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District News – 26 January 2021

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This Week's News

Sad News

Last week we shared the news that Deacon Elsie Littlewood would be 100 this week. We are very sorry to have to share the news that she died in late December. Our thoughts and prayers are with her family and friends, and apologise for any upset that last week's notice may have caused.

GDPR – Annual Checklist

TMCP have issued a checklist which summarises the specific practical steps Managing Trustees must take in order to reaffirm their ongoing duties and liabities under the Data Protection Act 2018 and the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR).

It is important that every Local Church, Circuit and District works through the Checklist on an annual basis which needs to be returned to the District Office by May 2021.

To help churches and circuits with this I have set up a series of Zoom meetings over the next month initially, but I may extend them further if there is need. You can register for one (or more) of these by following this link:
You can find the Checklist here: Data Protection Annual Checklist

Safeguarding Update

Safeguarding Briefing

Last Monday evening I held the first in a series of Safeguarding Briefings. This briefing was all about Safeguarding Form used in the Safer Recruitment process. If you were unable to attend you might like to watch the recording which can be found on the District YouTube channel by following this link:

I have received word of 2 worrying safeguarding concerns regarding to children's social media. A big thanks to Sam Roberts for passing these onto me. If your school alerts you to a safeguarding concern please will you let me know and I will share this with others in the Sheffield District.

TiKTok Choke Challenge

We have been alerted to reports of the tragic death of a 10-year-old girl in Italy. It has been reported that she died after taking part in the so-called 'blackout' or 'choke challenge' on the video-sharing platform TikTok.
The team of online safety experts at Safer Schools have provided you with credible advice that will support you to respond effectively. So before sharing news reports or reacting please pause... stay calm and read their advice:

Avakin Life

Safer Schools have been made aware of a risk of potential grooming and abuse on the Avakin Life. Their online safeguarding experts have reviewed and tested the game, and discovered a number of potential risks to young people. The major risk is that users can easily access children and young people online via private and public chats. Over 2 million people are using the platform with 500,000 using it every day. To learn more please see the Safer Schools website at:

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.

For such a time as this

This week Neil shares his thoughts on the third strand of the new mission policy – Transforming Mission.
Don't forget you can still join the prayer groups on Thursday lunch time and Monday Evening. Details of how to join can be found on the District Calendar on the home page of the website.

Year of prayer – led by Henry Ohakah

2020/21 has been declared a Connexional year of prayer, so that our Church-wide commitments to evangelism, church growth, church at the margins, and pioneering and church planting will flow from a deep, contemplative orientation to God's grace and love. All are invited to be part of this movement of prayer as we ask the Holy Spirit to help us be a growing, evangelistic, inclusive, justice-seeking Church of gospel people.
The rhythm of prayer includes a nationwide weekly Zoom prayer meeting on Tuesdays at 12:45pm. On Tuesday 2 February, prayers will be led by Rev Henry Ohakah from Sheffield Circuit. All are welcome to join


Save the Date(es)

10 – 16 May 2021

Gifts outside the box is a week of online events brought to you by safeguarding teams across five Districts. It will help with discerning how we can use our gifts from God to serve others in safe and gracious ways.
More information, including how to register, will be coming soon!

Whirlow Spirituality Centre

Ash Wednesday Quiet Day

Our first themed Quiet Day over Zoom will feature seasonal input as well as plenty of time and resources offered for reflection.
Details and bookings >>

Space to Reflect: the open cup

Join us remotely on 7 February in the evening, or at your convenience for Space to Reflect.
Between now and April, sessions will take inspiration from Joyce Rupp's prayer guide and book The Cup of Our Life.
Details and downloads >>

Training and Learning Opportunities

Climate Sunday

How can we as Christians engage with environmental issues in 2021, especially as the UK hosts the world at November's global climate conference (COP26) in Glasgow? Signing up to Climate Sunday is a great first step. A new website at has resources to help churches hold a climate-focused service before 5 September, to pray, and to explore the theology and science behind creation care and action on climate. Local churches are called to act, to address climate change in our places of worship and communities, and to use our voice to tell politicians we want a cleaner, greener, fairer future at the heart of plans agreed at COP26.

How to stay calm in a global pandemic

Here is a link to a FREE e-book which you may find useful (or not)
How-to-Stay-Calm-in-a-Global-Pandemic-Free-ebook.pdf (

Preparing for "Thy Kingdom Come"

15 February, 1:30pm

Thy Kingdom Come is an exciting global initiative that invites Christians around the world to pray from Ascension to Pentecost for more people to come to know Jesus. Come and exchange ideas and inspiration with other Methodists across the country, and find out how the Evangelism & Growth team can support you with training and resources. This will be a really practical session to encourage Champions and church leaders to get involved in Thy Kingdom Come 2021. Register here to join in!

Job Vacancies

Children's Coordinator – Sheffield Circuit

Our Youth and Children's Project is looking to appoint a Children's Coordinator. The successful candidate will work alongside our current Coordinator, who currently oversees both Youth and Children's Work within Sheffield Circuit.

Closing date: Monday 15th February

For an application pack please contact:
Sheffield Circuit Office, The Furnival, 199 Verdon Street, Sheffield, S3 9QQ.
Telephone: 0114 299 7130 or 0114 272 6561

Birmingham District Chair

Closing date: 26 February 2021 at noon

Are you a collaborative leader, able to work strategically, creatively and with vision to shape a sustainable future for Methodism across the West Midlands?

Are you passionate about enabling the transformation and growth of the Methodist Church in ways which are inclusive, justice-seeking and evangelistic?

Nominations are sought for a new chair for the Birmingham District from September 2022 for an initial three year appointment.

Full details can be found here: Birmingham District Chair

News from Other Organisations

Action for Children

Happy New Year

Although 2021 started with the lockdown still in place, we're grateful that we can continue to support children and families through the pandemic. We cannot count our blessings without mentioning our Methodist family. Thanks for your prayers and bountiful support.

Count Your Blessings

What will you be doing this Lent? We'd like you to join us for 40 days of making life better for children across the UK.

We've created an inspiring calendar of activities. Each day, you'll be asked to do something meaningful. It might be giving money to those in need, saying a prayer for a child, or spreading the word about our work. So, download yours from our website:

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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