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A   P rofile   o f   t he   P arishes   o f    
St   J ames   F inchampstead    
and    
St   M ary   a nd   S t   J ohn   C alifornia    
 
 
A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

 

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

Table   o f   C ontents  
1   Introduction  and  Explanation  .................................................................................................  5  
2   Finchampstead:  The  Community  We  Serve  ............................................................................  5  
3   What  Our  Two  Churches  Have  To  Offer  ..................................................................................  6  
3.1   Worship  ....................................................................................................................................................................................  6  
3.2   Encouraging  Discipleship  .................................................................................................................................................  6  
3.3   Places  of  Worship  ................................................................................................................................................................  6  
3.4   Parish  and  Church  Centres  ..............................................................................................................................................  7  
3.5   Rectory  and  Vicarage  .........................................................................................................................................................  7  

4   The  Church  Community  ..........................................................................................................  8  
5   How  We  Work  .......................................................................................................................  9  
5.1   Parish  Staff  ..............................................................................................................................................................................  9  
5.2   Committee  structures  ........................................................................................................................................................  9  
5.3   Pastoral  Teams  ...................................................................................................................................................................  10  
5.4   FairTrade  and  Eco  Congregation  ...............................................................................................................................  10  

6   Mission  and  Outreach  ..........................................................................................................  10  
7   Vision  and  Goals  ..................................................................................................................  12  
7.1   The  St  Mary  and  St  John  Vision  ...................................................................................................................................  12  
7.2   The  St  James  Vision  ..........................................................................................................................................................  12  
7.3   Our  Joint  Vision  for  the  Immediate  Future  of  the  Merged  Parishes  ...........................................................  13  

8   The  Qualities  and  Attributes  of  the  Incumbent  ....................................................................  14  
9   Appendices  ..........................................................................................................................  15  
9.1   Parish  Map  ...........................................................................................................................................................................  15  
9.2   Mission  and  Charitable  Giving  .....................................................................................................................................  15  
9.3   Finance  ..................................................................................................................................................................................  17  
9.4   Service  Times  ......................................................................................................................................................................  17  
9.5   Membership  and  Statistics  (as  recorded  at  the  APCMs  April  2010)  ..........................................................  18  
9.6   Committees  List  .................................................................................................................................................................  19  
9.7   Church  Groups  ....................................................................................................................................................................  20  
9.8   Relevant  Websites  ............................................................................................................................................................  21  

 

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

St  James’  Church,  Finchampstead  
The  Parish  Office  
Church  Lane  
Finchampstead  
Berkshire  
RG40  4LU  
Tel:  0118  973  0133  
E-­‐mail:  office@st-­‐james.finchampstead.co.uk  
Web:  stjames.finchampstead.co.uk  

St  Mary  and  St  John’s,  California  
St  Mary  and  St  John's  Parish  Centre  
Vicarage  Close  
Finchampstead  
Berkshire  
RG40  4JW  
Tel:  0118  973  0468  
Web:  www.smsj.org.uk  

 
Profile  Writing  Team  
Paul  Arscott  
Carolyn  Fox  
Karen  King  
Richard  Peat  
Sharon  White  
Picture  Credits  
All  pictures  from  members  of  the  churches  except  cover  image  based  on  Cross  and  Sunrise  by  
Jerry   Worster   and   picture   of   St   James   Congregation   ©Rolfe   Markham   Photography  
www.rolfemarkham.co.uk    

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

1 Introduction  and  Explanation  
In   accordance   with   the   2010   Sonning   Deanery   Mission   Plan   the   two   parishes   St   James  
Finchampstead  and  St  Mary  and  St  John  California  are  to  be  merged  into  a  single  parish  with  
two  full  time  stipendiary  clergy:  a  Rector  and  an  Associate  Priest.  The  intention  is  for  the  post  
of  Rector  to  be  filled  first  so  that  he/she  can  be  involved  in  the  appointment  of  the  Associate  
Priest.   Both   PCCs   have   resolved   not   to   invoke   Resolutions   A   and   B.   The   existing   separate  
parishes  have  worked  jointly  to  create  this  Parish  Profile.  

