Marsden’s church building needs support

If you can offer anything to help keep the building standing for future generations, it would be deeply appreciated. Online giving following this link.

Dearest friends of St Bartholomew’s,

I am writing to you as the new Vicar of Marsden and Slaithwaite; I started just before the coronavirus hit. If you have seen me on social media, you may already know that I am delighted to be here in the Colne Valley. This is a beautiful place to live and work, I feel blessed to be here with you. I have been invited to be the full-time Vicar of Marsden and Slaithwaite in the hope that I can bring a fresh way of thinking about God and help everyone here to ask questions and explore their Christian spirituality in a new way. As an Analytical Chemist and a Priest, I bring a perspective to faith which you may find helpful. I do hope I can help you.

The Vicar

It is humbling therefore, to be asking you for help. Your church building needs you, and it really is your church building. As your Parish Church within the Church of England, you have the right to be Baptized here, to have a Church of England marriage service, and to commemorate the lives of family and friends who have died and been placed in the hands of God’s loving care. Every worship service is a public service, to which you are always warmly welcome. There is a small but wonderfully faithful community, of all ages, who meet at St Bartholomew’s are doing their best to financially support this listed building, and to keep it a place of living faith.

St Bartholomew's Church
St Bartholomew’s Church on a sunny early Spring morning

However, the church needs urgent repair. The drainage, the tiled flooring, the roof, the tower, the clock faces, the stained-glass windows… all these aspects of the building are in constant need of repair and it is expensive. We considered getting a Grant for the guttering, but the building needs to be open most of the year to qualify. We just do not have enough volunteers to make this happen. Our annual insurance bill is £8,700 this year. The heating and lighting will cost £7,600. The everyday repairs typically cost £5,000 each year. This total of £21,300 just keeps us ticking along but will not pay for any of the structural work which is needed. Can you help? Even value of having a Priest in your Parish, (who is supported by the Diocese of Leeds) is not included in these figures: the cost of giving Marsden a Vicar is paid by other churches.

If you can offer anything to help keep the building standing for future generations, it would be deeply appreciated. Online giving following this link.

I come to Marsden in hope and faith. I long to see St Bartholomew’s Church open for visitors every day. To be a place of safety and sanctuary. To be a place where those who suffer abuse can find solitude and someone to listen. Where the people of Marsden can quietly come and know that God is with them. I would love to see the Choir stalls full and to hear the people of Marsden led in hymns of joy. I would love to support volunteers who share a passion for our building’s heritage, working with those who have been worshipping here all their lives.

May the love and peace of God be with you every day, always.