Sunday, May 30, 2010

A Visit to Haughton Green

This is Haughton Green Methodist Church. It is two hundred years old this month and today we went to a service that was part of a series to celebrate that venerable age. Unfortunately it is showing real signs of age, and this winter, which was one of the hardest winters I can remember, has played its part in damaging the fabric of the church. If I understood what I was told, the congregation will soon have to leave this old building and move their church across the road into what is currently the Church Hall. That will be a huge wrench for a lot of them, and many of the congregation are getting older. 

We were there because one of our friends, John, was taking the service and preaching there today. John is Australian and lives in Adelaide, normally, but he, and his wife Janette, are over here on a twelve week holiday. Back in 1998, when Pat and I were still both teaching we both ended up having surgery within a week of each other. So we were both off work for an extended period of time. While we were off work, the School had to find people to do our jobs. Pat's replacement was Janette who was living in England while her husband, John, was over here as a Missionary. I always loved the idea of this Australian minister coming back to the Mother Country to bring the word of God to the savage Brits.

John is a minister in the Uniting Church of Australia. I believe that the Uniting Church was formed in the 1970's by the amalgamation of the Presbyterian, Congregational and Methodist Churches in Australia. So when he came to Britain, he took a post as a Minister in the Methodist Church. Pat and I are Anglicans, Members of the Church of England. So we actually attend a Parish Church in Mottram. But the two churches are really quite close, the Methodist Church broke away from the Church of England in the 1800's. So I don't think that we will get kicked out of our Church for heretical actions.

The Church at Haughton Green was having a Flower Festival this weekend. I think that they have them every four years or so, though I must admit that I'm far from certain. There were lots of very substantial flower arrangements there today and I admire the work that has gone into creating them. I'll put a photograph of one of the arrangements at the bottom of this post, which is coming up rapidly because I'm running out of things to say. well, no, I've got lots to say but not enough energy for tonight. I think that part of it is my taking anti-histamine to stave off the hay fever that I often suffer at this time of year. I take pills that are advertised as being non-drowsy, but every year, when I take them, I feel really tired compared to most times.

So anyway, we parted from John and Janette and we probably won't see them again for another two years, but it's always nice to know that on the day that we meet up with them again, it will be as if we had never been apart. They are really good people. I just wish that I was anything like as good.

Ah well, another day, another taler. See you again quite soon, if we are spared. Sleep well.

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