What we stand for
As a Baptist Church we do not define our faith by a list of things we all believe, such as a creed. We tend to reject “Statements of Faith” and similar as they can never reflect our memberships diverse faith and spirituality.
How it works
Baptists work on the principle of “the priesthood of all believers” meaning that every member of the church has an equal say on matters concerning the running, conduct, ethos and direction of the church through the Church Meeting.
Baptists have no bishops or other hierarchy as such, there is a national organisation: the “Baptist Union of Great Britain” but they are servants of the individual churches and facilitate some of the practicalities as well as maintaining lists of ministers who individual churches may employ.
The Church Meeting appoints Deacons as well as a Secretary and Treasurer who are servants to the church meeting (and trustees for legal purposes) but deal with day to day matters as well as facilitating pastoral work etc.
The Minister of any church has an equal say to any other church member and is selected and appointed by the Church Meeting.
The Church meeting also appoints individuals and/or sub-committees to run our organisations.
We meet on Sunday mornings for worship. Our worship together is the centre of our life as a congregation, and what we express there in faith is what we work out through our various activities during the week. We have a monthly pattern of services. Twice a month (on 1st and 3rd Sundays) we celebrate communion. The service is centred around reflecting on Scripture and sharing bread and wine. We have an Open Table, and all who wish to participate are welcome. We sit in our seats and are served by deacons or serve one another as a sign of our community.
On the second Sunday our service can take a variety of forms, exploring different themes and aspects of our Christian life.
On the fourth Sunday, we meet at 10.00 for a reflective communion service, at which we all sit round our large communion table. Then it is café church at 10.45. This is time to share coffee and biscuits and talk together, exploring ideas and thoughts. There is usually a discussion started and activity on offer, and sometimes the conversation is facilitated by somebody with special knowledge. There is also the opportunity simply to have chat, share news and catch up. Some folk come to one, some to the other, some to both.
If there is a fifth Sunday in the month, it is usually a formal service, but without communion.
1st Sunday: Communion service
2nd Sunday: Word and worship
3rd Sunday: Communion service: as above
4th Sunday: Reflective communion at 10.00. Café church at 10.45
5th Sunday: Word and worship.
We are part of the Baptist Union of Great Britain, of The Northwest Baptist Association, of Affirm, of the Progressive Christian Network and of Churches Together in Cheadle Hulme.