2 Finchampstead:  The  Community  We  Serve  
The  parishes  are  part  of  the  Sonning  Deanery  within  the  Diocese  of  Oxford.    
Finchampstead  is  three  miles  South  of  Wokingham  in  Berkshire,  with  easy  access  to  the  M3  
and   M4.   It   includes   both   residential   and   rural   areas   and   has   population   of   about   12,500  
(based   on   the   2001   census),   consisting   mainly   of   commuting   and   locally   working   families   but  
with   a   sizeable   retired   community.   The   area   is   largely   prosperous   but   with   pockets   of  
deprivation.  
Within   Finchampstead   there   are   local   shops,   several   restaurants,   a   public   house,   two   post  
offices,  several  garages  and  two  GP  surgeries.  All  major  supermarkets  are  within  a  seven-­‐mile  
radius.  There  are  two  major  NHS  hospitals,  one  in  Reading  and  one  in  Frimley.  Both  are  about  
ten  miles  away.  
Centrally   in   Finchampstead,   a   new   community   facility   has   been   built   by   Finchampstead  
Baptist  Church  providing  a  sports  hall,  coffee  bar,  library,  children’s  centre  and  worship  area.  
In   the   parishes   there   are   three   state   primary   schools,   one   of   which   is   a   Church   of   England  
voluntary   aided   school.   Local   children   attend   secondary   schools   in   Wokingham,   Yateley,  
Crowthorne   and   the   Church   of   England   voluntary   aided   Ranelagh   School   in   Bracknell,   all   of  
which  are  highly  regarded.  There  are  a  number  of  private  schools  in  the  area.  
Over   the   last   thirty   years   there   has   been   a   considerable   increase   in   population   and   this   is  
expected   to   continue.   In   particular   the   recently   adopted   Wokingham   Borough   Core   Strategy  
includes  a  large  development  based  around  the  Arborfield  Garrison  that  has  previously  been  
declared   surplus   to   requirements.   A   significant   part   of   this   development   falls   within   the  
parish  of  St  James;  on  the  current  plans  this  includes  1500-­‐2000  of  the  development  total  of  
3500   houses,   a   secondary   school   and   district   centre   including   a   church   and   one   of   two  
primary   schools.   Following   the   recent   Defence   Review   there   are   currently   question   marks  
over   when   or   if   the   MoD   will   vacate   the   site,   however   the   PCC   at   St   James’   continues   to  
participate  in  the  on-­‐going  planning  process,  and  hopes  to  be  able  to  work  with  the  parishes  
of  Arborfield  and  Barkham,  and  other  Christian  groups  in  the  area  for  a  combined  vision  for  
the  church  in  the  new  community  should  the  development  go  ahead.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

3 What  Our  Two  Churches  Have  To  Offer  
3.1 Worship  
Worship   is   at   the   heart   of   our   church   life   and,   reflecting   the   diversity   of   our   church  
communities,  we  offer  between  the  two  churches  a  wide  range  of  Church  of  England  liturgy:  
Ø Weekly  Sunday  and  midweek  Holy  Communion  from  Common  Worship  Order  One.  
Ø Three  times  a  month  non-­‐Eucharistic  family  services.  
Ø Weekly  BCP  services;  either  Matins,  Evensong  or  Holy  Communion.  
Ø A  monthly  Ministry  of  Healing  Service  
Ø A  quarterly  Taizé  service.  
Ø A  weekday  Morning  Prayers.  
Ø A  monthly  informal  youth  worship.  
3.2 Encouraging  Discipleship  
Both  churches  aim  to  give  people  the  chance  to  hear  the  good  news  about  Jesus  and  to  deepen  
their   Christian   faith.   We   do   this   through   courses,   house   meetings,   bible   study,   prayer  
meetings  and  extensive  preparation  for  Confirmation.  
3.3 Places  of  Worship  
St   James’   Church   is   a   small   ancient   building,   started   in  
the   12th   century   that   has   recently   undergone   extensive  
conservation.   This   completed   a   decade   of  
refurbishments   and   restorations   that   now   leaves   the  
church   very   much   fit-­‐for-­‐purpose   for   many   generations  
to  come.  There  is  seating  capacity  for  about  150  and  a  
further  100  can  be  accommodated  in  the  Church  Centre  
using   a   video   link.     Larger   services   have   recently   been  
held   in   Wellington   College   Chapel   in   nearby  
Crowthorne.  This  has  a  seating  capacity  of  700.   S T  J AMES’   CHURCH  

St  Mary  &  St  John’s  Church  has  met  for  the  last  thirty  years  
in   the   hall   of   Gorse   Ride   Junior   School.   Funding   from   the  
church   enabled   the   hall   to   be   enlarged   providing   space   for  
a   sanctuary   with   two   stained   glass   windows   as   well   as  
enlarging   the   school   entrance.   There   is   a   further   thirty  
years   lease   agreement   with   the   school.   Regular   midweek  
services   and   special   services   for   church   festivals  are   held  
in   the   Parish   Centre.   The   capacity   of   the   Parish   Centre   is  
50  and  the  school  hall  is  175.  
S T  M ARY  &  S T   J OHN  AT  G ORSE  R IDE  
S CHOOL  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

