St Michael’s is a Welcome Hub!

We are delighted to share that we have recently signed up with South Glos Council to be a Community Integration Hub for Resettling Communities (Refugees & Asylum Seekers).

So far this has led to us hosting weekly English Classes, monthly Clothes Distribution and Signposting Events, and from next month we will be starting to hold twice-weekly housing support sessions .

This is a great way of us living out our vision of ‘Living to make a Difference’ by being a Christian Heart at the Centre of our Communities and is an excellent use of our community centre.

For details of the events taking place across all the Welcome Hubs across South Gloucestershire, why not follow the Facebook page, or view the online calendar.

Forest Church

At Forest Church, we explore God’s creation, sing songs, hear bible stories, play games and have lots of fun along the way – whatever the weather!

Meet at the entrance to the woods on Long Down Avenue (opposite Bushy Leas)

Next dates:

The next events for Forest Church are:

Easter 2022

We have lots going on this Easter.

In 2020 and 2021 all our Easter services and celebrations were online only. We are so pleased that this year we can meet in person, as well as continuing to live-stream each service.


Easter Services

Maundy Thursday 14 April

Communion Service 7.30pm in church. Live stream link here

Good Friday 15 April

All-age Service 11am in the centre Live stream link here

Reflective Service 12pm in church,   This service concludes with communion at 1.45pm.  Stay for all the service or come and go on the quarter-hour. Live stream link here

Easter Sunday 17 April

The Nine o’clock – communion service in church –  Live stream link here

The Ten-thirty – communion in the centre–  Live stream link here

The Six-thirty – in the centre – service will also be Live stream link here

Themes and Readings

Easter Trail

Head to our special Easter Trail page for more info!

Easter Message

“The chief priests and our rulers handed him over to be sentenced to death, and they crucified him; but we had hoped that he was the one who was going to redeem Israel. And what is more, it is the third day since all this took place.” Luke 24:20-21

We had hoped…

Those words (by some of Jesus’ followers walking away from Jerusalem) so eloquently sum up what they must have been feeling after his crucifixion. All hope seemed lost. They had started to believe he really might be the promised Messiah, but now…

Many of us face – and possibly still live through – dashed hopes: the death of a friend or relative, the clear end to a pandemic, the longing for a career or position that is now closed.

How does Easter story speak to these situations? After all, despite the disciples worries – Jesus was alive.

There is nothing wrong with expressing ‘we had hoped’. We need to grieve over lost dreams and crushed hopes. There are strong biblical precedents for lamenting and taking time to process our emotions.

Jesus’ message, when he appeared to his ‘hopeless’ friends on the road, was more than ‘boo…I’m alive’! Jesus opened their eyes to a much wider and more glorious reality; that pain and hurt will, in the end, be defeated by ‘hope’.

As we ponder Jesus’ sufferings and resurrection in the coming days, let us take comfort in the amazing truth that hopes which seem defeated are in reality just deferred.

This Easter, ‘May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit’ (Romans 15:13).

God bless,


Rector St Michael’s Stoke Gifford

Revd Canon Simon Jones

Congratulations to Simon who has been installed as Honorary Canon at Bristol Cathedral.

This honour is a recognition of Si’s work as Rector and Area Dean, as well as leader of the Heart of the Community Project.

Si was installed alongside 5 others from across the Diocese, and all were well supported within the congregation.

Si said  “A huge ‘thank you’ to everyone at St Michael’s who came to the Cathedral on Sunday. I felt very loved and supported by you all. It was a privilege to be installed as a Canon at Bristol Cathedral and an on-going joy to lead St Michael’s.”


Photos by Chris Dobson


















Stoke Gifford World War One Centenary Event

On Saturday 2nd August we are joining with the Stoke Gifford Royal British Legion to host a community event on the Green, in commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War. We’ll be raising money jointly for the RBL Poppy Appeal and the Heart of the Community project. 

