Calum+Piper.jpg
 

Welcome to St. Michael and All Angels Parish Church.

One of my favourite descriptions about church is within a book entitled “Why Bother with Church? and other questions about why you need it and why it needs you.” Sam Allberry, the author, writes:

“The Church is God’s family. It is not those who have signed up to a human institution, or who find themselves in natural sympathy with Christian ethics and Church life. It is those who have been brought into God’s family through the reconciling work of his son. When we were adopted into his family – we became part of the familial community. When God draws people to himself, he draws them into family.”

I joined St. Michaels in July 2017 as their Interim Minister and went on to be appointed their Vicar in February 2019. My experience of church both before I became a priest and since my ordination was of the church being a group of people who strove to worship God, support one another through all of life whilst also seeking to do some good outside the building it owns.

The church, as a whole, has an incredible potential to make such a positive difference in the life of every individual and in every community. This is possible because within a church community you see at work the true nature of God – love.

During my time at St. Michaels I have witnessed a group of people, who aren’t just a community but are a family who want the best for each other, and who want the best for Bramhall.

Throughout our website you will find more about who we are as a family of God’s children, sharing life together at St. Michaels. Do come and visit, we are excited to get to know you more, and hope that you might want to join us, as we continue to share the adventure of life together.

 

Our Core Values

The church, as a whole, has an incredible potential to make such a positive difference in the life of every individual and in every community. This is possible because within a church community you see at work the true nature of God – love.

 

 
 
 

Community Focused

At the heart of any church is the people. Although usually when people talk about church they are thinking of the building - church is actually the people and we believe the best way of being church is living life together as community or to use another word; family.

Jesus said: "You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you. You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit – fruit that will last – and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you. This is my command: love each other." (John 15:14-17)

We seek to shape our life as a church based on love for one another and wanting to enable each individual to flourish as a child of God.

 

Inclusive

We have no rules about who is welcome and who is not. Everyone is welcome at St. Michael’s; young and old, male and female, refugee and landowner, families and individuals, we don’t believe anyone should be judged by what they wear, what they believe and how they love.

The Apostle Paul wrote:  "So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus". (Galatians 3:26-27)

We want our church to be a safe place for everyone so that anyone can come, be, rest and walk with others on a journey of faith.

 

Discipleship

At the heart of the Christian faith is the truth that Jesus has called people to follow him and be shaped by his life. This is commonly called discipleship. Through prayer, worship, reading of the bible and sharing life together we seek to encourage one another and build each other up as followers of Jesus.

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law". (Galatians 5:22-23)

No one in our community is perfect but we all strive and encourage one another to grow in these qualities of life and shape, for the better, the community of Bramhall.

Calum Piper.JPG

Revd Calum Piper - Vicar

Calum was ordained in 2014 and served his Curacy at St. Hilary’s Church in Wallasey on the Wirral, before that training at St. John’s College in Nottingham. He is married to Jess who is curate at St. Mary’s Church in Bowdon. Before ordination, Calum was a student at the University of Chester where he returned to the Church of England after a period of time growing and learning within the Baptist Church. He enjoys walking, running and touring the country with Jess during his time off. Calum’s passion in ministry is about building communities of disciples centered around the cross.

You can contact Calum in the following ways:

(t) 07511427258          (e) calum.piper@bramhall.church


Louise Richardson.JPG

Louise Richardson - Churchwarden

Louise generously dedicates her time to St Michaels as a Churchwarden whilst also being chair of the board of corporation at Stockport College, and owning of her own consultancy practice. Louise is an accomplished musician and singer, having previously served as Music Leader here at St Michaels, and remains heavily involved with the church's musical life, including singing in the choir at services.


David Walker.JPG

David Walker - Churchwarden

Dave has been part of St Michael’s for the past 33 years. He is the Electoral Roll Officer and was a sidesperson until he took up the role of Churchwarden. Dave is married to Ann and has two children, Stuart and Andrea, and five grandchildren. Dave worked for British Telecom for 38 years, retiring 16 years ago. He has enjoyed being a member of ’79 Probus Club of Bramhall for 13 years being chairman from 2011 to 2013 and also volunteers with Ann at the Avro Heritage Museum in Woodford.