3.4 Parish  and  Church  Centres  
St   Mary   and   St   John’s   Parish   Centre   is   located   in  
Vicarage   Close   and   was   purpose   built   in   2000.   It   has   a  
small   hall   with   a   sanctuary,   a   quiet   room,   small   meeting  
room,  kitchen,  toilets,  an  office  and  storage.  In  addition  
to  being  used  for  worship,  parish  socials  and  meetings,  
it   is   used   by   a   variety   of   local   organisations   whose  
contributions  currently  cover  the  running  costs.  
St   James’   Church   Centre   is   housed   in   an   early   20th  
century   Manor  
T HE  P ARISH  C ENTRE  
House   that   was  
bequeathed  to  the  
church   and   to   which   a   modern   hall   was   added   about  
twenty   years   ago.   The   facility   has   meeting   rooms,   an  
office,   toilets,   kitchen   and   coffee   bar.   The   building  
includes   four   flats   that   are   rented   out   as   a   source   of  
revenue.  The  Centre  is  also  used  by  other  churches  and  
organisations  in  the  Diocese,  for  Away  Days,  Quiet  Days,  
and   by   members   of   the   congregation   for   family   T HE  C HURCH  C ENTRE  
functions.  
3.5 Rectory  and  Vicarage  
St   James’   Rectory   is   in   the   semi   rural   area   known   as  
Finchampstead   Village.   It   is   a   large   modern,   self-­‐
contained,   four   bed-­‐roomed   detached   house   in   its   own  
grounds   and   is   located   about   one   mile   from   St   James’  
Church.  
St   Mary   and   St  
John’s   Vicarage   is  
situated   next   to  
the   Parish   Centre  
T HE  R ECTORY  
in   the   middle   of  
the   major   residential   area   of   Finchampstead.   It   is   a   large  
modern   four   bed-­‐roomed   detached   house   that   was  
originally   purpose   built   to   provide   worship   space,  
counselling  rooms  and  accommodation.  There  is  a  large  
enclosed   private   garden   that   is   not   overlooked.   The  
Vicarage  is  a  five-­‐minute  walk  from  Gorse  Ride  School.   T HE  V ICARAGE  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

4 The  Church  Community  
Both   parishes   strive   to   cater   for   a   broad   range   of   the   church   membership   by   providing  
different  groups  and  activities.  
Some  of  the  groups  such  as  the  Children’s  Ministry  and  
Mothers’   Union   are   organised   independently   in   the  
separate  parishes.  During  the  past  few  years,  a  number  
of   activities   have   been   organised   together   such   as  
Alpha,   Christianity   Explored   and   the   Men’s   Group.  
Other   groups   are   exploring   the   opportunity   to   work  
together  as  we  move  towards  becoming  one  parish.  
Music   plays   a   large   role   in   both   Parishes;   at   St   James  
S T  J AMES   CONGREGATION   there   is   a   robed   choir   of   adults   and   children   numbering  
about   thirty-­‐five.   The   choir   is   an   integral   part   of   all  
main   services   and   is   led   by   a   paid   Director   of   Music.   They   have   also   sung   by   invitation   at   a  
number  of  other  churches  including  Dorchester  Abbey  and  St  Albans  Cathedral.  
St  Mary  and  St  John’s  has  a  choir  who  sing  at  some  Sunday  services  and  special  occasions.  A  
newly  formed  music  group  of  adults  and  children  lead  the  music  at  the  monthly  Alive@11  all  
age  service.  
St  James’  Church  has  an  active  team  of  bell  ringers  who  ring  the  church’s  peal  of  six  bells  on  
Sundays  and  special  occasions.  
Our   churches   encourage   children   and   young   people   to   be   part   of   both   our   worship   and   our  
Church  community.  Sunday  Clubs  are  run  during  Sunday  services  and  there  is  a  youth  group  
at  St  James.  Young  people  take  an  active  part  as  altar  servers  in  both  churches.  
St   Mary   and   St   John’s   has   approval   to   prepare   children   for   communion   before   confirmation  
and  has  run  two  courses.  St  James’  has  discussed  this  in  the  past  but  has  not  taken  it  further.  
St  James  has  sought  to  broaden  the  range  of  voices  the  
congregation   hears   through   inviting   a   range   of   high  
profile   outside   speakers.   Primarily   these   are   invited  
during   a   series   of   evening   talks   during   Lent,   but   the  
church   has   held   stand   alone   and   shorter   lecture   series  
at   other   times   in   the   year   as   required.   Sessions   have  
also   been   offered   allowing   the   church   community   to  
S T  M ARY  &  S T   J OHN   CONGREGATION  
discuss  controversial  and  potentially  divisive  issues.  
St   James   has   organised   a   variety   of   pilgrimages   and   trips   for   its   congregation   and   beyond,  
some   of   which   have   had   a   profound   spiritual   effect   on   those   who   participated   and   have  
influenced  the  life  of  the  Church  as  a  whole.  Young  people  from  the  Church  have  been  to  the  
Taizé  Community  in  France,  a  group  also  went  to  Santiago  de  Compostela  in  Spain  to  follow  
the   Way   of   St   James,   and   more   recently   the   youth   group   have   made   two   pilgrimages   to   the  
Iona  Community  in  Scotland.  
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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

Groups  from  the  churches  have  also  attended  Spring  Harvest,  Yellow  Braces  and  Greenbelt.  
Both  churches  offer  a  broad  range  of  social  events  throughout  the  year.  These  encourage  the  
congregations   and   the   wider   community   to   enjoy   fellowship   and   some   raise   funds   for   the  
churches  as  well  as  for  outreach  projects.  Additionally  the  churches  have  independently  and  
together  held  a  number  of  quiet  days.  
A  list  of  groups  at  both  churches  can  be  found  in  section  9.7  Church  Groups  on  page  20.  

