Although one of the smaller mainstream denominations, the United Reformed Church plays a dynamic and challenging part in the British Christian community. It has brought together English Presbyterians, English, Welsh and Scottish Congregationalists, and members of the Churches of Christ. Sixty-eight thousand people make up 1500 congregations, with nearly 700 ministers, paid and unpaid.
The United Reformed Church combines its commitment to the Reformed tradition with a passionate belief that all God’s people should be one. It seeks to work with Christians of all traditions, and rejoices in being part of more than 400 Local Ecumenical Partnerships, with the Methodist Church and others. It is also committed to theological and cultural diversity.
Our Church is a member of the Vision Pastorate with Rose Hill URC and Tonge Moor URC.
We value working with other Christians and people of other faiths whenever we can. We are a member of Christians Together in Bolton Town Centre and members of that group have signed an Act of Commitment to each other. We see this as a vital aspect of our mission, trying to contribute fully to the initiatives whenever possible.
Our Sunday morning worship is normally of a traditional nature. We enjoy singing hymns accompanied by our organist on a renovated Foster and Andrews 3 manual pedal organ. Our refurbished building enables our worship to take place in a flexible modernised area that benefits from the use of PowerPoint style projection and sophisticated audio loop sound system.
We are all called to minister to each other, especially at this time. Our church life is led by our minister Revd Mark Bates, the team of elders, a worship group, and many others who serve the church.
A good communications system exists which includes weekly production of an Order of Service with notices, and a bi-monthly church magazine called "The Link". Our worship on a Sunday morning and "The Link" are also available as audio recordings.
Although some of our members are from areas close to the Church itself many live in the surrounding areas of the borough. Bolton is fortunate in having the vibrancy that comes from being one of the ten towns that make up Greater Manchester whilst also being on the edge of the wonderful Lancashire countryside. Many of our members choose to live where they have views and easy access to this. Indeed the manse, where our Minister lives, also benefits from this.
There are about 100 families within the congregation. We regularly have around 80 people at our Sunday morning worship and there is involvement of several members in that service.
We care deeply about worship, outreach, encouraging faith and working with people of Christian faith, other faiths and those of goodwill to build a better world.
We have a strong tradition of mutual support and pastoral care. This is carried out by a Pastoral Care coordinator with a group of elders and members who are able to visit people.