Seeing lives transformed through encounter with Jesus
We are a Church of England Benefice of six village parishes in the countryside between Sittingbourne and Rainham in North Kent, with seven diverse congregations. We seek to be "the people who bless", seeking to embody Jesus in our daily lives sharing by our presence, service and words the Lord's transforming love and grace. We see church as a community we belong to, not just a place we go to. Yet we recognise that each village's ancient building speaks of the steadfast, faithful presence of God through the varying times of life down the centuries. They speak of the Lord's promise to us: "I am with you always".
Everyone is welcome to join us at any of our services, which provide different flavours of traditional and contemporary worship. We endeavour also to reflect this in our weekly online service, which you can find on our YouTube channel by clicking here.
So do join with us, you are very welcome!
Our church buildings (clockwise): Hartlip, Iwade, Lower Halstow, Upchurch, Stockbury, Newington
COVID-19: WE ARE HERE FOR YOU.
We have been living in unprecedented times as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and its knock-on effect on the economy. Our six church buildings have been closed for several months as part of the Church of England's support for Government measures to avoid transmission of the virus. However we have now started to re-open them for private prayer, public worship, funerals and weddings in line with Government guidelines, although we are not yet back to a normal pattern of weekly worship.
The following churches are now open as follows:
Individual private prayer
St Michael's Hartlip: Wednesdays 2pm-5pm ; Saturdays 10am-1pm
St Mary's Newington: Wednesdays 10am-12 pm ; Saturdays 2pm-5pm
St Mary's Upchurch: Wednesdays times TBC
St Mary Magdalene Stockbury: Sundays times TBC
Public Worship (Sundays)
St Michael's Hartlip: 10.30am
St Mary's Newington: 10.00am
St Mary's Upchurch: 10.00am
All Saints Iwade: 10.30am (from 20th September)
We are committed to ensuring the safety of everyone who attends any of these occasions.
So we have put in place certain measures in accordance with current guidance for to ensure such.
We kindly ask that everyone abides by these measures.
Face coverings are a requirement in attending any service.
Your local church community is still here to serve and support you, to be available to you and especially for the most vulnerable in our village communities. We are praying for your village community and invite you to join us to pray, as you can, wherever you are as follows:
Daily Prayer: Monday to Friday at 9.00am
Sunday Worship: 10.30am
'Shine a Light': 8.00pm. We invite you to place a candle or a lamp in your window each Sunday evening as a sign of hope given the challenges that the nations face. Please be conscious of fire safety.
We are aware that some may be worried and struggling in some way during this period. Do not struggle alone. There are many who can help and listen. Do ask. If you wish for help from our churches, do contact me in the first instance. I can then put you in touch with others in the communities who can and are willing to help.
Rev. Julian Staniforth
Rector & Priest-in-Charge of The Six benefice
"The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not (cannot) overcome this light". These words from John’s Gospel remind us of God’s promise that no matter what life brings, the Lord says “I am with you”. In the midst of the storms the Lord Jesus met his panicked disciples and said "It is I, do not be afraid. Where is your faith?" In the midst of this particular storm engulfing our individual lives, our nation and our world at this time may we hear the Lord’s promise “I am with you”.
If you would like to speak to someone, please do get in touch with the Clergy team in the first instance. Safeguarding is an essential part of our churches being safe for everyone. Follow the link here.