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St John’s Church Abridged APCM Report and Accounts 2015 Presented at the Annual Parochial Church Meeting on Wednesday 22nd April 2015 at 7.30pm

St John’s Church, Harborne Annual Report for APCM on Wednesday 22nd April 2015 CONTENTS Forward ................................................................................................................. 3 Wardens Report - 2015 ........................................................................................ 4 PCC Secretary’s Report....................................................................................... 8 Electoral Roll Report 2015 ................................................................................. 11 Edgbaston Deanery Synod ................................................................................. 12 Birmingham Diocesan Synod Report ............................................................... 13 Churches Together in Harborne (CTH) .......................................................... 14 Fabric & Building Development ........................................................................ 15 Mutual Care Fund ............................................................................................... 16 Finance Sub Group ............................................................................................. 17 Life at St John’s ................................................................................................... 18 Annual Report and Accounts ............................................................................ 19


Forward Operations Manager Steve Foster In previous years the APCM report has been a traditional printed document with three main sections, The PCC and Diocese, Life at St John’s and Finance. This year the PCC took the decision to change the format of the APCM report due to a significant fall in the demand for the previous more traditional style. Although this style has been available on the web, in paper format, and CD Rom, the demand still remained low. This shortened document contains the reports pertaining to the PCC and Diocese, Finance and Accounts. The section Life at St John’s will be reflected by the production of a DVD that will give a snapshot of the past year in St John’s Church. It has not been possible or practical to include every area. However, included in this report, is a full list of the ministries and activities and a contact name. You will find this list after the Finance Team Report just before the Report and Accounts. As we go through the year we hope to use some of the video footage to raise the profile of the different ministry areas in the life of St John’s.


Wardens Report - 2015 Wardens Debby Bridge & Brennan Horne Introduction A third year of our term of office has now gone by and how time flies. It seems no time, since we were weighing whether this was the role that God wanted us to undertake. Over this last year, we have enjoyed getting to know some of you better, but given the numbers that attend St. John’s, many are a face we recognise, but as yet have not got to know or chat to. There is more to us oddly enough than passing the collection basket along the ‘centre first six rows’ and locking up our church. Please do come and introduce yourselves to us, as it would be lovely to meet more of those who are part of our fellowship in Harborne. We have been most grateful to Antony, our Interim Vicar, for providing such a strong, purposeful lead that we see God’s hand upon. Despite constraints that have been unavoidable, we are so glad that he has been at the fore, taking us onward and upward, rather than leaving us treading water so to speak. We recognise that this is very much a time of change, that may be quite unsettling for many, especially when we are happier in the ‘driving seat’. However, at these times, we are provided with greater opportunity to trust in our God, knowing he will lead us along a good path. We accept there are challenges, but maybe life would be dull without them and we are provided with the chance to see the faithfulness of the Lord taking us forward. Sacristan Duties Once again we are very grateful to Ann Anderson, Liz Vale and Katharine Spellman who carry out the duties of Sacristan with great skill and serve the Lord and the community of St. John’s so faithfully. We would also like to thank those that assist them in the cleaning of the vessels each week. Deputy Wardens There has been no change to the six Deputy Wardens who assist us so ably. We understand that you may not attend all of our various services on a Sunday and as such, may not have met all of our Deputy Wardens. So for your information they are Janet and Daphne Ryland, David Dixie, Dave Atkins, Mark Jowett and Ian Edgington. We are so grateful that they have faithfully continued in this role and we simply could not effectively carry out our role without their willingness to stand with us. We know that they perform their duties with great skill. We thank them for their continued commitment and availability. We would like to publicly thank them for their personal encouragement to us in very many ways, which has been amazing. Volunteering in St. John’s Church This part of our report may seem a little like the needle stuck on a record. We note that to some of the younger members of our church family, this may be a foreign language (maybe ask some oldie what this is about), who download MP3’s where a needle doesn’t get near, let alone stuck! Please don’t glaze over now, not for the sake of a few lines more. We are struggling for folks to step up and volunteer for a multiplicity of jobs that make our church work and live and be effective and be welcoming and be the place that God inhabits. Quite simply, we need you! Not every job is your thing, we could say thank goodness, but there may be something that you would love doing and so would we. Please keep an eye peeled and see where you can maybe spare a small amount of time, energy, skill and see the blessing that God can uniquely bring to others through you and no one else.


Statistical Information 2014 Occasional Offices The bar chart shows the number of 'Occasional Offices' that the clergy undertook during the last five years. These mark the major events of a person's life and are recorded from January to December each year. Note: There were no confirmations performed at St Johns in 2012, 2013 or 2014.

