Pastoral Care Group
This group aims to provide pastoral care for a wide range of people in our local community in Berwickshire, including children and young families, the middle-aged and the elderly. This group is at present made up of six members of the congregation who keep a ‘watchful eye’ on members of the church and of the local community and refer any concerns to the Interim Pastor. It is low key, always holding confidences and so respecting the privacy of any individual.
The Outward-Looking Group currently focuses on three areas of church life: mission partners; links with local churches; exploring what kind of church we want to be. It thus aims
- to witness locally in our wider community (such as Duns Show tent, Easter Art Café, inter-church activities etc.).
- to foster links and the commitment of Christ Church to the wider mission of the church (such as setting a Mission Action Plan, selecting the mission charity focus, understanding and promoting their work, support for vulnerable people, disadvantaged groups etc.).
- to make our church welcoming and inviting (posters, website, notices, invitations to special services etc). For example, circulating the Diocesan guide ‘Mission in the Local Church’ to guide thinking in this area; attending local workshops on Mission.
Mission further afield
The Outward-Looking Group has a remit to organise our charity mission programme and support. Its areas of support (both financial and in kind) include
- Children/Youth (Berwickshire Christian Youth Trust, Aberlour Childcare Trust, for which members of the congregation provide Christmas gifts for the children in its care),
- Elderly/Homeless (Alzheimer’s Research, Fresh Start Borders, supporting Duns Foodbank) and
- Health/Global (Cerebral Palsy Africa, FGM*). Funds raised by Cerebral Palsy Africa help to fund AHDI, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) in Lusaka, Zambia; Edinburgh Direct Aid provides essential clothing and equipment to Syrian and other refugees.
- Special events including the World Day of Prayer and Christian Aid Week.
Several fund-raising events are held each year, including a gift month, coffee mornings, concerts and study days. These planned events are enthusiastically supported both by the congregation and by other members of the local communities. There is plenty of enthusiasm and good reception of new ideas. About £2,538 in 2016 and £837 in 2017 was raised in this way towards the expenses of the Church.