Present: Rick Hill RiHi (co-chair), Pat Maguire PM (co-chair), Pam Brazendale, Michele Gerard,

Ted Green TG, Roger Hartley, Ian Hayter IH, Richard Henshaw RH, Diana Pearson, John Preece and partner, Lilas Rawling (Minute Sec.), Hazel Rendle, Liz Ridler LiRi (Treasurer)

Apologies: Roger Baker, Warren Bardsley, Rod Clark, David Clarke, Nigel Gann, Brenda Liptrot, Brian Maguire, Robert Mountford (CLASP), Gregory Platten, David Shaw, Julie Smith

The meeting was chaired by Rick Hill, apologising for the necessity of Zoom for this Forum.

1. The first 15 minutes of the Forum were people sharing their experience of Covid-19.

2. The minutes of the Forum on 16th June (AGM) were accepted. It was noted that there were no specific matters arising.

3. Treasurer’s report.

Book Balance b/f   £6947.65       Current a/c             £813.14

Plus income          £1229.24       Deposit a/c           £3744.17

Less expenditure   £3958.06       Less u/p cheque     £388.48

                            £4218.83                                  £4218.83

4.Group reports

i) RiHi reported that there had been a community event held at Wade Street sponsored by Support Staffordshire. A number of City and District Councillors attended as well as various community groups. A report is due to be submitted by the end of October. Those present recognised the importance of church and community working together. Ian Hayter said that he thought it had been well organised and that there was plenty of opportunity to share ideas and information; he recognised that there was not a huge representation from faith groups. Most attendees seemed encouraged by the chat and hearing what other groups are doing; there was a cross-fertilisation and a great deal of goodwill.

ii) Lichfield Christian Schools Work Trust. There would be celebration event at the Cathedral on 4th November to celebrate 25years of the work of the Trust. The Trust was grateful to Greg Platten for the venue arrangements, There are lots of good stories associated with the work of the Trust. About 120 young people are currently being helped. It was noted that a significant number of mentors now are not faith members. Ted Green said that it was not unusual that an organisation starts in one way but then changes to meet the current circumstances; he was pleased that CTiL is associated with such a worthy cause.

iii) World Day of Prayer. Hazel Rendle HR, spoke about the World Day of Prayer, held on the first Friday of March. Of the £100 that had been provided by CTiL in 2018, there was £7.86 left. They had made an application to the Enabling Group for a grant of £125 – but it had been suggested that they be granted £150, so that items could be bought for the services. £150 was propsed by Helen Rendle and seconded by Richard Henshaw. The World Day of Prayer committee would like to become an affiliated group of CTiL. Proposed by Richard Henshaw, seconded by Ted Green and accepted by all. HR expressed her thanks to CTiL for all the support from all the churches

iv) Lichfield Emergency Night Shelter LENS. RiHi said that LENS had been very effective in 2018/19 and 20/21, but had had to close two weeks early due to Covid. LENS had rotated around 7 venues each week. The rough sleepers had been offered B and B and 2 entrenched rough sleepers had been found accommodation in Burntwood, but some of the rough sleepers didn’t feel LENS met their needs. LDC’s housing officer, David Whittaker, had a conversation with RiHi and PM. They explained it had been a great drain on the resources of CTiL to manage the employment of the staff. It was agreed CTiL would assist LDC if i) LDC found the premises ii) employed the staff. Churches could provide support with volunteers and in other ways, but CTiL would proceed with caution not overpromising what could be delivered.

5. Periodic review.

The constitution of CTiL requires that a review of its work is carried out every 7 years. PM, RH, DM and LiRi did a review based on that prepared by TG 7 years ago. They carried out a SWOT analysis on the work of CTiL; the results are posted on the website. After several affirmatory comments, it was proposed by RH and seconded by IH that the report be sent directly to Robert Mountford without further amendment.

6. Future events.

i) Interfaith Week. No events had been come to the knowledge of CTiL

ii) Christmas Day Together. This would definitely be happening. Last year’s volunteers were willing to take it up again this year. 3 people have already been referred as volunteers by Support Staffordshire. The arrangers, Caroline and Gaynor, were due to be meeting later that week to start the arrangements.

iii) Week of Prayer for Christian Unity. 18th to 25th January. LR volunteered St. Chad’s as a location to host the Friday evening service.

iv) Lent house groups. Last Lent showed that house groups could be manageable even under difficult circumstances. PM will coordinate again; the paperwork will come out in late January.

v) Good Friday. DM has booked the Cathedral for the evening worship. Arrangements as usual for the Walk of Witness from Whittington and Diana Pearson will book the Methodist Church for the service and fellowship.

vi) Easter Sunday. There will be pilgrimage walk, organised by RiHi.

vii) Bower Day. Due to the rearrangements for the Queen’s Jubilee, the actual Bower Day in 2022 will be on 4th June. PM will pull the CTiL arrangements together for the activities on that day.

viii) 2nd Feb. TG announced that St. Michael’s would be planting a tree for the Queen’s Jubilee and encouraged everyone present to get their church to do the same.

7. Any Other Business.

i) Hazel Rendle pointed out that if the next Forum wasn’t until February, Ian Hayter would have retired by then so this would be his last Churches Together in Lichfield meeting. Fulsome tributes were paid by members present, recognising the contribution Ian and Wade Street under his leadership, have made to Christian life and presence in the City. RiHi concluded by saying that if someone had an idea, and Ian thought that God was in it, Ian would say ‘Yes’. Applause from all.

ii) RiHi mentioned that students from South Staffs College have to do work experience; they can help with websites, marketing and IT, with zero cost to organisations. Wade Street is getting the students to look at their social media presence for example. If any church could make use of this service, let RiHi know.

The next Forum meeting would be on Wednesday 9th February 2022


Page last updated: 4th January 2022 5:49 PM