Mark Hackney - Reader in Training

Mark and his wife Julie have recently joined the St. Michael’s family. Mark was a teacher for 37 years at a variety of schools where he undertook a range of teaching roles. He is now a community driver. He is aiming to be licensed for Reader Ministry at St. Michael’s in the Autumn of 2020. Mark enjoys preaching and is also interested in developing his involvement in pastoral ministry.


Andrea Millington.jpg

Andrea Millington - Pastoral Worker

Andrea was a counsellor for many years, including working for Relate, reinforcing her enthusiasm for nurturing individuals, couples, children and young people and strengthening family relationships. Music is Andrea’s main hobby and she currently sings with a flourishing NW choir. Andrea has three sons, a daughter and seven grandchildren spread around the world necessitating much travel to see them! Following the death of her husband Rob ( whom she met at church in her teens) , Andrea felt called to formalise her ministry , studied and was Licensed as a Pastoral Worker in 2010 then re-licensed to St Michael’s in 2018 after moving to Bramhall. In addition to pastoral work Andrea is a leader of Praise and Play ( 3s and under) and leads Thursday Fellowship.


Chris Ainscough.JPG

Chris Ainscough

Chris (Christine) lived in the area with her husband, Brian for 46 years before moving to nearby Tytherington, 2 years ago. They have three children, Julie, Sally and David and have been blessed with seven grandchildren and recently, one great grandchild. Family is very important to them and all living nearby, they are able to enjoy getting together often.

Chris was a Secretary at a firm of Chartered Accountants but later completely changed direction and worked as an HCA on a medical ward for 15 years up to retirement. She enjoys walking, gardening and many craft activities.

Chris has been worshipping at St. Michael’s for the past 19 years and along with Sally, takes the commitment as Baptism Coordinator very seriously. She sees baptism as a wonderful and memorable occasion and feels privileged to be able to play a small part in the beginning of that journey of faith.


Bob Munn.JPG

Dr Bob Munn - PCC Vice Chair

As lay Vice-Chair of the church council, Bob chairs meetings in the absence of the Vicar, and chairs the PCC Finance and Buildings Committee. A retired academic, he is a former Churchwarden at St Michaels, and sings and plays the guitar at 10 a.m. services. He also chairs the Diocese of Chester committee that advises parishes on significant changes to church buildings and their interiors.


Tricia Munn.JPG

Tricia Munn - PCC Secretary

As Secretary of the church council, Tricia maintains the official records of meetings including the annual meeting. A teacher by training, she worked for the Diocese of Chester and later for the Acorn Christian Healing Foundation, and is a former Churchwarden at St Michaels. She sings at 10 a.m. services.


Graham Knight.JPG

Graham Knight - PCC Treasurer

Graham together with his wife Brenda have been worshipping at St Michael since 1974 following the move from London via a short spell in South Africa. Have 3 grown up grandchildren to their sons David and Mark who died in 2010. Graham is a retired accountant and has been church treasurer since 2010


Kathy Hedley.JPG

Cathy Hedley - Safeguarding Officer

Cathy has been an active member of St Michael’s since moving up from Nottingham in 1998 to Bramhall and has lived here ever since with her husband Damian and 3 children James, Lauren and Nina.

St Michael’s has been a key part of Cathy’s life, having married Damian (who is the Explorer Scout leader at 4th Bramhall Scout Group) here and both her daughters were baptised at St Michael’s. Cathy has helped over the years with the creche, young church and all age services (in their various formats) as well as supporting other youth activities such as the puppet ministry.

Cathy will be continuing to provide a safe and enriching environment for everyone to safely worship here at St Michael’s in her role as safeguarding officer.


Susan Joyce.JPG

Susan Joyce - Children’s Advocate

Susan has been involved in Church life at St. Michael's for about 10 years helping out at Young Church and as part of the all age service planning group. She plays the violin and enjoys playing in Church services as part of the music group with her daughter and friends. She is usually a secondary school teacher of languages but also worked as a Children and Family worker for the Methodist Church for 2 years.

For ten years St Michael’s has been steadily building links of friendship with the Anglican Diocese of Newala and its community. In the same year as St Michael’s celebrated its centenary the Diocese of Newala, was carved out of the massive Diocese of Masasi in the far south of Tanzania, and it was looking for new friends.

