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District News – 19 July 2022

This Week's News

Farewell Services

It is the time of year when churches and circuits say "Farewell" to the ministers who are moving on. We wish Mark Goodhand, Tim Crome, and, Gail and David Hunt every blessing as they sit down from active ministry, and wish Sally Coleman, Gareth Jones and Cameron Stirk every blessing as they move on to a new stage in their ministry.

Heat Banks – responding to the cost of living crisis

Whilst how to keep WARM may not be top of our thoughts this week, we are only a few months from a winter when many neighbours will sit in freezing homes because they cannot afford to turn the heating on. Churches and other organisations are starting to think about providing accessible community spaces where people can regularly spend time in a literally warm and welcoming environment.

Is your church already planning to do something? What will be the unmet need near you? Could you offer something, maybe in partnership with others? How will you make this non-stigmatising and inclusive? How will people hear of it? Will you provide food, things to do, access to specialist support? Do you need help overcoming practical hurdles? Do your local councillors have any insights?

Please contact Neil Harland if you are making plans or asking questions. We may be facing a scale of fuel poverty not seen for a generation, so it is important we share learnings of what our roles arein such a time as this.

Family Fun across the District

The Family Fun Day at Bakewell was enjoyed by all who came. Hopefully this is the first of many such gatherings across the Districts.
At the same time, Little Fishes Soft Play at Hemsworth, Barnsley was officially opened by Revd Gill Newton. This creative repurposing of part of the church is already becoming a popular venue.
Find out more about their vision here:

Methodist Conference Digest

A report for local churches about the business of the 2022 Methodist Conference can be downloaded here: 2022 Conference. Do take a moment to read and share it.

District Officers' News

Peak Park Rural Development Enabler

Life never stands still as a Rural Development Enabler in the Peak Park and I am always encouraged to find people exploring new ways of sharing their faith and continuing to share the Gospel story.
It is true to say that in the current climate many find themselves conflicted between the need to stop doing what has always been done in the struggling chapels of the small villages and the need to find the energy 'to do a new thing.'
Should we just close? – What else can we do? – We are so few in number?
To pause, and listen, to be open and explore options takes courage, especially when the chapel tradition has had family significance over generations. Getting to the stage where we can say it's not about the building, can be quite a journey.

That is exactly what we have been doing in Monyash recently. We have a successful monthly Messy Church in the village that can attract around 20 children, so this is now our regular act of worship. We have also become a 'Wander and Wonder community' as we wander on a journey, wondering where God is leading us. I have been spending time in the village building relationships with local people. There is clearly a heart to explore faith and to keep telling the story. We held a successful Holy Week art display that was open to all. The display attracted 60 visitors and lead to many interesting conversations. We are now planning some discussion and listening events. We have progressed in our relationship with the small Anglican community and we will develop festival services together. Through prayer and God's Grace, people are slowly coming forward to offer their support. The joy I share with you this month is we have just heard we are accepted as a Caleb community. A New People New Places expression. It feels like we have been waiting at a station, the train has arrived, and we are about to go on an adventure...

In another adventure, I am working closely with Neil Harland and the Peak Circuit Leadership team exploring pilgrimage and ways in which we could develop a specific Methodist Pilgrimage within the Peak Park. Expect to hear much more of this in the coming months, it feels like an exciting way to tell the story of 'The People called Methodists' and share the Gospel story today with both visitors and residence of the Peak Park.

Deacon Lorraine Brown -Peak Park Rural Development Enabler


Learning Network Regional Retreat for Presbyters, Deacons & Lay Employees

Visio Divina: embracing the new normal through creating images on our camera

A lot has changed over the last two years for us. Certainties we held, people we loved, the places we knew may all look different. But we can still find God in all things. The camera we carry in our pocket has the potential to help us slow down, centre in the present moment, and encounter God.

This retreat will open up the possibility of contemplative photography and show you how to incorporate it into your everyday life. You don't need to be a skilled photographer, but you do need a camera--the one on your phone will do just fine.
This will be led by Stephen Radley, an Anglican priest, trained professional photographer and members' ambassador for the Guild of Photographers.
When: 8-10 November 2022
Where: The Briery, 38 Victoria Avenue, Ilkley LS29 9BW
Cost: £220 A subsidy of £110 is available for those in the Yorkshire Plus region to attend one retreat a connexional year. A deposit is required to confirm your registration.

Register online via EventBrite before 28 September

Lay Employee Community of Practice

The next online gathering will be held on 19 January from 10am with the theme "What does Good Employment Look Like?". It will be facilitate by Izzy Milburn, the Darlington District Lay Employment Advisor.

You can register to join here:
There is space on the registration form if you have any specific questions around employment that you would like to be looked at.

Save the Date

Urban Theology Union
Come and listen to our own Dr. Joe Forde talk about his new book: Before and Beyond the "Big Society"- John Milbank and the Church of England's approach to welfare.
Thursday, 15 September 2022, 7.30PM
Norfolk Room, United Reformed Church, 60 Norfolk Street, Sheffield S1 2JB

Job Vacancies

Circuit Operations Manager

The Peak Circuit

The Peak Methodist Circuit are recruiting for a Circuit Operations Manager (P/T 20-hours per week) to assume operational lead and oversee operational strategies by supporting ministers, circuit stewards, and local churches, with practical management expertise so that the mission and vision strategy can be delivered effectively.

This is both a challenging and broad role where the successful applicant will support the transition to modernised ways of working, releasing resources for mission by supporting the key areas of operations, administration, property, finance, people, and compliance.

Information packs and application forms are available by emailing (Closing date 5th August 2022)

If you want to chat further about the role before completing or making an application you can contact the Rev Adrian Perry by at 01629 812195 or via email to

Methodist Women in Britain

Applications are invited for the role of
President of Methodist Women in Britain

This is an exciting opportunity to shape the role and the future of the organisation

Is God calling you?
Closing date: Friday 5th August 2022
For further information contact:

Communications Coordinator
This is an exciting, volunteer, mainly home based opportunity, to become a full member of our Executive team as we seek to develop the organisation for the next decade.

The person appointed will ideally be a member of the Methodist Church, have good administrative and communication skills, and enjoy working as part of a team.

For information and details please

Closing date: 26th August 2022
Interviews: 9th September 2022

Get In Touch
0114 270 9990 / 0114 430 0255

Sheffield District Office
Room 47, Victoria Hall Methodist Church
Norfolk Street
S1 2JB

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