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District News – 03 November 2020

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This Week's News


Sorry about the layout in last week's Newsletter. I think the long link for registering to vote for the Youth Reps broke the coding. As you know, we have a new website and it is taking me a while to get used to the new format.

Good News

It is great to be able to share a Good News story this week. We are delighted to welcome the Revd Dr Bill Davies (former President of the Methodist Conference) to the Rotherham & Dearne Valley Circuit and to congratulate him on his wedding to Joan on Saturday. We wish them every blessing in their life together.

District prayer team needed

Despite covid restrictions, the work of our district continues, equipping our circuits, churches and people to respond to the gospel of God's love in Chris and live out their discipleship in mission and service.

You will know this already from reading these mailings, but behind the scenes there are also preparations for launch of our new strategy and newest church.
In such uncertain times we are perhaps more aware than ever that we cannot
labour under our own strength, must always turn to God in prayer. Praying daily
our first commitment under the Methodist Way of Life, but we are looking specifically in this moment for a group of people to commit to praying regularly for the work of our district.

There are no pre-conditions about how you pray, or how tech-savvy you are – just that you love to pray. Please share this request with people in your churches and ask anyone interested to get in touch with Neil Harland / 07483 308008

Extension of furlough grants

Following announcement of the new national lockdown, the government has extended the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (the "furlough scheme") until December 2020. Its proposed replacement, the Job support Scheme, has been postponed. Further details of what this means for Methodist employers can be found on our website

Pastoral Letter to Farmers

The President of Conference, the Revd Richard Teal, and the Vice-President, Mrs Carolyn Lawrence, have written a letter of appreciation and support for all in the Agricultural Community. You can read it here: ( Pastoral Letter )


Ministry with Older People webinar – staying in touch : staying engaged

1 to 2:30pm Wed 25 Nov

  • Are you part of your church's ministry with older people?
  • Is Covid forcing you to work out new ways to respond to the practical, social and spiritual needs of older people?
  • Are you concerned by the prospect of a winter of isolation?
  • Would you like an opportunity to speak with others asking the same questions?

This webinar is for anyone – volunteers, lay workers, ministers – involved in ministry with older people. We will share stories, hear from a panel of speakers including Chermayne Bennett (MHA Live at Home Manager, South Yorkshire & Bassetlaw), and speak about what we can do.
Register for this event here
Contact with any registration queries
Hosted by Sheffield Methodist District – open to all

National Safeguarding Adults Week 2020

Safeguarding Adults Webinar – Tuesday, November 17th at 11am

This is to invite you to join a one-hour webinar, led by Christine Kennedy and Grahame Snelling from the Connexional Safeguarding Team, which will explore a number of key safeguarding adult concerns that, according to national statistics, have become far more prevalent during the Covid 19 pandemic, especially under lockdown conditions. These include domestic abuse, neglect and financial abuse. This webinar will build on the Foundation and Advanced training we already deliver, to ensure that our wider church safeguarding community is more aware of current trends and therefore better placed to respond when we recognise a concern. As a structure we will be basing the webinar on the 7-minute learning principle that aims to convey key training messages in a concise and accessible manner.

To book your place, please register by Tuesday November10th. To register: send your name and email details to We will then send you a joining link in good time for the webinar.
On the day, please be available from 10.45. If you want any more details, please contact Christine or Grahame directly. We look forward to seeing you.
Best wishes,
Grahame & Christine

Domestic Abuse Webinar on 24 Nov 10.00 – 11.30

**Save the date**

The Methodist Church will be holding its first Domestic Abuse Webinar on Tuesday 24th November 10.00 am to 11.30 am.

We have some prominent speakers lined up including Mandy Marshall, Co-Founder and previous Co-Director of the domestic abuse charity Restored (now the Director for Gender Justice for the Anglican Communion) and Dr Lesley Orr, a Research Fellow at the Centre for Theology and Public Issues, University of Edinburgh.

There will be contributions from domestic abuse survivors and both the Revd Helen Cameron, Chair of Northampton District, and the Revd Dr Jonathan Hustler, Secretary of the Methodist Conference, will be participating.

The Vice-President and President of the Methodist Conference will be opening and closing the proceedings. Details on how to register for the webinar will be out soon.

From Susanna's Kitchen...

Monday 30th November, 2.00pm

On-line discussions about women's lives in the story of Methodism
Revd Donna Fowler discusses her new book"Mothers in Israel: the Methodist Women in the circle of John Wesley.
Further information and log-in details from
You can also download a poster here: Mothers in Israel

Whirlow Spirituality Centre

Still – Adapting

These are wearying weeks. Thank you for your companionship as we offer weekly Communion, opportunities for prayer and reflection and a range of online events.
We hope what Whirlow offers will help you endure, be at peace and adapt as you need to. Please browse below.

