A not-for-profit organisation run by a group of willing volunteers aiming to restore an old Baptist Chapel as a resource for our church outreach activities as well as offering a range of community activities.
Catalyst is a youth and schools work project based in Tavistock, Devon, it currently serves also Tavistock Community College and Kelly College and Catalyst supports a full time link worker for these links and other Community Youth work.
Our local Primary School is situated in the centre of Buckland Monachorum. The school at present is single form entry accepting children in the Foundation Year as rising 5’s. The school also offers before and after school care with on their on-site Fantastic Fun Club, this will take children prior to the start of the school day and after school. The school also runs a good range of after school clubs.
Currently operating from the Village Hall, this is one of the feeder nurseries/pre-schools for St Andrew’s Primary School with which there are close links.
for more information.
The Diocese of Exeter is part of the Church of England. We St Andrews are part of a community of more than 25,000 people who come together in churches large and small, all over the county of Devon. The Diocese offer a Christian presence in every community – this means they offer support and prayer, worship and friendship, as well as practical help for those in need through our involvement in all sorts of projects from foodbanks to credit unions.
There are over 600 churches in the Diocese and it covers a wide geograpical area.
The Diocese Vision
‘I know the plans I have for you, says the Lord, plans for your welfare and not for harm, to give you a future with hope.’
We seek to be people who together are:
Growing in prayer
We want to grow in prayer, living a life close to God. This means taking risks as we become more honest with ourselves and more honest with God. Prayer opens up deep places within us to God’s grace which is why it is such a life-giving activity. Growing in prayer is essential if we are to witness to God’s Kingdom and become the people God has called us to be.
Making new disciples
A disciple is someone who follows Jesus Christ. With him as our companion and guide we can travel through life differently, and we hope others will share the adventure with us. We want to be more faithful in our discipleship and allow God to shape our priorities and values. The Christian gospel is good news and we need to find new ways of telling the story, of explaining the faith and giving a reason for the hope that is in us.
Serving the people of Devon with joy
We want to make a difference in the world and witness to God’s love and justice, especially in the communities and schools where we live. Working in partnership with others who are transforming lives, we seek to address the global issues confronting our generation so that everyone may flourish.
This new Vision was set out by Bishop Robert at diocesan synod in March 2016. Bishop Sarah of Crediton has recently been appointed as the new Bishop of London. Prayers are asked for the appointment of a new Bishop who shares the same servant-hearted ethos that has characterised the Diocese since the arrival of Bishop Robert. https: exeter.anglican.org
Missionary Partners in Egypt
St Andrews has been supporting the local church at Menouf in the Nile Delta for a number of years. Strong links have been forged with the church, school and hospital, and strong friendships have been engendered. Two mission trips have taken place, and members of the church family at Menouf have been invited to spend time with the church family at Buckland each summer, and to enjoy our parish camp at Strete.
The church in Egypt has gained some stability since the coming to power of General Al-Sisi, and the ousting of the Muslim Brotherhood.
Bishop Mouneer Anis, and his wife Nancy are leading the Anglican church not only in Egypt, but across north Africa. Bishop Mouneer is a much-loved friend of the parish, and is very supportive of our summer invitations. The obtaining of visitors’ visas has proved more difficult in recent years, and prayer is needed in this regard.
Other close friendships:
George Girgis is head of the Episcopal school in Menouf. He is married to Eman. They have three children, Shady, Joy and Judith.
Adel Saleh: Adel is a surgeon at the Harpur Memorial Hospital in Menouf. Adel is married to Mona. Their daughter Heidi came with them to visit in the summer of 2016. Heidi is now married to Karem, and they live in Canada, planning to return to Cairo to establish an orphanage for street children.
Open Doors Report
As radical Islam is fervently trying to take over the country’s culture, there is a growing sentiment to reject Christians. Ten-year-old Marina is the youngest of six children – and the only girl – in a poor Christian family, living in a small village in Upper Egypt. In these remote, predominantly Muslim communities, Christians often find themselves excluded or experiencing discrimination.
