The first Growth Fund grants to help churches reach younger adults have been awarded to three churches in different parts of the diocese - in Middlesbrough, Bridlington and the outskirts of York.
The grants, initially £5000 for the first year for each church, have been awarded to West Hill, Bessingby near Bridlington (East Riding Archdeaconry), Holy Trinity, North Ormesby (Cleveland Archdeaconry) and Huntington Benefice (York Archdeaconry).
The Growth Fund has been made possible by central Church of England ‘Strategic Development Funding’ with a total of £500,000 available over the next five years for around 25 churches or benefices in the Diocese of York to develop lay-led new worshipping communities aimed at those in the 20s to 40s.
At one of the first three churches to be awarded a grant, Holy Trinity Church, North Ormesby, Lee-Anne Southon will be supported through the fund. Lee-Anne has already begun a new worshipping community, known as ‘Moving On’ which extends from her work in the church and local community with Tots praise, Messy Church, nurture courses and holiday activities. The community meets on a Wednesday morning to explore the Bible and key aspects of Christian faith together.