JSP Sees Steady Growth Across the UK
Jesus Shaped People is growing steadily across the UK, and particularly in churches that serve urban estate communities and other areas of social disadvantage. Originating in Bradford, West Yorkshire, it is now making a significant contribution to churches in the Anglican dioceses of Leeds, Birmingham, Manchester, Blackburn, Chester, Rochester, Peterborough and Southwark, and is currently emerging in the dioceses of St. Albans, Lichfield, and Norwich. There is also interest appearing in London, Wales and Scotland. JSP is also being explored by other Christian denominations.
Such rapid expansion is encouraging, and springs from ‘good news stories’ that churches are sharing with each other as they hear about the benefit to be gained from adopting JSP.
In Blackburn diocese, St. Mark’s Church Layton, Blackpool, adopted JSP back in 2014, and continues to benefit from the fresh vision it brought. St Mark’s Vicar, Peter Lillicrap says: 'JSP has provided focus on what Church is all about, and continues to help us in turning the church inside out, as we seek to be a growing, all age, Christ-centred Community that serves others, especially those on the edge of society, alongside preaching the good news of the gospel.'
In Chester diocese, St Barnabas Church, in Bredbury, Stockport, began their adoption of JSP in 2017. Sue Shrine, their Vicar, is convinced of the value it has brought them: ‘JSP has influenced not only our fellowship with each other and God, but also our corporate and individual prayer life, Bible study and outreach. Even the physical layout of our worship space has changed as God has spoken into every aspect of our lives.’
In Rochester diocese, St John’s Welling began their JSP adventure in September this year. Their curate, Danielle Pearson-Smith comments: ‘JSP has brought the Church family of St John’s together in an intergenerational way. We are connecting even more with our local community, as we discover together what it means to be Jesus Shaped People on Welling. I am being led by God to support JSP more widely, and I look forward to seeing churches and communities transformed as they embark on a JSP adventure together.’