|History and Vision
County Church started in 2003 when John & Liz Wilthew and Dennis & Kay Fancett moved to Northumberland with a passion to share the good news of Jesus with people who have not yet heard, to help believers follow Jesus, and to launch new churches across the county.
Over the next twelve months they were joined by around a dozen members of City Church Newcastle who wished to support their vision. Subsequently, others have joined us, some from within the County and some relocating from other areas to be part of what God is doing here. You can read some of our personal stories at County Church People.
Initially our vision was very broad but more recently we have decided to focus on the South East of the county, particularly Bedlington where we operate our Community Help Hub, and our plan is to develop the Church here so that it is eventually capable of launching other new Churches elsewhere in the County and beyond.
Our passion is to see a Church which is authentic and informal, not unduly religious but relevant to people who may never have been involved with a Christian Church before. We want God to be honoured in everything we do, and for County Church people to be committed to getting our message of the good news of Jesus Christ across to people who don’t yet know. At the same time we want County Church to be a place where people can relax, have fun together, and be like an extended family.
In summer 2012, James Shepherd joined the leadership team at County Church, and was appointed an elder in November of the same year. John Wilthew stood down as an elder shortly after reaching his 65th birthday and John & Liz re-located to Norfolk towards the end of 2013 where John continues to play an active role in serving the Churches there. James and Dennis continue as elders of County Church and you can find out more about them on our Meet the Leaders page.
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