Steve Walford is an Elder and oversees many of the Pastoral ministries here at CCK. He is married to Rosie and they have four children: Lindsay, Ruth, Jonny and Grace. Steve talks to Emily Sneyd about his vision for the City of Brighton, and who he would like to play in a movie...
SW: Yes, I’ve been a part of the Church since 1980! It was primarily because my wife, Rosie, got a teaching job here in Brighton. Rosie and I had met as students in Sheffield and then she found work down here, while I was living and working in Central London. It was while Rosie was teaching that she got introduced to what was then the Clarendon Church- she was teaching a very young Luke Fellingham! (Luke is the son of elder, Dave Fellingham and is a member of Phatfish). When Dave discovered she was a Christian, he invited her along to a meeting and Rosie enjoyed it very much. We both attended a meeting while I was visiting for a weekend and felt very clearly that yes, this was the Church that we were to be a part of. I’d attended great Churches prior to this, but a charismatic Church such that CCK was, was new to me. It was a Church truly living out New Testament principles and was just amazing to be a part of. So we got married and I moved down here, and continued commuting up to London for a few years till I became an Elder of the Church in 1984.
ES: And your role must have changed somewhat over the years, I suppose?
SW: Indeed! My role has always been very much pastoral and continues to be, but it's certainly shaped by what’s happening in the Church. For example, in the early years of the Church, there came a time when we multiplied into two, then into 5 congregations across the City; one of which I led for a while. Then we came back into one congregation and met at the Odeon Cinema before moving to the Clarendon Centre.
You have to evolve as the Church grows; early on, it was a lot more about being involved directly with many different people in the Church, and now as the Church has grown in size, my responsibility is more to the other leaders of the Church.
ES: And what exactly are your main responsibilities now?
SW: I form part of the Core Team which is a group of leaders of the Church that deal with a lot of the nitty-gritty decision making. The theory of this is to keep the Elder’s jobs free from a lot of the small details and they focus on the strategic decisions for the Church. I also lead a Pastoral Team that assists fellow Elder, Steve Horne, in a variety of ways; we have a Team meeting on Tuesdays with key people from Zone life and other pastoral ministries, for example. I ultimately oversee the Children and youth work and also the Marriage and family parts of Church life. I also play a part in the BEA (Brighton evangelical alliance) – made up of 25 churches across the city. We meet regularly to see how we can develop and get more involved in the happenings of Brighton and Hove. So I am the vice chairman of that and I lead and attend a weekly prayer meeting for Church leaders in the City
ES: What would you like to see happen in Brighton over the next decade?
SW: My passion and expectation for this Church is to see it continuing to grow with people from multiple nations, every age band, and every conceivable background. I also want to see the Church impact every area of city life; the estates, schools, local politics and health, to name but a few.
From my perspective as an Elder, I also want to see every Church member going strong in their relationship with God and becoming mature in faith and in their areas of gifting. And it is the role of us, the leaders, to equip our people for whatever God will release them into.
SW: Rosie and I love going to a pizza place called Al Duomo near The Pavilion - we’ve got a lot of good memories from special occasions that we’ve spent there- and the pizza is really good! I also love playing squash when I can.
ES: Lastly Steve, if you could play the lead in any movie, which one would it be?
SW: I’ve always loved the Back to the Future trilogy so I'd probably play the kid in that- I’d especially love to give those hover-boards a go!
Haha, maybe we'll get them one day! Thanks, Marty Mcfly.