One of the benefits that many people find in belonging to a church is the care and friendship that they find from other members of the congregation. Jesus said that there were two key commandments – to love God and to love your neighbor – and we live out our faith when we are able to show that love to those around us, both within the church community and beyond.
Sometimes we face particular crises in our lives and we need the support of our church family. Our pastoral team offer one to one support to those in need. This may be to those who are sick in hospital or at home, or recently bereaved, or who are isolated through a lack of mobility or old age.
Other members of the congregation or the clergy will often mention to the pastoral team that a particular person is in need, and we will follow those links up to provide friendship and support, normally for a limited period, until the person is back on their feet again.
We meet together monthly in a confidential meeting to provide supervision and help to one another. This means that those who act as pastoral visitors get support, but also advice on good ways forward.
There is excellent training provided by the pioneering Deanery Pastoral training course for all pastoral visitors, which is run by Carolynn Croisdale-Appleby, our associate priest.
St. Mary's Church embraces its duty to keep children and vulnerable adults safe. We follow the principles outlined in the Diocese of Oxford Safeguarding Handbook for the Protection of Children and Vulnerable Adults.
The Safeguarding Handbook is available to download as a PDF by clicking here.