René Moor, Company Director,
St Michael’s Beccles congregation
As a child, René was brought up in a traditional Dutch Reformed Church. Having rebelled against it as a teenager and moved to England, it took him until his 30’s to rediscover church, though his desire for spiritual nourishment and direction stayed strong throughout.
When René met his soon to be fiancée, he found church again through members of her family, and felt so welcomed that he decided to get confirmed into the Church of England.
That was a decade ago, and René says, “I found a church community that put kindness and acceptance first. My parish priest became a confidante and advisor to me, helping me to find spiritual enrichment as my career grew.”
But when his priest retired, René again found himself without a church and missed it: he felt spiritually homeless.
Like so many people, he was nervous of going into a new church. What would he find behind those big oak doors? How would he be received?
Over time, René says, “My desire to reconnect with worship made me find the courage to push open those doors to St Michael’s church in Beccles: and that courage was rewarded from that very first Sunday. I received a warm, enthusiastic welcome; and knew that I had found just the right church.”
Now, René derives great joy from the routines and reflection that this church allows in his increasingly pressured life, working as an Optician and managing the business during a global pandemic.
That hour on a Sunday morning - up first in the household, heading into town, letting the rhythms of the church service bring comfort and enlightenment - is a point of peace in the week.
Of course there is more to a church community than services, and René enjoys the opportunity to take part in ways that fit around his life. He regularly reads at church, can sometimes be found burger flipping at social events, and takes part in home groups discussing books and all things spiritual.
He’s shopped for the food bank, and will be training for more involvement in services soon.
René’s overriding view of his place in the community he has found at St Michael’s is that it has given him the opportunity to be part of something greater than himself: an active, tolerant and kindly group of people who are guided and enhanced by their faith.
Further Information and resources
- Families at church | weblink
- Volunteering in our church | weblink
- Alpha courses | weblink
- Beccles Parish Church | weblink
- Church resource pack for the campaign | weblink