From the Manse

Dear Friends,

I am writing these words at the end of a day of contrasts. Early this morning, I set out on my journey in swirling snow and experienced many wintry scenes as I made my way, cautiously, to a snowy destination.

Late this afternoon, I journeyed back along the same route in sparkling, warm sunshine, glad to experience the early signs of Spring. In many ways March and April can be months of surprising contrasts. During March our journey through Lent and Passiontide continues, but the glory of Easter will burst into new life as we enter the month of April.

A friend was recounting her visit to the village of Selworthy in Somerset, highlighting a walk up through the woods to Selworthy Beacon. With the Beacon in sight, my friend had been particularly struck by the final stage of her journey.

On one side of the path there was an expanse of grey-black burnt moorland. On the opposite side there was a blaze of colour: the yellow of the gorse and the purples of the heather.

Perhaps this contrast could be illustrative of Good Friday and Easter Sunday. The barren, lifeless expanse evokes a sense of the suffering of Jesus upon the cross. The yellow and purple carpet of plants cries out about the joy of the day when God raised Jesus from the dead.

As my friend noted, the path clearly separated the two different sights. What her eyes took in depended upon the way she was facing. She could angle herself so that she could see either only one side of the path or the other, or so that she saw a combination of the two views.

We encounter many contrasting experiences in life. Some are extremely traumatic and sad. At such times all can appear dark and desolate. The message of Good Friday is that God, through Jesus, has entered into that kind of experience and continues to share in the pain and suffering of individuals within his world. Other occasions are full of joy and celebration, of life and colour.

These are echoes of the wonder of Easter Day, when Jesus, through his resurrection and the power of love, overcame evil and all that seeks to destroy life. God shares with us in these moments of great pleasure when we are glad to be alive.

However, perhaps generally, we live between the lows and the highs and the scenery appears to be a blend of bad and good. In those times too, God walks with us as our companion and offers help along the way.

Obviously, I do not know how life feels for you at present, more like a Good Friday, or an Easter Day, or somewhere in-between. However, like the apostle Paul, I trust that there is nothing in all creation that can separate us from the love of God. So, this Holy Week and Easter, I hope and pray that you will know something of God’s loving presence, however bad or good life seems to be.

Yours in Christ,
Rev Debbie


We pray for

For the second time this year the Church Family has been shocked and saddened by the sudden death of a very dear member. Barbara Berry has been a very active and much loved and respected member for almost fifty years. We extend our sympathy and offer our love and support to Laurie, Chris, David, Joanne and Matthew and their families.

We continue to pray for Ron and Doreen living in residential care and we pray for Geoff who has recently needed respite residential care.

We pray for Keith, Lois and Garry, Colin and Valerie, Arthur and Dorothy,

June, Barbara, Pat, Zem, Barbara and Dave, Connor, Christopher.

We pray for those who are unable to come to worship due to ill health or mobility problems, remembering Jean, Vanessa, Brenda and Christine.

We remember those living permanently in residential homes, especially Vera and Ian.

ALSO PRAY FOR The needs of the Circuit, the Circuit Staff, Circuit Stewards
and individual churches in the Circuit;


A wonderful service of thanksgiving for the life of Barbara Berry was held on Wednesday 28th February. Many of you will have been present at that service, but several people were not well on that day and were very sad that they were unable to attend.

Reverend Debbie, in her usual very caring manner, led the service and two of Barbara’s sons, David and Matthew, read bible readings from Proverbs and Philippians. Loving tributes were paid by two of Barbara’s grandsons, Philip and James, and the eulogy was delivered by her eldest son, Chris.

He spoke of Barbara’s dedication to her family and all the special memories held by the family. He also detailed Barbara’s life from the time she was born in 1938 to the present day.

Sadly, Barbara missed celebrating her eightieth birthday by just a few weeks and Laurie and Barbara would have celebrated sixty years of married life this coming June. Reverend Debbie referred to the many, many roles fulfilled by Barbara in the life of Sutton Methodist Church, and in the Circuit, over the years.

She was always very generous with her time and energy and she was particularly devoted to the Sutton Methodist Playgroup. We shall all miss Barbara very much.


Group meetings for April and May are:

Ings Library Wednesday 12th April and Wednesday 12th Oct 10 am to 12 noon, and Central Library Thursday 8th and Thursday 13th Oct 10 am to 12 noon.

Also at Bransholme Methodist Church every Tuesday during the Coffee Morning/Table Top Sale, 9.30 to 11.30am.

We can make things to order, and do straightforward alterations.


The stone on the outside of the building shows that our chapel was built in 1859. So, it was thought that our latest anniversary, celebrated on Sunday 11th February, was our 159th Anniversary.

Apparently not! The chapel was not opened until the following year, 1860, so we have just celebrated our 158th Anniversary.

Not to worry, a really good time was had by all. It was lovely to welcome back Keith, Joanne and family and there were more than eighty people attending worship that morning.

After the service we all enjoyed fellowship together sharing a faith lunch. Special thanks to those who prepared the Potterill Room and spent time washing up and clearing away.


This group meets on the second and fourth Wednesdays each month, at 7.45pm in the Potterill Hall. There is a programme of invited speakers, entertainment and members activity evenings.

Any ladies who would like to come and meet this group will be very welcome, and very welcome to join the group.


More helpers are needed at our very popular Messy Church and Children’s Craft activities run during school term times, on two Thursday afternoons per month, 4pm to 6pm.

Anyone able to come and have some fun whilst helping at these events would be very welcome.

