Norwich Christian centre is an oasis of calm in busy city
Revelation is a unique place in Norfolk that provides Christian resources, a popular cafe and a forum for topical debate . Local people and churches are urged to help the centre continue to flourish.
by Helen Baldry
As Britain’s retailers find it increasingly difficult to make ends meet, Revelation, located on Redwell Street in Norwich, has also experienced a decline in sales. Yet trustees, staff and volunteers are determined to keep the centre open. They see the role of the centre as far more than ‘just a Christian bookshop’, but as an oasis of calm and peace in troubled times, and most importantly, a place to promote the Christian faith.
At their recent AGM, trustees expressed gratitude for a small surplus of income at the end of the financial year. Chair of trustees Philip Talbot summed up the vision of Revelation as “A place where we promote the Christian faith. Everything else that goes on is because of proclaiming the Christian faith.”
There is a strong sense of community and belonging at Revelation.
Delia Smith is patron of the centre. The cafe has recently been awarded a food hygiene rating of five. A special Norfolk Day menu will be served on July 26 and 27 using local ingredients and celebrating the wonderful produce of our county.
Trustees identified the pastoral role of the centre and this has been explored over the past year; visitors feel free to talk about issues going on in their lives if they wish. Revelation falls within the parish of St George Tombland and the vicar Revd Alaric Lewis has become a trustee and supports the centre and is able to offer spiritual support to people who wish for it.
The centre draws customers from an ever wider radius, including those who delight in visiting the beautiful medieval building while on holiday.
The new bishop of Norwich Bishop Graham Usher has already visited Revelation – an undercover visit before he had been appointed - where he bought a book and enjoyed tea and cake. In an email conversation he has promised to be a regular visitor and purchaser!
Manager Steve Foyster paid tribute to the “best team of staff – paid and voluntary – that we have ever had.”
He said, “This place is still meant to be here. In a very troubled global and national atmosphere, people are seeking something, even it’s just peace.”
Appeal for trustee with retail experience
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Pictured above: some of the staff, trustees, volunteers and supporters