Thursday, 25 June 2009

More than Bakewell Puddings

Our visit to the Sheffield District began for me in Bakewell - almost as famous for its puddings as Eccles is for its cakes!

Deacon David Clark and others from the Methodist Church had invited the local mayor, the Chair of the Chamber of Trade and other members of the community for an evening to talk about the social and economic future of the town - especially for its small businesses as they face the effects of the credit crunch.

It was a lively and constructive evening with some practical suggestions for action - including encouraging a reduction in local shop rentals as a stimulus to trade. The Church is to be congratulated on its initiative.

On Sunday morning I was planned to preach at The Crossing Church in Worksop - a joint Methodist /URC venture which was celebrating the third anniversary of life in its new building.

And what a splendid building it is. The coffee shop and entrance opens right onto the high street and there are lots of activities and outreach throughout the week; currently over 90 volunteers are involved. Local impresario and church organist Dave Jordan masterminds a popular series of concerts in the Church itself.

The Rev Mark Pengelly (pictured with his family above) leads a strong lay team and I look forward to watching their progress over the next months as they seek to deepen the spiritual life of the Church.

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