Our Vision for the Future

Holy Trinity is the oldest church in Sutton Coldfield, and has stood at the centre as the town has grown around it. 

 

We want to affirm our church at the centre of the life of the town, and of our parish.  We want our church to be holy, welcoming, learning and caring.  And we want our church to be a sustainable and growing presence in the parish.

We are always looking to the future, and to the kind of church we want to be.  But in 2014/15 we spent some time putting it down in writing.  So here we set out what we want the church to look like 10 years from now, with our thoughts on how we plan to get there.

 

2017 update - reading on, you'll see that we've made good progress on our 10 year vision, set in 2014/15. For instance, visit our page on Phase 1 of re-ordering. However, there is still much to do!

 

We'll be re-visiting our 10 year vision soon to assess progress and help us keep on track.

 

Now read on...

 

Renewal of the church building

In 2016 we will reorder the church building.  The changes will help us to address all of the elements of our vision.  They will enhance our offer of worship and prayer, and provide a facility suitable as a base for our mission and ministry to the parish.  The reordered church building will be at the centre of parish life.  Key elements will be:

  • New entrance - a more welcoming and accessible main entrance, level with the 'piazza' outside.

  • Floors and seating - floors levelled throughout the main part of the building, and pews replaced by chairs, to give flexibility for different types of worship and other events. 

  • Chancel and dais - chairs in the chancel to make a flexible space; extending the chancel floor level into the nave as a raised platform for worship or a stage for concerts, drama and other presentations.

  • Altar and font - moving the altar to the chancel arch, and the font to the top of the tower steps, locations visible to the congregation and reflecting that God is amongst us.

  • Facilities - creating separate glass-walled rooms under the north gallery for children's Sunday groups, and for church and community group meetings.  New toilets, a refreshment area, a new heating system.

  • Light and visibility - introducing more glass in the new entrance and tower door, giving a view of the church even when it is closed; removing the west gallery and organ which block natural light; installing new lighting throughout.

  • Organ and music - replacing the pipe organ with a digital instrument; speakers will be located within the nave, console and choir located nearer the congregation and speakers.

Development of the Trinity Centre

In 2015-17 we will undertake a review of the Centre's operations, focused on stabilising its finances.  Then from late 2017, with the expanded capacity offered by the reordered church, we will look to develop the Centre further. 

  • Marketing - with the church space focused on community and church groups, we will have the capacity to increase the proportion of commercial lettings on the Centre's upper floor.  This will make it an income source to support our ministry and mission.

  • Systems - we will introduce IT based systems, from on-line enquiries/booking through to generation of invoices.

  • Maintenance - we will continue to build the maintenance fund to provide for major repairs as the building ages.

  • Lower floor – regardless of how we use the upper floor of the building, the lower floor will remain as a base for uniformed organisations and other youth activities.

Mission and ministry: using the church

We will use the renewed church building as a place for mission and ministry focused on a range of themes and population groups.


Thinking of general community use:

  • Heritage and Education - we will introduce heritage information boards and guides.  The church will be open to visitors as much as possible, and volunteers trained.  We will encourage visits by schools (and others) to support their learning in areas of history and religion.
  • Arts - through 'Friends of Holy Trinity' we will continue our programme of concerts.  We will invite drama groups - continuing the relationship we have with the college, but also engaging with local amateur groups.  We will encourage use of the building as an exhibition space by local arts groups.

  • Other community meetings - we will encourage the use of the building by community and church groups more widely.  And we will continue to make best use of the role of Holy Trinity as the town's civic church.

  • Community services – we will encourage the use of the church by local groups and schools for their own services, (eg carol services, BVGS Founders Day, etc.)

Looking at use specifically for church purposes:

  • Pastoral services - these will continue to be a core element of our ministry, with the openings they often give to younger people.  Adequate space will be left in the booking of the building to ensure wedding and funeral ministry is not compromised. 

  • Education - confirmation classes and marriage preparation mornings will be held in the church.  Occasional faith exploration/development courses may be held there - for newcomers and established members alike.

  • Church groups - we will hold Open House in church if logistics allow.  Our youth groups will continue to use the Trinity Centre, but with activities in the church when appropriate.

