As Community Church has grown so too has the leadership team and staff, working alongside many volunteers. Together they care deeply about seeing God impact the church, the wider community and the nations.
Peter is married to Angela with two grown up daughters and became a full-time church leader in 1987 and leader of the eldership team here in 1991. He takes personal responsibility for the directional leadership of the church by leading the eldership and wider leadership teams, the staff and preaching team. This involves line managing and supporting several members of staff and volunteers where he seeks to bring leadership, pastoral support and vision to these areas. Peter also oversees and supports several other churches and their leaders locally and overseas within the wider Relational Mission family of churches. He and Angela enjoy spending time working together in serving the churches and in their spare time love to watch rugby, get away in their camper van - or Peter goes to the golf course!
Gareth is married to Nicola and together they have two children, Ben & Jaiya. Gareth was previously an elder at the church between 2004 - 2007. In 2007 the whole family moved to China, where for 8 years they followed God's call to plant churches in a largely unreached area. Now, back on the leadership team, Gareth heads up the small-group and discipleship life of the church, oversees the children's work teams, and preaches regularly. He loves to keep fit and drink coffee... at the same time if possible!
Claire currently works one and a half days per week co-ordinating all of our children's work including Creche (0-3), Promise Keepers (3-5) and Transformers (5 -11). This involves overseeing the content of the groups, leading and supporting the teams members involved in running the groups and administrating the rotas, as well as recruiting team leaders, helpers and volunteers to ensure the children's work runs smoothly. Claire is married to Daniel, one of the fantastic guitarists who play in our worship bands on a Sunday, and is mother to Alec. When she's not in the office, Claire enjoys quilt-making and can be found on her whizzy new sewing machine!
Maureen works Monday to Thursday for the Community Church and heads up the administration with responsibility for the day to day running of the office including hiring of the Charis Centre. As well as assisting the elders with a wide range of administrative tasks she ensures everything is in place for our Sunday meeting and other meetings taking place during the week. She enjoys being the first point of contact for people contacting the church! Maureen is married to Andy with two grown up boys and lives in the countryside in Henham.
Ali keeps us afloat by dealing with all the financial aspects of church life. As well as dealing with all income and expenditure she oversees the processing of all giving, salaries, financial reporting, dealing with the Inland Revenue in relation to Gift Aid and also prepares our accounts for the auditors. Equally as important she also administrates the finance of the Thirst Youth Café Project. As well as working part time for the church, Ali has had fourteen years’ experience of being on the board of governors in primary schools – presently being Chair of Governors in two local schools. She also clerks for various schools in the district and working freelance for some other local businesses makes her one on-the-go lady!! Originally from Bishops Stortford, she lived in Canterbury for a number of years before returning to live in Stansted some years ago. We all love Ali for her generous nature, pastoral and wise counsel and she is also a great cook! Ali has three grown up children, a horse and a dog to keep her busy (muddy!). She likes nothing better than to take long walks over the local nature reserve with her dog Poppy.
Dave has been on staff since early 2014. He is married to Charlotte and they have a wonderful boy called Ryan. Dave handles all our media and communications across a wide range of platforms including church news, enews, video production, live streaming, photography, audio, social media and website. He also looks after all aspects of our fantastic facility, including venue hire, I.T., Maintenance, Health & Safety and Utilities, and oversees our caretaker Paul. Dave loves time at home with the family, having a good old 'saffa Braai' and thinking about going for a run!
Oskan joined the staff team part-time in 2014 following a 25 year career in the NHS Ambulance Service. He works two days per week, and also does some consulting/planning work for the ambulance service at regional and national level. He is married to Clare who plays violin in the worship team, and they have three grown up children. Oskan has proved himself as a man full of integrity and encouragement, who is thoroughly dependable, honourable, and works to an extremely high standard. He has a real passion to see all of the back office functions of CCBS run as smoothly as possible, to ensure God’s vision is lived out among us unhindered. His role is therefore to ensure that the church vision, decision making, administration, ministries, finances and planning all dovetail together both on a day to day basis and over the longer term. He also assists the eldership team with strategic planning, we are blessed with the aid of his 360 degree vision. We are also so grateful that loose ends run a mile when they hear Oskan coming. Oskan is a keen Saracens rugby fan and we can neither confirm nor deny that he is a fan of pork pies and shortbread
Paul joined us in 2015 and makes sure everything at the Charis Centre is where it should be! A former business manager for a large banking concern, Paul is enjoying the quieter life and spends his spare time as a river warden for Essex Wildlife Trust. He is also a keen sports fan and avidly follows his team – Colchester United – around the country.
Rachel works part time and looks after health and safety, compliance, and the safeguarding aspects of CCBS; having joined our Church in 2015. Rachel is married to Ben, grew up in Nigeria and Ivory Coast, and worked for many years in international relief and development in various parts of Africa and Asia. She more recently worked as an occupational therapist in the NHS and charitable sector, before becoming a full-time mum to two very lively girls and moving to Bishop's Stortford!
Ruth works 3 part-time days per week co-ordinating our outstanding children's work with Becca Marsh. This includes overseeing the Creche (0-3yrs) and organising, leading and supporting the team members involved in running Transformers (5 -11yrs) as well as recruiting team leaders and helpers to ensure that children's work and our ever-popular Treasure Chest ministry run smoothly and liaises with others to help support families where she can. Ruth married her husband Neil, here at The Charis Centre and is mum to Jamie and Izzy and enjoys being creative, loves spending time with friends and meeting new people and also enjoys reading and running.
Becca is providing maternity leave cover for Claire Pearce and is a great asset to our Families and Children’s Team with her talent for being organised and efficient. She leads Promise Keepers and has a passion for seeing children grow and develop in their spiritual gifting’s as they walk through life.
She has two fantastic children Amelia & Tim and is married to Chris. They have been part of the CCBS family for some 2 years and loves to host coffee mornings, bake cakes, cook meals for a growing house group and is a reluctant skier.