It’s not an Anatomy Lesson, we are a body!

The Bible uses a number of different images to show what the church is, these include a building (Ephesians 2:21; Hebrews 3:6), a bride (Ephesians 5:25; Revelation 19:6-8), a temple (1 Corinthians 3:16) and a body. When the apostle Paul writes about the church being a body, in the first letter to the Corinthian church, he is not intending to give a lesson in anatomy, rather he describes who the church is and how we should work together.

But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired. If they were all one member, where would the body be? But now there are many members, but one body.

1 Corinthians 12:18-20

The wonderful thing about this particular picture is that we can all relate to it, we all have a body and understand how it works. We know intuitively that our bodies have different parts, each performing different functions: the ears for listening, the mouth for speaking, the feet for walking, the arms for throwing. Yet, we also experience the unity of our bodies too. Think about a simple task like kicking a football, our brain passing instructions to move our muscles, aligning our body with the ball and help us keep our balance. Each part working together to a single goal. Its quite marvellous really.

That is what the church is to be too, a body, with many members, working together for purpose. The church is not a building, or an institution but a body made up of people with different gifts, different talents, different characters, different roles joined together and part of one another. We are not just any body, but the Body of Christ himself! It is the life of Christ that draws us together, holds us together and strengthens us. We are privileged to be part of the Salt & Light Advance family of churches which is the main way that we are connected into the wider body of Christ.

So, when we gather we prioritise building relationship with one another, we prioritise participation and community life. In practice this means that we often each together because that builds and deepens relationships. When we gather we value participation, which means that different people contribute to our gatherings. This can be in a variety of ways including prayer, reading & teaching the bible, exercising spiritual gifts, encouragements and in many other ways too.

If you are interested in find out more why not read more about us or contact us?

About us

Who are we? The church is being planted by a team from the Salt & Light Advance family of churches. It is led by Paul & Lottie Meathrel who are part of the Salt & Light Advance team and who also lead the roots+rivers churches.

Church is family on mission together. We are looking to start a new church that has room for everyone, including those who are exploring faith for the first time. We believe in the bible and enjoy the presence of the Holy Spirit as we gather and as we go. We are intent on obeying Jesus’ call to ‘go and make disciples of all nations’ (Matthew 28:19) and so focus on following Jesus and reaching out.

Everyone is invited to join us, whether you have been following Christ for years or are new to exploring faith as we embark on this adventure to see a new church built.

Our story so far

Our story starts with a train line. In May 2015, God spoke to Paul Meathrel through a stranger about following a disused railway line and planting a church in the town where it led. At the time, Paul & Lottie lived a stone’s throw from the disused railway line in Chipping Norton. The line originally led to Cheltenham: this prophetic word started a journey to plant a new church there.

Fast forward to In June 2021, Paul & Lottie along with kids George and Saffy moved into Cheltenham with a vision to establish a new church for the town. They joined by a team of 9 adults plus children who were already living in the area or have moved to be part of the plant. We are exciting about establishing a new church which has mission at its heart.

Contact Us

We’d love to hear from you whether you are interested in exploring faith, just moved into the area looking for a church or simply want to stay up to date. There are lots of ways to contact us.