Mens Shed Ark Unveiled At St Marks Church

Mens Shed Ark unveiled at St Marks Church
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A lovely time was spent attending the opening of The Ark Project at St Marks Church in Salisbury this week, a church community project working in partnership with Alabaré and The Men's Shed Salisbury. 

During lockdown, to alleviate social isolation, a small church group met regularly on zoom to chat and pray. Discussions led to talk about the use of rainbows which were by then regularly adorning windows up and down the country during the pandemic, and people reflected if people knew the significance of the original bible story (Genesis 7:1) on Noah's Ark, which first talked about the rainbow. From here, the idea of designing an ark for the church community was born. 

Several discussions and several design iterations later and following a generous donation of wood from a New Forest woodsman, it was decided that The Men's Shed would run with the project. The Men's Shed, which met weekly at Alabaré's Riverside House Salisbury, had recently started up again following lockdown as a community space for men to connect, converse and create, aiming to reduce loneliness and isolation while, importantly, having fun. 

Now complete, The Ark has become a focal point for young children and the wider community. Visiting the ceremony, John Glen MP said, "It's fantastic to be at St. Marks Church and to see all the hard work that's gone into The Ark with the church members and the community at large, and the exhibition is really inspiring. And it's great to see a collaboration between The Men's Shed, Alabaré and St. Marks, and it once again reminds me what a wonderful community Salisbury is and how St. Marks Church is at the centre of it." 

Various thank you gifts to key individuals were presented together with a cheque for Alabaré from the congregation before a beautiful reading and a light interpretation of Noah's story were acted out.  

Andrew Lord, CEO, added, "So, in glorious sunshine, we've seen the unveiling of The Ark, created by a group of committed volunteers which is just outstanding. Alongside that, a big thank you to St. Marks for the cheque for over £600 towards the work of Alabaré. Thank you."

The Ark will be a permanent reminder of the power of the rainbow sitting alongside the entrance to St Marks Church for years to come.