Bishop of Wakefield, the Rt Revd Tony Robinson will be joining the “Café-Mass” fresh expression of church at All Saints, Darton , near Barnsley, on Friday 25 May to celebrate the confirmation of two adults who have joined the new congregation.
The ‘Café-Mass’ recently started on Fridays meeting in the church halls of All Saints. The church itself is a Grade-1 listed medieval building, but is accessed by a path from the main road, and requires the descent of several steep steps down into the building.
“It’s a very wonderful building, but not the most accessible,” says the Revd Jonathan MacGillivray, Vicar of the United Benefice of Darton with Staincross & Mapplewell.
As a result the Friday ‘Café-Mass’ started in the church halls, 250 metres away from the church and near the village shops.
“The halls have easy, level access, and are used daily by a variety of non-church groups. On two Saturday mornings every month there are coffee mornings in the halls, and we thought we might engage with the regular clients at the coffee mornings, and others who find getting into the church difficult, by celebrating the Eucharist in a less formal setting every week in the halls.”
The fresh expression is proving popular and, says Father Jonathan, is attracting folk who like the less formal style, and who feel comfortable in the halls rather than the church.
So much so, in fact, that Bishop Tony Robinson will preside at the Mass on Friday 25 May at 10.30 and celebrate the sacrament of confirmation for two adults who have joined this new Friday congregation, and for whom the Cafe-Mass congregation is their Church.
“This is a genuinely Fresh Expression of Church”, adds Father Jonathan, “since it has at its heart the celebration of the Eucharist.”