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St George’s News - Waterlooville’s Parish Magazine

The Website for St George’s Church, Waterlooville and its Parish Magazine St George’s News

Autumn 2022 issue

From the Vicar, Fr Dr Colin Lawlor

There is often a collective sigh when ‘Stewardship’ is mentioned. Unfortunately, this is because we automatically assume that this simply means the church are asking for more money. In reality it means much more than this. Stewardship is about acknowledging what God has given us, and reflecting on how we might, in thanksgiving, give something back in terms of time, talent and, yes, money. The Church of England talks about ‘Living a Generous Life’ in response to God’s generosity to us and asks us to consider how we might be generous in the giving of our labour; generous in our interactions; generous in our financial giving; and generous in the giving of our expertise. This is, in reality, what we mean by Stewardship.

The PCC Awayday

The day itself was framed in prayer and meditation. We began with prayers for our late Queen, whose death had been announced the previous Thursday. We then had some time to meditate ‘mindfully’, in order to listen attentively to a passage of scripture and consider what in the reading particularly resonated with each one of us. The reading was the parable of the Pharisee and the Tax Collector (Luke 18:9-14). Having reflected on the parable, and after a closing prayer, the work of the day began.

To begin with the theme of Stewardship was introduced. We then had a presentation, given by Revd Sandra, in which she shared with us her experience of running regular Stewardship campaigns in her former parish. This was followed by an opportunity for people to ask questions.

The PCC then reflected upon our current situation as a parish: what is positive? What are the challenges (in terms of time, talent and money)? What was the cost of the pandemic? This ‘groundwork’ was intended to lay the foundations for the afternoon when we began to plan how we might undertake a Stewardship campaign beginning in January 2023.


At 12 noon we joined with the community for the Angelus and mid-day prayer. This was followed by lunch.

The afternoon session

In the afternoon we broke into three groups to look at different aspects of undertaking a stewardship campaign. These were:

‘Building the Case’: How might we make a case for our need for greater Stewardship in terms of time, talent and money?

‘Designing the Programme’: What might the programme look like?

‘Preparing the Literature’: What material needs to go in a ‘Stewardship pack’?

After a plenary session, where the groups came together to share ideas, we began to think about next steps. The three groups have committed to meet again, and to plan further for the Stewardship campaign in January.

Final Prayer and Meditation

We ended as we began, with a meditation, a reflective bible reading (this time from 2 Corinthians 9:6-8), and a time of prayer.

I got the sense that the Awayday gave members of the PCC, and others who attended, a real sense of confidence in our Christian lives together. People have commented on how much they appreciated the time of prayer and reflection, and on how much work we managed to get done in a relatively short space of time.

In spite of the pandemic, we at St George’s can be encouraged by the many good things that are happening here, not least in relation to prayer, worship, bible study, mission, and community outreach. Let us pray for our upcoming Stewardship campaign, that God will continue to guide us and bless us in all our endeavours.

With love and prayers

Fr Colin

PCC Awayday

On Saturday 10th September members of the PCC gathered together at the Convent of the Sisters of Bethany, Southsea, for an ‘Awayday’. The purpose of this gathering was not to have some kind of ‘jolly’ but to reflect prayerfully on where we are as a parish coming out of the pandemic, and how we can move forward, strategically, to build upon our strengths and address our weaknesses.

Mission and Stewardship

Our Mission Action Plan, which was presented to the parish and wider community in January 2020, had proposed that we worked on an audit of our local community to ascertain what the needs were, and how we might address them as a parish church reaching out to those to whom we are called to serve. This work, which is being undertaken by our Mission and Stewardship sub-committee, has already born fruit, leading to some important initiatives, such as our ‘Knit and Natter’ group, our monthly pop up cinema, and bringing the St George’s Bereavement Group ‘in house’. More will undoubtedly follow.

The Awayday itself was intended to focus on ‘Stewardship’.