Youth & Schools Chaplain

Laverne Williams has been appointed as our full-time Youth Worker and Schools Chaplain.  We are really excited to have Laverne join our team!

Schools

We are passionate about our relationship with and ministry to the primary and secondary schools across Witney and the surrounding villages.  We are enjoying being able to be back in schools to offer Collective Worship.  During COVID we offered weekly online Collective Worship videos for primary schools, which can still be watched via our YouTube channel: YouTube Channel. Our newest contributions are listed first.

Young Disciples

Our youth group for secondary school students is known as the Young Disciples. We gather online or in person for fellowship, fun, and prayer. If you are interested in joining the Young Disciples, please get in touch with rebecca@witneyparish.org.uk

Children in Church

St Mary's Junior Church (for children in infants and below) and Groundbreakers (for children in junior school and above) are now back in person on Sundays at 10.45am.  Everyone is welcome.  

Holy Trinity hosts Messy Mass six times per year.  These are interactive services aimed at families and children. The next two dates are 21st November and 9th January at 10.45am.

St Mary's, Holy Trinity and Hailey churches all have books and toys available during Sunday services.

Below are also some websites where you can find resources for exploring faith with children at home. Be sure to let us know what you are getting up to!

  • BeSpace is an Oxfordshire Christian charity that seek to provide spaces of prayer and reflection to schools. They have moved their Prayer Spaces online, which you can find here.
  • Roots is a Christian company with worship and learning resources for the whole church. They are offering free Worship at Home resources for school-aged children here.

Benefice Youth Council

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The Witney Benefice Youth Council

Hello, we are the Benefice Youth Council (BYC). We are a group of young people aged 11 to 18 who meet once a month, (usually the first Sunday of the month, however, this may vary depending on availability), to discuss different topics, ideas, and opinions. In doing this we hope to achieve better plans for the youth ministry and the church. We currently have Lindsey Macfarlane and Laverne Williams holding the council, who join us for each meeting.

The BYC started back in July 2020.  We have always been eager to discuss new ideas and have taken any advice on board.

What are the roles involved?

In the Benefice Youth Council there are four main roles allocated (Chair, Vice Chair x 2, Secretary), as well as other attendees. The roles will reassign in line with the PCC in order that other people will get the chance to lead and organise the meetings. In total there are 8 counsellors.

What are our aims as a Council for the future?

We assisted with the appointment of our new youth worker, Laverne Williams, who is dedicated to youth ministry, leading youth events and working with schools. One of our aims is to also become a more eco-friendly church; for example, walking to church. Being aware of how we can take care of ourselves both physically and mentally either by setting a goal or doing a small thing, can add up to a bigger reward for ourselves and the future of the Benefice.

Why have a Youth Council?

As a young person who attends the meetings, I can truly say that it is a space for any youth ideas to be heard, taken on board, and not judged. It is a safe place where any suggestions are welcome and discussed. If there is something that you feel passionate about with regards to the future of the church, youth ministry or a brand-new area of discussion, that you would like to have discussed, you can bring the idea along and see what other people think. It is a meeting that I always look forward to sharing new ideas and aspirations of how to improve the impact of the church on the environment and how to have an even more enjoyable youth ministry.

For more information or if you are aged 11 to 18 and interested in joining please contact: youthchair@witneyparish.org.uk

Safeguarding

    If a child or adult is in immediate danger or requires immediate medical attention, call the emergency services on 999. If there are concerns about their immediate welfare, don’t delay: call Children and Adult’s Social care on 0345 050 7666 or the MASH Out of Hours Emergency Duty Team: 0800 833408. Also please inform one of Parish Safeguarding Team.
    For other safeguarding concerns please immediately inform our Parish Safeguarding Officer, Alison, on 07884 074812 or her Deputy, Sarah Jane, on 07506 515 952 or Pauline on 01993 648136. You can also email concerns to safeguarding@witneyparish.org.uk
    If you are unsure or worried about how serious a situation is, contact the Diocesan Safeguarding Team on 01865 208295 or Richard Woodley on 07391 868478 or Lisa Wilkins on 07341 866832 lisa.wilkins@oxford.anglican.org

Click here for more safeguarding information

Prayer Tree

    Please feel free to post a prayer on our Benefice website.
    All prayers are first moderated to ensure any post respects our Safeguarding Policy and so there may be a small delay before they are published on our website.
    When writing a prayer, please use only first names, initials or a pseudonym to protect privacy.
    Your email address will not be published and is used only if we need to double check your prayer request.

Click here to post a prayer