Jan - Apr 2020
I hope your Christmas and New Year went well. So here we are not just at the beginning of a new year, but at the beginning of another decade and I’m truly grateful to be in your company as we set out on the rest of our journey. Making sense and the most of it all requires truly good company, and you have been and are that and then some. So I look forward to this next era, which we begin much as we have throughout our 180 years, that is as a small band of not unsophisticated, but easy going, simple and down to earth spiritual travellers, spoiled with resources (if things can get tight!), for whom its essential to have their own church building and ministry, and to provide good quality and inclusive public worship, pastoral and other support to the community. This is a very privileged position for us to be in. Let us count our blessings and make the most of having found our rather wonderful little church in which everyone plays an important role and helps write our pleasant and not undistinguished history. I will be certain to. Many thanks to all who joined us for our lovely Carols Service and Christmas Party, including our Organist / Pianist Lyd, our tenor, District Minister Martin and regular visiting preacher in 2020, Jim Corrigall. Thanks also to Andrew for putting-on the festive spread and drinks. Sadly this was Lyd’s last service with us as our regular Organist / Pianist, the journey from Hampton Court each Sunday proving rather too much for Lydia understandably. An excellent musician and lovely person, she will be missed; and we wish her all the best in her musical career and life generally going forward. We have arranged temporary cover to-date pending finding Lyd’s replacement, save for the service on 5th January, but which Humanist Mindfulness Service will not be let down by the use of good recorded music provided on the stereo system by Andrew and which we’re much looking forward to. Our longtime member and much loved friend Cynthia is now clearly experiencing early onset dementia, if still looking and being lovely and enjoying Chapel, which I mention with permission and just so we can all take that knowledge into account and look out for Cynthia a little where appropriate to make sure she can continue to enjoy her time with us for as long as possible. You will be reassured to know that Cynthia is being very well looked after by her wonderful daughter Tracy who is impressively on top of things for her mum, and with whom I am in regular contact. Finally, we were very pleasantly contacted at Christmas by, amongst others: Lisa Hall who attended our Sunday School as a little girl and later as a young adult, and who now lives in Manchester and sends her best wishes for 2020 to us all; and by the next generation of the Willis family to conduct a blessing at Chatsworth House, Derbyshire for them in 2020, my having assisted at Pete’s and Lindsay’s wedding at Upper Chapel, Sheffield more than 30 years ago. What wonderful treats; quite made my Christmas!