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Wednesday 1 November 2017

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News from the churches

News from the Churches

The most recent news items are also available as a pdf that can be downloaded here.  This allows printed copies to be available

St Martins Transformation



For the last decade the church congregation has been faithfully praying about how they could use their building to serve their community.

In 2012 Allenton was given ‘Big Local’ Funding and a community organisation ‘Allenton Big Local’ (ABL) was set up. One of the founding members of the ABL Partnership was also a member at St Martin’s and it soon became evident that there were several groups in Allenton who shared the same social objectives and vision.

Working together with the community groups and with a grant of £70,000 from ABL, ambitious plans were drawn up to extend and refurbish the existing church buildings and develop a community hub. However it soon became obvious that this funding would not be enough to fulfil the dream.

Thinking ‘out of the box’ the partnership viewed the challenge as one not simply about monetary funding. Guided by the church vision and shared group aspiration, the team has built on local network and agency contacts which has resulted in the wider Derby community coming on-board in support. The result is a DIY SOS style project, with much of the work being provided free of charge or at cost by local tradesmen.

What it will deliver

St Martin’s working with and alongside other community groups will provide:

  • An affordable community café providing a meeting place for the deprived in the area.
  • Toddler groups (much needed in this poor area)
  • A community garden set within this busy urban area, boasting ‘plot to plate’ initiatives, sensory garden and outdoor play
  • A community project (involving the café) supporting adults with learning difficulties
  • Strengthening existing links with ‘Enthusiasm’ providing a place for youth clubs and dance groups
  • New community rooms for local groups to meet and hold events
  • New toilets and disabled facilities that local shoppers can use
  • Provide a refurbished Church building fit for 21st Century Worship

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Read the latest articles and media releases to follow this exciting project:

August 2017 – Derby Telegraph: £350k community centre being created in Allenton

August 2017 – Connect East Midlands Article: Major new community centre in Allenton

July 2017 – East Midlands Business Link Report: ‘Demolition Day’ Swings Into Action

The Church on Oakwood news : July 2017

News from the Church on Oakwood : July 2017

We have had a really blessed last few months at The Church on Oakwood. Links with the local school have grown massively. ‘Open the Book’ continue to lead assemblies each Wednesday morning at two local schools; Becky, our new Family Worker, leads a lunchtime club for junior aged children every Monday. In the lead up to Easter, we were joined by children in Year 1 as they were invited into the Church to take part in Experience Easter. In June, Years 5&6 joined us for a morning called ‘It’s your Church’. This was a truly amazing morning of inter-generational working and the feedback from both the school and volunteers, who made the morning happen, was so positive and encouraging.

We are looking forward to a range of summer activities such as Holiday Club for children aged 5-11 years; Wednesday picnics and games on Oakwood Park for all ages; Saturday Family Film nights, to name a few! Also, Oakwood Gala – as a Church, we are pleased to be serving refreshments in the Community Centre and able to offer an Open-Air Service again with Woodlands Church for the local community, before the formal opening of the Gala.

In September, we are looking forward to welcoming our new minister, Rev’d Neil Draper and family into the Church and wish Rev’d Peter and Cathy Bates all the best as they move to their new Circuit.

Allestree News: July 2017

Allestree News: July 2017

Since the last e-letter we have had Mrs Sue Nickson (District President of MWIB) come to talk to the Friendly Circle. She spoke about her life and how she came to be President. A collection was made for “Chicks” which is her Charity during her presidency.

Bible Study and Friendly Circle continue to flourish.

Cameo has changed days and now meet on the Tuesday when there is no Friendly Circle or Bible Study.

Future events we have planned are:-

July 15th Summer Fair at 2.30 p.m. at the Church. There will be cakes, plants, books, cards and cream teas. Please come and join us.

Harvest Festival September 16th Bugs and Spuds.

Please pray for our congregation, many getting on in years but still giving their support in whatever way they can, some unable to come now but still supporting us in prayer.

Chellaston Methodist receives Honour

Chellaston Methodist receives Honour

Sue Wilson, a steward at Chellaston Methodist Church was awarded a British Empire Medal in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list in June 2017. Sue says:

My BEM I understand will be engraved, ‘for services to Chellaston’. I started at Chellaston Methodist in 1963 attending Sunday School and then the Youth Club. Although I was a SS teacher and secretary during the 1970’s my involvement with various offices really started in 1990. I taught in the SS and became Superintendent for a number of years. I helped with and then led Holiday Club, latterly with our friends from St Peters for a week each summer and about 8 years ago I decided to extend it to include a session before Christmas. More recently I have been involved with safeguarding, became a Steward and organised Messy Church following my retirement.

