The Church We See
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Chalkstone Community Centre
Care 4 the family
We are an active, growing church whose home is Haverhill in Suffolk, UK. We are also
modern, multicultural, all aged and a bible based church that is committed to transforming lives through the love of Christ.
A BIT OF HISTORY
Over twenty years ago a small group of local people connected with a church on the outskirts of London called Havering Christian Fellowship (HCF). As a result, HCF decided to start a house group in Haverhill to see if God was leading them to plant a church here. From the outset it was clear that God’s blessing was on the group and a year later, in Sept 1999, with 9 people River of Life Community Church was started. At this stage Paul and Wendy were still living in Romford and traveling to Haverhill a number of times every week to develop the church. It soon became evident that to develop the church they would need to relocated to Haverhill and so in August 2000 they moved into the town.
One of the remarkable features was that of the nine local churches, seven had a change of pastors at that time. A result of this was the forming of good relationships between local clergy and is something that has continued to this day.
From the outset we wanted to be a church that was involved in our community and that expressed the love of God in practical ways. We had a very limited budget but decided that helping people with debt problems would be a good start. We looked for possible ways to do this and came across Christians Against Poverty. At the time we were the smallest church to apply to be a CAP centre but we felt a resonance with their approach and vision and they felt the same about us. So in 2004 we set up a local CAP centre. From this has developed a number of local projects under the banner name Reach.
When we started we met at the local sports centre in a small function room, but as the church has grown we have needed to relocate a number of times. in 2015 under a government scheme known as 'asset transfer', the church were given the Chalkstone Community Centre. This is where we are currently based and, consistent with our desire to be involved with our community, we continue to run this as a community centre as part of our ministry in the local area. 500-600 people use the building every week and it is used for many different activities, including befriending groups, sports activities and parties. We have also been given an acre of land in the Hales Barn part of town and the long term plan is to build a new church centre in that location.
We are part of:
Haverhill and District Churches together