Occasional Offices: last 5 years (Jan-Dec) 2010





20 18 16


14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Thanksgivings

Statistics for Mission Church attendance figures are taken from all churches/parishes during the month of October each year, forming part of the 'Statistics for Mission' for the Diocese.





Comparison of weekly attendance trends 16 & over

15 & under


900 800

The "count " was done in the time honoured way of counting raised hands in 2014. This enabled a more accurate number to be recorded for those who consider themselves to be regular members of St Johns.








500 400 300 200 100 0 2010





The downward trend of the past two years has been reversed and 626 people (adults aged 16 years and over and all children aged under 15 years) attended St John's on average each week during the month of October. Communicant Trends - Sunday Services The graph below reflects only those who receive communion and not all those who attend the services, or the numbers of 300 children and youth who were 267 present. The Welcome Teams 250 count the number of communicants as they go up for 200 communion, as this figure is required for the "Register of 157 152 150 Services".

Sunday Services: 10yr Communicant Trends 9.15am





168 139

136 105

100 2005











Each service has its own distinct congregation but there are an unknown number who do attend more than one service. This was not recorded this year. The 9.15am and 11am numbers have remained at the same level and the 6.30pm service has continued to decline. Festive Services The bar chart shows the total communicant numbers for each of the main Festive Services in each calendar year.

Festive Services - last 5 years (Jan to Dec) 2010





450 400 350

The number shown for communicants on Easter Day is an average. This is because the number of communion services offered varies from year to year.

300 250


200 150





50 0 Maundy Thursday

Easter Day **

Christmas Eve

Christmas Day

Note: In December 2010, the replacement heating system was not fully operational. Prolonged snow and icy conditions may have affected the attendance figures. The increase in numbers in the Christmas Day services of 2011 and 2012 is because there had been one morning service with Communion included. In other years there has been a separate Communion service after the Family service. In 2012, 445 attended and 345 took communion. In 2011, 526 attended and 404 took communion. The drop in numbers for Christmas day communicants in 2013 and 2014 is because there was only one Communion service offered either before or after the main family service.

Christingle Services 800


Christingle Services These services, held on Christmas Eve afternoon, continue to be very popular and for the fourth year running two identical Christingle Services have been held at 2.30 and 4.00pm. Refreshments are served after both services. The bar chart shows the total numbers for the two services combined.

627 584



400 Many of those attending are 2012 2013 2014 visitors, friends and family. The growing numbers at the Toddler Group, and the extremely successful Christmas Tour are key factors in attracting so many to the Christingle services. We continue to encourage and welcome people to attend the regular Sunday services at St Johns.


Monthly Thursday Communion Service Catriona Foster, our Pastor for Older People, coordinates and enables this more traditional service to take place on the third Thursday of each month. This year there has been Monthly Midweek Communion a marked increase in the average numbers attending. 80 70 60 Numbers

It is held at 10.30am and followed by opportunities to meet and greet other people over the refreshments that are so kindly and generously provided.

50 40 68






20 A number of factors make this a more 10 accessible service for those who 0 would normally find it difficult to 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 attend. The services are kept to under an hour, some transport is provided where possible, and suitable chairs are used. Well known hymns with large print are used and assistance is provided for those who need it.

The Midweek Communion service continues to be a very special time for those who attend. A number of people who come had not been attending a church at all, or some attended in their younger days and this service has been a way back into worship and fellowship for them. Others in our parish, who have attended the Prime Time events, also come along. Prime Time has become a popular, valued and regular fixture for the over 70's in the month of August.


PCC Secretary’s Report PCC Secretary Libby Hubbard In the year 2014/15 the PCC met in 2014 in May, July, September and November and in 2015 in January and March. In addition, on 14th March 2015 the PCC spent the day together. The day and its discussions, centred largely on “preparing for the next stage of the journey”, was run by two facilitators from 3D Coaching. During this year we have, as ever, tried to act both as worshipping members of St John’s and Trustees of the St John’s charity and seek God’s will in the decisions that have needed to be made. New regular agenda items have been added during the course of year. A Standing Committee Report is one such item. This outlines briefly the discussion and business that the Standing Committee has carried out in between PCC meetings, so aiding communication and trust between the two bodies and improving transparency. In addition, in several meetings this year, we have started with communion in addition to our usual time of praise and worship. Interim Vicar and Chair of the PCC, Revd Antony Spencer, has spent some time in meetings sharing his vision for St John’s at this time and how it can grow and flourish. The issues we addressed throughout the year’s meetings included (in chronological order): • • • • • • •

