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District News – 2 April 2024

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This Week's News

Easter Joy

It has been lovely seeing so many images of how churches have celebrated our Risen Lord, here are a just a few – culled from Facebook posts.
We know that for some this may be a difficult time and hold all who have lost or who are caring for loved ones. May they feel God's love surround them!

Faith, Hope and The Journey – District Podcast

The 5th episode of Faith, Hope and The Journey is now available to stream online.
In this episode you will hear from Dave Fisher from Hathersage Methodist Church in the Peak Circuit talk about the churches Eco Church journey and also his own journey of faith.
You can listen via the district website or on Soundcloud, Spotify, iTunes and Amazon Music.
You can also catch up with all other episodes from series one too:
Metal Methodist, The Peak Wesley Way, Local Preaching and Family Fun Church.

Vocations Sunday

Vocations Sunday is Sunday 5th May. It's a great opportunity to celebrate all those who serve faithfully in the life of the Church.
If you are leading worship on that day, you may wish to use the liturgy for 2024, which is available in English (and Welsh) here. Vocations Sunday – Methodist Church

Hollowford Trust Big Award

The Hollowford Trust has relaunched it's big award for up to £2,500!

The Hollowford Trust makes grants of up to £525 for our regular applications (limits have just been increased!) and also welcome applications for our larger £2,500 award at any point through the year for projects, trips or events that will benefit many young people aged 10-25.
This £2,500 award was a single annual award, but it is now something you can apply for at any point, and there could be as many as 3 of these large awards available each year for the next 3 years or so!
The next deadline for applications is 25th April.

JW Chapman Charitable Trust

The JW Chapman Earlsmere trust was created by the late JW Chapman who continued a life long investment in the people of Doncaster by leaving a substantial cash and property portfolio in his will to help those in need . This led to the creation of the trust which through its trustees can make grants to individuals in need along with worthy organisations or charities. The key proviso is that the awards made must benefit Doncaster residents.
Grants can be given for: Beds, Bedding, Carpets, Clothing, Cookers, Fridges, Freezers, Mattresses, and Washing Machines.
Find out more here:

Volunteering for 3Generate is open!

This year we need to grow the team by 25% and want to encourage everyone in churches to consider getting involved.
There are 3 prime opportunities to care, help and engage as part of the event so the message is about finding a role that fits. Depending on a person's skills, experience and gifts one of the following teams may be preferred:

  • Care: Night stewards, youth support, village hosts, team lounge hospitality, additional needs/accessibility team
  • Operations: Reception, registration and stewards
  • Venues: range of venues across site that cater for a variety of passions and interests, including The Arts Centre, The Theatre, The Rec, The Health & Wellbeing Centre and many more.

Join the delivery team for further information.

Care for God's creation

There's an online webinar, Eco Church: baby steps to bronze taking place on Tuesday 21 May for those who are looking to respond to the climate emergency and want to take their first steps towards becoming an Eco Church.
Register here:
You can also sign up to the online Mission Planning Conference which is taking place on 13 July where you can discover how creation care and mission planning are about good news for all creation.

New Methodist Website

As you may have realised – the Methodist Church Website has been republished and looks very different now. That means that it may not feel the easiest to work around, and existing links that you may have will no longer work.
Singing the Faith Plus has now been integrated into the new website in the resource hub – Worship Calendar.
It will take time to learn your way around, change is always a bit unsettling!

Rural Solidarity Circles

The Methodist Church is setting up solidarity circles which are a way of the Methodist Church supporting people in different diversities of the Church's life through offering regular on-line opportunities to meet, to support one another, and to raise with relevant Church leaders the concerns that need to be addressed.
A rural Solidarity Circle is being set up and anyone is invited to express and interest in being part of this. The church is looking for those who are passionate about rural matters and with an interest or involvement in any area of rural life such as rural & net zero/ agricultural chaplaincy/ rural issues in general/ rural inclusion/ rural poverty. If you are interested please contact Sarah Hulme

Urban Theology Union

What does it mean for a church to foster justice in society?

