Author Archives: Administrator

Ways to save our seas

  • If you see some litter pick it up - litter such as plastic bags are super lightweight and get blown into waterways by the wind. If it’s safe to do so, pick it up even if you’re not by the sea.
  • Use reusable bottles - 500 billion plastic bottles are used worldwide every year, many of which don’t get recycled.
  • Support charities - there are many incredible charities that work hard to clean our oceans that depend on donations to continue their planet saving work. For example, 4Ocean is a company who use plastic from the sea to make jewellery. The purchase of one bracelet funds the removal of one pound of rubbish from the oceans!
  • Shop smart - when shopping for groceries choose foods that aren’t wrapped in plastic; only 14% of plastic packaging gets recycled.
  • Invest in reusable items - there are so many environmentally friendly alternatives to single use plastic, from reusable straws to beeswax cling film.

Want to find out more? ‘A Plastic Ocean’ – a multi award winning documentary, available on Netflix or to rent on Amazon, reveals the effects of plastic on the planet’s marine ecosystems and on human health. Praised by David Attenborough as ‘one of the most important films of our time”.

Anita Beer

MWiB update – Swanwick 2021, and volunteering opportunities

Happy new year to you from MWiB.

SWANWICK 2021

Following the huge disappointment of having to cancel the weekend at Swanwick in 2020, we have been determined to offer something in 2021, but sadly, we have made the decision not to meet face to face at Swanwick because of the ongoing uncertainties of life with Covid 19, and the need to keep everyone as safe as possible.

However, we are delighted to be able to invite you to ‘Together, with Hope on the Way’, an online conference taking place on Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th April 2021. It will be different to our previous conferences, but nevertheless is an exciting new venture, which will be accessible to a wider audience.

Our keynote speaker Sister Imelda Poole will be joining us ‘virtually’ from Albania, to talk about her work educating and training young people to help prevent them becoming trafficked. There will also be worship, prayer and Bible study, plus news and information on the work of the World Federation, and a chance for us to celebrate 'together' the tenth anniversary of MWiB.

You can find more information and register your interest now on the MWiB website: https://mwib.org.uk/index.php/2021/01/15/swanwick-2021-together-with-hope-on-the-way/

I hope you'll consider joining us - and please pray for the conference as we continue to prepare and as we meet online.

VOLUNTEERING OPPORTUNITIES

We're currently seeking two volunteers to work with us as we lead this exciting and growing movement into it's second decade: Communications Coordinator, and Website and Social Media Coordinator.

Could this be you? Or someone you know? Perhaps a younger person, or someone not directly connected with MWiB?

You can find an advert for noticeboards, newsletters, websites etc, along with further information and application packs for both roles on our website. Please share and forward this information as widely as possible within your own church, circuit and district: https://mwib.org.uk/index.php/2021/01/11/looking-for-a-new-challenge-2/

AND FINALLY...

Keep in touch with MWiB and the World Federation on our Facebook page: Methodist Women in Britain and via Twitter: @MethodistWomen

Judith R Simms
Communications Officer
Methodist Women in Britain

Advent 2 – Preparing For Christmas

If you’re like me you may still have many things to get sorted before you can relax. ‘Some hope’, might be your response as you’re preparing for a possible family re-union if we’re not still in ‘Lock-down’! This “on” and then “off” change in Covid-19 guidelines is well and truly a pain in the nether regions! But whatever happens Christmas will take place! And, its significance is still as relevant today for people who are anxious, lonely, and unsure of their future.

It will certainly be different this year. Some stores may not have everything you want. So it may be even more stressful! It may not be the usual chaos because of the ‘safe spacing’, but we’re still likely to see ‘masked’ shoppers manoeuvring around us in their desire to get that last tin or packet! Hopefully stock-piling won’t leave some short of necessities, and I pray that our Food Bank is well supported so that the less fortunate may enjoy their Christmas too!

There may be fewer Christmas cards due to Face-time and texting. I expect some will still decorate the home and garden, competing with Blackpool’s illuminations! But, over the years my favourite in our street has been a wonderful display of a stable with the manger and Christ-child. It is simple, to the point, and reminds us that Jesus was born as a stranger in Bethlehem and didn’t have the choice of staying in a local hotel! Possibly a New Testament ‘rough sleeper’ who got some posh visitors bearing gifts?

Those neighbours remind us that Christmas is not ‘Xmas’ or a Winter Festival where the world goes absolutely barmy! It is the annual invitation to acknowledge God’s gift to us of Jesus - and of his ministry of love and reconciliation. Angels proclaimed: “To you a Saviour is born, a King, come and worship him”. And they ended with “Peace on Earth, and Goodwill to all people”! Even for rough sleepers, and then refugees – something that the Holy Family were as they travelled to Egypt!