Bradley Stoke Radio will be in attendance, along with Westerleigh Brass Band and Mini Massive Sax Flextet, and there will be lots of other things to see and do.  The OSR Coffee Shop will be open serving tea, coffee, cold drinks and cakes – and on the other side of the Green the Beaufort Arms will be putting on a barbecue.

Children are invited to wear fancy dress, for a little parade and a chance to win a prize.  Please do come along and support this community event!


Heart of the Community project updates

Construction and costs 

Rebuilding of the north wall is nearing completion. The steel frame of the new building is now complete, and work on the roof has begun. Internal and external walls on the ground floor are now about 50% complete. Corridors and rooms are taking shape, and work has begun reconstructing the internal arches. We anticipate the shell of the building will be finished by the end of July. 

Savings of about £20,000 have been made on the cost of the north wall, and further savings are expected to be made as disruption costs are minimised by a smooth continuation from phase 1 to 2. 


Following the DCC decision at their last meeting an application is being pursued for Heritage Lottery Funding via the ‘Grants for Places of Worship’ programme. We will be bidding for a grant of around £225,000 which will cover most of the work which needs doing in, and to, the church building. 


We have recently awarded just under £15,000 to our mission partners working with Family Impact, to build a classroom block at a rural school in Zimbabwe. The current classrooms are mud huts with no desks or seats. The new classroom block, containing two classrooms to accommodate 80 children, will be built of bricks, made by the local community. There are plans to build three other similar classroom blocks so that the entire school can be re-housed. 

Events for the diary

Phoenix Trading – Coffee and Cards

Saturday 26 April 

Sue Woodhead Marsh is hosting an open home during the morning on 26 April. This will be an opportunity to drop in, drink coffee (or tea), eat cake, meet people and browse some high quality, good value, greetings cards and stationery. All proceeds to go to the Heart of the Community. (For more info please contact Sue on 07525 929085) 


Band Night

Saturday 10 May

Back by popular demand. More details to follow. 


Colour and Style evening

Tuesday 10 June 

If you are interested in the finding out more about personal image, and how to choose colours and clothing that will flatter and enhance your look, then pop this date in your diary. All proceeds from the evening will go to Heart of the Community. More details to follow. 

Archbishop’s visit

Saturday 13 September

The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, will be visiting the new Church and Community Centre to bless the project. 

New Buy a Brick appeal launched

St Michael’s Church is inviting everyone to play a part in the Heart of the Community project with our new Buy a Brick appeal.

The idea is that church members encourage everyone to buy a brick or two for the new church and community centre. Each brick represents a £10 gift, with a small certificate presented to everyone who donates.

Our target is to raise £50,000 for the project – which means selling 5,000 bricks.

We are currently recruiting volunteers to take a turn helping to run one of our three Buy a Brick display stands at local events and meeting places over the next few weeks. You could sell bricks at your own Christmas event too. Please contact Sue Woodhead if you’d like to help. (Hard hats will be provided.)

All the details, and a link to the Buy a Brick online giving page, can be found on the new Buy a Brick section of this website.

Remember – this project isn’t about a community building, it’s about building a community.

Celebrating 150 years of serving the community

To mark 150 years of serving the community St Michael’s Church and St Michael’s Primary School are hosting an open-air service of celebration followed by a family fun day.

It’s 150 years since the Old School Rooms – back then a new Victorian village school – first opened. The celebration service is taking place in front of the Old School Rooms on the village green. It will feature songs and stories from pupils past and present, Victorian hymns and a prize for those who come in Victorian dress!

Sunday 23rd June


Stoke Gifford Village Green

Bring your own picnic lunch and stay on afterwards for games, a photo exhibition by the school, an opportunity to watch the Heart of the Community project DVD, and the last chance to visit the site of the Old Barns before the diggers arrive in early July!

The whole community is invited, but pupils of St Michael’s School, past and present, are especially welcome.

Please click on the link to see our press release: HOTC press release