Potter Street Baptist Church lies in a busy neighbourhood on the edge of Harlow, an Essex New Town which has seen continued growth since becoming established after WWII to help ease London overcrowding in the wake of the Blitz.
The town has higher-than-average unemployment and a large number of people in social housing, so with the challenges those circumstances bring, it’s encouraging that there is a strong desire for the people at Potter Street to serve their neighbourhood.
Minister Alison Taylor is in no doubt that they serve it well. Alison is at great pains to point out the commitment and dedication of the congregation, describing them as very hard-working and very committed, for which she is extremely grateful. She says: ‘There is something for everyone, every day of the week and the building is full on Sundays. I am so grateful for the effort made to ensure we serve our community in so many relevant ways. The church is focused on being a refuge, a place of restoration, and a place where people can find and develop faith, and there are many varied ways that they can take their first steps into the building.’
Day time activities include craft group, coffee stop, Bible study, tots at play, lunch club, and house groups, while evenings feature table tennis, model club, badminton, boys group, ladies’ keep fit and Girls’ Brigade. Once-a-month Saturday activities include men’s breakfasts, messy church sessions and film nights.
Alison adds: ‘People often meet with us at church through any of those activities – and many arrive with needs – but they can embark on a journey of growth once they see faithful people around them who are there to support and nurture.’
Please pray that the church would continue to be a valuable part of the community, serving in whichever way is needed.
Pray for our consideration of additional Sunday services and for God’s guidance as we seek to find different ways of doing church to reach people who are seeking.