Building or even repairing a church is difficult, if not impossible, and Christians find themselves placed at the end of the queue when it comes to things like education and welfare. Even more so, if you are a Christian girl. Socially and culturally, girls and women are viewed as far inferior to men. Although Marina’s parents are illiterate, they sent their children to the public school in the nearby village. However, in such places, many Christian children face discrimination. Placed at the back of the class, they can be ignored and marginalised.
The majority of Egypt’s population is Muslim, but in recent years, radical political Islam has become more visible and the society has suffered the implications of the presence of radical Islamic groups. In December 2016, an attack by so-called Islamic State extremists on a chapel adjoining Cairo’s Coptic cathedral, St Mark, left at least 28 people dead and many more injured. But it is not only from radical groups that Christians face persecution.
Believers from a Muslim background, as in many countries, bear the brunt of persecution, often from their families, who may punish them for abandoning the Islamic faith with beatings or expulsions from the home.
The tradition of authoritarian rule is perhaps the only permanent feature of Egypt’s political system, which has known three regime changes in only three years. The current government seems to regard basic human rights and democratic pluralism as a low priority: a law from November 2013, restricting public protests, contributes to reducing freedom of expression in the public sphere. In this context, therefore, religious freedom for Christians is not fully guaranteed.
The large Coptic minority, while facing discrimination in education, health and legislation which hinders essential aspects of church life, has been tolerated in the past because of its historical presence and demographic size. In recent years, however, this has changed, causing historical Christian communities to be targeted as well.
In cooperation with local churches and other partnering ministries, Open Doors supports the church in Egypt through:
Literacy training and education projects
Youth and family ministry
Women’s empowerment training and ministry to widows.
Missionary Aviation Fellowship
MAF one of our mission partners
Becki Dillingham MAF Aviator
Becki and Mat Dilligham married in 2008 and moved to Cheltenham to enable Becki to continue with her commercial pilot training. Meanwhile, Matt started teacher training at Gloucester University. A job flying out of Plymouth airport as the ‘eye in the sky’ pilot for a local radio station saw Becki and Matt move back to the south-west, where Matt taught science at Holsworthy Community College.
Becki’s Latest Assignment
As well as being one of the pilots in the MAF Chad program, this year I have taken on the role of Flight Operations Manager, a role essential in providing the smooth running of flights and upholding customer relations. My team are responsible for booking flights and liasing with customers to ensure the purpose of the flight fits within MAF’s criteria. Much of my time is spent working out the logistics of flights to minimise costs and flying hours while also working together with engineers to plan aircraft maintenance so as to reduce disruption to flights as much as possible. We fly 6 days a week (Sunday if its an emergency) and the aircraft often departs soon after sunrise or lands late in the day.
Therefore scheduling the hours of ground staff is necessary to ensure there is always someone to assist the pilot in the preparations for the flight, flight-follow on the radio and push the aircraft back into the hangar at the end of the day. There is a lot to organise and I always have my phone on as you never know when a call about a medical evacuation might come in that needs organising for the following morning!
Currently I am working on an exciting set of flights that will see our small aircraft fly around the south of Chad with two doctors, offering one day clinics in 6 different villages.
This project allows the team to reach villages that are only 1 hours flight away but are almost impossible to reach by road. None of the airstrips have fuel available and the aircraft needs maintenance during the same period so working out a schedule that fits within the funded hours (there is a budgeted number of hours for each project we do), ensures the aircraft won’t run out of fuel and is back in the hanger when needed is a big puzzle. A provisional schedule has been worked out with the medical team and the local clinics but I’m sure there will be some last-minute hurdles to overcome and changes to be made before the Medical Tournee begins!
MAF Flying in Chad
MAF have been operating in Chad since 1966 and have built strong relationships with many organisations that are also working here. There are people from countries all over the world, who have come to live in remote regions of this country where they have only the most basic amenities available. They are serving the local people through sharing the Gospel, Bible translation, providing medical services in hospitals and in their own homes. MAF is able to support these families by transporting them to where they need to go and frequently, provide transport for their families or friends who come to visit them. Usually any extra weight allowance not taken up by people/luggage is used to send food supplies to these communities.
Faith in Kids
Faith In Kids have some fantastic resources to support parents in discipling their children at home. From materials to facilitate family devotionals to a podcast discussing the joys and struggles of raising children to know and love the Lord Jesus - their site is well worth checking out!