The Lord Lieutenant also mentioned in his letter my contribution to the county of Derbyshire which includes my work as a magistrate. I was appointed in 1994 and am currently a chairperson in both the criminal and family court and sit in Derby one day a week.


All we can: July2017


(Methodist Relief and Development) July 2017

At the moment, the most urgent relief work carried out by All We Can is in East Africa, in countries worst affected by drought and famine. These include South Sudan, Ethiopia, Somalia, and Yemen in the Middle East. The distribution of aid is made more difficult by civil wars in South Sudan, and Yemen. All We Can is very appreciative of the £420,000 donated recently for famine relief, which has enabled the supply of sorghum, beans, cooking oil, and a nutritious peanut paste for babies to famine stricken areas. This is welcome news to people who have been trying to survive on bitter leaves, and water lilies, of little nutritional value.

The lean season in these areas is July, and three counties in South Sudan are already suffering famine. The Methodist Church is appealing for people to continue to give towards All We Can’s programme for famine relief. I am very pleased to have received £130 in the last few weeks for the appeal, and would ask people to keep up the effort, whether donations are sent to me to forward, or direct to Head Office at (or call 020 7467 5132)

Perhaps churches are already planning their Harvest Services, so please keep the All We Can Harvest Appeal in mind. This year the focus is on setting up small enterprises keeping chickens in Zimbabwe, and the slogan is ‘Chirp for Joy’. Many poorer people find it difficult to buy food, where prices are very high due to rampant inflation. The setting up of small chicken farms for poorer people in the countryside will be a life- saver. Harvest Packs for services, including a DVD, are available at (or order by phone) I will have a few packs available on the All We Can stall at the Derby and Nottingham District

Synod on Sept. 16th at Riverside, Pride Park, Derby. At the Synod in April, this stall inspired a collection for All We Can from Synod members which amounted to £500, and I am very grateful for their interest, and wonderful support.


Derby Circuit Rep. ‘All We Can

News from Littleover Methodist Church: Feb 2017

News from Littleover Methodist Church: Feb 2017

Ministries Celebration – 12th February 2017

As part of our ten priorities for the year, Littleover Methodist Church recently hosted a celebration of the different ministries that take place in and around the church. The aim was to celebrate what we do, and allow the congregation to see the different ministries and activities showcased and so raise their awareness. Each group within the church made a board which set out what each group does and how it contributes to our overall vision of being people that live like Jesus, reaching out with God’s hope and love.

It was a wonderful time of worship and celebration, as we abandoned our traditional pattern of morning worship to do this. We realised through this process that there are over 50 different ministries either being run by the church or where people from the church serve. These ranged from children’s and young people’s groups, Messy Church, Sycamores (our outreach to mainly over 50’s), our minibus-to-church service and plenty of others. It really encouraged us and helped people to see where there were some spaces to get involved in the life of the church.


News from City Centre Mission & Ministry: Mar 2016

News from City Centre Mission & Ministry: Mar 2016

Thank you to all who have supported the handbags and ladies under wear appeal. We have been overwhelmed by your generosity.

We had a generous donation from District Methodist Women in Britain who have provided some leisure wear for the ladies to wear after showering. We have had Footwashing Church logo on the tracksuits and some ladies have been given them to sleep in in the nightshelter returning them for washing when they come to midday prayers on Thursday. Those of you who have asked ‘what ongoing support can I give’? This would be one way that does not involve your time. We hope to replenish our stock of leisurewear and so if anyone would like to make an individual anonymous donation we will be happy to replenish our stocks.

Susanna Wesley House’s prayer life and hospitality is widening in its small group work if you would like to know more please express your interest either through Angela at the Circuit Office or through Marianne Obong-Oshotse, our Safeguarding Officer.

Our garden project is in its embryonic state. We have an exciting partnership with a Landscape gardener at Alvaston Castle. The ‘quiet garden’ plan has been created with a Christian emphasis in the planting. Work will begin with the laying of slabs which will be done by Scouts who are working towards a relevant badge. If you would be happy to keep them supplied in home baking as they work please contact Angela at the Circuit Office.

Please pray for the ecumenical work of the city centre and the contribution that Susanna Wesley House is offering. That Footwashing Church will in the future have a more inclusive welcome to those in our traditional church congregations as well those who are unchurched or would consider themselves as dechurched.

