District News – 10 December 2019


This Week’s News

Freedom Community Group – Christmas Appeal

  • £5 donation will allow us to provide a food parcel for a family
  • £10 donation will allows us to support people at tribunal
  • £20 donation will allow us to provide specialist support for a family
  • £100 donation will allow us to offer specialist counselling sessions

Please help support our vital work this Christmas!
Donate at one of our centres / email info@fcgroup.org.uk
Tel: 0300 302 0334 / www.fcgroup.org.uk/financial

Friends Against Scams

Friends Against Scams is a National Trading Standards initiative which aims to protect and prevent people from becoming victims of scams.

Lizzie Wilson is the Community Banker for NatWest who will be more than happy to come to your church/community group to give practical and  impartial advice and guidance on how to stay safe.  She can be contacted by email: elizabeth.wilson@natwest.com

Other banks are also likely to have their own community workers.

District office

A reminder that the office will be closed from Tuesday 24 December and will re-open on Thursday 2 January 2020. Next week’s mailing will be the last until the new year.


The deadline is fast approaching for applications for the roles of MWiB President/Vice President, and World Federation Officer – Tuesday 10th December – and as yet they have received no applications for either role. Do please consider whether God might be calling you, or someone you know, to this important and fulfilling role. You can download information and application forms on the website – www.mwib.org.uk

They are also seeking a new Resources Officer – again, information is available on the website.

The Swanwick Residential weekend (April 2020) “Travelling in Hope” is booking up fast – download info and booking form from the website , and don’t miss out on joining us for a great weekend of fellowship, worship, teaching and fun! You can find out more here: swanwick-residential-2020-travelling-in-hope/


Follow the Star

We hope you have been following the Facebook posts during Advent. It is lovely to see all the amazing things going on in our District! If your event hasn’t appeared, make sure Sam Roberts, our Communications Officer knows about it by emailing her: comms@sheffieldmethodist.org

Training & Learning Opportunities

Cliff College

Introduction to Pastoral Care: Cliff College, Saturday 11th January

After a great response earlier this year, we are delighted to again offer our ‘Introduction to Pastoral Care’ training day entitled ‘Let’s Talk, Let’s Listen’ and invite you to explore this important area of Christian ministry.

Pastoral Care is at the very heart of mission and ministry, born out of compassionate care and nurtured in the relationships we foster within our families, churches, and communities. This introductory day offers a creative approach to understanding more about the nature and development of pastoral care. During the day, there will opportunity to develop some of the essential communication skills require to create effective caring relationships within ministry.

The day will be led by Jennie Fytche, a trainer and mentor in pastoral care ministry. Jennie has been actively serving God in pastoral care ministry for many years and in different contexts. The course costs £60 and includes morning and afternoon refreshments, lunch, and all teaching materials. For more information and to book a place, contact Pete Anderson on shortcourse@cliffcollege.ac.uk or email 01246 584203.


Short Courses

The teaching weekend ‘Women in the Bible’ is an addition to the Short Course programme developed in partnership with the Bible, Gender and Church Research Centre (BGC) https://www.cliffcollege.ac.uk/about/gender-centre/ based here at Cliff. The BGC is a joint initiative between Cliff College and The University of Manchester, and headed up by Dr Holly Morse from the University of Manchester, and our own Dr Kirsi Cobb.

The teaching weekend will be delivered Friday 15th  – Sunday  17th  May 2020. Details of the course can be found via this link, which is now live: https://www.cliffcollege.ac.uk/women-in-the-bible/

Retreats @ Cliff

This is to announce the launch of a new Cliff Retreat weekend within the Short Course Programme for the 2019-20 academic year.

‘The Pilgrim Way’ weekend is an addition to the Cliff Retreats section of the programme, and we are delighted that the weekend is to be led by experienced retreat leader Jill Baker, previous Vice-President of the Methodist Conference, and good friend of the college.

The teaching weekend will be delivered Friday 1st  – Sunday 3rd  May 2020. Details of the course can be found via this link: https://www.cliffcollege.ac.uk/the-pilgrim-way/

Job Vacancies

District Safeguarding Officer (part-time)

Sheffield District

We are looking for an experienced safeguarding professional to join our committed and high performing team in Sheffield and surrounding areas.

This exciting opportunity is to support and strengthen the Methodist Church’s response to and practice in relation to safeguarding.

The role is 21 hours per week to be worked flexibly including evenings and occasional weekends, with a probationary period of 6 months.

Salary will be between £19.23 & £21.36 per hour dependent on experience (£21,000 – £23,325)

Closing Date: 12 noon on Friday 3 January 2020

Other News

Taste – Prayer Points newsletter

We would like to wish all of you our friends a Blessed Christmas and a Peaceful New Year. Thank you for your support in 2019. We pray that you will continue to support us in 2020.

Praise for:                                                      

  • God’s faithfulness in bringing us all to the end of another fruitful year and for protecting all our staff especially those who have had to travel to many remote often flash-point areas to carry out projects
  • The Project at Amankpunato Achi, the village that TASTE CEO Ben Udejiofo’s family is from which should be completed by Christmas, after 20 year wait
  • Ben Udejiofo and daughter Sarah’s safe return after an encourage and fruitful two week trip to Nigeria in November
  • The successful Fairtrade Coffee Morning in November which raised for Good TASTE Shop, Sheffield and for TASTE £1041.61 from sales and donations

Pray that:                            

  • Our staff will continue to honour God in all that they do both in the UK and in Nigeria
  • The communities across Nigeria which we were privileged to support this year will reflect on God’s goodness to them, not just in giving them life changing water, sanitation and Hygiene facilities, but in sending his Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, the source of the real life changing water
  • There will be Peace over the Christmas festive period when Christians are particularly targeted by Islamist Militants
  • Patrick Maren who retired in November after 15 years of faithful service would settle well to the slower pace of retirement and would enjoy more time with his family and friends. He hopes to breed chickens in his village.

Church Action on Poverty

Church Action on Poverty Sunday will be on 23 February 2020.

In past years we have held a separate service in the city centre but this year we think it is better to encourage individual churches to give special attention to poverty at their regular services  on that day.The update has a link to the excellent resource pack produced by Church Action on Poverty and includes worship materials , prayers and ideas for services.

In these challenging times, the real issues facing people in our poorest communities are in danger of being forgotten. If we are to build a just and compassionate society, we need everyone’s voices to be heard.We hope this new approach will encourage churches to mark this special Sunday.

You can download the December update here: December Update 2019

Methodist News

Singing the Faith Plus

The old website has been packed up, moved, re-thought and re-ordered. Still retaining its unique StF+ identity, it has taken a new shape within the main Methodist website. More than ever – with Methodism’s Our Calling priorities at its heart – Singing the Faith Plus aims to support meaningful, creative and inclusive worship that expresses God’s presence and celebrate God’s love.

The main menu includes two new headings, Leading Worship and Prayer in Worship. Here you can find, for example, a detailed guide to preparing for worship – ideal for someone new to the task, or for those wishing to refresh how they go about it. Creative prayer ideas draw together updated resources that may have been overlooked before but which complement our wide-ranging thoughts on Hymns as prayer

We have separated out resources that focus on the liturgical year (e.g. Christmas, Pentecost) from broader themes. Currently, these include: God in Love Unites Us; Climate and Creation; Refugees and Migrants; and Remembrance.

Each theme is supported by hymn suggestions but also by a wide range of articles and links designed to open up the topic, be informative, and stimulate your imagination.