Our vision is to show the love of Jesus within the community.
Welcome to Aston and Cote Community Church (ACCC). We are a thriving family church in the heart of the village community, made up of residents of Aston and the villages around. We cover all ages, from new born to mid-90s and our regular Sunday meetings are family-friendly, informal and contemporary in style. In normal circumstances we meet at 10.00am on Sundays in the Fellowship Centre, but at present all meetings are suspended due to Covid-19 and our church life continues via social media.
Who we are:
Aston and Cote Community Church is a modern church with a very long history. The church community is made up of residents of Aston and the villages around. While most of our church congregation live in Aston, we have always had a significant number from Bampton, as well as folk from Standlake, Ducklington and, of course, Cote. Visitors are always welcome to join us in any of our activities and we hope to provide a friendly and relaxed atmosphere in all we do.
We meet most Sundays at 10.00a.m. in the Fellowship Centre, Cote Road, Aston. Our Sunday meetings are family-friendly and informal. We usually start with a short child-centred talk, song or activity. This is typically followed by a time of sung and spoken worship and prayer, using contemporary worship music and opportunity for contributions from the congregation. About half way through the meeting, the children go to their own time of activities and ‘Sunday School’ (all led by DBS-checked volunteers) while the adults listen to a talk. Our talks are unashamedly Bible-based, as we believe in the inspiration of the Bible and see it as the authoritative source for our beliefs and practices; but we seek also to make sure it is applied and relevant to our day to day lives.
Although Sundays are our main meeting day, we are a church family, who see our shared faith in Jesus as the basis for every part of our lives. We think it very important to build strong relationships and aim to meet together during the week in various ways and to support and encourage one another and those in the neighbourhood in whatever ways we can. As our simple mission statement says: ‘Our vision is to show the love of Jesus in the community’ – whether church members or others. Many of our activities involve the wider community, whether that be our monthly Chillax youth group, Forest Church for younger children, or the Alpha course, designed for those who wish to explore Christianity in an open-minded, discussion-based format (with food!). For more details of when we meet and what we do, please see Meetings and Events
We believe that the church is the ‘body of Christ’ (to use a biblical metaphor), which means that every individual is an important member of the body and plays their own key role in the life of the church. Our church leadership emerges out of this, so that we do not have a single ‘one-man (or woman) ministry’. We do however have a leadership team, currently comprising three couples, led by Alastair and Hazel Barnett. Alastair is the leader, or community head of the church. He is sometimes called the pastor or minister, but, prefers a less ‘professional’ sounding title!
While rooted deeply in the local community, we also believe it is important to have a wider vision and to be part of something bigger. We are part of Oxfordshire Community Churches and work closely together with a group of 4 other churches in the west part of Oxfordshire and beyond, known as West Region. All are part of a UK and international family of churches called Salt and Light. Approximately once every two months, we meet together on a Sunday morning with the other churches of West Region in a larger Celebration, held in Witney
ACCC is the contemporary expression of Cote Baptist Church, whose history dates back to the early eighteenth century. The congregation continued to meet in Cote Baptist Chapel (built in 1756) right up until 1980, when it moved into the newly-built Fellowship Centre in Aston, where it has met ever since. Cote Baptist Chapel itself is now managed by the Historic Chapels Trust and is available for booking for special events e.g. weddings, blessings, concerts etc (For further details about the Chapel, contact firstname.lastname@example.org)
ACCC remains part of the Baptist Union, but we are also affiliated to Oxfordshire Community Churches (https://www.occ.org.uk/) and are part of the Salt and Light international network of churches (https://www.saltlight.org/).
Beliefs and values
We are an evangelical, charismatic church community and we adhere to orthodox, biblical beliefs, as summarised in the 11 core points of the Evangelical Alliance ‘Basis of Faith’
- The one true God who lives eternally in three persons – the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.
- The love, grace and sovereignty of God in creating, sustaining, ruling, redeeming and judging the world.
- The divine inspiration and supreme authority of the Old and New Testament Scriptures, which are the written Word of God-fully trustworthy for faith and conduct.
- The dignity of all people, made male and female in God’s image to love, be holy and care for creation, yet corrupted by sin, which incurs divine wrath and judgement.
- The incarnation of God’s eternal Son, the Lord Jesus Christ – born of the Virgin Mary; truly divine and truly human, yet without sin.
