25 Jul 2020 • Articles
Every baptised Christian should be part of the fellowship of the Church. Attending Sunday services to worship and learn alongside your fellow-Christians helps you to grow in faith and to support others in their growth. Being involved with other parish activities and events and sharing in the thinking and decision-making is important, too. Churches are not social clubs, they are the local expressions of God's will for his heavenly Kingdom on earth, the Body of Christ, so every Christian should take seriously their call in the work of God.
Each parish has a Parochial Church Council which conducts and oversees the ministry and administration of the parish and the local church. In the spring, every parish in the Church of England holds its Annual Parochial Church Meeting, which is a form of AGM for the PCC. Reports are given by the Vicar, the Churchwardens and the Parochial Church Council secretary. The PCC approves the annual accounts of the parish, and they are received by the APCM. This enables parishioners to see how money is being spent, how bills are being met and how much will be needed for God's work in the future.
Only people who are registered on the Electoral Roll, the list of active supporters of the Church, can be members of the PCC or vote at the Annual Meeting, so you should make sure that you are correctly registered. To be on the Roll, you must be at least 16 years old, live in the parish or worship regularly at the church, and be able to show that you have been baptised.
Churchwardens are appointed at the Annual Vestry Meeting. The role of a Churchwarden begins with leading the Parochial Church Council in co-operating with the vicar in the church's mission and ministry and in encouraging the congregation to work and worship together to the glory of God. Churchwardens therefore need to be friendly, patient, spiritual people of prayer and integrity who can delegate work and speak on behalf of others. Churchwardens are responsible, with the whole PCC, for the church building and its contents and for the churchyard. They keep the Church Log Book which records events such as completed maintenance tasks, and the Property Register which lists the church's furniture and furnishings to make sure that everything is in place and in good order. Churchwardens also lead the sidespeople in welcoming worshippers to the services of the local church.