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Transforming the Village Club

Andrew Nicholson fills us in on an exciting project for an FIEC church in Shropshire as they renovate a building to help them reach those on their doorstep with the good news of Christ.

Transforming the Village Club primary image

Prees Baptist Church embarked on an adventure of faith in late 2015 when it purchased a former Shropshire village club to transform it into a new place of worship.

In a move that locals largely applauded, the church planned to bring an empty building back into use and enhance the character of the premises and surrounding area, including the Prees Conservation area. The church, of course, had a much higher purpose in mind!

the proposed meeting room

The members got behind the vision and were able to buy the property outright for £107,000. While it continued to meet in the village hall next door, the church began working towards raising the funds needed for renovation.

A broad vision

More than two years later they have not yet reached their target, with builders finding asbestos and the building specification being reworked to a more affordable level. The plans have all been approved and pastor Chris Dakin hopes that 2018 will be the year they finally start the renovation.

the proposed coffee shop

So it was something of a pleasant surprise when, along with the church’s FIEC membership renewal for 2018/19 they gave their full suggested donation of almost £1,000 to FIEC. Why would they do such a thing when they clearly needed the funds for their own project?

Pastor Chris said:

“We are concerned that the new church building doesn’t become our goal, absorbing all our attention. We see it as a tool which will further enable us to serve and worship God in the community.

We need a broad vision of what our Lord is doing in this land and abroad, so it is a privilege to support the valuable work of FIEC as together we seek to glorify God.

The generosity of the members of our reasonably small church has been phenomenal. We were able to purchase the building and raise the funds for refurbishment so far without taking on any loans.”

Do pray for the church as they need to raise £45,000 to complete the £85,000 renovation costs; and as they seek to use part of the premises for a drop-in coffee bar to help reach the 3,000 residents of the village.

Chris would love another FIEC church to partner with them in this significant development. You can contact Chris: christopherdakin@hotmail.co.uk

Andrew Nicholson photo
Andrew Nicholson - FIEC Head of Development

Andrew worked for FIEC from 2001 to 2008 as Office & Conference Manager, then re-joined the FIEC staff team in May 2014. He is married to Meryl, who works as a hospice nurse, and they have two sons.