Queen Edith Chapel, Cambridge
Queen Edith Chapel
Together – With Jesus at the Centre – Reaching our Community
Queen Edith Chapel is near the southern fringe of the City of Cambridge, within walking distance of the regional Addenbrookes Hospital. The surrounding area is composed of mixed housing, sheltered housing, local primary schools, a large secondary school and enjoys excellent public transport. Current and future mixed housing developments are taking place nearby but outside the periphery of Queen Edith Ward. The church is outside the catchment of either university.
Premises - These have been extended and developed over recent years and incorporate a main meeting hall, a variety of small rooms, a craft room, a well equipped kitchen, offices, multi-purpose sports hall and a small field at the rear.
Historical - Queen Edith Chapel started as a church plant from a Brethren Meeting in the City centre during the 1950s with an outreach vision to families, children and young people in what was then a new housing area for Cambridge. From the outset, the church formed its own identity with an attitude of openness and responsiveness to its surrounding community. The church has been led over the intervening years by a succession of Eldership teams, together with the support of full and part time employed personnel, particularly over the past 25-30 years. Worship styles have changed over the years, but nevertheless, the value of open congregational worship with its encouragement of exercising spiritual gift within church life remains as a key feature. The church has always valued the pluralistic style of leadership, but in recent years, has increasingly appreciated the input of salaried staff in the areas of pastoral care, teaching and outreach.
Our current situation - Our combined membership and congregation number is about 100, with about 75 attending a typical Sunday morning service. Our age demographic is skewed so that about 70% of our total is over 50 years of age. About 60% of our numbers live within a 1.5 miles radius of the church. A wide variety of nationalities, occupation, need and background are represented. Our midweek ministries are popular and we see well over 100 children and young people participating in church led activities. We would dearly love to see more of these children and their families coming to faith and joining the church family.
The dominant attitude towards the church by members would be expressed by sentiments of spiritual home and family, together with the thought that it is a place where a personal relationship with Christ can be expressed with openness, thus encouraging personal spiritual growth and maturity. The attitude to newcomers is welcoming, with a ready acceptance and inclusion at the earliest opportunity.
Outreach and the support of mission is an integral and vital part of church life. Many are active in personal friendship evangelism as part of their Christian lifestyle. In a more structured way, there are many groups and activities, run by members and based on the premises, serving the community amongst children, young people and the elderly. Support is further given to missionaries serving in South America and India, together with local missions based in Cambridge.