Our Minister: Rev. Richard Lowson 


Challenging Times…..

There is a wonderful Lent animation called 40 by Si Smith (Google) that very cleverly shows Jesus in the wilderness. And imagines how Jesus fills those 40 days. $0 days of sorting out priorities. Forty days to reflect on what is important.

For Jesus, and for us, Lent gives us the opportunity for reflection. It will be great to see you at one of the Lent groups that are being run this year on the theme of pilgrimage. Also I hope you have seen the letter “Challenging Times” from Rachael Hawkins and myself. As a circuit and local church we have been asked to reflect on what kind of circuit we need to be with dwindling ministry, resources and congregations. What can we do to shape a circuit for the future? What can we do as a local congregation?

At recent church councils we have decided to take some pressure from the preaching plan by having occasional joint services with other local Methodist churches. We need to see these services as something special, a heightened sense of worship with a larger congregation. They are not Sundays off but rather Methodists in the locality meeting together for fellowship and worship. We can be creative and shape worship that may appeal to our wider community.

Another seed that has been planted and needs us all to reflect on: What would it mean to be One church on 3 sites? The Methodist church on the Heath, in the Village and in CPSO? One church council etc. A greater sharing of resources, a new freedom to be the churches our communities need.

Do we still need 3 Methodist churches offering similar services and events within a 4 mile radius? What do our communities want a Methodist presence for? What do we do best in each locality? If we were starting out with a blank piece of paper what would the Methodist church look like in our patch? Give it some thought. Dare to dream dreams.

We are a very different church to the Methodist church of my youth, even to the church we were 10 years ago but I am still excited about the challenges in front of us.

There are no easy answers but your views matter. Use this Lent to pray and reflect on our future.


To contact the minister please email minister@samcbh.org.uk