Mission and ministry: in the wider parish

Although mission and ministry will be focused on the church, we will continue to work within the wider parish, for example:

  • Visiting team - we will continue with regular visits to parishioners, for home communion or more general pastoral reasons.  These will focus on former congregation members no longer able to come to church.  Visitors will have appropriate training and support.

  • Clergy/reader visits – clergy & readers will continue to visit the bereaved and others in need in their homes whenever safe and possible, though the church and Trinity Centre will be used on occasion.

  • Schools – we will continue to engage with schools: through clergy leading assemblies, and will encourage individual church members to be involved as governors, PTA members, etc.

  • House groups - we will offer groups meeting in people’s homes for those who would value them.

  • Communications – we will work to improve how we publicise what we offer to the parish, developing a communications plan and appointing someone to co-ordinate it.  We will continue our positive and fruitful presence on the internet, with our website and social media pages.  We will continue to use more traditional print media, and ensure we target appropriate groups (eg primary schools, etc for Messy Church services.)

  • Charitable causes - we will continue to offer support to a variety of charities working at local, national and international level.  And we will encourage the congregation to do so in their lives away from Holy Trinity.

  • Other - we will explore what pastoral needs exist within the parish, engaging with other community and voluntary organisations.  Depending on our resources and the needs identified, we will look to meet these needs.  Again, we will encourage the congregation to do so in their lives away from Holy Trinity.


Worship and Prayer

Prayer and spirituality will be at the core of our life as a community and as individuals. 

  • Weekly services - we will continue to be a church holding the eucharist as its main expression of worship.  But we will use the new flexibility of the building to explore other forms and times.  Musical provision will be aided by the new layout.

  • Young people - we will use the flexibility of the new building to have regular, (possibly theme-driven) services for young people; and occasional youth group activities.

  • Children and families - Sunday groups and crèche will meet in the under-gallery rooms; we will have regular services in church involving craft activity & food for young children and their families.

  • Individual prayer - using the opportunity provided by the re-ordered church we will keep the church open as much as possible, staffing it with volunteers; and have a chapel set aside for prayer, with the book of remembrance and a votive candle stand. 

  • Prayer groups - groups praying for the life of the church, the needs of our parish and of the world will base their life around the 'prayer chapel'.

Working with other churches

We remain committed to working with other churches.  The focus will be on:

  • 'Sutton Coldfield Group' - we will continue with those activities which the three churches cannot individually resource (eg youth work), where joining gives more efficient use of leadership time (eg confirmation preparation), or where we can develop inter-church relationships (eg Lent and other study groups).  We will also join for midweek services at 'festivals' which are poorly attended at each church, for youth services, and for confirmation.  We will continue with clergy ‘pulpit exchanges’.

  • Deanery & Diocese – we are committed to our place within the wider Anglican community, and will continue to engage with initiatives appropriate to our circumstances.

  • Churches Together - we will continue to work with Churches Together in Sutton Coldfield churches; as part of that we will develop our relationship with the Islamic Centre based in our parish.

Resourcing the future

We recognise that to fulfil our vision we need to provide appropriate resourcing:

  • Capital fundraising - reordering the church will require a major fund-raising campaign which we will carry out, with professional support.  We will also look to establish a pattern of giving through legacy.

  • Sustainable giving - we will continue to encourage realistic and regular giving to finance the day-to day work of the church and its people.

  • Friends of Holy Trinity - we will develop 'Friends of Holy Trinity', aiming to fund building maintenance from the income, and enlarge our pool of volunteers from its members. 

  • Trinity Centre - we will seek to turn the Trinity Centre into a net income source to fund and supporting ministry and mission activities, and to use the resource of space it offers for community and church activities.

  • Staffing - we recognise that we need able staff to take responsibility for different aspects of our ‘organisation’.  For example: marketing/sales and 'facilities management' for both church and Trinity Centre buildings.  We will identify the roles and consider which should be full- or part-time roles, paid or volunteer.

  • Volunteers - we recognise the need to increase the volunteer base, drawing on congregation members and the wider community.  We will develop training to ensure that volunteers can be the welcoming face of the church and the Trinity Centre.