2018 marks a very special year in the life of St Michael’s. On 29th September 2018 it will be exactly 175 years since the foundation stone of St Michael’s was laid. (In case you are wondering why the plaque says St Michael’s chapel, St Michael’s didn’t become an independent parish church until 1873 – see the history of St Michael’s here)
That St Michael’s has made it to 175 years is in itself remarkable. Destroyed in the war, badly rebuilt afterwards, demolished and rebuilt a few years ago, St Michael’s is remarkable testimony to the persistence of the Christian faith, and even today it still bears witness to the vision of the original founders that it should be a “poor man’s church” for Stoke and Devonport.
So we want to let folk know we are still in business. For a start, we want to connect with the many people who grew up at St Michael’s, were baptised or married here, or sang in the church choir or went to Sunday School. For various reasons most people who used to live in St Michael’s have moved to other parts of Plymouth and beyond, and we would love to invite them back.
Secondly, we want to let folk know that St Michael’s is more just an interesting piece of living history. We want them to know that here is a community of believers in Jesus Christ and invite them to discover the riches of the faith delivered once for all to the saints.
And thirdly, we want to look ahead. Where will the Lord be leading us for the next 175 years? How can we involve children and young people in our anniversary celebrations?
For all these reasons and more, we will be putting on a series of events at St Michael’s during the coming year. We will be publishing a full timetable soon. But in the meanwhile, please pray that 2018 will be an effective year of outreach. Please pray how you might get involved. Please consider who you will invite, if you are regular at St Michael’s and St Barnabas.
And together may we keep alive the original vision of St Michael’s and lay foundations for many years ahead.