We welcome Rev Sara Cliff
On Tuesday 31 August, we held a special service to welcome our new minister Rev Sara Cliff.
Chair of District Rev Helen Cameron joined us for the event.
We wish Sara all the best for her ministry here in Brackley and throughout the circuit.
Rev Pat bids farewell
Rev Pat has bid to farewell to Brackley after eight years as minister of Brackley Methodist Church.
She is moving on to become Superintendent Minister of the Melton Mowbray Circuit.
A circuit farewell service was held at the end of July and she took her final service at Brackley on Sunday 1 August.
Pat said: “In the eight years I’ve been here I have watched children grow up. I’ve baptised, performed marriages, and officiated at too many funerals. I’ve visited hospitals and shut-ins and made too many phone calls to count. Together, we have realised a few dreams, lived through a few trials, and persevered. We’ve laughed and cried, eaten good food together and shared fellowship.
“I want to thank all of you for the many ways you have allowed me to be your minister, for the wonderful circuit leaving service and for the many beautiful gifts I have received. As the years go by, I will look back fondly on our time together; I trust the same will be true for you.”
We wish Pat well in her new position. Our new minister, the Rev Sara Cliff, will join us in September, and her welcome service will take place on Tuesday 31 August here at Brackley.
John Wesley holds court outside Brackley Methodists
When Brackley organised its first ever Scarecrow Festival in June 2021, the Methodist Church was keen to join the festivities.
The festival was introduced as an alternative to the town carnival which was cancelled due to Covid restrictions.
More than 70 scarecrows rose up around the town, all socially distanced and all following the theme of ‘the great outdoors’.
And there was only one scarecrow suitable to stand outside the front of the Methodist Church looking down the town High Street … the founder of Methodism himself, John Wesley.
Malcolm Bromhall, Mission Outreach Worker at Brackley Methodist Church, said: “According to local history, John Wesley visited our town in 1784 and preached outside the town hall, which is just a few yards away from the current Brackley Methodist church. Creating our scarecrow in his image not only fitted in with the theme of the festival but also meant we could celebrate our heritage.
“The festival was a great success. The weather was good and it gave people the opportunity to get out and walk around the town. It was lovely to see the smiles on so many faces after what has been a very difficult 18 months or so.”
Books in a Box
We are delighted that our ‘Books in a Box’ scheme has now gone out to four of Brackley’s coffee shops … Hummingbirds Bistro, The Old Fire Station Cafe, Brackley Central and Jenny’s Restaurant and Cafe. Thanks to the generosity of members of our congregation, youngsters can now enjoy looking through story books while their parents/carers enjoy a drink. This is a gift from our church to the people of Brackley.
On Sunday 15 March 2020 we were joined by Town Mayor Cllr Anthony Bagot-Webb and Deputy Mayor Cllr Christopher Cartmell for the annual Civic Service. The purpose of the Civic Service is to create a platform allowing dignitaries, local community organisations and local residents to come together to give thanks. Said Cllr Bagot-Webb: “It is an honour and pleasure as Brackley Town Mayor to be able to lead this year’s Annual Civic Church Service. I would also like to thank my Mayor’s Chaplain, Rev Pat, for her pastoral and moral support during my Mayoral year and for officiating at today’s service.”
Our own Rev Pat joined Town Mayor Cllr Anthony Bagot-Webb at the annual service of Remembrance held in the market place on 10 November 2019.
Musicians of the Dreaming Spires
Celia and Christopher Redgate, Helen Pitstow, David Lewis and Coral Lancaster from The Musicians of the Dreaming Spires joined us in October to treat us to an evening of classical music featuring composers including Albinoni, J C Bach, Dvorak and Purcell.
Our Harvest Festival on 22 September was an opportunity for members of the congregation to support the work of Water Aid. We were joined by Emily Hugo, Special Projects Co-ordinator who told us about the valuable work being undertaken by Water Aid. Emily is pictured with Church Steward Gareth Evans. Our collection for Water Aid raised a total of £1047.80.
Brackley Community Hospital
On Sunday 1 September, Councillor Caryl Billingham MBE joined us after the service to tell us more about the new Brackley Community Hospital which is due to open in 2020.
Christian Bikers share service
Although the Brackley Festival of Motorcycling took a break for 2019, it didn’t stop Brackley Methodist Church from holding it’s annual service with members of the Christian Motorcyclists Association. So on Sunday August 11, bikers … and their bikes … joined the regular congregation to share in worship, testimonies and Holy Communion.
It’s Your Move!
On Wednesday 24 July 2019 our Mission Outreach Worker Malcolm Bromhall was delighted to attend Brackley Junior School’s End of Term Celebration at St Peter’s Church where, on behalf of Brackley Methodist Church, he presented all of the Year 6 leavers with a copy of the Scripture Union publication ‘It’s Your Move … your secondary school survival guide‘.
On Sunday 14 July 2019 our Church Anniversary service was led by the Rev Canon Helen Cameron, chair of the Methodist Church Northampton District. Helen is pictured after the service with our minister Rev Pat, our Mission Outreach Worker Malcolm Bromhall and church stewards Helen, Debbie and Bill.
