The Canal Ministries team currently consists of 19 evangelists crewing/living aboard 10 boats, two land-based members and an outreach boat which is used by a number of team members for a variety of purposes. We are all supported by a board of nine trustees.
Our purpose is to reach out to people in need as we find them within the inland waterways environment. This outreach can take the form of:
Provision of a food parcel
Provision of fuel
Provision of coal / logs for heating
Help with practical / mechanical issues
Refer to other agencies for local help with medical needs, benefits, education, etc
Link up with other agencies (eg Waterways Chaplains, local churches) for ongoing support
Emotional and Spiritual support
A shoulder to cry on
An ear to listen
A hand of friendship
Anything else appropriate as we are led
As our boaters are generally cruising, we cannot necessarily provide ongoing, long-term support. But, we are often the first link in the chain. We will give immediate help wherever needed and possible. In situations where ongoing assistance is required, we will ensure appropriate connections are made to relevant local agencies and organisations. As cruising boaters ourselves, we are often well placed to get alongside other boaters in difficulties.
Some members of the team are all-year-round Continuous Cruisers, some over-winter in a fixed location and some have a very localised ministry. Each works according to God’s calling and the gifts with which they have been blessed. Two members have been called to a very specific ministry in residential homes in the Tamworth area. Every one of the team, no matter where their ministry or what their specific calling, has an important part to play.
“Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of service, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who empowers them all in everyone.” 1 Corinthians 12:4-6 (ESVUK).
“He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.” Ephesians 4:16 (NLT).
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