'I just wanted to say thank you to everyone who has made my time here so special. I have been made to feel so welcome and a real part of the Church's community over 3 years. I have so many happy memories with you all that I shall treasure dearly. Heslington Church will always hold a very special place in my heart...'
(a student who recently finished her degree)
Heslington Church, affectionately known as "Hes", is the nearest church to campus - and ministry to the students and families in the area is a main focus.
We feel Heslington Church is unique among the many churches in York because we are a truly ecumenical community, welcoming people from very different traditions to journey together into the knowledge of God's love. And no, we aren't 'wishy-washy', we are daring and honest, and seek to bring the best out in each other. We have a clergy team including the University Chaplain and Methodist minister (John) and Church of England Vicar (Adam), and maintain strong links with faith representatives in the university and throughout York. Our Sunday morning worship is led by a variety of different clergy and lay people, and this includes the Anglican Chaplain (Catherine) as well as the Methodist Chaplain. The Chaplaincy also run a Night Prayer live-stream on Facebook, and hold Morning Prayer weekly on Campus, as well as mid-week worship (usually with a free soup and bread meal afterwards). More details of all of these can be found on the Chaplaincy Facebook page. Other worship at Hes includes Catholic mass, the Vineyard Church and a Korean church.
Students are invited to be involved in the various areas of church life, such as assisting in worship, being involved with children's work, Messy Church, attending or helping at social occasions, or being involved in the church's work in the community. Since 2015 one or more students have become paid interns in the church to run projects for the students, and one of the students is the official Student Rep on our PCC/Church Council. There is a music group and a singing group which welcome new members (singing or instrumental), just speak to them after the service. We also have a number of younger children who worship with us. We are always looking for volunteers to help out. If you think that is you, then please do talk to Adam or John at church who will talk you through the process.
Once a term we do a student led service where everyone gets to contribute to every aspect of that family service from hymns to prayers and readings. It's a really exciting way to explore and grow your faith amongst friends and our church is very receptive to new ideas. Why not come along? It would be lovely to see you! If you want to get involved just pop along on a Sunday and speak to the Student Rep.
It is also worth noting that we host a Student Welcome Lunch after our Sunday worship at the end of Freshers' Week. The food is plentiful and free and anyone who wants to come is fed well. And that is not the only occasion where food and fellowship come together in our gatherings: whether that is down the local pub or at study/home groups, or on special occasions.