- The atoning sacrifice of Christ on the cross: dying in our place, paying the price of sin and defeating evil, so reconciling us with God.
- The bodily resurrection of Christ, the first fruits of our resurrection; his ascension to the Father, and his reign and mediation as the only Saviour of the world.
- The justification of sinners solely by the grace of God through faith in Christ.
- The ministry of God the Holy Spirit, who leads us to repentance, unites us with Christ through new birth, empowers our discipleship and enables our witness.
- The Church, the body of Christ both local and universal, the priesthood of all believers – given life by the Spirit and endowed with the Spirit’s gifts to worship God and proclaim the gospel, promoting justice and love.
- The personal and visible return of Jesus Christ to fulfil the purposes of God, who will raise all people to judgement, bring eternal life to the redeemed and eternal condemnation to the lost, and establish a new heaven and new earth.
What we do:
Our main weekly meeting is a worship service on Sundays at 10.00am. Please note that approximately once every two months, we meet jointly with our sister churches from West Oxfordshire in a Celebration held in the King’s School Witney at 10.30am.
We meet in a variety of ways midweek. See the calendar of events for details of what is happening when.
- Twice a month we meet in smaller midweek groups. The Penny Black group meets on Tuesdays and the Cote Road group meets on Wednesdays. These groups provide an opportunity for fellowship, discussion, worship and prayer in a more informal context, where everyone can feel able to contribute. They also serve as a means of pastoral care for members of the church.
- Once a month the men meet together for food and friendship. We alternate between meeting at Curry Paradise in Witney and in one of our own homes in the village. The women also meet up in the same way, although as yet not quite so regularly.
- Twice a month we meet together as a church for prayer. We meet at 8.00am on the first Saturday of the month for an hour’s prayer, followed by breakfast together. We also meet together on the third Tuesday of the month for an hour of prayer at 7.45pm.
We were about to start an Alpha group before Covid-19 put our plans on hold. Alpha is a course built for local churches based on hospitality, sharing and open conversation. The same Alpha content is run all over the world, by Christians of all traditions, and provides a common expression of proclamation, service and witness. Millions of people have experienced Alpha in over 100 countries and over 100 languages around the globe. It provides a friendly and fun environment (with food!) for exploring Christianity in a relaxed and un-pressured context and lasts approximately 12 weeks. We hope to re-launch Alpha at the earliest opportunity.
Chillax started in September 2011 as a monthly Friday night youth club at the Fellowship Centre for young people in Years 7 to Year 9 of secondary school. We have been blessed with many gifts of equipment, including donations from the village Fete Committee and Bampton Welfare Trust. On a typical Chillax evening we will start with a “talkie bit” from one of the leaders and then the young people have a choice of air hockey, snooker, table football, table tennis and PS4. Usually there is a craft activity and board games available too, along with ever popular tuck shop and the opportunity to just hang out and chill with friends.
All of our volunteers are DBS checked. Chillax usually runs on the 2nd Friday of each month 7.30pm to 9pm and is advertised on the “What’s on in Aston & Cote” Facebook page.
- Sunday School
[Netty to contribute]
- Forest Church (note spelling of Forest – needs correcting on website!)
[Rachel to contribute]
We are part of a family of churches across Oxfordshire and in particular we work closely with the churches in the West Region. We believe that we are stronger when we work together. We are part of Oxfordshire Community Churches [link https://www.occ.org.uk/] and work closely together with a group of 4 churches in the west part of Oxfordshire and beyond (currently – Witney, Carterton, Chipping Norton and Fairford).
As a family of churches we are stronger together than we are apart, so there are many things we do together including:
- Celebrations – roughly once every two months we meet jointly on a Sunday morning for a large, inter-church Celebration , which is a time of corporate worship, teaching and envisioning, with a full programme of youth and children’s activities.
- Training – we work together to provide training in areas including leadership development, worship, evangelism, prophetic ministry, and preaching.
- Theology – we run theological forums and send people for theological training at the King’s School of Theology [url https://kingstheology.org/] where we offer flexible part-time theological training with an emphasis on ministry and application.
- Youth– we regularly draw together our youth from across the region for adventure days, scavenger hunts, worship and much more!
We support several organisations and individuals beyond our own immediate locality. Currently, we actively support these ministries:
Andrew and Andrea Warner – https://www.ecmi.org/en/worker-detailpage/dd5aa2f7-d8e5-415d-a2d6-d0776cc5cee6