Our Journey Together

In 2006 All Saints Anglican Church, Algarve was born when thirty eight people met together...

Those 38 people undertook to form a new Anglican Church and invited Rev Eric Britt to be its first priest in charge. Eric accepted and was supported in his ministry team by Lay Reader Jackie Nevill and Paul Luckman, who was in training at that time. A few weeks later All Saints were blessed with somewhere to worship when we were invited to use the premises at ASCA (Associação Social e Cultural de Almancil), by the then President of ASCA, Sr Hermes Alberto.

Canon Chris Sugden and Anglican Mainstream supported us from the start and that together with a huge amount of work by Terry Blackman which included many meetings, plus trips to America and Recife, a visit from Canon Ellis Brust sent by Archbishop Kolini, eventually led to Terry & Jo going to the first Global Anglican Futures Conference (GAFCON) in Jerusalem in June 2008. During the whole of this time Terry was supported by Jo, Jackie Nevill, Paul & Madeline Luckman, Eric & Sue Britt and the council at the time, Kevin Croft being the first Warden. At the GAFCON Terry & Jo met with Archbishop Kolini of Rwanda, Archbishop Acrofi of Ghana and Bishop Frank of the Church of England South Africa who signed a unique Concordat providing Episcopal Oversight to All Saints giving us legitimate status as an Anglican Church and which also enabled us to register with the Portuguese authorities.  We were now part of the Worldwide Anglican Communion. Bishop John Ellison was appointed as Episcopal Delegate a few years later by Archbishop Kolini and his guidance and leadership were invaluable.

In 2008 an evening service started in Lagoa at the Convento de São José, as a need for services further west was recognised. Jackie Nevill and Paul Luckman continued with their studies. Jackie being ordained Deacon in 2007 and Priest in 2008. Both these ordinations took place in Kigali, Rwanda by Archbishop Kolini.  Paul was ordained Deacon in 2008 and Priest in 2009 at Lagoa by Bishop Martin Morrison.

Rev Eric & Sue Britt were succeeded, after an interregnum, by Father Joe & Beth Wingo in May 2009 who arrived from Tampa, USA, together with baby Lilly. It was lovely to have a young family in our midst. When Father Joe returned to the USA we were without a priest in charge, but in 2011 Rev Jackie and Fr Paul rose to the challenge and a morning service started in Lagoa and our two congregations were born, in Lagoa and Almancil.  We meet together to worship for united services as well as at more informal social events and meetings which help us to keep in touch. 

In the absence of a resident priest for Almancil and after several years of being served by many locums at Almancil, who became our friends including Rev John Calvert who was with us for an extended period, Almancil congregation were very pleased in 2018 to welcome Rev Mike Clarkson to take the services at Almancil.   

Over the years our Ministry Team has grown: Terry Moore, Kurt Pardon and Maurice Holmes have been admitted as Lay Readers and other lay people have followed a preaching course.

Our friendship with Rwanda continues to grow, with Rev Jackie spending time working there after she retired from All Saints, and other members of our church family having visited on several occasions.  Archbishop Kolini was succeeded by Archbishop Onesphore Rwaje and the current Archbishop Laurent Mbanda has continued to support All Saints.  Following the death of Bishop John Ellison in 2019, in 2020 Archbishop Laurent Mbanda appointed Bishop Andy Lines, missionary bishop for GAFCON UK and Europe, as his episcopal delegate to All Saints.

The summer of 2020 bought many new challenges with the coronavirus pandemic in Europe, however All Saints embraced technology and started regular online church meetings using Zoom, YouTube and Facebook spearheaded by Colin & Sarah Packer.  We even embarked on an Alpha Adventure under the leadership and guidance of Rev Mike & Linda Clarkson and saw 40 people, across 4 groups, regularly join us online for the adventure.

Our Journey Together Continues...

All Saints has a dedicated core of willing, resident church members who keep All Saints alive and active. Being part of an expat community means that we enjoy having lots of part time members of our family who come and go through the year, as well as visitors who find us during their holidays. 

With the change in the economic climate we have lost most of the younger resident families but we have been developing outreach into the Portuguese community in both Lagoa and Almancil which includes craft activities with the residents and day centre members at ASCA as well as support of food banks in both locations, and supporting other local needs in our communities.

The All Saints family have always enjoyed lots of different activities during the year which usually combine fun, faith and fellowship, and sometimes fundraising thrown in!  We always try to find ways to engage the local Portugese community in our activities which include Christmas & Summer Fairs, Golf Tournaments, Skittles, Boule, Picnics, Treasure Hunts, Fashion Shows, Meals, Parties, Quiet Days, Retreats, Music, Bible Studies & Discussions, Children’s Missions, Teddy Bear Services and other Special Services.

All Saints also have a willing band of 'Church Mice' who meet together for crafting sessions making cards and items to sell. There are several musicians amongst our members and All Saints has always had a good reputation for Sunday morning worship. Over the years there have been a music group, choirs in both locations and dedicated worship leaders.

We can’t stand still, we know there are things we do well, but we also need to look to the areas where there are new challenges to face.

Looking to the future, let us be attentive to where God is leading us, looking on the past with thanksgiving, praying that God will guide us and lead us forward into the future... He has a plan.