Presence and Engagement

Interfaith Relations are a vital part of life across the West Midlands, whether communities have high numbers of people of different faiths living side by side or very few, issues relating to living in a multi-faith society impact us all.

Our work helps churches in their engagement with people of other faiths whether through mission, evangelism, dialogue or social action. We recognise the breadth of attitudes and approaches that churches have and aim to support and help as broad a range as possible.

Near Neighbours projects aim to bring people together for both social interaction and social action. We encourage people applying for funding to work closely with local places of worship and to plan, implement and evaluate their projects with people from other faith communities. All our projects, whether dialogue or social action, have the same aim which is to bring people together from different faiths to build friendships.

The Faithful Neighbourhoods Centre is part of The Church of England’s Presence and Engagement Programme, which encourages and supports the mission and ministry of parishes and other Anglican communities in multi religious contexts.

The Faithful Neighbourhoods Centre is one of four Presence and Engagement Centres across the country the others are based in


Leicester and


Dr Andrew Smith, the Bishop’s Director for Interfaith Relations, is a member of the Presence and Engagement central task group, and also has responsibility for supporting churches across Birmingham Diocese in their engagement with people of different faiths.
Andrew’s work also includes advising and supporting the Bishop of Birmingham, David Urquhart in his work with other faith communities.  This work includes working with the Bishop in a variety of contexts including his participation on the Birmingham Faith Leader’s Group.
Many of the activities taking place at the Faithful Neighbourhoods Centre are part of the wider Presence and Engagement programme and are geared to supporting churches through training, consultations and one to one support.
For more information about this work contact Andrew Smith on 0121 675 1165 or at


The Faithful Neighbourhoods Centre is also home to Interserve Birmingham

Interserve Birmingham is part of the national team which works cross-culturally in towns and cities in the UK, seeking to engage and serve those from other faiths. The team will often link the church to the community, offering practical, social and spiritual support in the areas of language, advice, childcare, social interaction and skills development. The work of Interserve Birmingham is focussed mainly in Balsall Heath, Sparkhill and Sparkbrook.

“Interserve Birmingham is an exciting and diverse team of big-hearted individuals who love God and who long to see God’s love at work in Birmingham’s communities through genuine partnerships with churches and other groups who share our ethos and values”

For information about Interserve Birmingham  Contact Roger Lynch

The Bishop of Birmingham addressing local Christians