Minister – Revd Nick Harris
Secretary – Diane Le Masurier
The History of Witney Baptist Church (WBC)
Looking back at the history of Witney Baptist church we find that there was a Baptist church in Witney in the 1800’s which did not endure and an attempt to re-plant was made by Woodstock (and other local Baptists) in the 1990’s which didn’t take.
Not the most encouraging story but It is felt right to try this now because:-
There is now to be a large housing development built to the West of the town (which itself has grown rapidly over the last 20 years) as well as developments in nearby Carterton.
Witney is a strategic centre for local government and various care agencies base themselves here. Engagement with these and other agencies with a “Local voice” is helpful in matters of social action. (Foodbanks etc)
Ducklington Baptist Church (on the edge of Witney) recently closed leaving no viable Baptist presence in the area.
The Planned Progression for WBC is:-
Phase 1 – Explore
Phase 2 – Establish
Phase 3 – Engage
Phase 4 – Enlarge
Phase 5 – Expand
Exploring – By gathering on Sunday for prayer, study and worship and meeting in Witney for prayer during the week we hope to discern God’s clear call for the establishment of Witney Baptist Church. (2014-2015)
Establishing – If it seems right to do so we will draw up the necessary constitution to establish Witney Baptist Church in association with Southern Counties Baptist Association seeking their guidance and support. (2015-2016)
Engaging – A program of community engagement and outreach to the area seeking better to understand and serve the emerging community of the new housing development sharing Jesus with them (2016-19)
Enlarging – Growing WBC to a viable size to become self-supporting in finance and personnel ( 2020)
Expanding – Planting out from WBC west into Carterton (2025)
Now, in the autumn of 2015
We are established as a separate Baptist church, members of the Baptist Union of Great Britain and Southern Counties Baptist Association and a part of Churches Together in Witney.
We are in consultation with developers to run a community led café and creative center known as “The Ark” on the new Curbridge development and seeking to have a community chaplain based on the estate leading a team, in offering the hospitality of Christ to the emerging community.