Reflective Communion

Services every Tuesday at 9.45am have resumed. The numbers are restricted and, as so many people are enjoying being back together, we invite you to book your place to stay safe and avoid disappointment.

Praying Without Words

We offer a monthly Thursday evening opportunity to pray in silence with a group. An introduction and opportunity for conversation border a time of quiet. All welcome via Zoom.

Personal Space and Time

Our beautiful chapel is available for you to reflect, meditate or pray. Our exhibition, Together In Isolation, is on display and provides a moving backdrop

Please keep an eye on our website, especially the What's On page, for details of all our events.

Training and Learning Opportunities

Leaning Network Regional Retreat

Wednesday 18 November

It is not too late to register for next Regional Retreat for presbyters, deacons and lay employees on Wednesday 18 November 2020.

We are delighted that Deborah Lewer will be leading our reflections on 'Art, Faith and Transformation' and it promises to be a very enriching experience.

Details and booking information are on the flyer here.
It will be free of charge but booking is essential so please click on the link here to register and secure your place
Bookings will close 72 hours before the event.

Certificate in Theology and Discipleship for Mission

It's still not too late for people to join our Certificate in Theology and Discipleship for Mission course, now including Kingdom Evangelism.

During lockdown, the group will be meeting purely on Zoom rather than a mix of zoom and face to face. Full details can be found here: UTU Certificate

News from Outside Organisations

Action for Children

Thank you

Christmas is just 53 days away! Even though it's been a really challenging year, the unwavering support of the Methodist Church starkly stands out in our memory.

We weren't able to meet up with our Methodist friends during the Conference, MWIB Residential and Action for Children Sunday, but we still felt the impact of your prayers, friendship and gifts. We can't thank you enough but at every opportunity, we will.

Our Chief Executive, Trustee and the children we support recorded this video message for you:

Secret Santa is back!

This festive season, Action for Children is looking for a sleighful of Secret Santas to support our Christmas campaign. For most of us, the festive season is a happy time. But there are children all over the UK who face a Christmas without food, warmth or love; Coronavirus has had a devastating impact on their lives. We are working hard to change this – and we need your help more than ever. See the poster for how you can help: Secret Santa

Starry Night – virtual Christmas carol

On Tuesday 8th December, join us and families across the UK for an evening of Christmas carols, fun and festive cheer hosted by Channel 4 News' Jon Snow. Tickets are £10 per household and will give you access to exclusive entertainment, readings, and performances from celebrities including Angellica Bell and Call the Midwife's Jenny Agutter. All this from the comfort of your own home. Buy tickets here:

FairTrade Fortnight

Fairtrade Fortnight is 22 Feb – 7 March. It isn't too early to start to plan how you might mark this in your church/Circuit. Here's the link if you want to sign up directly to be notified of resources.

Christian Aid

Christian Aid carol singing is going virtual!

Do you love singing carols? Would you like to become a recording star AND help Christian Aid raise much needed funding this Christmas? Christian Aid in Sheffield are going to have a carol singing YouTube channel during December and would love to have videos of 24 different carols, one for each day leading up to Christmas day – a sort of "carols advent calendar". People watching the videos will be invited to donate to Christian Aid via a JustGiving Page.

So we need 24 people /small groups to record a video of themselves singing a carol – can you help? If so, please contact Alison Trezise for more details on how to submit the videos on or mobile 0790 663 1108. Closing date for submitting videos is 15 November, but please contact me first – we want to avoid repetition!

Association for Church Editors

Which magazine is best?

The search is on for Britain's best church magazine. Entries are now invited for the annual competition run by the Association for Church Editors (ACE).
"Church magazines are often a forgotten but effective means of communication," says Sally Churchus, Chair of the national organisation, "so we are keen to encourage editors everywhere."
For the coming 2021 competition, which closes on 1st February, awards will be made for any sized church magazine, excluding A5, and printed in colour. The Gold Award winner will receive the John King Trophy, to be held for one year, while Silver and Bronze Awards will receive an inscribed trophy to keep, together with a Certificate of Excellence for display.
More information can be found here: Competition Launch

Methodist News

A Methodist Way of Life

A Methodist Way of Life offers a way for Methodists and other Christians to express their discipleship and spirituality by commitment to a set of practices based on Our Calling. It puts into words how we can live our lives in response to God's love made known to us in Jesus. There is a wide range of A Methodist Way of Life resources available for you and your church this Autumn.
Visit Methodist Publishing to find out more.

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