Alton Webteam: July 2016
WORSHIP — At the Conference and
across the Connexion
Methodists from across the Connexion joined in the Reception into Full Connexion and the Conference Worship on Sunday 3 July via the internet live stream service.
The Conference members in London were joined virtually by Methodists in Silsden, Tadcaster, Cambridge and beyond as presbyters and deacons were received into Full Connexion with the Conference.
In the lead up to the event a number of ordinands were asked about their experiences leading up to the day which was put into a video shown during the service.
#LEARNING & CARING — Rethink Sanctions, Department of Works and Pensions
Immediately after the Conference adjourned on Thursday 7 July, the President and Vice-President of the Conference, along with Deacon Tracey Hume, delivered a letter to the Department of Works and Pensions (DWP) about Methodist concern on Benefit Sanctions.
The letter came following a Memorial from the Newcastle upon Tyne District highlighting the effects of benefit sanctions on poor people. Speaking to the Conference, Deacon Tracey Hume, who proposed the memorial, said: "The sanctions regime disproportionately affects some of the most vulnerable people in our society. Young people, homeless people, single parents, people with long-term mental health problems.
"At our foodbank, we regularly have clients going without food so their children can eat."
The letter expressed the Church's concerns and repeated its call for a full independent inquiry, asking that the DWP implement the recommendations of the All Party Parliamentary Group Report, 2015.
In its reply, the Conference referred to the report produced by the Joint Public Issues Team: 'Time to Rethink Benefit Sanctions'.
Email: Deacon Tracey Hume firstname.lastname@example.org
EVANGELISM — Church calls for unity against racism across the Connexion
Following the Conference's unanimous decision to call for respect and tolerance in our national life, Methodists across Britain were encouraged to write to their MPs speaking out against the rise in racist attacks following the EU referendum vote.
Along with many other ministers and lay preachers, the Revd Andy Longe of All Saints Church in Durham addressed his congregation to unite against racism on Sunday 10 July. Speaking to his local paper, the Northen Echo, Andy said: "I think it's an important message for people in churches and the community to hear that we're all in this together".
Since the resolution was passed at the Conference, hundreds of people have written to their MP using the online tool and several church groups have organised meetings to discuss the issues.
Below is a photo of members of the Conference standing together in unity against racism, following the motion being carried. Many members were wearing safety pins as part of a campaign which encourages wearing a plain safety pin as indication that you are a safe person and would not subject anyone to intolerance or abuse.
Email: The Revd Andy Longe email@example.com
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