Posted by: nickgardham | June 12, 2011

Transcript of Saturday’s Mass – Delivered by Nick Gardham

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For those who missed Mass this weekend, Nick Gardham explained the Neighbourhood Challenge project to over 500 Parishioners who attended the three Masses that occured over the course of the weekend. He even managed to fit in a voluntary shift behind the bar on Saturday evening!

Anyway, for those who missed it here it is…

“Thank you Father Michael for inviting me to speak at Mass today on what is a clearly a very special day for a number of people. Also Thank you to the Parishioners who have welcomed myself and RE:generate so warmly into the Parish.

Just to reintroduce myself, I am Nick Gardham, and I am leading the Neighbourhood Challenge project on behalf of RE:generate and we are delighted to be able to say that we are working in partnership with Holy Trinity to deliver this project.

I am sure that many of you have now seen or heard about this Neighbourhood Challenge project, both from Fathers words and from the Parish Newsletters. But briefly the project is about reaching out to all people across the NG24 postcode. Of course we are keen to engage people in NG23 too so if any volunteers want to step forward to help us grow this I would be delighted to meet you! The project is about listening to and engaging people in community activity and helping and supporting people to bring about the changes that they want.

Working with Holy Trinity is a tremendous opportunity for us. There are so many wonderful talents and skills that already exist in the parish and there is a real depth and insight to the Parishioners. As we listen and unearth new people and identify new skills and talents we want to be able to find ways of linking people together so that we can strengthen and build on the good work that already goes on here.

Many people have been asking us how will we do this. How will we engage the numbers that we have said. Well, very simply it begins with listening. We have been listening to people on their doorsteps, in their homes, in the street, in parish groups – the places where they are at. And we have already met well over 150 wonderful people.

We have also trained over 25 Parishioners in our Listening process. We have encouraged those who have participated to listen to their friends, neighbours and family and find ways of encouraging them to become more involved with community activity. One of the Parishioners has already engaged a number of others and has started to engage with young people to rebuild and regrow the youth led activities that the church offers for the wider community.

We are also in the process of recruiting another Community Animator to lead the Listening process with me. They will be responsible for listening in the Parish and the wider community, building a network of people who want to take part and helping people to develop a voice and take action for change.

As everyone leaves here today, it would be great if you could leave thinking about:

  • The things that you love and find special about the Parish and community
  • The things that concern, frustrate and worry you about the Parish and community
  • Your visions and dreams for the future of the Parish and community
  • And  your project ideas that will build on the things that you love, tackle your concerns and help you realise your visions.

Importantly, I want you think about how you can start to bring those people that you know together and how we can support you to take action on the what matters to you and how you can be part of the Holy Trinity Neighbourhood Challenge.”

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