A team from St James’s will travel to New York at the invitation of St Bart’s Park Avenue NYC to forge a partnership with them for the future and to launch the American Friends of St James’s Piccadilly. Please do look them up at stbarts.org The trip is for a week at the beginning of September. The team going are treating this trip as a pilgrimage, and will meet daily for prayer and reflection, alongside attending a variety of events, forging new friendships and relationships as we go. A charity auction will be hosted by Christie’s (whose London auction house is in our parish) a reception in Washington DC hosted by the UK ambassador, and a Sunday with St Bart’s church council, musicians and clergy at which our own clergy will preach.
The blueprint of St James’s Church designed by Christopher Wren in 1684 was used during the 17th and 18th centuries to build churches in the USA , and on Sundays St James’s very often has visitors from the USA in our congregation. So we hope that the launch of the American Friends will help support not only the Wren Project but build on our existing strong links and form friendships for the future. This is also part of a London Diocese initiative that partners churches in London with churches in New York. Acutely aware of the carbon footprint of flying, and wrestling with the different complexities of this, the very least we can do is offset the flight, which on this occasion is what we are doing. We are aware that this is not enough, and in taking a whole set of complex decisions, for this and many reasons, we ask you please to keep this trip in your prayers.