This Autumn we begin meeting at The Maynard School for our Sunday gatherings.
This blog will give some of the context behind the move and explain why Grace Church Exeter will be meeting in this venue.
Whilst we believe that the local church is about people, not buildings, our experience has nevertheless been that finding a suitable venue is an important step for every church. As we begin meeting at The Maynard School we are delighted to have found a venue which will allow more people to explore, experience and express the goodness of God together.
The 5-Year Plan
We’ve been looking for a large, city-centre venue to host our Sunday morning gatherings for much of the last 5 years. Whilst there are several venues that meet some of our criteria, until now we have been unable to find a suitable facility.
As Frontiers Church Exeter we have met in various venues around the city, tried running 2 back-to-back meetings and even hosted an evening gathering in a local primary school. Whilst this allowed us to make more room for more people, we have remained persuaded that a large Sunday morning venue is the best option for our church at this time.
Hitting Legal Limits
From 2012 until August 2014 we met at Isca College on Topsham Road, a great venue with excellent facilities for our children’s groups. During this time our Sunday attendance increased by over 25% as people invited their friends to church and others moved to Exeter to start new jobs in the city.
On several occasions in the last 12 months we have reached the legal limit of the building. This would mean that we would have to start turning people away once the limit had been reached – and that the experience on a Sunday would be uncomfortably busy.
We knew at this point that we would need to find a new venue for the start of the new academic year in 2014.
An Excellent Opportunity
After a lengthy investigation into possible venues it became clear that The Maynard School best fitted our criteria. We have previously used a smaller hall on the same site and have maintained an excellent working relationship with the school.
We will be meeting in Bradley Hall, a large sports hall which offers us a significantly larger capacity for our Sunday gatherings. There are good facilities for children’s groups, on-site parking and close proximity to public transport links.
Whilst there is no such thing as a ‘perfect venue’, we are very excited about meeting at The Maynard School. There will inevitably be a transitional phase as we get used to the new surroundings, but our staff team and volunteer leaders will be working hard to ensure that the experience is as warm, helpful and welcoming as possible.
Join us on Sunday
If you’d like to join us on Sunday then we would love to see you. We’ll be serving tea & coffee from 10:00am in Bradley Hall and the service will begin at 10:30am.
There will be parking available on site; if the car park is full, stewards will be on hand to advise you of suitable on-road parking options in the surrounding streets.
If you have any questions about our Sunday gatherings then please don’t hesitate to contact us.