5 How  We  Work  
5.1 Parish  Staff  
As  part  of  the  pastoral  reorganisation  provision  has  been  made  for  two  full  time  stipendiary  
posts.   Following   the   appointment   of   the   Rector   designate   an   Associate   Priest   will   be  
appointed,  a  process  in  which  the  Rector  designate  will  be  invited  to  participate.  
Alongside  these  posts  the  current  ministry  teams  are  as  follows:  
The  team  at  St  James  includes  a  half  time  Non  Stipendiary  Associate  Priest  and  a  Eucharistic  
Lay   Minister.   There   is   also  a   retired   Licensed   Lay   Minister/Reader   and   a   retired   Priest   who  
take   services   on   an   occasional   basis.   St   James   has   been   encouraging   lay   members   of   the  
congregation   to   explore   their   vocations,   and   several   take   occasional   services   or   have  
preached,   and   are   participating   in   the   Diocesan   training   schemes.   One   is   currently   on   the  
Ordinand  programme  and  is  expected  to  be  ordained  at  Petertide,  having  been  provisionally  
appointed   to   the   parish   as   a   Non   Stipendiary   Associate   Curate.   The   Chaplain   of   Wellington  
College  and  his  family  are  members  of  St  James  and  the  Chaplain  has  taken  occasional  services  
before  and  during  the  vacancy  when  his  duties  at  Wellington  allow.  
St  Mary  and  St  John  have  a  retired  Priest  who  has  taken  on  many  of  the  services  during  the  
vacancy.  In  addition  there  is  a  lay  team  that  prepares  and  participates  in  the  Alive  @  11  all  age  
services.  
Both  Churches  encourage  lay  participation  in  worship  and  have  readers,  intercessors,  chalice  
administrators,  altar  servers  and  sidespeople.  
St   James   has   a   paid   part-­‐time   Parish   Administrator   in   the   Church   Office,   supported   by   a  
number  of  volunteers.  
St  Mary  and  St  John  rely  on  a  number  of  volunteers  for  their  administration.  
5.2 Committee  structures  
Both   parishes   currently   have   their   own   PCC   and   Standing   Committee.   Each   committee  
normally  meets  six  times  a  year  on  alternate  months.  The  PCCs  have  delegated  the  day-­‐to-­‐day  
work   to   a   number   of   committees   that   focus   on   different   areas.   Each   member   of   the   PCC   is  
encouraged  to  join  one  of  the  committees  that  also  draw  membership  from  the  wider  Church  
Community.    There  are  two  Churchwardens  at  each  Church.  
A  full  list  of  committees  at  the  two  churches  can  be  found  in  section  9.6  Committees  List  on  
page  19.
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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

5.3 Pastoral  Teams  
Both  churches  have  lay  participation  in  pastoral  work  through  Pastoral  Teams.  
At   St   Mary   and   St   John   the   focus   is   primarily   church   based,   in   particular   through   the   monthly  
healing  service.  At  St  James  the  approach  is  community  based  through  pastoral  visiting.    
In  both  parishes  the  clergy  or  a  Eucharistic  Lay  Minister  take  Holy  Communion  to  local  care  
homes  and  to  individuals  who  are  unable  to  attend  services.  
5.4 FairTrade  and  Eco  Congregation  
Care  for  God’s  world  is  an  important  aspect  of  the  way  St  Mary  and  St  John’s  church  works.  
The  Green  team  has  led  the  way  in  a  number  of  environmental  projects,  such  as  recycling  and  
a   FairTrade   fun   day   in   Gorse   Ride   Infant   School.   As   a   result   of   the   many   initiatives   the   church  
was   awarded   the   Eco   Congregation   award   in   2009.   St   Mary   and   St   John   is   a   FairTrade   Church  
and   where   possible   adopts   L.O.A.F.   (local,   organic,   animal-­‐friendly   and   fairly   traded)  
principles  at  events.  
St  James  is  also  a  FairTrade  church  and  encourages  recycling.  

6 Mission  and  Outreach  
Both   churches   have   over   the   years   had   a   strong  
emphasis   in   their   work   in   reaching   out   into   the   local  
community  and  the  world.  The  PCCs  each  year  allocate  
10%  of  their  free  will  offering  to  mission  and  Christian  
charities,  which  is  discussed  in  section  9.2  Mission  and  
Charitable  Giving  on  page  15.  
The   churches   run   a   weekly   Mother   and   Toddler   group  
(Fledgelings)   and   a   twice   monthly   Tea   and   Chat   group  
which  incorporates  an  Older  Peoples  Forum  every  eight  
weeks.   These   groups   are   for   the   benefit   of   the   whole   B ISHOP  S TEPHEN  WITH  THE  
F LEDGELINGS  
community.  
St  Mary  and  St  John’s  local  outreach  focuses  on  the  two  
schools;   Gorse   Ride   Infants   and   Gorse   Ride   Juniors  
where,   for   the   last   six   years,   the   church   has   designed,  
set   up   and   facilitated   a   Labyrinth.   Each   year   this  
provides   150   children   the   opportunity   to   journey  
through   the   Labyrinth   and   learn   about   Christian   Faith  
and  prayer.  The  Clergy  are  invited  to  lead  an  assembly  
in   both   schools   each   term   and   there   are   termly   liaison  
meetings  with  the  Heads.    
C HILDREN  P ARTICIPATING  IN  THE  
LABYRINTH   Finchampstead   Church   of   England   (aided)   Primary  
school  has  strong  links  with  St  James’  Church.  There  are  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

