Working hard, Methodists follow Wesley's steps

Methodists from all over East Anglia gathered in north Norfolk at the weekend for their twice yearly synod. Richard Batson dropped in check the pulse of a church at the heart of many communities… Nearly 300 years ago Methodism's seeds were sown on the streets as founder John Wesley preached to working class men and women.

NEW forms of worship were discussed when Methodists from all over East Anglia gathered in north Norfolk at the weekend for their twice yearly synod. District Methodist chairman the Rev Graham Thompson, from Norwich, said these included caf� style relaxed services, 'messy church' craft-based sessions and Godly Plays - Bible stories told through drama.

While membership was 'going down slowly' nationally, and some chapels closing - Southrepps will close on June 7 - there were successes, with 29pc of churches rising in number and some new ones starting up.

He stressed that there was less competition between the churches - as shown by an Anglican-Methodist covenant signed in 2003 which promotes cooperation between the two - and saw Saturday's synod being held at North Walsham's Anglican parish church.

Saturday's synod drew representatives from 286 churches across Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridgeshire.


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To find out more about the church visit www.methodist.org.uk

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