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 unpressured context and lasts approximately 12 weeks. We hope to re-launch Alpha at the earliest opportunity.
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 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 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!
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.
All our Sunday meetings are family friendly and will usually begin with a short activity designed for the children. Part way through the service, the children will go to one of the rooms in the Fellowship Centre for a time of games, activities and Bible teaching suitable for their age group. These sessions are led by DBS-checked leaders, under the oversight of a trained primary school teacher and using professionally produced children’s activity materials.
We do not currently have a formal creche for children under the age of three, but there are rooms for parents to take their children to, toys available and space at the back of the main hall with soft seating, where parents can relax and oversee their young children, while still listening into the main meeting.
[Netty to contribute]
From time to time Forest Church activities are laid on for families with their children. These usually take place on Sunday afternoons and involve an outdoor activity (e.g. a walk, games, or nature treasure hunt) and a simple message about God’s presence and love in his creation. These are suitable for families with children of primary school age and will be advertised via Facebook, the website and noticeboards when they are happening.
[Rachel to contribute]