Nationally, the remit of the URC Church & Society Committee is broad: a visit to their website illustrates the breadth of interest and discussion at the national level and our Avenue St Andrew’s Church and Society Committee work closely with them, joining in campaigns and petitions, and publicising research materials produced by them.
Locally, Avenue St Andrew’s Church and Society Committee’s purpose is, first, to publicise those issues in society which are most pressing in our locality, amongst our church members, our friends and work colleagues and the wider public; and, second, to organise some degree of commitment, both practical and financial.
Since it was established in its present form, in 1972, the Church and Society Committee has been responsible for publicising and lobbying on many current issues. To list a few: homelessness, sexuality, the plight of refugees, poverty and deprivation, fair trade issues, ecological issues, the on-going Israel/Palestine conflict, HIV/AIDS, the war against Iraq, water shortage issues, racial awareness, racial justice, refugees and asylum seekers, and human rights. For further information on these issues, the reader is advised to visit the websites.
On the practical level it has been instrumental in setting up the Avenue Centre, Southampton Churches’ Rent Deposit Scheme, the Church Amnesty International Group, Avenue St Andrew’s Eco-congregation work and in having appointed a full-time Church Related Community Worker.
Financially, the committee has for many years organised annually the church’s main fund-raising event for our URC Commitment for Life overseas partners, as well as the monthly collection on Communion Sundays for a charitable cause, either local, national or international, in consultation with the congregation.
Our vision is that Avenue St Andrew’s may be an instrument for building God’s kingdom – a kingdom inwardly secure and reaching out to all.
Contact: Richard Harris