Bishop Andrew’s Challenge at the APCM to be a more welcoming church The modus operandi of the PCC to ensure good communication and trust Extending the trial period of the CAB advice service (the service was later withdrawn) Staff Matters – the extension and upgrading of the role of Ben Baker, the appointment of Mark Watson as Youth Worker The Governance Review by Andrew Halstead of the Birmingham Diocese – discussed at September meeting and then again after the report was published in the March meeting The Birmingham Diocese’s “Growing Younger” initiative – a sub group was formed to draft St John’s response Treasurer’s Financial Report including financial accounts, budgets and staff pay, expenses and allowances

Role of the PCC (Parochial Church Council) To work with the Vicar in promoting the whole mission of the Church, pastoral, evangelistic, social and ecumenical. Consider the financial affairs of the Church, including the setting of the annual budget and accredited accounts. The acquisition, management and disposing of property. To be a good employer of church staff.


To consider and discuss matters concerning the Church of England or any other matters of religious or public interest (not including the declaration of doctrine) Work in partnership with the Diocesan and Deanery Synod, putting into effect any provisions and providing advice. The Standing Committee meets between meetings of the PCC to deal with management issues on behalf of the PCC and to prepare guidance, papers and agendas for the PCC meetings. Membership of PCC from APCM 2014 PCC Members Geoff Heyes (Vice Chairman) – 3 year term Libby Hubbard (Secretary) – 1 year remaining David Harvey (Treasurer) – 1 year remaining Dave Atkins – 2 year term Howard Brydon – 2 years remaining Diarmid Campbell – 1 year remaining Sue Clegg – 3 year term Vinod Diwakar – 3 year term Alison Earey – 3 year term Martin Graham – 1 year term Patty McCulloch – 3 year term Becky Pearson – 1 year remaining James Reed – 2 year term Kenneth Reid – 2 year term Janet Ryland – 2 year term The Church Wardens Debby Bridge Brennan Horne Clergy who are ex-officio members of PCC Antony Spencer Diocesan Synod Members (Not elected by St John’s, ex officio members of the PCC) Ray Buick Lesley Osborn Carol Dealey Deanery Synod (not elected by St John’s, ex officio members of the PCC) Isobel Bartram Vinod Bhatia – elected at 2014 APCM for a three year term Helen Nixon Stella Jennings – elected at 2014 APCM for a three year term


The following staff member has attended as part of his job description but does not vote Steve Foster


Electoral Roll Report 2015 Operations Manager Steve Foster The Electoral Roll was completely revised in 2013. This meant that everyone had to re-apply to be listed on the Roll. The Electoral Roll number as of March 27th 2015 is 422 after 29 additions and 11 deletions. Previous figures are listed below: Year 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001

Electoral Roll Number Revision Year 422 404 399 Revision 553 610 581 575 568 546 Revision 583 518 494 459 412 Revision 436


Edgbaston Deanery Synod St John’s Deanery Synod Representative Carol Dealey Edgbaston Deanery Synod has met three times during the last year (June, November and February). We had a very interesting meeting of Deanery Synod on 19th June at which we discussed issues in relation to poverty and how parishes are addressing them. The main speaker was Fred Rattley who is the Diocesan Director of Community Regeneration and whose main work relates to issues of poverty and is part of the Church Urban Fund national strategy. Putting the poor at the heart of priorities is the heart of mission – showing God’s love to the poor and disadvantaged. This also means collaboration with others. As well as talking about what is happening at Diocesan level, he also asked several questions: • • •

How do you connect with your local neighbourhood? Do you know what is going on locally to alleviate poverty? Can you work with them?

After this there were several short presentations regarding activities round the Deanery: Debt and Benefit Advice at St John’s, Credit Union in Ladywood. Quinton & Oldbury Food Bank; Selly Oak Jobs Club run By St Mary’s Selly Oak and the Christian Life Centre. In November Bishop Andrew came and talked to us about The Growing Younger Project. This is covered in the Diocesan Synod report so is not included here. The vicars of St Boniface and St Peter’s churches shared about their churches and areas for prayer. It is always encouraging to hear about what God is doing in other places. The February Synod was aimed at sharing information about difference courses being run by churches across the Deanery. Short presentations were given on Alpha, Start and The Freedom Course. We then split into groups led by the course leaders so that people could get more of a flavour of how the courses were run. We also had a ‘spotlight on chaplaincies’ with speakers from university, hospice and hospital. Finally we would like to note that Lesley Osborn has resigned from Deanery Synod after many years of service. We would like to thank her and wish her well.