twice   termly   whole   school   communion   services   held   either   in   the   church   or   school   and   a  
member  of  the  congregation  takes  weekly  assemblies.    
Both   churches   actively   participate   in   their   link   school’s   fairs.   St   James   holds   a   church   fete  
every  other  year  on  the  Memorial  Park  in  the  village  alternating  with  the  village  fete.  
St  Mary  and  St  John  have  strong  links  with  the  Community  Development  Worker  employed  by  
the   Borough   Council   and   organise   joint   events   such   as   Carols   in   the   Community   that   also  
involves  the  Gorse  Ride  Junior  School  Choir.  
Both  churches  look  upon  baptisms,  weddings  and  funerals  as  opportunities  for  outreach  and  
actively   support   the   families   involved   and   encourage   them   to   come   to   main   and   specific  
special  services  during  the  year.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

7 Vision  and  Goals  
The   two   parishes   have   had   their   own   visions,   as   described   below.   The   emphases   have   been  
different,  reflecting  the  culture  and  size  of  the  church  communities.  In  preparing  this  profile  
the   writing   team   has   been   encouraged   to   discover   that   there   is   already   much   in   common   and  
many  areas  in  which  our  thoughts  for  the  future  could  agree.    
A  key  task  for  the  new  incumbent  will  be  to  take  a  leading  role  to  develop  a  new  vision  for  the  
combined  parish.  
7.1 The  St  Mary  and  St  John  Vision  
“ALIVE  WITH  CHRIST;  Know  it,  pray  it,  share  it”  
At  St  Mary  &  St  John  we  seek:  
Ø To  know  the  love  of  God  the  FATHER  
Ø To  pray  in  faith  in  the  name  of  JESUS  
Ø To  share  what  God  has  done  for  us  in  the  power  of  the  Holy  SPIRIT  
Currently  St  Mary  and  St  John  are  working  towards:  
Ø Developing  and  growing  the  Alive@11  all  age  service.    
Ø Encouraging  spiritual  growth  and  prayer  in  our  young  people.  
Ø Developing  more  people  to  lead  services,  home  groups  and  other  teams  
Ø Encouraging  more  people  to  take  advantage  of  the  many  opportunities  for  individuals  
to  explore  and  develop  their  faith.  
Ø Continuing  to  make  a  difference  in  the  world  and  local  community  through  our  green  
initiative,   charitable   giving   and   closer   links   with   existing   groups   in   our   local  
community.  
7.2 The  St  James  Vision  
St  James  strives  to  be  a  broad  and  inclusive  church  with  an  electoral  roll  and  attendance  that  
defines  us  as  one  of  the  larger  church  communities  in  the  diocese.  The  capacity  limitations  of  
the  building  have  in  part  led  to  the  diversity  and  inclusivity  that  is  now  such  a  valued  part  of  
our   church   life.   We   maintain   a   viable   BCP   congregation   and   well   attended   family   services  
alongside  the  weekly  Eucharistic  tradition.    
We   value   the   breadth   and   inclusivity   of   our   worship,   theology   and   churchmanship.   We   feel  
our   diversity   and   differences   explored   together   in   a   prayerful   environment   strengthen   our  
faith.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

The  Away  Day  in  2008  identified  our  three  key  priorities  as:  
Ø More  focus  on  God  and  Christ,  and  energised  by  the  Holy  Spirit  
Ø Reaching  out  to  the  community  and  developing  greater  links  
Ø Teenage  Youth  
Since  then  we  have  taken  a  number  of  initiatives  in  each  of  these  areas:    
Ø Working  on  Sustaining  the  Sacred  Centre.  
Ø Making   progress   with   our   Youth   Group   that   is   now   growing,   and   taking   the   leading  
role  in  planning  a  main  service  once  a  quarter  alongside  their  own  monthly  services.  
Ø Succeeding  in  developing  stronger  links  with  our  local  community.  
In   addition   to   these   areas   of   focus   we   aim   to   continue   to   enhance   what   we   offer   families,  
recognising   that   many   of   those   who   attend   our   Family   Services   have   little   previous   church  
background.   We   are   also   aware   that   we   need   to   make   better   provision   for   the   8   to   11   year  
olds  for  whom  the  family  service  format  is  no  longer  appropriate.  We  are  currently  working  
on  this.  
7.3 Our  Joint  Vision  for  the  Immediate  Future  of  the  Merged  Parishes  
Ø To   share   best   practice,   using   our   skills   and   resources   across   both   churches   to   enhance  
all  aspects  of  the  Church  community.  
Ø To  work  towards  unity,  whilst  maintaining  the  distinct  personality  of  each  church.  
Ø To   identify   where   there   is   unnecessary   duplication   in   order   that   resources   may   be  
better  utilised.  
Ø To   explore   a   way   forward   working   with   and   alongside   the   resurgent   Finchampstead  
Baptist  Church  and  their  new  Pastor  for  a  combined  vision  of  the  Christian  community  
in  the  area.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