I’m unaware of ever seeing an angel as described in the nativity stories, but I am absolutely convinced of the vast number of ‘angelic’ people that exist around us. How many people have benefitted from the Street Pastors, The Bower House Counselling Service, The Cube’s youth work, the Food Bank and the countless other volunteer led agencies that pick up what governments have ceased to fund via statutory authorities? Some only see funding cuts and this pandemic causing chaos all around us – but others also try to fill the gaps and help folk in need!

Recent “Angels” were heralded and honoured. Folk like centenarian Captain Tom and a young footballer, Marcus Rashford, who challenged HMG and got food for children. HMG refused to follow-up at Christmas until a further back-lash made them find more funding! Locally we celebrated when Cllr Roger Dunton was named in the Queen’s Honours List for his work for our community. Angels are those who inspire and encourage us to also carry out the task of offering good-will to others and working for Peace in our troubled and strife torn world.

Christmas is meant to be a time of peace and good-will. Not just for others, but for us too. It is a time to reflect on not simply the ‘Ah, how sweet’ moment of the birth of a child, but on what the Christ-child has meant throughout the centuries. More importantly, it is still meaningful today, so I challenge others to join with other human “Angels” and stand up for Love, Compassion, Mercy, Justice and Peace – and bring about a fair and just society where all may live in peace and harmony. A place where all may share in a life in all its fullness. Remember, even Scrooge had a change of heart at Christmas, so I wonder what we can do to make a difference?

Hark, the herald “Angels” sing: so give thanks for God’s gifts to you, and let your voices and actions give glory to God in the highest! Alleluia and Amen!

Dave Tomlin
Advent 2020

News from The Leprosy Mission Dec 2020

Allister du Plessis, Regional Manager for The Leprosy Mission, has written:  

'Our wonderful supporters continue to humble us with their sacrificial generosity for people affected by leprosy. 2020 has been an amazing financial year, allowing TLMEW to fulfil funding commitments for work overseas.  You have helped to ensure no one affected by leprosy is forgotten during this crisis.

As the world went into lockdown back in April, we prayed together that God would build a mighty hedge of protection around every leprosy community, that Covid-19 would not enter in.  Praise God that to date,  Covid-19 has not entered any leprosy community!  Sadly, we have seen field staff struck down by the virus, with six valued members of the worldwide team losing their life.  Please do pray particularly for Anandaban Hospital in Nepal, where there are cases on the leprosy wards and amongst staff.

 Christmas is coming and so are the carols……….

 I am thrilled to pass on the exciting news of our Virtual Carol service, Thursday 10th December at 7.30.   This year our annual Carol Services at Lichfield Cathedral and St. Giles in the Fields in London are unable to go ahead. But this doesn’t mean you will miss out! Our online Leprosy Mission Carol Service will be going out live on YouTube at 7.30pm on Thursday 10th December. Pam Rhodes is leading the service which includes an address from +Donald, Bishop of Peterborough, a film of Pam Rhodes meeting Lovely (a lady affected by leprosy in Bangladesh) and beautiful carols.  Former Regional Manager Jarrett will also be singing in the choir. 

If the date and time doesn’t work for you, don’t worry because you can download the link to watch at another time.  We hope you enjoy it!'

 Allister also gives advance notice that the campaign for World Leprosy Sunday 2021 will be towards ending leprosy in Mozambique –  and the exciting news that the UK Government will match fund any donations that are made between January 24 and April 24!  

 I'll be in touch with supporters about this early in the New Year.

Kathy Morrison

Methodist Women in Britain Newsletter 2020-4 Winter Newsletter

Click here to view / download: MWiB Newsletter 2020-4 Winter

It contains plenty of news and information on the latest planned events including:

  • All We Can Big Church Sing - Christmas Special on 29th November at 4pm
  • Action for Children: Starry Night Virtual Carol Concert and entertainment, hosted by Jon Snow
  • Next year's residential: Together, with Hope on the Way to be held at Swanick 16-18th April 2021 - virtually if not possible to meet together by then.
  • And a short article from 'Our Woman in Togo' - the mention of this country took me straight back to my stamp collecting days at age 6 or thereabouts, when the colourful exotic fish stamps from Togo were among my favourites - although I recall I only managed to accumulate a couple of them!

Kathy Morrison

Fair Trade and Eco stall

The Fair Trade and Eco stall has moved from MHMCHURCH to our house! ( Hopefully back to normal when the church building is open again.

