Who We Are…
We’re a friendly bunch!
We are young, and not so young.
We are supercool and super conservative.
Some of us are very quiet, some of us are very loud.
We are a multitude of ethnicities.
We are varied in shades and shapes; in our circumstances, aspirations and opinions.
Yet we are bound as one, knit together by two burning passions:
– A hunger to know God, and become more like Him.
– A thirst to be a community who love, through thick and thin, in deed and in truth.
God loves with open arms and with a wide open heart. And we have chosen this as our passion and purpose also. We are aware of our failings and weaknesses and each of us have areas in our lives we are working on. Yet our aim is high – to grow, make friends, build family, and become the best version of ourselves we can possibly be.
We know we don’t have it all together, but we are discovering what it means to find LIFE in Jesus, to follow him fully, and allow Him space so He can free us from things that pain or bind us. Jesus promised healing, victory, abundant life and we aim for nothing less.
Our story started like this…
Bethany Church was founded in April 1973 by Pastors Tony and Jane Powell (In photo to the right) in their home in Gatley. We started out with 12 founding members who had an encounter with God that changed their lives forever – some of whom are still here with us. We originally called ourselves “Gatley Christian Fellowship”
In September 1973, the church moved to rented accommodation on the site which was owned by the Y.M.C.A. In September 1992, as the congregation continued to grow and more space was needed, the church was able to purchase the original small hall together with approximately an acre of land.
A building fund for the building of a new church was opened, whilst the congregation expanded to include members not only from England, but also from 12 other nations. Looking ahead, and after much prayer and deliberation we decided to build for growth. In November 1998 initial plans were drawn up – and building began.
In 1992 the name of the church was changed to Bethany Community Church.
In 2002 after years of steadfast prayer, sacrificial giving and the faithfulness of God, we opened the doors of our new church building, debt-free. What joy to be able to dedicated this new space to the glory of God.
Following 40 years of faithful ministry, the founding pastors retired in October 2011 and we became an affiliation of Elim International Churches.
The church has gone through a season of rejuvenation under the leadership of Elim and its pastoral associates. Pastors Tony Lacy and Aaron Hornback led the Church from November 2011 until November 2015. Pastor Tony Lacy retired at the end of March 2016 and Pastor Aaron serves now as worship pastor at Lighthouse Church in Salford, Manchester.
Bethany continues to grow in strength and numbers.
In September 2016 Pastor David and Katie Meggers took up position as the senior pastor. Originally from Lancashire, they have served as pastors in Somerset and North Wales for the last 9 years. They have two sons, Levi and Samuel, and are excited to be back on “home turf” leading Bethany and engaging with the community in the next phase at Bethany.