News from Findern Methodist Chapel: Mar 2017

News from Findern Methodist Church: Mar 2017

This newsletter is an opportunity to take a look at what we have done and are doing because it is easy to think we just continue with routine activities.

  • In September our minister, Gareth, challenged the congregation to read the bible in a year. Members of the local Anglican church have joined in and there are 2 groups meeting weekly with Gareth to discuss and question the passages from the well defined reading programme. It has tested our commitment during these dismal winter months to keep up with the old testament passages but the support of the group has kept us focused.
  • Also in September a new children’s group started for the under 5s called Tots Praise. It is a mixture of songs, crafts, snacks always including a simple Bible story, prayer and praise song. Attendance has been variable but after lots of prayer the numbers have been more encouraging lately.
  • Another new initiative was the men’s breakfast attended by about 16, held monthly – and cooked by ladies!
  • At Christmas alongside the usual services and activities we joined churches from Willington to sing carols at Mercia Marina at one of their special events.

For a second year we asked older village residents especially the housebound if they would like one or two from chapel to go to their homes and share some of the Christmas story through carols, a reading and blessing. It was a wonderful experience for all.

  • We invited members of the parish church to the covenant service in January and as we committed ourselves to discipleship we prayed for more opportunities to work together.
  • The chapel is a wonderful resource for outreach. Many different groups use it for meetings as it is such a flexible area. One day it has the gentle exercise group, another the craft group, the ever popular lunch club or tea afternoons, maybe a church group wanting an away day or the local schoolchildren doing environmental work. We praise the Lord for enabling us to change the traditional village chapel into a lively place of worship able to offer a welcome to many different people.

News from the Church On Oakwood: Mar 2017

News from the Church On Oakwood: Mar 2017

We are pleased to be hosting another Lent Course this year within the Church on a Tuesday evening as well offering an Experience Easter to our local school, inviting different year groups into the building during the school day to learn important parts of the Easter story.

We are in an exciting period in seeing where God is leading The Church on Oakwood, especially in terms of Family Work – with the families connected already to the Church through Walkers & Talkers toddler group, Messy Church, Activity Days and Holiday Clubs along with building further bridges with our local community, Children’s Centre and local schools. We have seen a number of huge blessings to the Church over this last month and are looking forward to where 2017 is heading

News from Allestree

News from Allestree: Mar 2017

Since the last e-letter we have had Christmas Events with a Carols by Fairy lights on December 15th led by Rev Helen White followed by Coffee and Mince Pies in the schoolroom. We had people come who had read it in the Allestree Life magazine so it does pay to advertise.

Friendly Circle went out for their Christmas meal, this year we went to Findern Garden Centre where we had a very pleasant time.

Bible Study and Friendly Circle continue to flourish. On April 4th we have Mrs Sue Nickson (District President of MWIB) coming to speak to us and you are welcome to come and join us.

Cameo is struggling with numbers and we have reached the time when we have to consider the future of it continuing or taking a different format or time.

Future events we have planned are:-

July 15th Summer Fair.

Harvest Festival September 16th Bugs and Spuds.

Please pray for our congregation, many getting on in years but still giving their support in whatever way they can, some unable to come now but still supporting us in prayer.

News from St Thomas’s Road Methodist Church

News from St Thomas’s Road Methodist Church

Simply Worship

The Circuit Missions Together and St Thomas’ Leadership Teams have been exploring the possibility of serving and reaching out to those within the community and have made the decision to provide friendship, fellowship and worship once a month for people with learning disabilities, their carers and for anyone who would enjoy a more simple style of worship. This will be run in conjunction with ‘Prospects’ under the name of ‘Simply Worship’.

‘Prospects is a national charity specialising in supporting people with learning disabilities. It has recently joined the Livability Group. In the recent ‘Livability News’, Claire Howell who runs an act of worship called ‘Fusion’ at King’s Church, Eastbourne, writes, the service is ‘for people who take a little more time to learn’.

A ‘Prospects’ group already exists at the Hope Centre in Derby on the 2nd Sunday afternoon of every month and we aim to provide worship on the 4th Sunday morning of every month, thus complementing each other.

The first ‘Simply Worship’ will be on Sunday 24th September at 10.30am at St Thomas’ Road (Harvest Festival).

We are seeking people who would like to work with us on this:

  • people who can serve tea and make people welcome
  • people who can help with simple craft activities
  • musicians to play songs
  • people who can help lead simple worship

All those attending with learning disabilities must bring a carer with them. It is appreciated many reading this will attend their own Churches on a Sunday, but the more people who volunteer, the less commitment will be required. Anyone who has a heart for God’s people, would be the ideal volunteer.

