The Hope Church Family is eight Church of England churches (and a ninth, which is redundant) working together at the southern end of Worcestershire.
But why the “Hope Church Family?” Let’s take each word in turn.
- FAMILY – The collective noun for parishes is “benefice”, but it’s a dull word, loved by lawyers and difficult to define. Family is a much better description of what we are – both because in Jesus we are adopted sons and daughters of God, but also because it emphasises solidarity without imposing conformity.
- CHURCH – because although we all worship the living God, we live in a number of different communities (or parishes), each with it’s own church building.
- HOPE –because being a Christian isn’t a personal, private thing, it’s good news for the whole world. And that’s what we’re about.
Now you might ask – Why “hope” and not something geographical that says where we are? The simple answer is that any geographical reference (for example Upton) would give undue emphasis to one of our communities over another.
The Hope Church Family name is recognisable enough to enable us to work together across our communities, whilst also being flexible enough for each of our family of churches to retain it’s own identity.
September 11th 2016