It’s a while since I last wrote to you about BYC, and it may seem that all has gone quiet since the flurry of video presentations and feedback in December and January. However, the picture is more like the swan, apparently gliding on the water with no effort, but under the surface, a good deal has been happening.
In my January letter (and at the APCM), I mentioned how grateful we are for the whole range of positive, constructive and challenging comments and questions you presented to us. I also explained how we were planning to address that feedback, dividing it into the things we had already spotted for the architect to address; new ideas we hadn’t yet considered; new or different requirements that need more serious discussion; concerns about timing and or the cost; and suggestions and offers of help.
Preliminary analysis has taken place, and in discussions with the PCC about the next steps, there was a renewed recognition that there are many strands to BYC, which we need to progress simultaneously. Improving our buildings will be a key enabler of our Vision, launched in 2018, but we also need to understand the new post-pandemic context of our community, develop the ministries we want to prioritise so that they are up and running in good time, talk to our community and not least apply for funding and raise the finance required. It is a complicated process.
On 9 March, the PCC approved the creation of a Steering Group, designed to bring other skills into play alongside the ones so willingly offered already by Norman Steven, Frances Reeve and Jill Mengham. I am immensely grateful to each one of them for shouldering this enormous responsibility for us all thus far.
The additional members of the Steering Group are Ron Stewart (Chair), Ruth Burns and Patrick Fleming. I will join the Steering Group regularly in the role of Project Sponsor. The Steering Group is a temporary sub-committee of the PCC tasked with ensuring we progress our vision through BYC. We really are so blessed to be able to draw such an experienced and skilled group together from within our own church family to achieve this.
One of the immediate tasks of the Steering Group will be to take appropriate action on the detailed analysis of the feedback.
Thank you for your involvement and prayers thus far. At this point the most important and valuable support everyone can give is through your prayer. Please continue to pray for every part of the BYC project: for those involved in leading it on our behalf; for God to call people to help with current and new ministries and activities; for Him to go ahead of us to external bodies and open their hearts and minds to this vision for Oxshott; and that God’s vision for the people of St Andrew’s and this community of ‘Followers of Jesus Christ Growing in Faith, Growing in Number and Serving the Community’ will become an amazing reality.
Easter Blessings to you all,