Where or from whom does its challenge to work for equity and dignity come from?
Listen to Stef Benstead, author of Just Worship (forthcoming in July 2024) talk about what inspired this work and how the character of God challenges churches to conform themselves to God's shalom and justice.
Click on the following link for the podcast . . .

Sight Loss Friendly Church

Sight Loss Friendly Church (SLFC) is the exciting initiative run by Torch Trust) to help churches to become accessible for people with sight loss.
They are providing some free sessions on Zoom for churches to find out more about SLFC.

Introduction to SLFC

Thursday 9th May at 2pm (45 minutes)
Registration Link –
This session covers a brief overview of what it means to be a sight loss friendly church. There is an interactive element in the form of an informal quiz, personal stories and videos about sight loss and an overview of our services. Come along if you're thinking of signing up your church or if you'd like to refresh old knowledge.


Monday 3rd June at 2pm (1 hour)
Registration Link –

Meet our expert panel from Torch Trust and ask your questions around welcoming and including blind and partially sighted people in all aspects of your church. No question is too embarrassing, we're all at different stages in our sight loss friendly journey. As well as asking our experts, churches with experience of inclusion are also welcome to chip in with hints and tips on how they have overcome any challenges.

District Office News

Safeguarding Update

A reminder that Alison is currently on compassionate leave.
If you have a safeuarding concern please contact Carolyn Godfrey at If you have a concern for the safety of a child or adult then you should always call 999 when it is an emergency, such as when there is danger to life or when violence is being used or threatened.

District Gathering (with Synod)

20 April from 9:30

Registration is now open for the Spring Gathering. The focus for this gathering is on how to be a leader (in any capacity) through this season of great change and uncertainty without running yourself into the ground!
Our keynote speaker is Revd Nel Shallow, and in the afternoon she and others will be running workshops exploring the topic in more depth.
Lunch will be provided, so advance booking is essential!

Registration will close on Friday 12 April at noon – With God's help

Ebor Lecture: Earth Hope with Professor Rupert Read

Wednesday 8 May 2024 at 5.00pm

Through the coming climate chaos we will find common cause in a spiritual orientation to our planetary home.
Rupert Read is a Green Party campaigner, a former spokesperson for Extinction Rebellion, and the current director of the Climate Majority Project. He is an associate professor of philosophy at the University of East Anglia.
This event is hosted by the Centre for Religion in Society at York St John University and jointly sponsored by York Minster, The Methodist Church (Yorkshire North and East District), The C. & J. B. Morrell Trust and the York Area Society of Friends (Quakers).
Register here to attend

And finally...

Today is Autism Awareness Day,

part of World Autism Acceptance Week which takes place 2 to 8 April 2024.

Here is a prayer written by Revd Verity Phillips, who was diagnosed as an adult with autism.

Loving God,
You made us all in your image, and that's amazing. You love all that you have made, including those of us who feel at times like badly-made mis-fits.
We may be sad that we can appear rude or selfish when we don't mean to be, especially when we're focussed, anxious, or overwhelmed.
Often, we'd like to please; and it hurts when we cause upset.
Where people misunderstand one another, you understand our differences, and the Complex interweaving of abilities and needs in every human being, and rejoice in them.
Forgive us when we think in "one size fits all" terms.
Help us not to lose ourselves as we try to fit in.
Help others to notice the qualities we could offer and make space for their expression so that we might all be enriched together.
When we feel threatened, or challenged, help us to find the courage and time to explore that together, so we can discover your truth at the crossover of our perspectives.
Help us to use life's difficulties as points for growth; as opportunities to recall how you transformed the apparent defeat of crucifixion into the victory of resurrection.
Help us to understand ourselves well enough to hold ourselves in check, and to hold back from dominating when we have a lot to share; to wait for the invitation.
Because we really do want to help you as you build your kingdom of peace and justice.

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