Our vision as a church is a description of the way God wants us to live: to love Jesus, love others, serve the world.
Since the 2015 remodelling of the church building, to create an open and welcoming place, it has been transformed from a Sundays only worship space to a fully flexible building used daily and welcoming many hundreds during a typical week, including in our café.
The planned works to the chancel and vestry is the next phase of church building development and will transform the chancel from being almost entirely unused into a beautiful and flexible space that, although separate from the rest of the building, connects more fully with the adjoining vestry and retains its proximity to the nave.
A remodelled chancel would bring four significant benefits to St Mary’s:
1 – A quiet, sacred space for prayer and reflection during the week when the rest of the building is in almost constant use, and somewhere for smaller services to take place.
2 – An additional space on Sundays for a children’s group as we expand our work amongst 8s to 12s.
3 – An additional space mid-week during our café, where Parenting and Alpha Courses could take place and a mid-week service offered to the very many people who attend. The café frequently has over 60 adults and 50 children
visiting on a typical morning and a significant part of our strategy for growth is to invest in and make the most of these community relationships. The space would also be used during the evenings for small groups and courses, especially when the nave is in use.
4 – A transformed vestry that will benefit from a significant increase in natural light, connectivity to the chancel, new lighting and redecoration.
The plan is to create a beautiful, open and sacred space in the chancel. The sanctuary (east end) would remain unaltered but the following works are proposed:
1 – Removal of two front rows of oak choir pews and re-siting along the walls of the nave.
2 – Installation of a high quality, glazed screen within and above the existing rood screen with a pair of glass doors fitted within the arch of the screen.
3 – Installation of glass double doors and glazed side panels between vestry and chancel, following removal of existing stud wall.
4 – Replacement of external vestry door with a glass door.
5 – Relocation of electric organ console to the south-west corner of
6 – Installation of a high quality, neutral fabric acoustic curtain, the pole of which would be concealed along the top of the rood screen within the chancel.
Permissions for these works are in the final stage of the approval process. We hope, if finance is in place, to complete the works by Christmas.
The total cost will be around £50,000 including VAT.
• £36,000 will cover the cost of supply and installation of all the
glazed screens and doors.
• £8,000 is required for preparatory building works, the acoustic curtain, carpet and relocation of pews,
• and about £6,000 for upgrading the lighting and decor of the vestry and AV provision for the chancel.
St Mary’s PCC were awarded £20,000 from the Elmbridge Community Infrastructure Levy fund in March, leaving about £30,000 to raise from the congregation.
The part you can play
We ask every member of the St Mary’s Church family to review this booklet and prayerfully consider the sacrificial financial commitment you can make to support this exciting opportunity for our church and future generations. For most of us this might be a commitment spread over the next year, but the benefit to our church and community will serve as a legacy for generations to come. There will be a gift day at St Mary’s on Sundays 7 and 14 October and we would love you to pray about what you can give. Download Pledge Form
Our hope and prayer is that we will all sense the Lord’s leading as we step out in faith together on this project. The response of the Church family is the key factor in determining whether we go ahead with the plans or not. As you consider your own response be encouraged by these words of King David: 1 Chronicles 29.12-14.
‘Wealth and honour come from you; you are the ruler of all things. In your hands are strength and power to exalt and give strength to all. Now, our God, we give you thanks and praise your glorious name. But who am I, and who are my people, that we should be able to give as generously as this? Everything comes from you, and we have given you only what comes from your hand.’
The remodelling of the chancel will further transform the church building and expand our ministry. It will create a valuable and beautiful sacred space that will provide much needed quiet and calm in a very busy building, and additional space for children on Sundays and further ministry mid-week. The works will also transform the vestry from a dingy room into a light-filled and inspiring space. These enhancements will therefore transform two large spaces for under £50,000 and will have a very significant impact on our ability to grow the church.