‘Prospects’ provide training for those who offer to help and we are in the process of arranging a date in May or June.

If you feel this is something in which you would like to be involved, please contact Revd Jenny Dyer who will furnish you with more information.

You may also know people with learning disabilities who would benefit from this worship and we would ask the above information be shared as widely as possible eg in your Church news sheet/letter. We are excited about this development of God’s work here at St Thomas’ Road and ask for your prayers and support where possible.

Future events at St Thomas’ Road

Saturday 29th April 6.30pm Madeley Players 40th year concert
Saturday 13th May 2pm Tea Dance
Saturday 10th June   Mary’s ‘At Home’
Saturday 8th July 11am  Church Anniversary bring & share Lunch + entertainment
Saturday 12th August 2pm Cream Tea and stalls
Saturday 23rd September 11am Salad, Songs & Stories Harvest lunch


News from Duffield: Nov 2016

News from Duffield: Nov 2016

A visit to Aberfan

During a recent visit to Cardiff, my son Stephen who is Chairman of the Welsh Synod asked me if I would like to accompany him to Aberfan on the afternoon of Sunday October 23rd as he was taking the service at Zion Methodist Chapel there at 3.00pm. This was the week of the 50th Anniversary of that terrible tragedy in Aberfan in 1966, and there was already a great deal of coverage in the news and on TV. I thought it would be a privilege to go and as I was attending the Duffield Church Council the night before I left home, I was able to take a greeting of support from our Church to the Society in Aberfan.

The afternoon was dry and clear as we drove up the Rhonda Valley and branched off up a smaller valley to the small village of Aberfan which seemed to be nestling peacefully on its lower slopes. We negotiated the new road interchanges recently developed to the small Methodist Chapel. Who could have imagined such a terrible tragedy happening here? But happen it did – 116 children and 5 teachers smothered in slurry in the school and other grown-ups killed too. The white arches around the many gravestones in the Cemetery on the hillside reminded us that this is a special place.

We met with a handful of worshippers at Zion, doing what they have been doing for years, before the disaster and since, worshipping the God who sustains them in their faith through all the events of life. Away from the commemorations, the concerts, the TV interviews, this seemed the right place to be. These faithful few have moved on since those terrible dark days, they don’t need reminding of events – they live with their memories of it all but now they live in the present. We sang “Lord of all Hopefulness”; “What a friend we have in Jesus”; “Blest are the pure in heart” and “May the mind of Christ our Saviour” and Stephen preached on 2 Timothy chapter 4, about ‘running the race’ set before us.

After the service the Steward June Vaughan and Pat, one of the other mothers showed us round their Church. Both of them were members of that ‘Young Wives Group’ who moved mountains after the tragedy and they spoke highly of their Methodist Minister at the time, Rev Irving Penberthy. With money raised a new set of premises were built around their Chapel in 1968 for youth work in the community. When the youth left, a doctor’s surgery moved in and now nearly 50 years on they were delighted to tell us that there was a newly formed Scout Group meeting there now and there was the expectation that cubs would follow. Everything was newly decorated and renewed for current use by the community.

I asked how old the ladies were now. They were the same age as me- 84! My son Stephen would have been 7, just about the same age as Julie, one of their daughters whose name was etched on a window along with six other names of children who had been killed and had been members of their Sunday School. These ladies were special people, no different to look at, but Christians whose faith shone through. It had nourished and supported them through that terrible time and to this day. It was my great privilege to visit them, to worship with them and to be blessed by their company that Sunday afternoon.

                                        Brenda Wigley


During the Duffield Arts Festival in September, which coincided with our Harvest Festival, we opened the Church for the two days. Not only was the Church decorated for Harvest but we put up displays about the many charities we support and about our Church programme. It was rewarding to be able to welcome the many visitors (children and dogs included) and the celebrations closed with a service at 4.00pm led by our minister Rev Helen White with the theme ‘Festival of Arts’, exploring all the creative ways in which we are made in the image of God. This was one of our Outreach Projects for the year. This November we are continuing a Discipleship Project by running a second series of House Groups led by our Minister using a new study book ‘Compass’-a short interactive course exploring our faith together. We can recommend it.

Next news


Articles for the next newsletter should be sent as an attachment, however small, laid out with Times New Roman at 14 point, to

Items for the next newsletter should be sent by

Wednesday 1 November 2017

Thank-you for all your contributions