From the Pen of Rev Steve

Recent copies of the minister's letters from Rev Steve. These are reproduced from the monthly Newsletter.

April 2024: Attending Synod

Attending synod isn’t my first choice of Things to Do on your day off! My normal Monday involves a trip to the golf course, but alas this week it has had to be postponed. Yesterday’s gathering was a joint event with ministers from the Plymouth and Exeter District and the Cornwall and Isles of Scilly District, with an anticipated formal amalgamation later this year.

We shared together in holy communion, acknowledged that we ascent to the doctrines and disciplines of the Methodist church. In addition we heard the testimonies of those ministers who are reaching the end of their active work and request synod’s approval to “sit down”, as we do not retire in any formal sense. The other key event of the presbyteral spring synod is hearing the obituaries of those ministers who have died since we last met. Those have to be agreed by the synod before being adopted by the Methodist Conference to form part of the historical record of the church.

Sometimes I attend synod begrudgingly, especially when it falls on my day off. However at its best it reminds us all that we are part of a Connexional church. Sidmouth Methodist church is part of a bigger family, linked with other local churches in the circuit, part of a District and formed as one church governed by the annual Conference. Just the same as any family we have to be mindful of our brothers and sisters who we do not see eye to eye with, we don’t always get our own way, and humbly we learn from those who are different to us.

Whilst part of our collection goes to support these wider understandings of church, which at times may feel like a drain, we also receive back from them. In addition to making sure all legalities are adhered to and that charity law is being respected their ability to offer an alternative perspective is good. In the summer Holly Adams, from the Connexional team, will be residing in Sidmouth for the duration of Folk Week, helping us to provide the event “Lost in Wonder”. In addition the Connexional team host and run the Methodist website, which has a rich resource of material available through the platform. Some of you may have spotted a small document around church called “A Methodist Way of Life - Pocket Guide”, which succinctly explains something about what it means to be a Methodist. Why not pick one up and have a read.

Finally you may have seen that I am starting another Membership Class on the 25th April at 2:00 pm. You are welcome to that short series whether you have been part of the church for years or you have only just started coming. We will look at some basic history of the Methodist church and our current identity, how to read the bible, how to pray, and what it means to be a disciple today. If you are at all interested then come and have a word with me.

Finally Happy Easter to you all.

Every Blessing

From the Pen of Rev Steve
We are all part of a Connexional church…