Reignite 2021 - Reigniting the Festival Church

Published by Giles Goddard on Tue, 30 Oct 2018 09:32
Vicar's Blog

What would you save in a time capsule, buried in London, to be opened by future generations well beyond our own lifetimes? And what would you give to see St John’s Waterloo carefully upgraded for future generations to enjoy?

These are questions we have been asking at St John’s, as a small team prepares for an exciting event here on Thursday November 15th at 6.30pm.

I’m delighted to invite all who worship at St John’s to come along that evening for a very special launch party with a dual mission. We will be both burying a unique and historic time capsule beneath the newly renovated forecourt. And we will launch Reignite 2021, the fundraising campaign to renovate our much-loved church.

With drinks, canapes, sparklers and live music, St John’s will honour the past with a time capsule filled with contemporary artefacts. And we will bravely launch into the future, with a mission to raise enough money to renovate this unique building. Our ambition is to reignite the Festival Church by 2021. That will be the 70th anniversary of the Festival of Britain, the event for which St John’s was first rebuilt.

St John’s is in serious need of an upgrade, as anyone who has descended into the crypt or popped into the toilets knows. Visitors need disabled access to get downstairs, the church needs a more welcoming single entry point, our chapel requires attention. Southbank Sinfonia desperately needs proper storage, the Bridge at Waterloo needs a home for all our employment and training courses, and our many partners who fill the crypt would benefit from modern spaces and kitchen facilities.

The good news is that we have already raised nearly £2 million. The challenge is that we need to raised another £1.5m. It all starts with a vision, and I’m absolutely confident we can get there.

As part of our congregation, you are the beating heart of St John’s, and I urge you to get involved. Every single donation, no matter how small, will make an important difference, and will be recorded in a thoughtful way. Please think about how much you might be able to give, and get in touch with me – or visit our donations page online. Each one of us can influence the future of an important London landmark, and have our contributions recorded for posterity.

You might even want to an experience of it by hosting an event in the next 12 months to raise money, such as an afternoon tea party? Keep an eye out for events over the year; on January 4th we will hold a fund-raising ceilidh for Twelfth Night, with all the profits going to Reignite 2021.

Until then, please join us at 6.30pm on Thursday November 15th. We will raise a glass, bury a time capsule and launch a fabulous campaign to ensure St John’s is made fit for the 21st century and ushered into a bold and confident future.

Links: Read more about our development plans

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