Birmingham Diocesan Synod Report St John’s Diocesan Synod Representative Carol Dealey Diocesan Synod meets three times a year in June, November and March. This year the focus has been in two main areas: The Growing Younger Project; and wider spheres of influence. The Growing Younger Project This is a very exciting diocesan-wide initiative. It recognises that the average of our congregations across the city is 61 years whilst the average age of people living in the diocese is only 36 and also takes account of the Biblical imperative: “We will tell to the coming generations the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might, and the wonders He has done” (Psalm 78:4). The diocese has obtained a £1 million grant from the Church Commissioners and added some other money for mission which means that there is about £700,000pa for the next three years to fund the work. The focus will be enabling parishes to grow younger and there will be a range of support available: • Significant resources including conferences and training courses will be available for every church. • 2 Growing Younger Facilitators to work with 5 parishes at a time to help them to develop fresh thinking and a model of good practice for working with younger generations • 9 Mission Apprentices to work in mostly deprived areas on Growing Younger projects. They will have training for the role and will work 18 hrs/week for 2 years • 20 Children’s and Families’ Missioners to work to train, equip and inspire congregations to reach out to younger generations in their parishes. They will work for 21 hrs/week for 3 years. Churches will be encouraged to fund the extra time to make it a full time post. Two or more churches could put forward a joint proposal for a post if they wish • A new mission church will be established in the city centre to attract young adults and students. Wider Spheres of Influence This is a bit of a catch-all to cover topics such as connections with the Diocese of Malawi, fossil fuels, education and the General Election. These topics are ones championed by different deaneries and often include recommendations for Synod to put forward proposals or requests to General Synod. During the year, both Raymond Buick and Lesley Osborn have resigned from Diocesan Synod after many years of faithful service. We would like to acknowledge this and thank them both.


Churches Together in Harborne (CTH) St John’s CTH Representative Helen M Nixon Chairperson - Ms Frances Pond (St Mary’s RC Church) First of all a big Thank you to everyone who has supported the work and witness of Churches Together in Harborne during the past year – delivering Christmas cards; collecting for Christian Aid; being present for the carols on the High Street before Christmas or at the prayer walk and open air service on Good Friday; joining in the Unity Lunch during the January Week or Prayer for Christian Unity; attending one or both of the CTH joint services; or visiting other events at the local churches. St John’s hosted prayer for unity in January and also the Women’s World Day of Prayer in March, which included participants from all the local churches. Harborne Baptists hosted a quiz last May to support Christian Aid, and the CMM (Christian Music Ministries) musical Angel Voices in February. The design for the CTH Christmas card was selected through a local competition. St Peter’s and St Faith & St Laurence held flower festivals, which included displays by St John’s flower arrangers. All of these help to develop our relationships with other local Christians, to increase our understanding of what God is doing in the wider church and to give a positive message of unity to the local community. Various services and events in the local churches are publicised during the year, especially during the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity and during Holy Week, but all the churches welcome visitors at any time. It is a great encouragement to discover different ways of worship, to share in prayer and become aware of the joys and challenges facing brothers and sisters we do not know so well, and to appreciate the gifts and skills offered to God in different settings. It will be good if more of us from St John’s feel called to join in prayer, worship and other events in different churches during the coming year. Brenda Green from Harborne Baptists currently minutes the CTH Forum meetings, but we are looking for someone willing to take on the full role of Secretary, who need not already be a CTH representative. If you feel that this is something you could offer, please contact Helen Nixon or Doris Macdonald for further details. Please pray for the CTH representatives on the Forum to be open to the Lord’s guidance and encouragement, for vision for ways in which local Christians can work and witness together more effectively, and for increasing support of the work of Churches Together in Harborne from local congregations.


Fabric & Building Development Operations Manager Steve Foster 2014 saw two fairly major, but not visible, projects being carried out. • •

The 5 yearly Electrical Inspection was carried out which resulted in some upgrading of the main switchgear because of changes in the regulations. The total cost was £6,000. The flat roof areas either side of the Upper Room were fully renovated along with some remedial work on the main hall flat roof. The total cost for this work was £12,000.

