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District News – 09 February 2021

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This Week's News

District Chair on Sabbatical – advance notice

Gill Newton, our District chair will be on sabbatical from March 23rd – June 22nd and will then be attending the Methodist Conference immediately following that period. Gill will therefore return to the District in her role as Chair from July 2nd.

During Gill's absence, Revd Sean Adair, Deputy Chair of District will be covering Gill's responsibilities and you can contact him on Any administrative enquiries should be sent to the District Office on

Safeguarding Update

After a period of relative calm in regards to safeguarding, we appear to be entering a time when a number of new projects and plans have been introduced all at once.

I will be writing to Circuit Safeguarding Officers with all the news in full and asking them to kindly disseminate the information to the correct people. Included in this will be:

  • An update on the Foundation Module of Safeguarding training,
  • Information about a range of external safeguarding training taking place with through the Learning Network, Connexionally or by the Local Authority.
  • Introduction to Reflect and Respond – new resources to support survivors of abuse

This months District Safeguarding newsletter is now available via the District website, click here to read it. This month I have focused on Home Schooling and Mental Health. I know from speaking to friends that expectations are higher in this lockdown and therefore the pressure on all is greater.

Kate Little from the Connexional safeguarding team has arranged a one-hour webinar on Thursday 16th February from 11am – 12noon. There will be a talk on Understanding Dementia and the support available facilitated by Sara Wilcox, the founder and CEO of Pathways through Dementia. Topics include the Mental Capacity Act, Power of Attorney, financial help for family carers, how to pay for social care such as home visits and Continuing NHS Healthcare, and there will be a chance for questions & answers. If you would like to attend please will you contact Kate directly on 07854 247 546 or email

As ever, if you have any questions or concerns please give me a call on 07483 362 735 or email me at
Many thanks
Alison Hill
District Safeguarding Officer.

Properties fit for mission

Have you missed your church toilets during lockdown? What does properties fit for mission mean after the age of covid? Neil Harland explains in this week's blog.

Please keep praying For Such A Time As this. We will gather on Zoom for prayer at 1pm on Thursday 11th and 8pm on Monday 15th.

Calling all potential climate activists

Is tackling climate change integral to your faith? Are you trying to reduce your church's and community's carbon footprint? Contact to join a district-wide conversation on how we respond to our climate crisis.
You might want to join us at:

And you might be interested in st a new tool to measure your church's carbon footprint, sponsored by Eco Church.
Neil Harland, Jenny Carpenter, Rev Paul King

Tell us about you

The Methodist Church would love to learn more about you and what you are passionate about.

Please could you take 10 minutes to complete this anonymous 'getting to know you survey'. By completing this survey you will be assisting the Connexional Team of the Methodist Church in Britain to have a better understanding of your needs, experiences, behaviours and goals.
You can find the survey here.

FairTrade Fortnight

From22 February to 7 March 2021, they will be hosting an online festival bringing together schools, universities, businesses, supporters, campaigners and farmers from across the world to choose the world they want. Find out how to get involved.

There is also an ecumenical service which you can download and use – at home or as part of online worship. You can find a copy here: Fair Trade Service

Could your church host a vaccination centre?

Notwithstanding the increasing pace of coronavirus vaccinations, the NHS remains on the look out for additional premises. If your church has more than 350 square metres of space and a WIFI connection you may be able to help. See further details and contact details in February's Property Matters newsletter

Brave the Shave

Revd John Simms, one of our Supernumeraries, is 'Braving The Shave' for Macmillan Cancer on Ash Wednesday, 17th February. If you would be willing and able to sponsor him, that would be greatly appreciated. You can find details of how to do so at


Book Club

Join us for an evening of conversion with Brian McLaren about his new book "Faith after Doubt" on February 25th at 7pm.You can find out more on the flyer here: Faith After Doubt

Numbers are limited so please register as soon as possible using this link:
This link is for all the dates that the Book Club will be meeting. You select the dates you wish to join us.
Registrations for this event will close on 23 February

Joined Up Conference

Saturday 6 March

Joined Up Conference is for children's, families, youth and schools workers... and chaplains! They usually meet in Sheffield along with a couple of hundred workers from around the region. This year, due to lockdown restrictions, it will be online.

For more information including how to join, go to their website:

Training and Learning Opportunities

Cliff College Lent Course

Cliff College is delighted to introduce its first online Lent course for group study. Creative Bible Reading- the Lent course is based on one of our online short courses and has been specially adapted for group study.
With teaching from Rev Dr Mike Parsons, previous Commissioning Editor for BRF, this course enables groups to consider different approaches to Bible reading. Topics include character studies, understanding individual stories in the context of the single narrative of the Bible, meditating on Scripture and more.
The cost for this course is £25 per person, and all proceeds will go to support United Theological College in Harare, Zimbabwe, one of Cliff's global partners. For more information, contact or call us on 01246 584229.
Please do share this with your churches, circuits and Bible study groups. Support towards the cost may be available via a Learning & Development Grant.

Ministry with older people:

18 March: exploring chaplaincy

Our next ministry with older people webinar will be 1 – 2:30pm on Thursday 18 March.Open to volunteers, lay workers and ministers, these webinars are an opportunity to share experiences, ask questions, and explore new resources and approaches to support you in your ministry in your context.

We will be joined on 18 March by Julia Burton-Jones who will explore the impact of chaplaincy approaches when working with older people in a wide variety of contexts, speaking from her involvement with the rapidly growing Anna Chaplaincy movement.

Book your space by Fri 12 March at

Pioneering Digital Community

Thursdays 7-9pm from 25 February to 1 April

Join the Connexional Evangelism & Growth team to explore together how we might pioneer and create community in the digital realm. The course is suitable both for pioneers and for those wishing to develop a digital expression of a more traditional church. This is an updated version of the heavily subscribed course run last autumn, incorporating new materials in this rapidly evolving field.
Book your place at

Save the date! Online Safety Webinar

17th June 2021, 10am -12.30pm

led by Karl Hopwood
The session will cover:

  • Overview of the risks for children and young people and for adults – looking at some of the latest data/research – an example of some of the common scams and how to tackle them.
  • How we can support those we are working with.
  • The importance of policy – what is available and how we can protect ourselves when we are online – specifically our online reputation.
  • Time for Q and A at the end.

More information can be found here .

News from Other Organisations

CLC Bookshops

Clearance sale of church supplies & resources

Take advantage of this offer from CLC Bookshops! Candles (for church and all special services, incl. Easter & Advent) ), palm ash, drip shields, tapers, cradle role, candle wreath, certificates, altar breads, non-alcoholic wine, calendars, Friendship Book, planners & diaries, books... and more. Palm crosses £9.50 per pack of 50.
Email for the list. Collect your order in Crookes, or have it delivered (for a small charge). First come, first served.

TASTE Prayer Diary

Dear Praying Supporter
I pray that you will all know God's presence and strength as we start another year. Although we don't know what it hold we are persuaded that our God is able to keep that which we have committed to Him.
Please find here the February 2021 Prayer Points for TASTE (Transfer of Appropriate Sustainable Technology & Expertise).

I pray that you will find much to encourage you and fuel your prayers.

Thank you for your faithfulness in praying for us please do continue to remember us, we can't do what we do without your prayers.

God Bless you
Ben Udejiofo
Chief Executive,TASTE

Get In Touch
0114 270 9990 / 0114 430 0255

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

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