Stalham Baptists reach out with community magazine
Community Scene is a professionally produced community magazine published by Stalham Baptist Church which is helping to develop the bond between the church and the local community in the town. Tony Rothe reports.
The magazine is the brainchild of David Child, pictured above, who produced a similar publication to support and boost the profile of the local football club back in the 1980’s.
Roughly half the content of Community Scene is news and features from Stalham Baptist Church with the other half coming from the town and surrounding area. So, Christian or church-related material is interspersed with news and information about the town or community.
“This concept helps to establish the church as a normal part of the community, and breaks down boundaries between church and secular life” explained David. “The magazine is an excellent way of finding out what is happening, not just at the Baptist Church, but in the community as a whole.”
A particular feature of the magazine is the cartoon work by professional cartoonist Steve English, who also creates the design for the front cover. “It is vital that people actually want to open the magazine and look through it when it arrives on their doorstep” said David, “and Steve’s cartoons and drawings are an essential element in catching people’s attention. Community Scene simply wouldn’t be the same without them.”
Printed by Century Printing in Stalham High Street, Community Scene is published three times a year, with about 1800 copies distributed through Stalham letterboxes and in other locations in the town. “It would be good to distribute to surrounding villages as well, but that would increase costs. However, there are always extra copies to give away and we have a good relationship with Tesco in Stalham” said David.
The eye-catching quality of the magazine is helped by the use of full colour throughout, funded by a donation to cover the extra cost. The printing costs are paid for by the Baptist Church, as the magazine contains no advertising.
Stalham Baptist Church regularly attracts congregations of 60 to 80 on a Sunday, and is one of three churches in the town, the others being St Mary’s Parish Church, and an Orthodox chapel, with a Methodist Church down the road in Sutton. “We have an excellent relationship with St Mary’s, with whom we do joint events through the year” said David.
“Christmas 2018 was the sixth edition of Community Scene and the magazine has been a good tool to raise the profile of Stalham Baptists and reach out to the community. We’re working hard to get people engaged, and have been receiving encouraging positive feedback.”
To view Community Scene, visit: http://www.stalhambaptist.org.uk/communityscene.php
David Child can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org
or phone 07799262645.
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