The Parishes of Dunham Massey

Parochial Church Council Annual Report

Parochial Church Council 2017/18

Rev Jerry Sutton – Incumbent and Chair

Ex Officio;
Mr Peter Stockton – Churchwarden
Mr Alan Hewitt – Deanery Synod Representatives
Mrs Carolyn Hewitt – Deanery Synod Representatives

Honorary Member
Mr Paul Zylstra – Hon Treasurer

Elected Members
Mrs Suzanne Stockton – Covenant Secretary
Mr Ray Lord
Mrs Sylvia Lord
Mrs Diana Davidson
Mrs Joan Pendelbury
Mr Ron Hutchinson
Mr Clifford Bushell
Mrs Carol Mitchell Cox – Secretary to the Parochial Church Council
Mr James Phillips

Co Opted Member
Mrs Ondria Williams

The Parochial Church Council met four times during the year. The Council exists to support the ministry of the incumbent and work with the incumbent in promoting the witness of the church in the parish.

The PCC explored the following areas;

Finance; The PCC spend much time managing scant resources. Pressure is high to maintain income to a level that meets the expectations of the Diocese and enables proper maintenance of the ministry and fabric of the church. The Financial stringencies faced by St Mark’s and the requirement that a significant contribution towards the Diocese request for £32,000 per annum are leading the PCC to look at ways the Parish may remain viable in the medium to long term.

Buildings; The PCC has delegated oversight of the Fabric to the Buildings Sub Committee which meets regularly and feeds back into PCC meetings. In the past year the Sub Committee has evolved and managed various projects, some of which are still in the developmental stage;

  • The renovation of the Porch
  • Renewal of Notice Boards
  • Renovation of the Lych Gate
  • Handrails to external Access Stairs
  • Car Parking options
  • Sunday School Storage

Events; Discussing fund raising and supporting the work of the events committee.

Children and Young People; Sunday School continues to meet on the third Sunday of the month and remains popular with our young children. Sunday School has been through a transition phase in recent months as new session leaders have emerged and established themselves. The curriculum is craft and story based and engages with children across the age spectrum. Storage issues and the development of audio visual possibilities in the Sunday School Room are being addressed presently. Two of our Young People were confirmed this year.

Mission Objectives;

  • To promote and nurture our diverse church community.
  • to address the capital challenges facing our church community and the long term viability of the present parochial arrangements.
  • To continue to establish St Mark’s as a Parish Church in Dunham Massey.

Worship; Sunday morning worship continues to be the most significant activity at St Mark’s. Our regular pattern of worship is well supported by a wide range of people. While there are historic church/village associations manifested in parishioners attending church the congregation is very much a ‘gathered’ one from outside the parish. Numbers are healthy but engagement with any more than Sunday worship is not common. Worship has been enhanced by the development of our choir which makes a great contribution to the music in church. The use of silver from the old parish of St John’s brings highlight to our major festivals as does a new Paschal Candle stand. This year we have been exploring the possibilities around Easter with an Easter Vigil which will be a great Easter draw in future.

Prayer; The council pray together at each meeting for the wisdom to lead the church effectively.

Giving; The necessity to promote the fiscal requirements of the church and it’s ministry and to seek Christian giving in time, money and talents as a response.

Occasional Offices; St Mark’s has an effective and much appreciated ministry through Baptisms, Weddings and Funerals. There is now an identifiable decline in numbers of occasional offices. However, this has been in the ‘casual’ use of church for these services by ‘cold contacts’. Baptisms weddings and Funerals are largely performed now for those with a demonstrable connection with the church.

Management; Child Protection, Health and Safety and Fire Safety are but a few of the legalities that the PCC has responsibility for. Management of contingencies relating to these areas is a regular feature of meetings. This year 2018 sees the PCC ensuring the church’s compliance with the new GDPR Act (Data Protection Act) which comes into forces in May 2018. The church filing system has been overhauled as have the Terrier and Inventory of Church Property.

Wider Church; The council heard reports from Deanery Synod and also discussed matters pertinent to the wider church this year such as finance and church structures.

The PCC will continue to work apace concerning these issues and other issues that emerge in the coming twelve months.

Rev Jerry Sutton
15 April 2018