Ringstead's Vision for the Future

St Mary's Sunday School
St Mary's Sunday School goes from strength to strength.  We meet twice a month on the second and fourth Sundays at 9:30am in the church.  As the service begins we leave the church and generally go to the village hall which gives us space to make a lot of noise and to move around - sometimes we are out and about in the village or we spend time in our Sunday School Allotment.

Over the last year the Sunday School has grown, with an average of 10 children and young people aged 3 - 11 attending.  Libby Bowness and I lead the group and are generally supported by other parents as those with children of pre-school age must be accompanied.

Each session we have a different theme, looking at a text from the bible as our basis.  We enjoy exploring topics with craft, drama, games, cookery, treasure hunts and gardening.  The children are also actively involved and encouraged to be in the church - here they frequently read prayers and readings, and occasionally perform plays and make displays.

In Spring this year we began our Sunday School Allotment, tying this in with an indepth look at creation and timing our first offerings with thoughts of the first fruits.  The children have learnt a lot about fruit and vegetables, have dug, weeded and sown and created a fantastic spread which we sold at the Summer Fete to help with fundraising, including our homemade jam which was sold with cream teas!

Sunday School allotment

Summer fete







In the last week of August we had our first Sunday School outing - a trip to Peterborough Cathedral.  our party of 16 children and 6 adults had a great day exploring the Cathedral, learning about how and when it was built, who is and was buried there and a little about how Cathedral life has evolved.  We even built a model with wooden bricks which was very taxing!

cathedral visitvisiting the cathedral









Sunday School is a great way to get to know God and all he does for us.  Its also a great place to make friends, learn lots of new skills and have a lot of fun.  We would love to see new members, including any young people who might like to help us lead.

Esther Mitchell.

Our vision for the church in Ringstead in 5 years time is centred on our mission to children, families and young people.

Where are we going?

We want to encourage children and young people to take a full and active part in the life and worship of the church.

In order to facilitate this we intend to improve the facilities within the church building, including the provision of a toilet.

We aim to develop our realtionships with the wider community through social activity and practical service.

We aim to encourage men to play a full part in this.

We intend to maintain and strengthen our links with the village school and our fellow Christians at the Shared Church of Ringstead.

None of this can be contemplated without a real development of prayer, which must be the foundation of our vision.  Agreed in 2011.

How are we going to set out?

During 2012/13 we want to achieve the following:

1. The provision of a toilet & creation of a usable versatile space

2.Continue the growth of children and young people's learning & role in worship by further   development of children's work.

3. The provision of practical service in the community

4. Continue to strengthen links with the village school and the Shared Church.

5. Support charitable and mission work wherever possible.

6. Remain mindful of the needs of the whole congregation within the worship pattern

7. A constant evaluation of our welcoming policy

How will we know if we are on our way?

Assessment criteria to use in February 2103

Do we have (or nearly have) a toilet & usable space?

Has the children's work improved and developed, and do the young people play an active role in worship?

What practical service have we provided to the community?

Do we have stronger links with the school and the Shared Church?

Have we supported charity and mission?

Are the needs of the whole congregation being met through the worship pattern?

Have we evaluated and amended our welcoming strategy effectively?

Would an unknown visitor agree?



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