St Martin’s Church in Liskeard is one of four church’s in the Diocese of Truro’s second stage bid for significant funding from the Church Commissioners to create four more resourcing churches. The bid, under the title “Transforming Mission”, to create the first such church in Cornwall at Falmouth was successful. If the second stage bid is also successful, St Martin’s will recruit a full-time youth leader, a full-time families’ leader; a part-time schools’ worker and a worship leader / social media person. Our existing parish administrator will become a full-time operations manager. We are looking for two interns to join this team. We will know the outcome of the bid in June 2019. If unsuccessful we will still be looking for at least one intern to join our current team.
Structure & Vision
St Martin’s church is a medieval grade II* listed church. It is the second largest parish church in Cornwall and has a membership of about 200. In 2018 a £600k reordering was completed, removing most of the pews, installing underfloor heating, a kitchen and a friendship area, and a state-of-the-art audio-visual system. The Lewis pipe organ is also being completely refurbished.
Traditional services are held at 9:15 every Sunday, followed by a modern service, with contemporary worship, at 11:00. The 6pm evening service varies greatly in style and content. The church’s theology is Open Evangelical.
The current team at St Martin’s comprises the rector, a part-time families’ worker and part-time parish administrator. This is supplemented with two retired clergy, three lay readers and several local worship leaders. A curate will be joining the team in the summer, and we are employing a part-time CAP manager (Christians Against Poverty) in March 2019.
We already have three youth groups, run by volunteers, and children’s work, involving both primary schools in Liskeard. This work is overseen by the rector and families’ worker.
Our vision is three-fold:
1. To build a multi-generational church in Liskeard, with a heart for families.
2. To guide everyone in our church to grow in their faith and love of Jesus.
3. To resource nearby parishes, helping them to grow too.
Our aim is to make a real difference in the town and nearby parishes:
1. Combat the significant problems of poverty and debt present in Liskeard and the nearby rural parishes through our new CAP centre.
2. Transform our local primary schools though the provision of governors and helping to address the high volume of safeguarding issues through parenting courses and other support mechanisms. Our two Liskeard primary schools, with ~750 pupils between them, were both rated “requires improvement” by OFSTED at their last inspections.
3. Create a local network of parish youth groups, provide a central venue for area group events and link with other resourcing churches for larger youth events.
4. Extend the two already successful ABC (Adults, Babies, Children) St Martin’s groups, initially in Liskeard, and then support other nearby parishes wishing to establish similar groups.
5. Increase the provision of Open the Book teams, which currently visit 10 out of the 16 deanery primary schools, to at least 13 (assuming the schools will welcome it).
6. To reach financial sustainability as a resourcing church in Liskeard by 2025 (when the Transforming Mission funding will end) and aim for the deanery to fully meet its ministry costs (being the basis of parish share).
St Martin’s Church is the Church of England parish church in Liskeard. Liskeard is a rural market town with a population of about 10,000, but a catchment area of about 36,000. It sits on the edge of Bodmin Moor, with the seaside town of Looe on the south coast just 15 minutes away, and access to beaches like Polzeath on the north coast of Cornwall just 45 minutes’ drive away. Liskeard is also a main stop on the Penzance to London Paddington railway line.
Like many Cornish towns, Liskeard has a mixture of wealth and poverty: one neighbourhood is in the top 10% most deprived areas in the country, and another two neighbourhoods are in the top 20%.
These would be new placements as part of the church’s plans to grow and to reach the missing generations.