St. John's is committed to spreading God's word through mission. We have a number of mission partners who we support as a church; their work reaches right across the globe. Some are short-term workers choosing to serve for a year or two, whilst others have committed many years to serving God in different ways and different places.
CMS - Catriona and Stephen Bennett
We are new CMS mission partners in training, preparing to work at Gahini Hospital. It’s a large mission hospital serving a rural community in eastern Rwanda with very limited surgical facilities.
Steve is a consultant surgeon, while Catriona is an anaesthetist – working for the NHS in Fife, Scotland. At Gahini Hospital, Steve will work full-time as the surgeon – performing surgery, training local doctors and establishing a safe surgical service. Meanwhile, Catriona will work part-time alongside nurse anaesthetists – providing complex anaesthetics and enabling professional development for existing staff.
We have both previously been involved in youth mission and student outreach. We hope that by using our medical skills we will be able to share God’s love with the people of Rwanda.
UFM - Kip and Rachel Chelashaw
Kip’ is originally from Kenya and served as assistant minister at East Dean Church, near Eastbourne.
Having spent half his life in the UK, he felt called to return to Nairobi.
In 2017, he and Rachel moved to Nairobi together with their 4 children (Elijah, Ezra, Susanna and Bethany) to lead a church plant there.
Rachel was born in South Africa to missionary parents, has worked as a nurse and served as a missionary and now looks after the children.
You can read more on the UFM website.
OM UK - Jemma Graves
Jemma writes: Operation Mobilisation is a global organisation that operates in 110 countries and on one ship, the Logos Hope, where I previously served for two years. As OM we want to see vibrant communities of Jesus followers among the least reached. The work of OM varies from country to country, but our focus remains the same worldwide.
OM in the UK has ministry centres in Birmingham, London and other major cities and they are committed to ensuring the UK church can be increasingly found working at the heart of diverse communities.
I work in OM UK’s National Office in Shropshire as Strategic Partnerships Administrator. The division of Strategic Partnerships incorporates five key departments; we work together to engage with individuals and churches about the work of OM in the UK and globally. I do a lot of organising and administrative work to support the division and help ensure efficiency.
I really value your support and prayer in this essential and exciting role with OM UK.
The Oakes - Jonny and Erica Greaves
Jonny and Erica Greaves are full-time missionaries working at the Oakes Holiday Centre in Sheffield.
The Oakes Holiday Centre has run residential holiday camps all year round since 2000 in order to bring the message of Jesus to children from all over the UK, ages 8-18, in a clear and relevant way while giving them a great holiday with exciting outdoor activities.
Erica has been working as the Oakes House and Bookings manager since 2008, helping group organisers plan visits to the Oakes and being in charge of the ministry of hospitality. Jonny has been the Office Administrator since 2011, responsible for overseeing the day to day running of the office and being the first point of contact for the Oakes.
Jonny and Erica were married in September 2012 and live in south Sheffield. They have two boys, Malakai and Zachariah and two cats, Oscar and Jabu.
UCCF - Alex Lucas
Alex Lucas is serving with UCCF in London.
She writes: "I’m so excited to be working with UCCF as the London Arts Staff Worker. I can’t wait to serve and invest in art students through challenging their world views in such a diverse city with people from all around the world. Through working with the Christian Unions, I’ll be encouraging and equipping them to be reaching out to those who do not know who Jesus is, as they live and speak for Him in their day to day lives. I can’t wait to see how our glorious and beautiful gospel can change the lives of young creatives in London".
You can read more about Alex and the universities that she's working with on her page on the UCCF website.
Western Kenya - Robert Matati
Canon Robert Matati is an Anglican minister in Butere, Western Kenya. He is Area Dean administering five parishes, the Diocesan Education Secretary coordinating programmes in 61 primary and 35 secondary Anglican Sponsored schools and he is also Chaplain for Lunza secondary school.
