Do you have an example of good practice?

We are looking to compile more case studies of good practice in rural churches.  If your church or group of churches has experience or knowledge in the following areas, do get in touch.  All we need initially is a couple of sentences about what is happening, the location and your contact details.  E-mail:

  1. Rural multi-church groups where the ministry of lay people is encouraged, enabled, and equipped.
  2. Rural multi-church groups that have been able to develop discipleship as a priority.
  3. Strategies and approaches that have helped rural churches to reach out to their communities and grow existing or new congregations.
  4. Churches that have been successfully able to bring different generations together.
  5. Churches/multi-church groups that specifically cater for any of the following age ranges: 11-16, 17-25, and 25-45.


Germinate Leadership 2019

Germinate Leadership is an exciting programme on leadership in the rural church to help lay and ordained leaders from all denominations to develop creative, entrepreneurial, and strategic skills for effective rural church leadership.  The 18-month programme includes four residentials, 360 degree leadership appraisal, mentoring and work shadowing.  A variety of learning styles are used, building on lay and ordained ministry experience from across the denominations.  As a result it is practical, relevant, and tailored to the person and context.  The programme is overseen by an ecumenical steering group.  Applications for the 2019 Germinate Leadership programme are now open.  Click Germinate Leadership for further information, or e-mail or phone 024 7485 3066.

Germinate Leadership has a significant bursary fund, and this year, in particular, they wish to use it to enable lay leaders, who tend not to be able to access some of the funding available to their clergy colleagues, to participate in the programme.  There is also a separate Methodist bursary fund available for both ordained and lay leaders.  To find out more about accessing either fund, e-mail

Rural Mission Sunday 2019: Live the Life

Sunday 14 July 2019

Rural Mission Sunday is an opportunity to celebrate the life of the rural church and the real difference rural Christians can and do make in their communities.  This year's theme is about what it means to live out our faith in everyday life, using three Bible passages (Mark 1:16-20, Acts 2:42-47, and Luke 10:25-37) to reflect on three key facets of doing that.  While Rural Mission Sunday itself takes place on 14 July, you can use the material at any time and in the way most appropriate to your church and community.  Register now at Rural Mission Sunday to receive all the free resources you need to get involved.

PCF funding for Germinate Enterprise

We are very encouraged that the Prince's Countryside Fund provided a significant grant to help us develop this rural business start up programme across the UK.  If you have ever considered starting a business or social enterprise, or might be willing to facilitate a programme in your church or community group, take at look at our materials.

Rural Ministry Course

This course is offered twice a year for those, lay or ordained, who are new to rural ministry.  It explores the current rural contexts, mission and ministry in multiple places, leadership and working with children and young people in the countryside.  It is ecumenical and suitable for those in their first appointment or wanting a refresher.

Each course can accommodate up to 20 people and early booking is advised.  Click on Rural Ministry Course for further information and booking, or e-mail

'Open Welcome'

Open Welcome is a new resource to help rural churches consider how they might use their building to offer welcome and hospitality to those in their community, both residents and visitors.  This free, practical resource includes opening the building, welcoming visitors and telling the story.  Click 'Open Welcome' for further information.

More Information

Running a community event?  A comprehensive easy-to-use 'Can-do' guide has just been published by the Government, aiming to simplify the legal requirements and make things easier.

  • Tell us about your innovative worship!  If you have produced a new worship resource, would you be willing to share it via our Rural Worship Resource?  Please contact Simon.
  • All age worship resources, including full all-age services, shorter services, short talks, seasonal services, dramas, puppet scripts and more can be found at:
  • Help people in need in your community.  Choose a tried and tested project on the The Cinnamon Network website and apply for up to £2,000 towards the cost of starting it in your church.
  • Property Matters from The Methodist Church.  You will find lots of useful and interesting information in the most recent edition of the Methodist Church's 'Property Matters' magazine.  The guidance on how to apply for funding through the Connexional Property Grants Scheme is especially important for those who qualify.
  • Funding for Church Repairs.  Finding sources of funding and advice for repairs to places of worship can be a real headache.  SPAB have published a useful guide to indentifying possible sources of funding as well as links to advice for those managing a repair project.  It is available from their website.
  • The National Churches Trust's Grants Programmes for 2019 - 2023 are now open.   Foundation Grants of £500 - £3,000 are for maintenance works, for projects costing up to £10,000; the next deadline is 12 May 2019 for a decision in July 2019.  Gateway Grants of £3,000 - £10,000 are for project development work up to RIBA stage 1; the next deadline is 9 May 2019 for a decision in July 2019.  Cornerstone Grants offer grants of £10,000 - £50,000 for structural repairs/maintenance issues costed over £100,000, and installation of kitchen and toilets over £30,000; the next deadlines are 4 March 2019 for a decision in July 2019, and 1 July 2019 for a decision in November 2019.  For all these grants, 50% of fundraising must be in place at the point of application, and grants awards will never exceed 50%.
  • Funding for innovative Methodist projects: small grants for projects by Methodist churches and organisations, especially of an ecumenical nature, in creative arts, education, social and international concerns.
  • Calor, off-grid energy supplier, has announced a fund for 21 individual prize pots to support rural communities throughout the UK.  Launched in 2017, past submissions included funding for community centres, village halls and sporting venues, as well as the installation of fibre broadband into an off-grid village.  Applications close on 21 May 2018.  Further information from Calor Rual Community Fund.

Rural Church Buildings Resource

Resources for getting the most out of your rural church building - how to look after, develop and utilise them.  This free, fully updated, Germinate: The Arthur Rank Centre resource provides you with a wealth of ideas on how to use your church building creatively.

There is advice on looking after the fabric of your building, undertaking effective and essential maintenance, preventing metal theft, making your building energy efficient, security, and health and safety.

Opening up your church buildings for visitors is also covered, and there is advice on how to maximise your building for wider community use, and all aspects of fundraising.

Further information can be found at

Further information about the above can be found at  Recent Country Way articles are now searchable in the resource section.

Germinate: The Arthur Rank Centre
The Rural Innovation Centre
Stoneleigh Park
024 7685 3060


Information updated 12.6.19



Sarah Sutherland, 11/02/2014