One year after our launch, this was Pathways' Report to Lenham Parish Council
By Gail Robinson
Pathways Church is predominantly formed of ex members of Lenham United Reformed Church and former members of Jubilee Church Maidstone. In May last year we launched as a church in our own right, still supported by, but now independent of Jubilee Church.
Our vision is to be “ a loving family, keeping Christ at the centre as we care for our community”.
We currently meet as two separate cell groups in members’ homes, in Harrietsham on Wednesday evenings, and in Lenham on Thursday evenings, for family time, prayer, worship and reading the Word. Once a month we all come together for prayer. A couple of months ago we held a half night of prayer for our community and spent the time praying for the families, schools, clubs and societies, businesses, medical staff, officials and churches of our community.
Since we launched, we have settled into the following pattern for Sundays: On the first and third Sundays of the month we meet at Lenham Community Centre. The second Sunday we keep free to do something in the community or spend time helping each other. On the fourth Sunday we join with Jubilee Church, and if there is a fifth Sunday we join with the Len Valley churches at their joint benefice service.
Our community, and serving our community, is at the heart of what we aim to do. Most of our members stretch from Hollingbourne to Charing and members are encouraged to be involved in the life of their village and look out for needs that we as a church can provide help with.
We continue to support the Lenham Family Festival. This year we will run three stalls to raise funds for the Festival’s charities and we have again secured the help of students from Jubilee Church, who will run the burger bar on the main day of the Festival. We’ve also been able to help people in smaller ways such as spending mornings tackling gardens that have got out of control where the owners are unable to do this themselves, and cleaning the toys for the toddlers’ group that is held in Lenham Community Centre.
We also value the work of St Mary’s and we like to support them and work with them on joint projects. One of our members currently helps with Messy Mums held at St Mary’s on Wednesday mornings and we support their family friendly breakfast service by sending some of our members to help two Sundays a month.
We’ve also had a lot of fun building family within our church with activities such as a ladies breakfast, a men’s green woodworking day in the woods and a visit to the British Museum to look at the Old Testament evidence held there.
This year we are stretching and challenging ourselves both spiritually and physically. Some of us faced our fears by completing the Go Ape course at Bedgebury Pinetum and later this year we are having a church weekend away in Snowdonia where we will be climbing Mount Snowdon.
We have had a successful year and we are looking forward to building on this in the coming year.