Grace where East meets West


Andrew Sach (L), and Andrew Latimer – with Greenwich Park, Royal Naval College and Canary Wharf in the background

Andrew Sach (L), and Andrew Latimer – with Greenwich Park, Royal Naval College and Canary Wharf in the background

Greenwich, London SE10, is where East meets West at the world-famous meridian.

Every day couples from around the globe make their way to the observatory in Royal Greenwich Park to be photographed holding hands across the iconic line.

Partnership church plant

This September, Greenwich is going to be the meeting place of a different kind of partnership: a new church plant called Grace Church Greenwich, which represents the coming together of two other London churches.

St Peter’s Barge, a floating church started in 2003 to reach out to workers and locals around Canary Wharf, is partnering with St Helen’s Bishopsgate to form this new fellowship. Since its beginning, the church on the Barge has had a number of people from around Greenwich who travel across the river to church, and so it has been a natural area to consider planting into, but the numbers have not been sufficient to start anything. In partnership with St Helen’s, however, the two churches are able to combine forces and give it a go. As the Barge’s senior minister, Marcus Nodder comments: ‘How do you plant churches if you are a small church like the Barge? You take to heart the biblical maxim that ‘two are better than one’ (Ecclesiastes 4.9) and team up with another church to pool your resources!’

Original idea

One of the two new ministers, Andrew Latimer, explains how the idea came about: ‘We at the Barge have had a heart for Greenwich and have been meeting and praying in homes around the area for a while, and so it was a wonderful answer to prayer when the possibility of a partnership came up. Jesus sent his followers off in pairs, so I’ve been convinced for a while about the need for a partner in crime, and was therefore thrilled when the prospect arose of joining with Andrew Sach from St Helen’s to make this vision a reality. Not only are we friends, but he brings lots of gifts and experience which will be a real help.’

Privilege

William Taylor, rector of St Helen’s, is convinced that this is a model which should be… (click here to read more)

James Squire

This article was first published in the September issue of Evangelicals Now. For more news, artciles or reviews, visit us online or subscribe to en for monthly updates.