After the Methodist year had begun for Daleep and I in London we found ourselves in Manchester on September 3rd where we led a NewYear Service for the staff of TMCP, the Connexional team based in Manchester and some members of the Circuit. The next day we did the same thing in Methodist Church House, London and were joined by the Youth President, Tamara Wray. It was good to begin the year by worshipping with members of the Connexional Team including those newly appointed to the Discipleship and Ministries Learning Network and to other roles. I am enjoying working with the Connexional Team and I am very grateful for the work they do and the support they offer. Please remember them in your prayers.
After a week of various meetings I travelled to Liverpool where I was attending 'Together for the Common Good', a conference exploring the ways in which we work with other churches. I was given the task, along with two others of reflecting on the conversations we had shared and looking to the ways in which we can continue to work together. We remembered the work that had been done in the 1970s and 1980s by the Anglican and Catholic Bishops and the Free Church Leaders including Norwyn Denny and John Newton. More importantly, we recognised the way in which church leaders in Liverpool are working together now in so many powerful ways. You can find more about this conference and see videos of the sessions at http://togetherforthecommongood.co.uk/conference.html
The following week, Daleep and I attended the World Methodist Council meeting in London at Wesley's Chapel. Here we shared in inspirational worship and shared in some of the work of the Council. I was able to sit in on the work of the standing committee for worship and liturgy and thoroughly enjoyed the two sessions especially as this was a committee that is clearly going to get things done.
|The World Methodist Council at worship|
|Steve Pearce playing the organ in the Foundry Chapel which was played by Charles Wesley.|
I was invited to offer the greetings of the Methodist Church in Britain in the opening session and also to take part in the British evening on Wednesday. I was given the challenge of describing British Methodism in 10 minutes, Daleep,Tamara and Jo Cox also took part. After the presentation which included a piper, who was very well received, we were served fish and chips and ice cream from vans parked at the back of Wesley's Chapel. As we queued for our food, we were entertained by Morris Dancers.
I had to leave that night but it was a very good two days in which I met many of our partners from the World Church and enjoyed talking with them and learning from them. We belong to such a rich and varied family.
At the end of the week I went to a meeting of the Churches Together in England Enabling Group in Cambridge and travelled from there to the Chipping Norton and Stow on the Wold Circuit - which I will write about in the next blog.