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Message from the Ministry Team - March

Dear friends,

I’m writing this before going on sabbatical for 5 weeks, and then coming back for my final 5 weeks at Little Lane Church. It already feels strange to put it in those terms, and yet I must face reality, knowing that in God’s good timing I must move on to pastures new. At this moment in time, I don’t know what the Lord will be calling me to, so have planned the rest of my sabbatical, and just wait and see where the Lord leads.

At these times it’s good to reflect on the time I’ve been a part of Bradford North. When I came, even though I had been an associate member of a Methodist Church in Manchester, I didn’t really know much about my Methodist brothers and sisters, so I have had a great opportunity to learn, something which I’m sure will stand me in good stead for ecumenical fellowship in the future.

I have received a very warm welcome by all I have met in the Circuit, and especially the Ministry and staff teams, who have been a real source of support and encouragement in ministry. It has been great to see how the Ministry team has developed over the 18 months I’ve been around, from a fairly new team concept to a now stable team for the foreseeable future. It is exciting to think how their skills might be used in the coming months, and I pray all the Churches will encourage them in that. I’m constantly amazed at how the team members all get around and support so many Churches. They work so hard for the good of the churches in Bradford North.

Being a transitional minister at Little Lane has been a great experience, and I will always hold fond memories of my time there. They have been a lovely people to worship and work with. They bring a lot of good work to the Circuit, with strong Sunday worship and a thriving Junior Church, and among other things, a popular Tai Chi class which has people of all faiths and referrals from professionals. Also a well-used Friday Café, which supports local volunteers, as well as providing hot meals for all sorts of people in the local community.

This week for worship I’ve been reflecting on some of the verses from Psalm 62 (vs5-8 & 11-12):

‘For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
On God rests my deliverance and my honour; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God.
Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him; God is a refuge for us.
Once God has spoken; twice have I heard this: that power belongs to God,
and steadfast love belongs to you, O Lord.’

The Psalm reminds us that God is always with us. We can trust in Him. God is our hope, our rock and our salvation, because all power and love come from Him, because He is God.

May God bless you all in your journey with Him into the future, as you continue to work out what it is to be circuit, churches working together for the communities you serve, people sharing God-given gifts to further the work of Christ in the whole of the circuit.

I leave you with the prayer of the apostle Paul, in Ephesians 3.20-21: ‘Now to Him who, by the power at work within us, is able to accomplish abundantly far more than all we can ask or imagine, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever.’

In Christ’s love,
Rev Clare


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