In the meantime, you can buy items and I can deliver on my daily walks - or you can collect from our place. The list of what’s available is on the photos below.

Please contact me if you would like to discuss a purchase - 07910073436.

Anita Beer

Harborough Hygiene Bank

Harborough Hygiene Bank was set up in late June this year, to help ameliorate the effects of hygiene poverty in Harborough district. With the end of the Furlough scheme, it is expected that more people will find themselves in the situation where they are making very difficult choices between paying their housing costs, their utility bills, feeding themselves and their family, and keeping themselves clean.

What we do

We are a group of volunteers who collect donations from the public, store and sort them, then distribute to partner organisations what they need for the people they are in contact with. We work closely with these partner organisations so we can deliver exactly what they need.

Donation Points

The following places have Donation Boxes where people can place their donations.

  • The Co-op, the Commons, Market Harborough
  • Boots the chemists, St. Mary’s Place, Market Harborough
  • Sainsburys, Market Harborough
  • The Co-op, high Street, Kibworth
  • The Manor, Tur Langton

Contact us

Our social media sites (Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) are all @thbharborough

Our email address is thbharborough@gmail.com

For specific enquiries and information, The Co-Ordinator is Judy Rowley, who can be contacted at the thbharborough@gmail.com address and on mobile 07958 059440

Battle for Naseby Square 2020

Naseby Square Housing Complex was a happy community of post retirement age adults living in a Social and Sheltered Housing development.

The local authourity, Harborough District Council, initiated negotiations with the managing Housing Group to agree to demolish 30% of the complex simply to gain access to develop a small plot of land. Manipulation of the truth (I'm not allowed to call them 'lies' - so don't mention this problem until you've seen the web-site of 38 Degrees). Suffice to say that appalling management behaviour can be clearly shown with inducements also offered by the local authority. They can now no longer afford the development costs, so they wish the Housing Group to buy their land and carry out the development for them.

The proposals are felt totally inappropriate for the area. There is no provision for the replacement of the social and sheltered housing nor retention or replacements of the community amenities - Communal Lounge, Warden's Office and Community (Centre) Hall that previously served both tenants of the complex and the surrounding community.

Since May 2018 a small group of supporters has lobbied the local authority and the managing housing group to very little avail. It appears that 'the powers that be' are assured of this Planning Application going through regardless of overwhelming numbers of objections.

The treatment meted out to tenants 'forced' to move has been appalling. The total disregard of the local pressures being placed on local services such as schools, social care and health - let alone already over-crowded narrow streets where traffic flow is sometimes impossible - adds up to madness.

This campaign means a lot to me and the more support we can get the better chance we may have of stopping the scheme.

You can read more and sign the petition here: Battle for Naseby Square 2020.

Thank you, and God bless,

Dave Tomlin, pp Tenants' Support Group.

Words for a weary walk

This year's Ability Sunday, Livability's annual event to celebrate inclusion in the Church, highlights the story of the road to Emmaus, found in Luke’s Gospel. The disciples we read about had to make on a journey they weren't expecting to take. They were setting out weary, downcast, and uncertain of the future.

This week, today, are you setting out weary? Think of an aspect of life where you may be feeling particularly deflated, worn out, or running on empty.

Make a note of everyone you ‘encounter’ in a week - this can be in person and online. It could include friends, family, colleagues, people we know well and those we know only in passing.

  • To what extent do you recognise Christ in each of these encounters? Why, or why not?
  • Can you imagine sharing a meal with these people? Again, consider why / why not?
  • How might that change your view, so that we can better see Christ in each of these interactions?

In the Gospel, when the disciples recognise Jesus, he immediately disappears. They get a glimpse of Jesus. This changes everything. Who might we get just the briefest glimpse of Jesus in our interaction? A delivery person? A supermarket worker? Someone we pass in the street? Look again at the list you have written of your recent interactions and commit each of these people to God in prayer.

As you think about these weary disciples, you can remember that God walks with you, even at your most dejected. This knowledge may not translate to having a spring in your step, but you can be confident that Christ travels alongside us, in every season of life.

Reflection taken from the Livability Community Engagement August Newsletter, for more resources and information please see abilitysunday.org.uk

Sight Loss Friendly Church Taster Sessions

Sight Loss Friendly Church (SLFC) are providing some free 30 minute SLFC Taster sessions on Zoom for churches to find out more about SLFC including all the benefits of this free resource, meet the SLFC team and ask questions. They currently have sessions planned for 29 & 30 September and 27 & 28 October. If anyone would like to find out more visit sightlossfriendlychurch.org.uk or to book a place email .