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Are you New?

Allow me to introduce myself. I'm Orlando Saer and I'm the Senior Pastor of Christ Church Southampton. Thank you for taking the time to look around the site. I'd love the chance to meet you in person. But for now, let me tell you a bit about the setup here.

We're an evangelical church meeting in the north of the city, close to Southampton University. Many of our regulars live so close they can walk to church, but others live all around the city and the region, from Wiltshire and Winchester to Fareham and the New Forest.

What draws us all together is a shared desire to enjoy that 'life to the full' which Jesus came to bring. We don't care who you are, what you do, how old you are, what baggage you bring, or anything like that. If you're interested in life to the full - life with God and with God's people - then you'll find a warm welcome at Christ Church.

I hope you enjoy looking around the site and finding out more about the church. And I look forward to meeting you soon!

Every blessing to you,


We are family

If there's one word you'll hear again and again as people describe Christ Church, it's the word 'family'.

We really do seek to live as brothers and sisters, caring for each other's needs, encouraging each other, rejoicing with each other and occasionally grieving with each other.

But this is no ordinary family. In our 'household' are people of all ages and walks of life, many different personalities and temperaments, and a number of different countries. For all our different profiles, we love spending time with each other and welcoming others into the family.

Our biggest groupings are students, people in their twenties and young families. But there's every one from babies to grandparents in our fellowship.

We enjoy a vibrant community life. Outside our regular group meetings, there are always people meeting up for meals, movies or games nights, going for walks or coffee outings, kicking a football around or throwing a frisbee.

It's all part of being family.

We are serious

If you want to get a handle on the ethos at Christ Church, you need to know that we have a clear set of values. We have a lot of fun, and we certainly don't take ourselves too seriously, but there are some things we're deadly serious about.


The apostle Paul wrote 'I want to know Christ'. Well, so do we. Jesus is the centre of our lives as individuals. And he's the centre of our corporate life as a church. 


God hasn't left us in the dark about his plans. He's given us his written word, the Bible. We treasure that gift: we teach it and study it in order to know God better, and to live accordingly.


'When you pray...' said Jesus. In other words prayer isn't optional. In fact it's the delight of every believer and undergirds all we do as a church: we depend on God to do his work.


Christ Church is not a one-hour-a-week church.  Far from it! We're constantly looking for ways to love, support and care for each other. We want everyone to feel part of the family.


We may have a family feel, but we're not just a club for people to make friends and grow old together. We're more an army on a mission: 'contending as one for the faith of the gospel'.


We're keen for everyone to develop their God-given gifts. So we work hard to 'prepare God's people for works of service'. That means not just doing ministry, but teaching it. 


'The fruit of the spirit is...' As we study the Bible together, we're aiming not simply to inform minds, but to transform lives. We long for the work of the Spirit to be evident in all our lives. 

*For a summary of the Bible's teachings as we understand them, please click here.

meet the staff

  • Orlando Saer (Senior Pastor)

    Orlando is married to Libby and they have four children. He enjoys taking the credit for the Saints’ meteoric rise since he switched his support to them in 2011, but in truth tends to enjoy sport more from the sofa than any closer up. Apart from that, you might catch him relaxing with a bit of music or a spot of reading. Before training for the ministry, Orlando was a school teacher.

  • Jonny Clifton (Associate Pastor)

    Jonny is married to Laura and they have three girls and a boy. Laura grew up on an island (Anglesey) and so she's excited to be near the sea again and Southampton is Jonny's hometown and so he's delighted to be back. Jonny is beginning to learn the ukelele, he's pretty bad at it so all tips, lessons and words of advice are welcome.

  • amanda lansdowne (children's pastor)

    Amanda has three children, all of whom are now taller than her. In past times she has lived in Swansea, San Francisco, Sydney and Surrey; and is glad that the move to Southampton has pushed the trend back towards S’s by the sea. Amanda is very excited about her role at Christ Church, and thinks that teaching children the Bible is the best thing ever.

  • Steve wicks (Student PASTOR)

    Steve studied economics at Durham, where he also started following Jesus. He's a Surrey man, a keen sportsman, a film enthusiast, a former corporate financier and occasional guitarist, but what he really loves is just chatting with anyone and everyone over a coffee. He's a strong believer that knowing Jesus is way better than we can fathom.

  • sophie cornes (student pastoR)

    Sophie grew up in a large, rowdy family in Sussex. As far as she knows she’s always trusted Jesus as her parents taught her about him and helped her see what it looked like to trust in him. She loves asking questions and found that the bible always seemed to have good answers! She enjoys having a go at any kind of sport although her enthusiasm outweighs her talent.

  • JAMES DE MARS (OPERATions manager)

    James has lived in Southampton since 2014, having grown up in Basingstoke. After going to university he worked for a couple of years on the railway, where he became more interested than most in trains. He likes a good book, or being outside walking – nothing more strenuous than that. He’s really looking forward to getting to grips with the organisation and administration at Christ Church.

