All through the Summer holidays, we'll be having bring and share picnics on a Friday night. If the weather is ok we'll meet at Castle Fields by the bandstand from 6pm-8pm as usual. If it isn't, we'll just picnic at the church together!


(Well, we might get wet but we'll still be warm!)






We meet as the family of God in heart of our community and God’s family keeps its doors open: therefore we welcome all people into our community including many people who are at risk, whoare unable to protect themselves from harm and who rely on us to protect them. Whether they are children or adults, regardless of gender, ethnicity, ability or creed, we recognize our responsibilities to safeguard all who come into contact with us.




Our safeguarding responsibilities


As members of this church we commit ourselves to the nurturing, protection and safekeeping of all associated with the church and will pray for them regularly. In pursuit of this, we commit ourselves to this policy and to the development of sound procedures to ensure we implement our policy well.


  • Prevention and reporting of abuse


It is the duty of each church member to help prevent the abuse of people at risk, and the duty of each church member to respond to concerns about the well-being of people at risk. Any abuse disclosed, discovered or suspected will be reported in accordance with our procedures. The church will fully co-operate with any statutory investigation into any suspected abuse linked with the church.


  • Safer recruitment, support and supervision of workers


The church will exercise proper care in the selection and appointment of those working with people at risk, whether paid or voluntary. All workers will be provided with appropriate training, support and supervision to promote the safekeeping of people at risk.


  • Safer working practices


The church is committed to providing an environment that is as safe as possible for people at risk and will adopt ways of working with them that promote their safety and well-being.


  • A safer community


In Jesus’ name thischurch is committed to loving God and loving one another; so in the name of Jesus it will confront, oppose and prevent any behaviour that interferes with that commitment. (Bullying, manipulation and gossip, for example). The church will seek to ensure that the behaviour of any individuals who may pose a risk to children, young people and adults at risk in the community of the church is managed appropriately.

















Gardening, music, politics, home improvements, gold fish, swimming, food, travelling, charity shops, camping, reading, cooking, fast cars, watching films, keeping fit, coffee shops, knitting, history, maps, grandchildren, sign language, manicures, walking, flowers, woodwork, sudoku, fashion, sport, computers, art, cycling, word puzzles, takeaways, dancing, current affairs, photography, model making, the next pay packet!


Just some of the things that you will find people are interested in at Mill Road.  We are a very, very mixed group of people who represent countries all over the world – at the last count it was over 15 countries.  We don't all have fluency in English, we are not all academic, we are not all practical, we are not all physically at our prime, our lives are not perfect BUT


we are one church family, enjoying God, learning what it is to be disciples of Jesus, growing in our relationships together as we become more like Jesus, believing that Jesus is Lord and wanting  others to know our amazing God.


We are used to lots of people coming to join us – some are passing through and others stay for a while, or even decades!  Whether you come for one day, a few months or many years, we look forward to enjoying God with you and finding out what you are interested in.


Worship: have you ever thought what a visiting alien might make of the word ‘worship’?


Two people are leaving a church: one asks the other “What did you think of the worship?” and receives the reply “I didn’t get much out of it.” What do they mean? The alien doesn’t know but concludes that worship must be some kind of activity arranged for their benefit by the organisers in that building. Alien resolves to investigate.


Next, Alien is watching the news and sees footage of a congregation leaving a church. The voiceover refers to these people as ‘worshippers.’ Alien now wonders whether ‘worshippers’ is a kind of collective noun for ‘churchgoers.’ Perhaps worship consists of attending church every Sunday. Being a member of the congregation must make you a worshipper. It must be a fairly passive activity.


Feeling that the matter deserves further investigation, Alien attends church one Sunday and listens carefully to what is being said amongst the congregation. “Oh yes, the preacher’s awful but then I only really come for the worship!” From this Alien concludes that ‘the worship’ is only one particular segment of that Sunday morning activities and does not involve the main speaker.


Matters seem to be becoming clearer still when Alien discovers that the church musicians are commonly referred to as the ‘worship group.’ He forms a working hypothesis that ‘worship’ is a musical activity that takes place in and around a church. This is confirmed when he finds out that when a large number of Christians talk about ‘the worship’ they are indeed referring to the music, usually singing.


But then Alien hears the following snippet of conversation: “Oh I only really have my best times of worship when I’m out with the dog, enjoying nature.” Intrigued, he follows the speaker as she walks the aforementioned dog only to discover that she looks and sounds just like any other dog-walker in the local park. There is no music at all in this sort of ‘worship.’    


The last straw, for Alien, comes when he hears someone saying “Well, of course, the whole of my life is worship.” At this point poor Alien is strongly tempted to give up on the whole project. Does this person spend their whole life attending church? Are they singing from dusk to dawn? Does ‘worship’ turn out to be one of those words that means almost anything people want it to and therefore ends up meaning practically nothing?


Well, is it?


‘Worship means intimacy’ someone once told me and the evidence that they presented in support of that was a certain Greek word (proskyneo, in case you’re interested) which does indeed mean something like ‘to come towards to kiss.’


Except that, in the Bible, it’s not that kind of kiss. When they used that Greek word to translate the Hebrew Old Testament they were most often using it to say that someone bowed down before someone else (like Abraham does in Genesis 18:2). When you bow down low like that with your face to the ground the only things you are capable of kissing are somebody else’s feet which is rather the point: when a lesser king or his ambassador appeared before another, greater king in order to ask for his support or protection he would pay homage to him; he would bow down and kiss his feet (like Abraham does with the Hittite rulers in Genesis 23:7.)


Now there definitely is intimacy in that kiss but it says something very different to what a full on lip-to-lip smooch would say. It says “I am totally subject to your authority” “You are far, far greater than I” “I need your protection” “All that I am I lay before you” it does not say “I have strong feelings for you” or “You’re mine” nor yet “One look from you is rapture.”


David understands the kiss of homage. He gives it to Jonathan [1 Sam 20:44] and Saul [1 Sam 24:8] receives it from Abigail [1 Sam 25:23] while she is still Nabal’s wife and from Mephibosheth [2 Sam 9:6-8] and then at the lowest point of his story; exposed as a murderer and an adulterer, he rises from the death-bed of his infant son and gives that kiss of homage to God [2 Sam 12:18-20]. He is not telling God how he feels about him, he is telling God what he knows about him, that he is Lord and that David isn’t.


There has been a kind of revolution in songs of worship in my lifetime. Many of them are simply about voicing the desire for intimacy with God. Nothing wrong with that so long as we understand what kind of intimacy the Bible talks about; it’s not the kind that proceeds from our feelings but from the facts. He is Lord, so in approaching him we come off our pedestal and bow down to him, we humble ourselves, we submit ourselves.


Now, why is it so important to know that? Sometimes people do have the most overwhelming feelings of love for God, that’s not wrong is it? Absolutely not! But you also hear other people saying sadly “I just couldn’t join in with the worship this morning: if you felt like I did, you wouldn’t want to kiss him!” people who have let God down and messed up other people’s lives in the process, people who have only feelings of pain and confusion. They need to know that they can join in at will with no danger of hypocrisy because this intimacy isn’t the kiss of passion which starts from our feelings, it’s the kiss of homage which starts from the facts: in this relationship there is one Lord and it is not me.