South Ashford Baptist Church is part of the Baptist Union of Great Britain a mainstream denomination of some 2000+ churches. On a local level the church is a member of the South East Baptist Association.
Baptists are Protestants, and are part of the Free church ( sometimes called dissenting or non-conformist) tradition of church, who have their origins in the 16th century. We practice baptism by immersion in water, upon confession of faith. Famous Baptists include President Jimmy Carter,Dr Martin Luther King, Rev Billy Graham, Pastor Rick Warren, and in the UK CH Spurgeon and Rev Steve Chalke.
people are a Christ-centred people. Having responded to the Lord Jesus
Christ in believer’s baptism, we long to live out that mission
lifestyle formed around his teaching.
Baptist churches are both autonomous and interdependent. The final authority in a Baptist congregation is the member's meeting itself, not any hierarchy above this. But true Baptists are also in covenent relationship with others- in our case with the local ( South Kent) Network, SEBA and BUGB.
For Baptists the concept of a family is important. The church is not so much a particular place or building, but rather a gathered family of believers, committed to Christ, to one another and to the service of God in the world.
In this family everybody is equal, for everybody has a part to play in the service of God. However, that does not mean that all have the same role. The church appoints its own minister to have particular responsibility for preaching, teaching and pastoral care. Working alongside the minister are the elders and deacons, who together with the minister form the leadership team of the local Baptist church.The Baptist way of being the church is living together in community; in a family.
The Baptist Union is a full member of Churches Together in England and Wales. Baptist Union churches have been ordaining female ministers since 1922.