  • Simon Mao (Pastoral assistant: internationals)

    Simon comes from a peaceful coastal city on the Yangtze River. He came to the UK with his wife Allison a few years ago and studied theology while she did a PhD in Sociology. He's passionate about Jesus. He likes to challenge people with Gospel and he is very happy to be challenged. He enjoys reading theology and history. Cooking is a hobby that could unleash his chef skills. He used to play some sports, such as basketball and football. Now he is unwilling to run, jump, and sweat too much. However, table tennis is still on his list. As others often mock, "Chinese are all good at table tennis". It is not true with him. He just likes it. 

  • Ruthie Emerson (Associate)

    Ruthie is from the beautiful county of Devonshire and graduated in 2015 with a degree in Musical Theatre from Chichester. Alongside everything dramatic, Ruthie is a big fan of the perfect cup of (real) coffee or Lady Grey tea. She loves sewing, baking, reading (especially Jane Austen) and can often think of nothing better than being out in the beautiful great outdoors.

  • jasmine brown (Associate)

    Jasmine grew up in Manchester and moved to Southampton to study Physics. It was here she first heard the gospel and began to follow Christ. In her spare time Jasmine enjoys reading novels, playing card games, sewing and crochet, and is an enthusiastic watcher of snooker. She's excited about growing in her faith and working with others as they do the same.

  • Matt Hill (Associate)

    Matt hails from the beautiful haven of Swindon and has just completed a degree in chemistry. He likes to pretend that he is good at sport, music and other intellectual pursuits, but in fact his enthusiasm outweighs his ability. He is however very much enjoying the life of an associate and spending time in the company of and serving other people.


    Matthew lived in Gloucester and Manchester before coming to Southampton.  A former teacher, he's married to Rachel (also a teacher) has recently become a Dad. He's excited about serving international students and telling people about Jesus. In his spare time he loves playing sport of any kind (although more eagerness than skill), reading and watching movies.


    Sophie grew up in the beautiful Devon countryside, by the sea. She has just finished a degree in physiotherapy at the University of Southampton. In her free time she enjoys playing sport, or any competitive game, and a healthy amount of tea and chocolate. This year Sophie is really looking forward to reading the Bible with students and growing in her own faith.

  • Lydia James (ASSOCIATE)

    Lydia grew up in the beautiful town of Leamington Spa, before coming to Southampton to study engineering in 2012. She enjoys escaping the city to get into the countryside, come rain or shine, and has a long-term ambition to learn Spanish. Any excuse to try a new coffee shop, or cake recipe will be met with enthusiasm.


  • naomi tillin (ASSOCIATE)

    Naomi grew up just south of Oxford and moved to Southampton to study Environmental Science in 2013. She loves reading, the sea, sewing (or generally doing anything creative with the exception of drawing), and her ideal Saturday would involve a walk or cycle in the beautiful English countryside, especially in Spring or Autumn.

  • sam cockbain (ASSOCIATE)

    Sam was born and raised in London, but moved to Southampton to study Criminology and Psychology at the University.  He is an avid lover of Jesus, tea, comedies, crime dramas, cats and sports.

  • miriam animashaun (ASSOCIATE)

    Miriam was born and raised in East London before moving to Southampton to study Economics & philosophy at university, which she has now finished. In her spare time Miriam enjoys reading novels, blogs and listening to podcasts, watching tennis and football (she is a die-hard Arsenal supporter). Miriam is a massive music fan and occasional guitarist.


The Beginning

In the autumn of 2006, a small group of Christians started to meet up each Sunday evening to study the Bible in the Elizabeth House Hotel.


A few months later, that small group began meeting on a Sunday morning under the name ‘Sunday@Swaythling’ as a witness for Christ at Swaythling Primary School. A number of individuals soon began to come to faith and grow in their knowledge of God.

Christ Church Southampton

There were a number of developments in 2010-11. The church became known as ‘Christ Church Southampton’, it moved to larger accommodation at Cantell School and it called a full-time pastor.

Under God’s gracious hand, as we’ve prayed, preached and planned, there has been rapid growth in numbers. What was a small group of a couple of dozen people is now a bustling community of hundreds of people, meeting in three congregations.

Getting connected

As time has gone on, we've begun to team up with other churches in different ways. Our affiliations and networks now include the FIEC, the Southampton Christian Network, the South East Gospel Partnership and the Solent Gospel Partnership.

Planting seeds

We’re a young church – in every way – but already we have much to thank God for and wonderful signs of his blessing. As we look to the future, we’re very excited about the prospect of planting new churches and have recently been involved - alongside other Solent Gospel Partnership churches - in establishing Cornerstone Church Portsmouth.