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Our activities for Messy Church today (24th Sept. 2017) were based around the story of Naomi and Ruth.
Ruth gathered grain that was left in the fields after harvest – so we had a go at grinding some grain with a “quern stone” – which was very slow and also with an electric coffee grinder which was much faster and gave us enough flour to make a few bread rolls, making different types of wheat pictures, making a harvest loaf and we coloured in a verse from the bible.
We had a very good turnout of children today and were also joined by Colin who has volunteered to help run Messy Church.
Welcome to Rev. Richard Parkes
A circuit welcome service was held at Gresford on 4th of September for Rev. Richard Parkes who has joined us from Stockport. Richard will have pastoral charge for Brymbo, Caergwrle, Ffrwd, Gresford, Rhosddu and also shares Wrexham with Rev. Phillip Poole who is now Superintendent.
Summary of news for the September 2017 issue of the Circuit Newsletter
Over the last 3 months we have held our Spring Fair – a fundraiser but more importantly a chance for the Church to work together and invite others into our Church. We have had a wedding! Alex and Vicky were married on 3rd June. It is wonderful that our refurbished church was used for the marriage of two of our members, I can’t remember the last wedding in our Church family. The church looked – and smelt – beautiful. We wish them both every blessing in their life together. Pearl has got us singing again – the Singing Group is meeting alternate Thursdays. Last Sunday they contributed to a special service – Richard’s last service at Gresford. In addition to 3 hymns from the singing group, Robert started and ended the service with solos on his trumpet, his sister, Bethan and Rebekah both sang solo. To quote from our notices: ‘We wish Richard and Biddy a hassle-free move and God’s blessings as they move on to take up their ministry in Bristol.’
Summary of news for the June 2017 issue of the Circuit Newsletter
Gresford has had an ‘interesting quarter’. It started on January 1st with a service led by Richard – we had anticipated fewer numbers than normal but it was well attended with tea and coffee in Church afterwards (instead of the hall). It was a thought provoking service and a good opportunity for exchanging New Year greetings. January also saw the start of Faith Shout, a ‘Trish’ initiative for young people involving loud(ish) LIVE music and discussion. It happens once a month on the third Saturday and the next one falls on Easter Saturday. 21st/22nd January was a busy weekend. We held a coffee morning/act of worship in our hall which was a joint event with our friends at All Saints’. On the following day we had our (now regular) January meal, this time in aid of SHARE (Supporting Homeless and Refugees Everywhere). We have had the opportunity to visit HMP Berwyn. Beryl liaised with the prison chaplin and we had the opportunity to meet the assistant governor, a couple of officers, other staff and one of the men (inmates are not referred to as prisoners). I was truly impressed with the ethos of the prison and the focus on rehabilitation. We also had a chance to learn about life in the British Merchant Navy 60 years ago – a good evening, thanks to Mike. Our Church celebrated Mothering Sunday with Richard leading our service and we had a dramatic illustration from the ‘Open the Book’ team. We welcomed Tilly into the life of our Church by baptism. Daffodils featured throughout, in the prayers, on the screen and were distributed to the congregation. We are looking to formalise our links with All Saints’ with three meetings a year of ‘Gresford Churches Together’ where we will plan joint events and to avoid clashes (of dates, not between people). After a planning meeting in January the inaugural meeting was held on 6th April. On Palm Sunday we had a joint service which went well. We had an opportunity to anticipate Holy Week with readings, reflections and music. There was an expanded music group with musicians from both churches and a chance to socialise afterwards.
Summary of news for the March 2017 issue of the Circuit Newsletter
Since the last Plan we have celebrated our usual Christmas services starting with a Gift Service where unwrapped gifts were given for distribution by our local Salvation Army. We are very grateful to them for undertaking this work at this busy time of year. We held a candlelit carol service before Christmas, led by Patrick. The refurbishment at Church (plus comments from the Fire Officer) have resulted in a fresh approach to lighting the church for the service. Our Christingle Service on Christmas Eve (led by Richard) was well attended. The 50 Christingles we had ‘made earlier’ were not enough and some people had to share, we’ll make more next year. Our Christmas Day service was led by Patrick and afforded an opportunity to light a candle for people who were not with us, as well as celebration. ‘Open the Book’ continues in association with our friends from All Saints’. The team took part in a Commissioning Service (Alyn Mission Area) with Bishop Gregory at St Martin’s Llay. Gresford has been hosting Alpha led by Patrick on Monday nights. The course finished with a Celebration evening and now we have a study group on Monday evenings. We are still fund raising for our refurbishment. Beryl organised a Fashion Show, held in the Church which raised money for Guides, Playgroup and Refurbishment. It was a successful evening and well attended. The event was entertaining and showcased so many nice clothes! We held our Church Fair at the beginning of December which included soup, cake and stalls. Money was raised for the Church but more importantly, Church friends worked together and we invited people into our Church. To conclude, in November, we lost a long standing Member, Dr Gerald Roberts, who had attended the Church since he moved from South Wales in the 1950s. Rev Marian Jones led the funeral and I learned how he had established ‘Paediatric Medicine’ in North Wales. We will miss him. For the latest on what is happening at Gresford visit our website gresfordmethodist.wordpress.com – the site is getting a good number of visitors and is the major gateway for casual bookings of the hall (a big thank you to Ivor who then deals with the enquiries).
We were pleased to have a full Church for our Christingle Service today. Fifty Christingles were distributed – hopefully each family managed to take at least one home. The offering, along with other special Christmas collections will be donated to SHARE. (A Charity based in North East Wales Supporting Homeless Assisting Refugees Everywhere)
Summary of news for the December 2016 issue of the Circuit Newsletter
If I had to identify a theme for the last 3 months, it would be ‘Community’. As a Church we have been involved in the Gresford Festival. In the run up to the festival there was a scarecrow trail around the village. Our contribution was ‘Old King Cole (Coal) complete with 3 fiddles and a representation of the Gresford pit wheel. The winning scarecrows made their way to Gresford Festival. Many community groups were represented at the festival, Gresford Methodist had a stall which gave us an opportunity to talk to a good number of the folk there.
Karen led our Harvest Festival, the church was beautifully decorated with generous donations of flowers, fruit and vegetables. Patrick was at the church while it was being decorated to collect financial gifts towards our refurbishment project. We raised £2,016 which will go towards repaying the Church refurbishment loans from Church Members and the Circuit.
Following the Harvest celebration we shared a meal which raised money for the Circuit charity ‘Holiday Hunger’. This is a Community project which provides lunches in the school holidays for children in the Wrexham area who normally receive free school meals.
We are actively inviting members of our community into our church via the Alpha course which is running on Mondays. It is very flexible and people can attend as many evenings as they are able.
Unfortunately our regular Monday lunch club in church has stopped, at least for now. The group is continuing to lunch together on occasion at ‘Mario’s’ in the Old Post Office.
Our last ‘Community‘ was a Community service held on 16th October. Meryl led the cafe style service. Hazel and Beryl had invited people from our community. We had representatives from various local organisations and businesses including the WI, MYPAG and Ambitions Dance Centre. We had dance, a poem and several people talked about the connections between their organisations and our Community – a very different time of worship.
A big thank you to our two local schools – The Rofft at Marford and All Saints’ Gresford – who came along to sing so nicely at our annual Peace Service. Richard Sharples led the service and focused on symbols of peace and their meaning.
Thanks to everyone who contributed to the gift day and Harvest Festival last weekend. The harvest lunch raised £150.10 for ’Holiday Hunger’, the Circuit project.