Church News

Christ Church London is about to embark on a significant new chapter. Find out more

New Chapter

Christ Church London is about to embark on a significant new chapter.

David Stroud, who planted the church 20 years ago this autumn, will be handing over the leadership of the church to Andy Tilsley and Joel Wade. Andy was part of the team that planted the church in 2004, and Joel has been part of the church for over 10 years. They both love this city, and love this church, and the Leadership Team and Trustees fully support this transition.

In the video below, David shares the story of how we reached this decision.

We’ve created a list of anticipated questions below, and we will be releasing more updates between now and the Summer Retreat, when the handover will formally take place. Please do get in touch with us if you have any questions by emailing [email protected].


Why two co-leaders instead of one senior leader?

Primarily, this is the direction we believe God is leading us. Both Andy and Joel felt it was right to lead together, and the wider team and Trustees agree. Andy and Joel’s gifts are very complementary and given our localised, multi-site model, two leaders are able to cover more ground. We also think it’s a healthy approach to leadership, as Andy and Joel share the weight of responsibility together.

What happens if they can’t agree on a decision/have fundamentally different views on something important?

CCL has always been led as a team, and consensus driven. This will continue, and we plan to announce the new team by the Autumn. Andy and Joel naturally defer to each other on ministry areas that fit with their responsibility and gifting. If there are any major issues that cannot be resolved, the Trustees are there to help and support.

These are two white, married men being appointed – will there be more diversity within the wider leadership team?

Absolutely, it’s really important to us that our leadership team reflects the community we serve. We will confirm the new structure by the Autumn.

What’s the process for deciding the new leadership team?

God has blessed us with many gifted leaders within our current staff team and each staff member has their own unique contribution to make. However, we recognise the need to have a smaller leadership team around Andy and Joel who are particularly focused on leading and directing the church. Andy and Joel will decide who should be on this team, through prayer and discernment. They will consult the Service Leaders, Trustees and some key leaders across the church to seek their wisdom, reflections, encouragements and concerns throughout this process. Once the new leadership team is confirmed, we will announce it to the church so we can all pray for, bless and commission the individuals involved.

How much will David still be involved/around until and after September?

David’s role will shift to ‘Founding Pastor’ from September. He will remain based at the Central service and preach two or three sermons a year at each of our services. He will play a key role in developing our up-and-coming leaders over the next 12 months, and provide support to Andy and Joel. We also want to release him and Philippa to be able to speak at other churches and to develop the Everything and Forum networks. Before that, David will be taking a sabbatical between June and August to prepare for this new season.

How do you plan to steward this transition/change well?

All of our conversations have happened in a spirit of love, generosity and friendship. Given how significant this transition is, we are so grateful to God for this. With any major transition, there are risks, but we are all excited about this change, and believe God has been guiding us through the process so far. We want to be as transparent and open as we move toward the Autumn, and recognise that some will be more affected by this change than others. Please do speak to your service leader, or one of the Trustees, if you have any questions, encouragement or concerns.

Will CCL still be involved in Everything?

Yes – Everything began at Christ Church London, and we see it as an extension of the ministry of the church. We will continue to partner with Everything for the conference, and other events throughout the year. 


Are there any planned changes with the Trustees?

The Trustee board is made up of current and former members of the church. We do not generally ask the Trustees to commit to serving for a set period of time, so they review their ability to continue in their role each year. That said, we do not anticipate any significant changes as a result of this transition, and would hope that the Trustee board will remain the same for the foreseeable future.

Will David remain a trustee?

Yes – Andy and Joel have asked that David remain a Trustee for at least the next 2 years, which David and Mark (Chair) were happy to agree to.

Who will Andy and Joel be accountable to?

Joel and Andy will report and be accountable to the Trustees. Find out more about our Governance here.

What will happen to the Council of Reference*?

Our intention is that the Council of Reference will remain as it is, and we will inform the church of any changes when relevant.

*What is the Council of Reference?

A group of leaders and friends who are happy to recommend Christ Church London as a faithful and fruitful church. Formally, the Council of Reference have no authority and do not provide accountability (that is the role of the Trustees).


What’s going to happen to the Central service?

David and Philippa will hand over the leadership of the Central service to Joel. Joel and Dee are excited about ministering again in Central London and working with Natalie Powell (who also moved from our service in East London). They feel that time is right for them to make space for new leadership in Mile End. Joel and Dee’s first Sunday at the Central service will be 28th April.

What’s going to happen in Mile End?

Adnan and Jessica Khan will take on the leadership at Mile End. Adnan has been leading alongside Joel for around 18 months, and we’re really excited that they will be taking on the service together. Adnan will continue as a member of staff, and Jessica will lead in a voluntary capacity. Adnan and Jessica’s first Sunday leading Mile End will be 21st April, and Joel and Dee will be there to commission them into their roles. As part of this transition, we will also be merging the two Mile End services into one 10:30am service from Easter Sunday.

Is there anything changing in Sutton? What about Stockwell?

Yes. Joy Tilsley will be joining the staff team in June to continue to co-lead the Sutton services with Andy, and release Andy to focus more of his time to the whole church. Andy will still be present in Sutton on Sundays as much as he has been already. Joy will also take leadership of the Families ministry across the church, releasing Catherine Ishola to spend more of her time focused on preaching and teaching. We continue to be delighted with the growth and life in our Cantonese Service. Our Cantonese Pastor, Vivian, is doing a brilliant job, and we are excited that now Joy as well as Andy will be able to support and serve her and this growing community.

We are so grateful for everything Helen and Shaninga are doing in Stockwell, and how that service is going from strength to strength – and we have no doubt that will continue!

How will things be different?

We believe this is a ‘new wineskin’ moment for the church. There is a genuine love and unity amongst the leaders of all of our services and key ministries, and we anticipate that this will lead to a fresh sense of mission together. Given Andy and Joel will lead together, they will be able to share responsibility and be present in all of our services more regularly.

Key Dates

21st April: Adnan and Jessica’s first Sunday leading the Mile End service.
28th April: Joel and Dee’s first Sunday at the Central service.
1st June: Start of David’s 3 month sabbatical, and Joy Tilsley joins the staff team.
26th-28th August: Summer Retreat, where we will pray for David, Philippa, Andy, and Joel and commission them into their new roles.
October: Christ Church London’s 20th birthday!