Synod Autumn 2015
Saturday 12 September 2015 at Trinity Church Centre, Barrow
Please find below an outline of some of the key areas of interest discussed at our September Synod. If anyone would like more information on anything included below, please make contact with the Synod Secretary Irene McKay here.... Tel: 015395 61881 or District Office Administrator Susan Teal here.... Tel: 01768 866342. You can download a copy of this report as a PDF document here.... or a Word document here....
Synod began with one of Methodism’s early traditions, the Love Feast, where members met in small groups and as they shared simple bread and drink with each other, they would also share testimony and prayer needs, enabling real fellowship and care for each other.
A New Disciple in Every Church
Our District Chair highlighted the call from Rev Steve Wild, the President of the Methodist Conference to challenge every church to seek to add a new disciple to the church in this coming year.
The Love Feast was one of four Methodist traditions shared in Conference. In Synod, representatives of Conference included reference to the Past Cases Review, Marriage and Relationships, One Mission, Positive Working Together.
God for All – Mission Communities
Revs Les Wallace, Jennet McLeod, Phil Jackson and Andrew Longshaw all shared encouraging stories from their circuits of ways in which different denominations are working together to respond to the vision of God for All and Mission Communities.
Good News Stories
There were Good News stories of work across the District with children, young people, families, community. If you have for a new initiative, we can connect you with those who have valuable experience to share.
Action for Children
Helen Noble highlighted the work in Cumbria. The District is keen to give every support to the work and we would be so pleased if someone in the District felt able to take on the role of Link Person with Action for Children. Please contact the Synod Secretary here.... if this is something you could undertake.
Money has been released from the Connexion to encourage the development of new initiatives in mission and ministry, but every church and circuit is reminded that money held in accounts needs to be spent.
In relation to concern raised about ‘Right to Buy’, the District Chair agreed to write to all MPs in the District.
Faith and Science
Rev Michael Harrison highlighted the importance of celebrating science in faith and offered to be available to churches and circuits to lead a session on this important subject.
Local Preachers and Worship Leaders Study Course
Revs Nicola Reynolds and John Morton with Martyn Evans gave valuable insights and feedback about the new training resource and the processes used for working with it.
Workshops – Four of Methodism’s Distinctive Gifts
The leaders of the following workshops are keen for the insights and material to be shared widely. Your Circuit Synod Representatives have details which they can share with you.
Connexionalism led by Rev Richard Teal:
Do individual Methodists have a sense of belonging to the wider Methodist Church? What benefits are there in belonging to the wider Methodist Church? What challenges are there?
Social Action led by Deacon
Melanie Beaven: The aim of the workshop was to explore what Social
Action means to us; what it meant to John Wesley; and what it could look like
for Methodists today.
Holiness led by Rev Wendy Kilworth-Mason: The workshop included using the hymns of Charles Wesley to look at John Wesley's concept of Scriptural Holiness with its roots in an interpretation of Scripture.
Hymnology led by Rev Andrew Pratt: We discussed the various reasons we choose and value different hymns: tunes, words, remembrance - things the hymns bring back to mind, illuminating the readings, commentaries on current issues.
Synod closed with reflective worship led by Rev Rachel Williams affirming the words of John Wesley; ‘The best of all is God is with us’.