really living to make a difference at the heart of the community.

Registered Charity

The official name of the Heart of the Community project charity is St Michael’s Church Centre Limited.

Registered Charity No.1149601


Heart of the Community Update – August 2016

 Thanks to the amazing £565,000 response to the Heart of the Community Gift Day in May, work is now underway on the next phase of the St Michael’s Centre as well as improvements to the church and Old School Rooms.

 – Our architects have re-designed the proposed toilet extension to the old church and we are seeking planning approval for the new design, which is slightly smaller .

 – The main entrance lobby and toilets in the Old School Rooms will be refurbished, including new flooring.

 – Work on the mechanical and electrical infrastructure for Phase 3 of the St Michael’s Centre will begin in September, with the installation of most of the underfloor heating, cabling and utilities to the arched barns area and the balcony.

This will enable phased completion of the various rooms as further funds become available.

We are also delighted that we will be able to repay the first Charities Aid Foundation loan of £150,000 in December.

A tenth of all money donated by members of St Michael’s is being used to support building and development projects undertaken by our mission partners in the UK and overseas and will be allocated by the Mission Action Group.

 Thank you to everyone who is supporting the HOTC project through prayer, regular giving and one-off gifts.