Newala, bordering Mozambique, is not well connected by roads; water is scarce except in the rainy season; cashew nuts are the main cash crop; many farmers depend on them for cash income. Offshore oil and gas, being exploited near the port of Mtwara, offer great economic potential, with risks, for all Tanzania. Masasi Diocese is a historic centre of Christian mission but the population of Newala Diocese is no more than a third Christian and another third Muslim, living peacefully together. 

VISITING FRIENDS FROM NEWALA

The Bishop of Newala Diocese, Rt. Revd. Oscar Mnung’a visited us in 2011 and thanked us for our efforts. Sister Helen, senior member in Newala of the Order of Sisters of Mary, spent time with us in 2012 and encouraged help with projects for teenagers.

Dr Lawi Issa, former hospital director, and his wife Molle, an experienced midwife, visited us in 2013 to tell us about their plans to re-open a Church hospital in a remote rural area. Expert advisers on projects we support in Newala have been George Mbesigwe, a senior government Education Officer, and Elizabeth Milanzi, founding Secretary of the Newala Diocesan Mothers’ Union and businesswoman. Both of them were able to visit us for three weeks in 2018 and made many new friends.

VISITING FRIENDS IN NEWALA

In summer 2013, a group of twelve from Bramhall visited Tanzania enjoying hospitality, visiting projects, churches and schools. They helped build toilets for a Mtwara primary school and taught English, met congregation members, joined in Church services, and organised a great sports day.

At Newala Town up on the Makonde plateau where the Bishop is based, they visited schools, teaching and organising sports, showing teenagers how to use the educational puppets we had brought for them. They visited the Lulindi Health Centre and the beautiful Cathedral in neighbouring Masasi Diocese.

A final week was spent on the coast and visiting Zanzibar, a time to talk about and digest their wonderful experience in Newala. We are planning a further group visit to Newala for 2021.

 SUPPORTING OUR FRIENDS IN NEWALA

Our Link is about friendship, understanding and growth in faith, but practical help from Bramhall to a materially much poorer community in Newala is also a vital part. Members of St Michael’s have joined in every sort of fundraising.

As a first try at fundraising in 2010 members of our Mothers’ Union agreed to organise three annual cake sales to raise £600. From that small beginning we have gone on to organise quizzes, concerts, Tanzanian evenings of food and entertainment, virtual gift Christmas cards, sponsored walks; Sunday breakfasts for the congregation. Over three years an annual Open Garden has raised almost £1800. Substantial funds have come from a vegetable stall, supplied with produce from our gardeners. New ways of raising funds are always being looked for.

 BUILDING CHURCH AND COMMUNITY

Tiny amounts of money, by Bramhall standards, can make possible all sorts of developments in Newala. Below are some of the projects we have financed through the generosity of people in Bramhall

·      £200 for corrugated iron completed a village church;

·      £100 for an isolated Christian village funded a herd of goats to provide milk, meat and long-term cash income.

·      A motorbike enabled a priest to visit and support remote parishes.

·      Seven old sewing machines meant young girls could earn money for school fees through sewing. Women are the micro-economic and community welfare entrepreneurs of Tanzania.

·      We funded successful Mothers Union investments of only £200 each in a tie dye business, building a shop, buying chairs and tables for hiring out for social and business events.

·      On MU advice we embarked on a much bigger project to bring water within easy reach of a succession of rural villages through construction of Water harvesting tanks (storing rainy season downfalls). £2500 in funding has now secured harvesting tanks in three villages. We aim to fund one a year.

·      Many primary school children go to school with empty stomachs. We wanted to help parents organise school porridge breakfasts. £1500 from us each year has funded porridge breakfast for well over 2500 children in five primary schools in the Diocese improving concentration and effective learning. Our idea has now been taken up by the Ministry of Education.

·      At Lulindi Health Centre we funded medicines, building work, and medical equipment to help the hospital build services.

·      Our biggest project, not complete until we find or borrow another £10,000, is a twelve bed hostel in the Cathedral grounds which will provide a safe and comfortable rest house for visitors to Newala and a steady income to the Diocese for its community welfare services.

 GETTING INVOLVED

Our group meetings (every two months) are open to all. This is where we organise and plan fundraising events. Please join us and share some new ideas. Above all, join us in prayer for our friends in Newala.

To find out more, contact the office who will put you in touch with the coordinating group.