2017 September

September 2017

Dear Friends,

I suppose I could blame it on my daughter, Fiona, but that would be unfair. Although it was her idea, I was just as keen to be there.

We were on the top of a platform, trussed up like chickens, about to be launched on the longest zip-wire in Britain at 660m long, over the Eden Project in Cornwall.

The instructor who took us through our preparations commented that there were more smiles than in the previous group, before we climbed up to a height of 93m above the valley below. He told us that we would need to wear a sail that would slow us down in the strong wind, and that rather than struggle, we should allow the staff at the other end remove us from our harnesses.

So there we were, embarking on something new, unsure whether we would like it or not, but with no option but to go through with it.

The 45 seconds that it lasted were a wonderful experience of flying over the ‘Biomes’ of the Eden Project. Although Fiona and I were on our own as we flew down the zip wires, we were actually in the very safe hands of those who had designed and prepared the experience.

This September brings the start of a new experience for our Circuit, with the welcome service for our new Mission and Ministry Team at Blundellsands Church on Sunday 3rd September at 3pm. While this may be new to us, and we may have a few butterflies in our tummies as we prepare for what we face, we also recognise that we are in the very safe hands of God who has led his church through numerous new starts as the church faced up to changes and challenges in the society in which it was placed.

As we progress with our new Team, we will be led by Rev. Dr. Sheryl Anderson as Superintendent Minister, who as Chair of Liverpool District, brings much wisdom concerning the Methodist Church to our Circuit.  Rev. Rachel Deigh, as well as being the District Mission and Evangelism Facilitator, will be our team leader, supervising the lay members of our new team. Our pastoral care will be strengthened with the help of Deacon Jenny Knight who joins us from the Wirral. We will be promoting mission and evangelism in all our churches, enabled by Hayley James, who brings great experience of this through her work with young people over the last decade. Such a team needs to be organised, and we have an able administrator in Margaret Carleton. I am delighted to be working together with this team, and value the range of experience, skills and enthusiasm that they offer to the Circuit.

As you look at the new Plan for September to November, you will find that Sheryl, Rachel and Jenny will be contributing to the worship of the Circuit. We will also be gathering together and with others as we worship. I am pleased that Ben* from Release International will be talking to us about supporting persecuted Christians on 17 September in our Circuit Service at Moor Lane. On Sunday 24th September for our morning service, we join with our friends from All Saints with St. Frideswyde’s at The King’s Church in Drummond Road – the third such service this year. There will be no service at Moor Lane on that Sunday.

In addition to worship, pastoral care and mission and evangelism, we will be working together on  discipleship, the means by which each one of us grows in our faith. In order to help us explore our faith and  to encourage people who attend our churches to consider membership, we are looking at the possibility of running a circuit-wide Alpha course. We will seek to organise this at a time and venue to suit the majority of those who want to attend.

I hope that as we launch into our new Methodist year, just as I stood on that platform looking out at a long zip-wire, so we will find ourselves gliding on a direction set out by God and that we may thrive and grow as God leads us into new things.

David

* ‘Ben’ is a pseudonym for our speaker, as he is in contact with persecuted Christians, and must protect his true identity for their sake.

 


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