8 The  Qualities  and  Attributes  of  the  Incumbent  
Ø A   spiritual   leader   who   can   demonstrate   an   ability   to   manage   a   large   parish,   who   has  
had   experience   of   change   management,   who   is   comfortable   working   collaboratively  
with  a  team,  and  who  is  able  to  develop,  inspire  and  communicate  with  ease.  
Ø A   person   who   is   comfortable   with,   and   willing   to   support   and   enhance   our   diversity   in  
churchmanship,  theology  and  styles  of  worship.  
Ø An   enthusiastic   representative   of   God   as   an   inspiring   preacher,   teacher   and   pastoral  
leader,  both  within  the  church  and  the  wider  community.  
Ø A   good   facilitator,   who   will   handle   conflict   in   order   to   maintain   unity   in   times   of  
change.  
Ø A  person  with  a  passion  to  grow  all  aspects  of  the  Church,  to  progress  a  clear  vision  for  
the  future.  
Ø A  person  who  can  lead  by  suggesting  possibilities  and  encouraging  people  and  who  is  
comfortable  in  varied  social  situations.  
Ø A   person   with   a   deep   spiritual   life,   who   is   disciplined   in   spending   time   in   private  
prayer,  study  and  personal  development.    
Ø A  person  who  is  self-­‐aware,   who   can   identify   his/her   own   strengths   and   weaknesses  
and  who  will  delegate  and  seek  assistance  where  appropriate.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

9 Appendices  
9.1 Parish  Map  
The   following   map   shows   the   boundaries   of   the   existing   parishes   with   the   locations   of   St  
James’  and  Gorse  Ride  School  marked.    

 
Map  data  from  Google  Maps,  Map  Data  ©2010  Tele  Atlas  
A  Church  Near  You  :  Copyright  ©  2008.  
Latest  data  available  for  parish  boundaries:  December  2010.  Boundary  data  from  the  Church  
Commissioners   for   England.   32/236   Digital   Mapping   Solutions   from   Dotted   Eyes.   ©   Crown  
Copyright  2005.  All  rights  reserved.  Licence  number  100019918  
9.2 Mission  and  Charitable  Giving  
St  Mary  and  St  John  take  a  keen  interest  in  mission  and  outreach  and  distributed  the  10%  of  
the  free  will  offering  put  aside  from  2009  for  charitable  giving  as  follows:  
20%  to  CMS,  this  was  used  to  support  Patrick  and  Helen  Mukholi  in  a  project  on  the  Blackbird  
Leys  estate.  Patrick  and  Helen  were  supported  for  a  period  of  6  years,  until  their  term  of  office  
came   to   an   end   in   2010.   It   has   been   decided   not   to   ask   CMS   for   a   new   project   to   support   until  
a  new  incumbent  is  in  place.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

20%  to  Mityana  Charity  in  Uganda,  amongst  other  projects  we  have  supported  the  sinking  of  a  
borehole  and  providing  bicycles  for  lay  ministers.  
The  remainder  of  the  giving  has  been  split  80%  to  Christian  Charities  (St  Stephen  Society  in  
Hong   Kong,   Church   Pastoral   Aid   Society,   Acorn   Christian   Foundation)   and   20%   to   Secular  
Charities   (Berkshire   MS   Society,   Bracknell   Samaritans,   Finchampstead   &   Barkham   Relief   in  
Sickness,  Wokingham  &  District  Cancer  Care).  
During   the   periods   of   Advent,   Lent   and   Harvest,   a   charity   is   chosen   to   support.   The   church  
endeavours  to  support  both  local  and  overseas  charities  such  as  Readifood  and  Water  Aid  and  
charities   where   there   are   personal   links   such   as   with   Jackie   Pullinger   of   the   St   Stephen’s  
Society  in  Hong  Kong,  Grandsons  of  Abraham  in  Kenya  and  the  Mityana  Charity  in  Uganda.      
The   young   people   have   organised   projects   that   have   included   making   and   selling   lemonade  
with   the   proceeds   used   to   provide   goats   for   Africa   and   making   theatre   gowns   for   the   Blue  
Peter  Operation  Smile  Appeal.  
In   addition   each   year   we   support   Christian   Aid   through   house-­‐to-­‐house   collections,   a   street  
collection   and   an   annual   ‘Quiz   Aid’   social   event   and   the   Children’s   Society   through   our  
Christingle  service.  
At  St  James  the  PCC  has  decided  for  the  last  two  years  to  concentrate  the  majority  of  its  10%  
giving   (see   section   6   above)   on   four   main   charities   (Bible   Society,   Church   Urban   Fund,  
Churches  In  Reading  Drop  In  Centre  and  our  link  Diocese  of  Kimberley  &  Kuruman  in  South  
Africa.)  and  to  encourage  church  involvement  by  publicity  and  by  inviting  speakers  from  the  
organisations  involved.    For  four  years  St  James  has  been  twinned  with  St  Matthew’s  Church  
in  Kimberley  and  has  formed  a  special  link  with  the  Pre-­‐school  that  operates  in  its  grounds.    
At  present  the  church  sponsors  five  children  who  would  not  otherwise  be  able  to  afford  this  
education.     The   head   teacher   keeps   the   church   up   to   date   on   the   progress   of   the   children.    
Some   of   the   money   set   aside   for   St   Matthew’s,   together   with   extra   donations   from   the  
congregation,  is  held  in  a  restricted  fund  ready  to  support  the  link  as  it  develops  in  future.    It  
is  hoped  that  two  of  our  congregation  will  visit  Kimberley  in  2011  to  strengthen  the  link.  
In  addition,  the  congregation  at  St  James  supports  a  number  of  Christian  charities  during  the  
year   by   regular   special   appeals   as   follows:   Christian   Aid   during   Christian   Aid   week,   as   well   as  
assisting  St  Mary  &  St  John  with  the  house  to  house  collection,  and  with  ’One  card  on  the  tree’  
during   Advent;   Royal   British   Legion   at   Remembrance   time;   Farm   Africa   or   Send   a   Cow   at  
Harvest,   plus   collecting   produce   to   take   to   the   local   Reading   Drop   In   Centre   and   Women’s   Aid  
Centre;   Operation   Christmas   Child   Shoebox   Appeal   jointly   with   the   Church   School   in  
November;   collecting   new   toys   for   PACT   (Oxford   Diocese’s   Parents   &   Children   Together  
charity)   in   early   December;   Children’s   Society   at   Christmas,   particularly   at   the   Christingle  
service.  
The  ethos  of  charitable  giving  is  encouraged  from  an  early  age.  The  Sunday  Club  sponsors  and  
keeps  in  contact  with  a  child  in  India;  the  Fledgelings  and  the  Youth  Group  both  regularly  give  
away  some  of  their  subscriptions  to  charities.    The  recent  Youth  Panto  raised  money  for  Great  
Ormond  Street  Hospital  Children’s  Charity.  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

