What sort of church are we?
LRBC formed as a new church in 1972, meeting in north-west Leeds. Peter Parkinson, who had been trained at the Northern Baptist College, Manchester, was invited to lead the new fellowship. Right from the beginning, the church wanted to be identified with the teachings of the Reformation. These are the teachings adopted by the main Christian denominations. However, we also sought to maintain the autonomy of our local congregation, rather than being just a ‘branch’ of a larger denomination.
So we’re Reformed, meaning that all our work and activity as a church agrees (so far as we understand it) with what God has revealed in the Bible and through his Son Jesus Christ. We’re also a Baptist church, meaning that we only baptise those who truly believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as their Saviour. And our church membership has the final say in major decisions that we need to make in the life of our church.
Our young church eventually bought its first premises on Cottage Road in Headingley, and built a chapel on the site. (Incidentally, at LRBC, we firmly believe that the word ‘church’ should refer to the people, not the building they meet in!) In the early years, many of the new members were students who found jobs in Leeds, and who are now parents of…more students! The church presently attracts people of all ages, from a wide variety of backgrounds.
God has really blessed the work and life of our church. Many ministries and activities have developed, including Boys’ and Girls’ Brigades, a vibrant Pre-School, and groups catering for young people…and the not-so-young!
A very special ministry began to grow during the late 1980s when some of the members of LRBC sought to make a real difference in the lives of vulnerable and homeless people, founding a dedicated charity, Caring For Life. Peter Parkinson is now devoted full-time to leading this exciting and challenging work – you can read more about it at their website, www.caringforlife.co.uk
Around 250 people regularly attend our Sunday services, which are led by various members of the church. Our Senior Pastor, Wes Johnston, is usually the main speaker and we sing both ‘old favourite’ hymns and contemporary worship songs, led by musicians playing on a variety of instruments. Above all, we try to make our services straightforward, relevant to everyday life, and faithful to God’s Word, the Bible.
The best way to find out what we’re really like as a church is to come and join us for a Sunday service: You will be warmly welcomed!