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Street Pastors is an inter-denominational Church response to urban problems, engaging with people on the streets to care, listen and dialogue.
It was pioneered in London in January 2003 by Rev Les Isaac, Director of the Ascension Trust, and has seen some remarkable results, including drops in crime in areas where teams have been working. There are now over 100 teams around the United Kingdom.
Each city project is set up by Ascension Trust and run by a local coordinator with support from Ascension Trust and local churches and community groups, in partnership with Police, Council and other statutory agencies.
We are heavily involved in the Street Pastors Weymouth team with many of our members being either pastors or prayers for the team.
What is a Street Pastor?
A Street Pastor is a Church leader/minister or member with a concern for society - in particular young people who feel themselves to be excluded and marginalised - and who is willing to engage people where they are, in terms of their thinking (i.e. their perspective of life) and location (i.e. where they hang out - be it on the streets, in the pubs and clubs or at parties etc).
Street Pastors will also be willing to work with fellow activists, church and community leaders, and with agencies and projects, both statutory and voluntary, to look at collaborative ways of working on issues affecting youth, and initiatives that will build trust between them and the Street Pastors.
As the Street Pastor gets to know people in the community he/she will find out their needs are and what can be done to help. A presence of Street Pastors will earn credibility in the community, so that people know that the Church is there for them in a practical way. The role is not about preaching heaven and hell, but one of listening, caring and helping - working in an unconditional way
To be a Street Pastor you need to be over 18 (no upper age limit), a church member and able to commit to our training programme.
Each Street Pastor team consists of at least three groups of four, each of which will work a minimum of one night a month, usually from 10pm to around 4am.