9.3 Finance  
St  James'  accounts  for  2009  show  Unrestricted  Funds  income  of  £161,918,  of  which  £71,714  
was   gift-­‐aided   donations   and   the   related   tax   recovered   and   £27,435   was   income   from  
investments.    The  Unrestricted  Expenditure  for  2009  was  £163,251;  of  which  the  2009  Parish  
Share,  which  was  paid  in  full,  was  £77,608.  
St  Mary  &  St  Johns'  accounts  for  2009  show  Unrestricted  Funds  income  of  £59,668,  of  which  
£40,347   was   gift-­‐aided   donations   and   the   related   tax   recovered.     The   total   expenditure   was  
£58,973;  the  Diocesan  Parish  Share,  which  was  paid  in  full,  was  £42,361.  
A  copy  of  the  most  recent  published  accounts  for  each  church  will  be  forwarded  to  all  short-­‐
listed  candidates,  and  can  be  supplied  on  request.  
9.4 Service  Times
St  Mary  and  St  John   St  James  

Sunday   8am   Holy   Communion   (Every   Sunday),  
alternate  BCP  &  Common  Worship  
9.45am   Holy   Communion   including  
Ministry  of  Healing  on  the  2nd  Sunday   9.30am   Sung   Matins   (2nd   and   4th  
Sundays)  
11.00am   Alive@11   all   age   worship   on   the  
1st  Sunday  of  the  month.   9.30am   Family   Service   (1st   and   3rd  
Sunday)  
Wednesday  
11am   Parish   Communion   (2nd,   3rd,   4th   &  
10.00am  Holy  Communion   5th  Sundays)  
11am   Church   Family   Communion   (1st  
Sunday)  
6pm  Sung  Evensong  (1st  Sunday)  
6pm  Taizé  (5th  Sunday)  
Also   Midweek   Communion   each  
Wednesday  10am  (1st  Weds  BCP)  
Morning  Prayer  each  Monday  9.30am  

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

9.5 Membership  and  Statistics  (as  recorded  at  the  APCMs  April  2010)    
St  Mary  and  St  John   St  James  
Electoral  Roll  98   Electoral  Roll  397  
Average  attendance     Average  attendance  
Ø Holy  Communion      49   Ø 8am  Holy  Communion  25  
Ø Alive@11    62   Ø Matins  24  
Ø Wednesday  Holy  Communion    11   Ø Family  Service  139  
Baptisms  6   Ø Church  Family  Communion  119  
Weddings  31   Ø Parish  Communion  123  
Funerals  12   Ø Evensong  34  
Ø Taizé  10  
Ø Wednesday  Holy  Communion  17  
Baptisms  29  
Weddings  51  
Wedding  Blessings  21  
Funerals  30  (10  in  the  Church)  
Interment  of  Ashes  in  churchyard  8  

                                                                                                                         
1  These  figures  are  lower  than  usual  as  St  

James’  Church  was  closed  for  conservation  
work  from  9th  August  2009  to  March  2010.    
As  at  the  end  of  November  26  weddings  for  
the  two  parishes  are  booked  for  2011.  
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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

