Discovery Team Update

They say that history is just one thing after another.  For Pip n Jay's Discovery Team this was never truer than at our last meeting where we completed a whistle stop tour of the last 1200 years of British History in the form of our new Parish Timeline. While we sat in the Treehouse with coffee aplenty, dates flew through the air like arrows at Agincourt. The names of Kings, Queens and Preachers were remembered, lost, discounted, dated and, at last, recorded on a 6 foot roll of paper that forms the backbone of this putative timeline. At our next meeting we plan to populate this effort of memory and perseverance with Parish history, allowing us to see our place in Bristol and the world.  Among the key dates the team picked out were the Abolition of Slavery in 1833, the death of Cromwell in 1540 and of course England's famous World Cup win in 1966. 

The breadth of this work was complimented by a wonderful in depth analysis of The Great Awakening in 1740. This was a movement of faith the like of which Bristol had not seen before, typified by men like George Whitfield and John Wesley, who lived for a time in our Parish.  Both men maintained links to Pip n Jay, despite their relationship with each other (and the church of England) not always being cordial. Their open air evangelism drew crowds of working people, and disapproval from the Church as it was deemed disrespectful to the Gospel. Despite this, Whitfield was recorded to have preached at Pip n Jay on the 17th of February 1739, raising £18 for the orphans of the parish.  John Wesley, who for the love of Christ was reconciled to Whitfield before he died, is the next avenue under investigation, as we would dearly love to pin the great Methodist founder down to the pulpit in our parish at a specific date.

Aside from these great men, St Philip and St Jacob was playing its part in bringing people to the Lord,  dividing to create the new church of St George at Kingswood in 1751. This evidence, taken from the Rev. M.E. Thorold's historical research, may be the first record of a church plant from our site, bringing to mind Confucius' words: if you would define the future, study the past. 

Many thanks go to the delightful Discovery Team for their ongoing work, and of course we always have room for those of historical bent. Please get in contact with Tim Browne if you would like to get involved in any capacity. 


Discovery Team Inaugural Meeting

If the past is a foreign country, Pip n Jay has recently had a visa approved in the form of the Discovery team. On Saturday the 14th of May, the Treehouse Room hosted the inaugural meeting. Having delved into the depths of our extensive archives, Tim Browne led the group in exploring the various historical sources that have been brought to fresh light. We managed to look at maps of the site, accounts from former Clergy and images of the church from the post war era. A particularly interesting find was a tithing record from 1847, which included a weathered linen map of the Parish which showed the oat, wheat and barley tithes taken during the year. 

Adrian, Jan, Meryl, Maureen and Mick were all in attendance and found ample food for thought in the themes of our Parish story. We sketched three main areas of research: The Church in the City, The Church in History and The Church in Faith. Within our remit we found the City Walls, mission donations from the 18th century and hatchments aplenty. We hope to create several displays that inform the current story of our church, and the direction we go in next. 

The team are keen to ensure that, whatever we dig up, the truth of the Lord and the       message of Christ are at the centre of what we produce. One thing is very clear: we have an immense tradition of faith and service within the walls of St Philip and St Jacob's. Our story now is the same story of love, prayer and worship that has survived the years since the   foundation. Future plans include braving the dust mites of our archives, walking the ancient walls of Bristol and creating a timeline for the church. The meeting ended in prayer, and the team would certainly appreciate being remembered before the Lord as we beat on,      ceaselessly into the past. 

We still have plenty of room in the Discovery Team for budding historians; if you have an interest please email or speak to Tim Browne. 


Discovery Team Update

Thank you to everyone that has shown an interest in digging into the History of St Philip and St Jacob Church to find the Golden Thread that runs throughout it’s history.  I have only started to scrape the surface in preparation and the scale of information and stories are vast!

Our first team meeting will be on Saturday 14th May @ 10am in the Treehouse at Pip n Jay. We will spend our first session identifying some key themes. We will then break down into research groups. If you are interested there is still time to get involved. Come along to our first meeting and you can get stuck in. 

As part of our research we will be trying to collate all our findings into a display. If you have any old pictures, photographs or information that you think may be useful to the team please either email or see Tim Browne. 

 View from the Nave into the Chancel before the organ and choir stall were removed.

View from the Nave into the Chancel before the organ and choir stall were removed.