This is a hard letter to write. For centuries, Barmston Church has been a spiritual presence in the village, a place of regular prayer and worship in good times and bad, and the location for christenings, weddings and funerals. In recent times we have hosted special services for Harvest, Remembrance Sunday, Christmas and Easter; we have welcomed Archbishop Sentamu to the Black Bull; we have offered barbecued bacon butties to dog-walkers on the beach and prayer-walked through the village; we offer fortnightly Communion services to all and monthly services especially for children and their families. Last year alone we conducted four weddings for families from the village.
Now we need your help. The coronavirus pandemic has hit us hard. Our small, elderly congregation is not able to meet together. Our precarious finances have taken a perilous turn. We are at serious risk of having to close.
The first thing we need is people. People to join us in worship – online or by phone at the moment, and in person when the virus has gone. People to pray and care and reach out to others.
The second thing we need is money. We have enough in the account that is restricted to maintaining the building. But the general fund which pays for the day-to-day housekeeping is diminishing rapidly; it looks like we have just a few more months left before it is empty and we are bankrupt. At the moment our monthly income doesn’t even meet our insurance payments.
What can you do to help? First, please join in our continuing worship, which is being streamed every Sunday from the vicarage. You can find the link online at https://www.achurchnearyou.com/church/19071/ or, for the price of a local call, you can hear the service at any time of the day or night by phoning 01262 412525. Then, when we’re back in church, come and join us there in the worship of the living God. We’re a friendly bunch and we love making new friends. If you want to get involved, or have other ideas you think we should try, please give me a ring on 01262 229503.
Second, we need your financial help, in particular regular, monthly donations. Just ten people giving £10 each month or twenty people giving £5 each month would make all the difference, and help the church to serve Barmston and Fraisthorpe now and into the future. Our account name is All Saints Barmston PCC, the sort code is 40-13-47 and the account number is 90095052.
I’m sorry to have to be so blunt. We are in serious trouble. We need your help. Thank you for taking the time to read this.