With a quick turnaround from my two days in London, I was off again this afternoon – over the Pennines to Delph Methodist Church, in the Oldham and Saddleworth circuit of the Manchester and Stockport district. But my journey was only about 40 minutes and the distance barely 20 miles; the landscape of twisty moorland roads linking steeply sloping villages is very reminiscent of my side of the Pennines, in the areas around Hebden Bridge and Holmfirth, for example. Having been kindly sent 2 tickets for the afternoon tea, I was accompanied on my last district date as president, by Judith, my pastoral visitor and close friend from my church in Cleckheaton. She proved herself a most helpful companion, driving us there, taking photos (I so often forget) and neatly avoiding me leaving the pulpit trailing the microphone pack in my wake!
The event was an “At Home” with tea, following the service to commission Sheila Tonkin as district vice-president. It was held in a lovely chapel with numerous community rooms – just as well as there must have been over 100 women present. I found that I knew many people here, district officers past and present, plus Rachel Collins, our Helen Kim Memorial Scholar, a lay worker in the circuit, and Kathleen Skinner, currently vice-president of the national committee of Women’s World Day of Prayer, whose husband James is minister here. (All 3 of us are in the photo.) I was glad to speak about my second visit to India, and MWiB’s ongoing work on Dalit Solidarity after Jo Richards, current district president, had commissioned Sheila.
We had a smooth and short journey home, and now my only presidential date remaining is the opening of the service to commission Anne as our next connexional president in Southport on Friday evening. Whether you can be with us then or not, I ask you to pray for Anne, as she prepares to take up the role and as she serves in it for the next two years. Blessings, Linda