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Who are we

The Parish of Whitton with Thurleston and Akenham known locally as ‘Whitton Parish’ is the Church of England Parish in which the parish church of St Mary and St Botolph’ sits, along with The Ascension and the now closed church of St Mary’s at Akenham. To see if you are in the parish please follow the link to the parish Map

It is part of the Church of England which has a Christian presence in every community. Unlike some denominations you don’t have to be a member of the church, it is there to serve EVERYONE in the parish. We pray for the whole parish and its life, we are there for the important rites of passage of life, Christening (Baptism), Weddings and Funerals. Your parish priest is there to offer pastoral care as best as is possible - within the resources of time etc - whether you come to church or not.

As Christians we believe in God.

We believe that through God creation came into being.

We believe that in order to establish a relationship with the people he loved and created God chose to dwell on earth in the person of Jesus Christ.

We believe that the ongoing presence of God is with us through the Holy Spirit who is within us, around us and present in all the world.

We believe that there is only one God who has these three aspects to him- yes, a bit complicated but let me try and explain a little in a way you might understand.

If we take a bowl of water, we have liquid, which for this purpose we might see as ‘God’ the creator. We can take some of that water and freeze it to become solid, this we can see as Jesus Christ who came in a ‘solid’ human form, but it the ice return to the bowl and become part of the water again, just as Jesus returned to heaven. We can take some and boil it to become steam which will be all around us and we can breathe in, the steam comes from the liquid and can become water again and return to the bowl, we can see this as The Holy Spirit.

One of the most important things we believe is that God is LOVE, he loves us and longs for us to love him, he created us out of love and for love. When we do not love one another as he loves us, we sadden him. When we turned away from this love God sent Jesus, his only son, the thing that comes out of who God is, to teach us how to live and love each other. Jesus chose not to turn away from God or us and went to his death on the cross to save us. Through this he promised us eternal life, life beyond the life we have here on earth, life with God in paradise. He promised this to all who love him.

Jesus left us a reminder of the love God has for us in what we call ‘The Eucharist’ which means ‘Thanksgiving, it is also known as Holy Communion or The Lord’s Supper. This is bread and wine that is blessed by a priest and we share among those of us who believe and trust in God, or who want to believe and trust in God. Jesus promised us he would be very especially present to us when we share this together.

We come together every Sunday to worship and give thanks to God for all he has given us, to pray for the needs of the world and for our own needs and to share the journey and friendship and faith together, we sing praises and learn about the life of Jesus and how we understand God.We have lots of questions but most importantly we have faith – that is we make a positive choice to believe that we what we see and know now convinces us of God sufficiently to keep searching and growing together. We don’t have all the answers, but we joyfully seek to understand more of God’s love for us together. 

Everyone is welcome at church, this is YOUR church not exclusively ours who go week by week, if you live in the parish you are automatically a member of the church if you choose to be. Of course, we need a community of faith to meet there and the more the better as we try and find the resources to spread the love of God through the community in practical ways.

We want to be a vibrant and inclusive Christian family, meeting together to worship God, serve our community and draw others into the family of faith as we seek to make the love of Jesus Christ known in the world.

We are members of ‘Inclusive Church’ and endorse the statement below that was originally seen at Coventry Cathedral.

We extend a special welcome to those who are single, married, divorced, widowed, straight, gay, confused, well-heeled or down-at-heel. We especially welcome wailing babies and excited toddlers. We welcome you whether you can sing like Pavarotti or just growl quietly to yourself. You're welcome here if you're just browsing, just woken up or just got out of prison. We don't care if you're more Christian than the Archbishop of Canterbury or haven't been to church since Christmas 10 years ago. We extend a special welcome to those who are over 60 but not grown up yet and to teenagers who are growing up too fast.

We welcome keep-fit mums, football dads, starving artists, tree huggers, latte sippers, vegetarians, junk food eaters. We welcome those who are in recovery or still addicted. We welcome you if you're having problems, are down in the dumps or don't like organized religion. We're not that keen on it either. We offer welcome to those who think the Earth is flat, work too hard, don't work, can't spell, or are here because Granny is visiting and wanted to come t. We welcome those who are inked, pierced, both or neither.

We offer a special welcome to those who could use a prayer right now, had religion shoved down their throats as kids or got lost on the Ring Road and wound up here by mistake. We welcome pilgrims, tourists, seekers, doubters and you.