The Mustard Seed was opened in 1992 by John and Pam Dunn. A few years earlier they had stood on the corner opposite while on a visit to Sidmouth and responded to what they felt God was telling them to do. This was to buy the café they were looking at and open a Christian café and bookshop. After much preparation they opened in the October that year. Sadly not long afterwards John died and Pam felt she should return to be near her family.
A trust was formed by local Christians and Mustard Seed Ministries Trust was formed in March 1995 and the shop purchased with gifts and support from local churches and supporters. Any interest free loans were paid back within the next three years.
Around 2005, realising that the premises were too small and additional services were needed, there was the vision to move or expand. The adjoining ground floor flat was available for purchase, but it was not until November 2009 that the flat was purchased. Once again the generosity of the local Churches, local Christians and visitors made money available for this to go ahead.
The vision was to:
- Create improved access for all, along with inside toilet facilities.
- Improve and increase the eating area
- Increase access and space for merchandise, and extra storage.
- Enlarge the cramped kitchen area.
- Create an office with space for confidential conversations
As we already had outline planning permission, improvements were put into action immediately with the help of both a Christian Architect and Structural Engineer.
With the increased giving and some interest free loans the building work was started after Easter 2011 and aimed to be completed at the end of July and opened for Sidmouth Folk week. The builders worked very hard to keep everything on schedule.
We praise God for the goodness and generosity of you His people, whose giving has enabled the Mustard Seed to grow and develop. We look forward to what God has in store for the work over the next few years.