Park Pastors, a new program initiated by CMF missionary Aaron Lincoln and a ministry colleague in Rugby, England, is getting a lot of positive attention from the media, including an article in the online BBC News. The program is believed to be the first of its kind in England.
The Park Pastors program grew from the local involvement that Aaron, pastor Matt Caldicott and other Christians have had in the weekend Street Pastors ministry in Rugby, where volunteers patrol the streets to help people stay out of trouble on a night out. The town’s borough council has expressed support for the Park Pastors project and offered the group free use of an unused café in Caldecott Park, which is located right in the center of the town. The park is the most visited destination in Rugby, with about 650,000 visitors each year.
Rugby Councillor Mark Williams is excited about the plan. “Having safe, experienced volunteers on hand to help out will make the park an even more attractive place to visit,” he said.
Aaron, Matt and their ministry team plan to engage people through a regular Dads & Kids ministry, with organized games and activities for families and refreshments in the cafe.
“We especially want to connect with dads who bring their children to the park,” said pastor Matt Caldicott. “There are lots of gathering places for mums and kids, but not so many for fathers.”