On Sunday 30 June 2019 we celebrated the baptism of baby Millie-Mae and were delighted to welcome the many family and friends who joined us for the celebration.
Good Friday Walk of Witness
Worshipers from churches across Brackley joined together on Good Friday to take part in a walk of witness.
A wooden cross, representing the one on which Jesus was crucified, was carried from the Methodist Church into Burgess Square in the town centre where Bible readings and songs were shared.
The cross was then taken back to the Methodist Church where the walkers enjoyed hot cross buns.
Clean water is flowing in Mozambique
We have heard from Emily Hugo from WaterAid who was guest speaker at our Harvest Service in September 2018. Emily spoke to us about Molia, a grandmother she met in Chicoma, Mozambique, and a little girl called Beatriz, who lived in the neighbouring village of Nacoto. WaterAid is working to ensure that Molia, Beatriz and their neighbours have access to clean water and, while the project work is not yet complete, incredible progress has been made and both villages are now able to access clean water from temporary water points. Molia says: “I am very grateful for the water you [WaterAid] have brought in our community. It signifies the end of our suffering. Every day, we flock to the construction site to draw water, even before the works are finished. I am so excited with the progress that has been made – I cannot wait to see this completed!” Says Emily: “It’s support from the congregation of Brackley Methodist church that makes this incredible change possible, so please let me say a huge thank you once again for all you have helped to achieve!”
Beatriz collecting water from a dirty stream before work began.
The sandpit that used to be Molia’s only water source.
Molia celebrates achievement so far with construction workers.
Beatriz standing proudly in front of newly installed solar panels.
Emily will be back at Brackley Methodist Church on 22 September for our 2019 Harvest Service.
School Carol Service
On Tuesday December 18 we were delighted to welcome Year 6 children from Brackley Junior School and Year 2 children from Waynefleet Infant School who shared readings and songs as part of their first ever combined carol service at our church.
Brackley Townn Mayor Mark Morrell joined us for our Carol Service on Sunday 16 December.
On Sunday 2 December 2018 we were delighted to support the Northampton Hope Centre by collecting socks as well as other items including hats, gloves and scarves. 120 homeless, disadvantaged and vulnerable people pass through the Hope Centre every day. However, the centre is currently under threat of eviction. If you would like to support the centre and sign a petiton against its eviction then please click here.
Our Autumn Bazaar was a great success raising more than £1,200. Thanks to all who helped and all who came along to support.
Bottle Top Art (October 2018)
Over the past few weeks our Junior Church young people have been being creative with bottle tops. The results of their labour is now on display in the church. Well done guys!
Flying the flag for Brackley Town FC (30 September 2018)
Lay worker Malcolm Bromhall and wife Ali were delighted to stand in for Rev Pat at Brackley Town Hall where the Mayor, Cllr Mark Morrell, was hosting a civic reception to congratulate FA Vase winning Brackley Town FC
Welcome to New Members (2 September 2018)
Our service on 2 September 2018 marked the start of a new Methodist Year and we were delighted to welcome two new members to our church family … Louise and Roy are pictured below with Rev Pat.
Church Anniversary weekend (16/17 June 2018)
Rev’d Steve Wild, chair of the Cornwall District and past President of the Methodist Conference, joned us to celebrate our anniversary weekend.
In June 2018 we were delighted to welcome the family and friends of baby Miah to join us as we celebrated her Baptism.
Thy Kingdom Come
Thy Kingdom Come is a global prayer movement which invites Christians around the world to pray during the nine days between Ascension and Pentecost (which in 2018 was 10th May – 20th May). Pictured below are the special prayer stations we hosted during this period.
Our recent Plant Sale in aid of Church Funds raised over £400. Thanks to all those who donated plants and who came along to buy plants. May your gardens be blooming.
In May we enjoyed an evening discovering the secrets of Handbell Ringing when we were joined by Launton Handbell Ringers who held a free evening workshop.
Church joins Christian Motorcyclists’ Association
Brackley Methodist Church has officially been recognised as a member of the Christian Motorcyclists’ Association.
Members of the association’s Towcester branch joined our service on Sunday 22 April and presented the church with a white leather ‘biker’ cross to recognise its partnership with the CMA. Minister, the Rev Pat Olivent-Hayes, received her own biker cross and is now an official supporter of the CMA. Meanwhile, Roger Geyton from our congregation was welcomed as a member of the CMA and also received a leather cross.
Rev Pat said: “It is a privilege to work alongside CMA and to support them both financially and with our ongoing prayers.”
Easter Celebrations 2018
Our floral cross on Easter Sunday morning, sharing a Seder meal with our friends at Silverstone and rainbows.
In March 2018 we had a great weekend hearing about the work of Compassion UK and an inspiring service from our guest speaker James Waddell. As a result, six children were sponsored and Compassion received a gift from our budgeted giving. To find out more about Compassion UK click here