Kings Norton Baptist Church profile

February 2012

 


Introduction

This Church Profile overviews Kings Norton Baptist Church and its current activities.

History

The Chapel was founded in 1847 from two terraced houses made into one building, on Wharf Road , Kings Norton. At this time all baptisms took place in the canal (few metres away). The entrance at this time faced Wharf Road . In 1947 the Vestry was built at the rear of the Chapel to commemorate 100th Anniversary and to honour the Pastor, Mr Sanders.

 

During the 1960's the Chapel was extended with a kitchen and cloakrooms being installed. The Chapel windows which faced Wharf Road were re-sized to a better proportion with a single storey building. The main entrance moved to the back of the building, away from the road.

 

In 1997, a week of celebrations took place to mark 150 years of Chapel life and activity. The Lord Mayor of Birmingham attended a thanksgiving service and unveiled a commemorative plaque.

The Congregation

There are on average 20-30 present at the Sunday Morning Service.  Those attending represent a mix of backgrounds, ages and ethnic origin roughly reflecting the area in which the church is situated. Some adults are in part time / full time employment (including shift work), others retired.  Almost all the folk attending live nearby and in any case two miles or less from the Chapel.

 

Principles and Practice

The Fellowship takes a Reformed approach to its teaching, worship and work.  Scripture is held to be divinely inspired and infallible.  God is sovereign.  (see Appendix: Doctrinal Basis). Members are required to be "born again" believers. (see Church Constitution).

Outreach

There is a programme of Evangelical outreach, to local children through the Sunday School, to carers and retired people through weekly coffee mornings and lunches, and to local residential homes for the elderly.  At present the fellowship benefits from the work of a Birmingham City Mission Missionary who is engaged in methodical local visitation. A team goes out each week to present the gospel to people through conversation and literature. Festivals such Easter, Christmas and Harvest are often used as outreach opportunities with extra leafleting of the area.  These activities have varied over the years and outside help from agencies such as Birmingham City Mission have supported children’s' holiday clubs and other local outreach in recent years.


Sunday Meetings

Meeting at the above chapel the 10 am Sunday morning service lasts until about 11:10. This is followed by tea and coffee refreshments.

From 11:30-12 noon there is an adult bible study looking at the Gospel of John.

Sunday morning worship is for the whole Church family with a crèche run for babies and toddlers. At present, morning worship combines traditional hymn singing with contemporary songs from "Mission Praise", The Church also has "Christian Hymns" and also "Praise" introduced to the church late in 2000. We usually have a time for open prayer. The sermon is followed on the first Sunday morning of the month by Communion. A short talk for church family children has traditionally been included. Each Sunday a leaflet, the Bulletin, is produced with brief details regarding the day, events for the week and matters for prayer.

Sunday school is from 3-4 pm see below.

The Evening meeting is from 6:30-7:30 pm. This more informal service is more focused on bringing our praise, prayer and followed by discipleship teaching from the bible.

 

Sunday School/Crusaders

Crusader Sunday School is at 3 pm. The Church minibus collects local children from the adjoining estates. The hour long programme incorporates singing, teaching, games and prayer. The Sunday school caters for school age children up to the age of fifteen. On occasion the Sunday School is combined with the morning service. A "Safe to Grow" child protection policy has been in place for a number of years. (See link on main page) All workers with children are vetted and have a current Enhanced CRB

Mid-week

A mid-week fellowship meeting is at present held on Thursday evenings 7:30-9 pm for Bible study fellowship and prayer. This is in a member's home, the venue varies, please make contact.

Missionary support

KNBC has for many years supported missionary work. Amongst the most supported are OM, Gideons, Barnabus, a Wycliffe project in the Cameroon and a joint BMS missionary in Thailand and Tunisia . It has a Birmingham City Mission Missionary within its fellowship, who works locally in the area.

Elders and Deacons

Currently there is one Elder, Frank Williamson and one Deacon Joyce Cooke . The Elder has an overview of preaching, pastoral and evangelistic matters in general. The Deacon serves as the treasurer have the practical responsibly of looking after the church's finance.

Heart of England Baptist Assoc.

KNBC is nominally part of the South Birmingham cluster. It supports BMS (see above) and Home Mission.

Finance

The fellowship is financially independent with the giving from Sunday Attendees and Church members covering all expenses. This includes a Church house and a minibus. Some of the income is by Gift Aid.

The Building

The Chapel is essentially an old rectangular building on one level capable of holding about eighty people.  The space is flexible as chairs are used. There is a baptistry and the usual essential facilities, including a foyer and vestry, added in the sixties.  In April 2001 extensive repairs have been made to the Chapel roof and wall structure.

The Community

Kings Norton Baptist Church is situated just a short distance from the old Kings Norton village on The Green, on the south-west side of Birmingham .  Kings Norton (pop.22,500 1991 census), is accessible to open countryside.  The main railway is to the south-west, with a station for local rail, the Birmingham-Worcester canal, and the River Rea all pass through the area, which now spans roughly a mile in all directions from The Green. Several retirement and nursing homes have been built in recent years.  Shopping is mainly in Cotteridge and on The Green. Several primary Schools, four secondary schools and a sixth form college lie within the area. The parish church of St. Nicolas stands prominent on The Green, with three satellite churches spread across the area.  There is a local Library and considerable area of parkland off the Pershore Road . The Pershore Road is a main route into and out of Birmingham with frequent buses.  Local employment is largely clustered on three factory centres, including Pilkingtons.  Many residents commute to Birmingham centre. Kings Norton will benefit from central government funding in the shape of the Urban Regeneration Budget and the New Deal for the Community scheme.  The current housing stock will be upgraded plus other services and amenities. Regeneration of the community will bring many opportunities for outreach.

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