Robert is married to Mary and they have three sons, a nephew at University in Nairobi, and Roberts’ ageing parents all to look after.
“My three roles dictate that I have to travel from office to schools, to Diocesan Education office from home and at times travel to conduct burials in the deanery or where the diocesan staff are affected. I LOVE serving my God. I love visiting schools encouraging teachers and students. I love pastoral care in parish”.
UFM - Johnny and Ann McClean
Working with UFM in Bangkok, Johnny and Ann McClean are currently involved with student groups that have been started in three universities.
Each group has between 3-15 students who are all believers and mostly from Christian families. The groups meet once a week for fellowship and bible study.
UCCF - Olivia Rigby
Olivia works with five universities: Keele, Staffordshire, Buxton, Harper Adams and Manchester Metropolitan Crewe Campus. Keele and Staffordshire Universities are the largest, so she spends most time with them. With respect to the percentage of the overall student body, Harper Adams has a huge CU, Derby CU is currently incredibly small, and Manchester Met (MMU) campus in Crewe is closing in 2019.
Each university has huge strengths, and it's exciting to work with the students, supporting them in evangelism, and nurturing their faith in and love for our wonderful Jesus!
You can read more about Olivia and the universities she works with on the UCCF website.
Barnabas Ministries - Pastor working in Uganda
We support a Pastor working in Uganda, who is working to share the Gospel with Muslims and provide holistic care for converts from Islam. Our support for the charity, called Barnabas Ministries, is facilitated via the Church of Uganda.
As well as supporting individual Mission Partners, St John's also supports a number of Partner Organisations.
Cornerstone Church Crewe
For more information, please visit their website.
St Catherine's Tranmere - Charlotte Kirkham
One of our partner organisations is St Catherine's Tranmere, where we help support Charlotte Kirkham, their youth worker. Charlotte writes:
"I am 24 years old and I am from Leeds. I started working for my home church in January 2017 and worked there for 18 months before coming to Tranmere. I have a degree in animal behaviour and welfare and have worked on various working farms.
The Lord brought me to ministry when I was made redundant from a petting farm due to lack of funds. The pastor of my home church, Emmanuel Baptist Church in Leeds, invited me to become their Church trainee and that is when the Lord started to guide me into a job in full time ministry. I am enjoying my work at St Cath's and everyone is very welcoming and willing to help in any way".
St John's Over - Eddie Bridle
We have supported St John's Over for a number of years, starting when Aled Seago was Trainee Minister. We currently support Eddie Bridle, who is Student Minister at St John's. Eddie writes...
Hello to everybody at St John’s, Hartford! A huge thank you for your decision to support me as I serve as a Student Minister at St John’s, Over! Your support has been such an encouragement to me and I feel incredibly privileged to be a partner in the gospel with you all.
Kat and I have now been living in Winsford for just over six months and we are pretty much acclimatised to our new-ish surroundings. Kat has really enjoyed getting to know our new church family and its been great to catch up with old friends from my ministry trainee days. We’ve settled into St John’s really well and are now serving the church family in a number of different ways.
Kat is working as a teaching assistant at Winsford Academy and is involved in our outreach into the school. She has also taken on responsibility for our music ministry, as well as a few one to ones, and is beginning to meet up with people in her capacity as a trained biblical counsellor.
I’m splitting the preaching and leading duties in the mornings and evenings with George, leading one of our homegroups, overseeing our children’s and youth work, and our schools outreach. I’ve also begun part-time theological studies with Union School of Theology, meaning I spend Wednesdays in Liverpool and another day a week studying.
We’re really excited to be here in Winsford for the next four years, and are praying that God would use us to serve this church and build his kingdom. Thank you again for supporting us in this and if you have any questions please get in touch.
Other Partner Organisations
Other partner organisations we support include:
- Bible Encounter Trust – Story Trails and schools work, run by Peter and Julie Fraser
- Christians Against Poverty (CAP)
- The Gideons – Bible distribution in local schools