9.6 Committees  List
St  Mary  and  St  John   St  James  

PCC   (12   elected,   3   Deanery   Synod,   2   PCC   (12   elected,   4   Deanery   Synod,   2  
Churchwardens,  2  co-­‐opted,  1  clergy)   Churchwardens,  2  co-­‐opted,  2  clergy)  

Standing  Committee  (8)   Standing  Committee  (8)  

Communications   Communications,  IT  and  Publicity  

Finance   Finance  &  Stewardship  

Mission  &  World  Concern   Mission  &  Charitable  Giving  

Parish  Centre  Management   Fabric  &  Property  

Social   Social  &  Fundraising  

Worship   Worship  &  Liturgy  
Outreach  &  Discipleship  
Pastoral  
In  addition,  Helen  Taylor  Churchyard  Trust  
Conservation   Project   Working  
Group,  
Conservation  Appeal  Group,  refining  
recently  set  up  Friends  Of  St  James  
Good   Practice   Advisory   Group  
(when  required)

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

9.7 Church  Groups  
St  Mary  and  St  John   St  James  

Children  &  Youth  Leaders   Fledgelings  

Choir   Sunday  Club  

Alive@11  music  group   Youth  Group  (Contrast)  

Alive@11  planning  team   Mothers’  Union  

Green  team   Tower  Bellringers  

Open  House  &  Prayer  Time   Ladies’  Breakfast  

Pastoral  Team   Housegroups  

Quiet  Group   RSCM  Affiliated  Mixed  Junior  &  Adult  Choir  

Mothers’  Union   Altar  Servers  

Men’s  group   Tuesday  Working  Party  

Singles  Lunch  group   Flower  Arrangers  

Tea  &  Chat   Baptism  Visitors  

Flower  Arranging   Monday  Morning  With  Jesus  Bible  Study  
Pastoral  Visitors  
Church  Cleaning  Team  
Coffee  Rota  Volunteers    
Office  Volunteers  
Fete  Committee  
Family  connexions  
Five-­‐a-­‐Side  Football

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A Profile of the Parishes of St James Finchampstead and St Mary and St John California

9.8 Relevant  Websites  
9.8.1 Our  Websites  
stjames.finchampstead.co.uk  –  The  main  St  James  web  site.  
www.smsj.org.uk  -­‐  The  main  St  Mary  and  St  John  web  site.  
www.achurchnearyou.com/finchampstead-­‐st-­‐james/  -­‐  The  St  James  page  on  the  Church  Near  
You  site.  
www.achurchnearyou.com/california-­‐st-­‐mary-­‐st-­‐john/  -­‐  The  St  Mary  and  St  John  page  on  the  
Church  Near  You  site.  
9.8.2 Oxford  Diocese  
www.oxford.anglican.org  -­‐  The  main  Oxford  Diocesan  web  site.  
www.sonningdeanery.com  -­‐  The  Sonning  Deanery  web  site.  
9.8.3 Local  Politics  
www.wokingham.gov.uk  -­‐  The  main  website  for  our  local  borough  council.  
www.wokingham.gov.uk/planningcontrol/planning/masterplanning/   -­‐   An   extensive   section  
on   the   current   borough   master   planning   process,   including   full   details   of   the   Arborfield  
Garrison  Strategic  Development  Location.    
www.phillip-­‐lee.com  -­‐  The  personal  web  site  of  Dr  Phillip  Lee,  the  Member  of  Parliament  for  
the  Bracknell  Constituency  that  includes  Finchampstead.  
www.finchampstead-­‐pc.gov.uk  -­‐  The  main  website  for  the  local  Parish  Council.  
9.8.4 Finchampstead  Baptist  Church  
www.finchampstead.com  -­‐  The  main  website  for  the  Finchampstead  Baptist  Church.  
www.fbccentre.com  -­‐  The  separate  website  for  the  new  FBC  Centre.  
9.8.5 Church  Groups  
www.fledgelings.org.uk  -­‐  A  separate  site  for  the  Fledgelings.  
www.finchampstead-­‐handbells.co.uk  -­‐  The  site  for  the  Finchampstead  Handbell  ringers.  
9.8.6 Schools  
www.school-­‐portal.co.uk/Grouphomepage.asp?GroupId=162839   -­‐   The   main   site   for  
Finchampstead  CE  (Aided)  Primary  School.  
www.gorseride-­‐inf.wokingham.sch.uk   -­‐   The   main   site   for   Gorse   Ride   Infant   School   and  
Nursery.  
www.gorseride-­‐jun.wokingham.sch.uk  -­‐  The  main  site  for  Gorse  Ride  Junior  School.  
www.school-­‐portal.co.uk/GroupHomepage.asp?GroupID=45620  -­‐  The  main  site  for  Nine  Mile  
Ride  Primary  School.  
www.ranelagh.bracknell-­‐forest.sch.uk  -­‐  The  main  site  for  Ranelagh  School.  
www.wellingtoncollege.org.uk  -­‐  The  main  web  site  for  Wellington  College.  
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