The future development of the buildings will most likely remain in abeyance until a new incumbent has been appointed. The Quinquennial Report has now been completed and received, and will form the basis of fabric maintenance and repairs going forward, although only works prioritised as urgent will be carried out in the immediate future. St John’s owns three residential properties in Harborne and currently two of these are rented out on a commercial basis. The properties rented are 55 Albert Road and 33 Margaret Road. During the tenancy change 55 Albert Road was completely redecorated and some carpets replaced. Last year the PCC took the decision to place 2 Milford Copse up for sale; it went on the marker in August at the end of the last tenancy. It is currently sold subject to contract. St John’s also owns 77-79 Vivian Road (The Crossway). All these properties remain in good order.


Mutual Care Fund Mutual Care Fund Treasurer David Dixie

INCOME AND EXPENDITURE FOR THE YEAR ENDED 31 DECEMBER 2014 2014 £ Income General gifts Specified gifts

2013 £

3,625 9,595

£ 4,385 5,010


Expenditure Specified gifts Other needs


9,595 4,200


Balance at 1 January 2014 Balance at 31 December 2014


5,010 3,900 13,795 (575)

8,910 485

951 376

466 951

The Mutual Care Fund exists to provide an opportunity for members of St John’s to help other members who may be in financial need, without the donor’s identity being known. Grants are made either on the specific instructions of the donor, or at the Trustees’ discretion from gifts received for general purposes. During the year 22 individuals benefited from grants from general funds and 26 from specified gifts. The Trustees during the year were Nigel di Castiglione (Vicar, ex-officio, until 2 March), Antony Spencer (Interim Vicar, ex-officio, from 2 March), Fiona Collins and David Dixie. The trustees would like to thank all who have contributed so generously during the year.


Finance Sub Group Treasurer David Harvey The aims of the finance sub group are: •

To formalise financial policies

To prepare and maintain a financial plan and management accounts

To prepare and submit to the Charity Commission the statutory annual report and financial accounts

Ensure appropriate processes and controls are in place to secure the church’s assets

Ensure all payments and banking of receipts are timely and that auditable records are maintained

Identify and secure the appropriate staff (employed and volunteer) necessary for the smooth operation of the church’s finances

To brief the Standing Committee and Trustees (PCC)

During 2014 the team of people managing the financial affairs of the Church were as follows: Bill Smith administering the gift aid scheme, Diarmid Campbell heading up the counting team, Ruth Downing managing staff salaries and expenses, John Cheatle as Living Stones Treasurer and Marjorie Featherstone (Church Accountant) management/statutory accounts. I am hugely grateful for the enormous amount of work that goes on behind the scenes by these dedicated people who ensure that the finances are handled carefully and professionally. On behalf of the whole Church I want to say thank you for this contribution to the life and ministry of St John’s. I especially want to place on record a huge thank you to Marjorie as she steps down as Church Accountant in May 2015, for many years of faithful service to the Church. The separate Report and Accounts gives the financial summary for 2014. Looking to the year ahead the finance team usually meets formally 2/3 times a year as required and that pattern will continue. Our main aims and objectives remain unchanged.


Life at St John’s Alpha CAMEO City Pastors Children’s Work Christmas Tour Debt Advice and Benefits Digging Deeper (Ladies Bible Study) Freedom Course Harborne Men’s Group Healing on the Streets Healing Prayer Centre Just Another Hour (Intercession Group) Living Stones Men’s Breakfasts Older People’s Work Midway Schools Liaison & Prayer Spaces Start the Month St John’s Women Students @ St John’s Talk Together Groups Toddler Group Uniformed Organisations Welcome Who Let The Dad’s Out? Worship Youth Work

Sharon Bryant Adele Cheatle Mark & Jo Jowett Ben Baker Alex Robertson & Marcus Pagnam Dave Robertson & Adele Cheatle Patty McCulloch Geoff Heyes Bob Kimmins Paul Featherstone Sue Clegg Beryl Beavis Jonny Pearson & Daphne Ryland Brian Thomas Catriona Foster Alison Norden Kate Diwakar Mark Jowett Pat Brydon & Pat Spencer Martin & Gina Graham Pat Brydon Kate Diwakar Emma James & Christine Cheel Pat Brydon Phil Varley Marcus Pagnam Mark Watson


Annual Report and Accounts


St John’s Church, High Street, Harborne B17 9PT Telephone 0121 427 4601 Website Registered Charity No. 1132862 Printed April 2015

St John's Church Abridged APCM report and Accounts 2015  

Presented at the Annual Parochial Church Meeting on Wednesday 22nd April 2015

St John's Church Abridged APCM report and Accounts 2015  

Presented at the Annual Parochial Church Meeting on Wednesday 22nd April 2015