No experience needed, just a willingness to help children and their families enjoy these fun sessions. Having more helpers would also mean more children could be welcomed into the sessions.

Any questions or queries please contact Angie on the Messy Church Contact Form

If you have any ideas of things that people may want to be a part of within the church, secular or religious, one-off, a course or club type, please speak to your church stewards, Jim, Bill Linda or Andrew. A few ideas have been suggested, but more would be welcome.


On Saturday 17 February the cast of this year’s pantomime gathered together around 1 o’clock in the afternoon to get dressed up, made up and ready for the first performance of Peter Pan.

By 2 o’clock the Hall was filled with an audience who were eagerly anticipating the forthcoming entertainment. They were not disappointed. All ages had come together for this production and all the rehearsing had paid off.

Most of the cast, and some front of house and back stage crew, stayed on the premises until the next performance at 7 o’clock, enjoying a ‘Special Delivery!’ of pizzas together just after 5 o’clock.

Again, the Hall was almost full at 7 o’clock and everyone delved deep into their reserves of energy and concentration and pulled off a second great performance.

The two performances together raised £814 for church funds and the raffle made a further £124 for the ‘Send a Child to School’ charity.

A really big ‘thank you’ goes to Robin and Helen for all the work that went into the pantomime, from the provision of a script, music, costumes, props and scenery to the organising of the sound and lighting through their friend Peter, and the setting up of the Hall, and ordering the pizzas!


Fairtrade Fortnight is currently running from 26 February to 11 March. The purpose of the fortnight is to remind us of the shocking fact that millions of farmers and workers who produce the food we love still don’t earn enough to feed their own families. It’s time for this injustice to end.

Fairtrade Fortnight puts a spotlight on trade. When trade is fair it has the potential to improve the lives of the people who grow our food.

When we reach for our favourite food and drink each day without thinking where it comes from, we may be feeding exploitation. We can become part of the problem.

When you choose Fairtrade, you are helping to ensure that the person who grew the banana you are eating, or the coffee beans used to make your drink, was paid fairly for their work.

Did you know that we are, in theory, a Fairtrade Church? We signed up to become a Fairtrade Church several years ago. Have we forgotten what this entails? Checking the details online of how to become a Fairtrade Church we find:

  1. Use Fairtrade tea and coffee after services and for all meetings for which you have responsibility.
  2. Move forward on using other Fairtrade products (such as sugar, biscuits and fruit).
  3. Promote Fairtrade during Fairtrade Fortnight and during the year through events, worship and other activities whenever possible.



will be open every Sunday I am in church, during coffee time after the Service.

Books can be borrowed, just put your name, book title and date in the notebook, and put the date in when you return the book(s).

Also available for sale are books, Greetings Cards, occasionally produce when available, and sometimes other goods.

Have a look when you are getting your drink and cake. All money raised from these sales is for Sutton Church funds.


Many thanks for those who have already made Twiddle Muffs and passed them on to me.

It would be good to have more people to knit the basic Twiddle Muffs for dementia patients as they continue to be wanted. I am happy to stitch up and apply the twiddly bits if knitters prefer.

Those I have already taken to the hospital were very well received. They are given to every patient with dementia that visit HRI clinics, wards etc.

To make one:

  1. cast on 40 stitches in chunky wool or 2 strands of double knitting wool on 6.5 mm needles.
  2. Work in stocking stich to 11 inches.
  3. Change to double knitting wool of any colour and texture, stitch, stitch patterns, or use ribbon or lace or any type of knittable things you want to, with whatever variety you can.
  4. Continue knitting to 23 inches.
  5. Cast off.
  6. At this point they can be passed on to me to finish.
  7. To finish yourself, with right side facing stitch long sides together.
  8. Turn right side out and fold first 11 ins inside and sew ends together.
  9. Securely stitch things agitated fingers can twiddle, about 6 on outside and 4 on the inside.
  10. Twiddle bits can be anything you like, buttons, beads, lace, zips, even a little pocket on the outside to pop a hanky into.


On taking the latest collection of knitting for the babies, I was asked if people could knit “bonding squares”.

These are pairs of small squares, one worn inside the mothers clothing, the other kept with the baby, for a week at a time. They are then exchanged, mum to baby and baby to mum. The squares absorb the essence of each wearer and help mum’s and baby’s bonding process.

The can be knitted like the blankets, DK yard on size 8 (4mm) needles. Cast on 35 stitches, work until a square is formed. Or in the same way as the baby blanket, starting with one stitch. They can be made in any colour.

Please contact Linda Whitton for more details.


Please contact Linda for the March and April dates at Ings and Central Library.

We are also at Bransholme Methodist Church every Tuesday during the Coffee Morning/Table Top Sale, 9.30 to 11.30am.

Do you have building maintenance, joinery, brickwork, electrical, plumbing jobs that need fixing but can’t find a relevant professional to look at them? There are 2 men who ran the Goodwin Centre Handy Van service, which recently has been stopped.

So, the men set up a business called “Wood ‘n Spoon” Building Services, (Mr Wood and Mr Spooner). Pleasant men, reasonable charges, no job too small. Free quotes.

You may have seen a young man with his little daughter at Sunday morning services, sat with Pete Gay.

He has given some members his business card and would be happy for you all to know that, should you need the services of an accountant, he could be your man.

He is Christopher Gay, you can find his contact details on linkedin


Our dear friend, Barrie Renwick, was a young man aged 26 forty years ago. He was very active in MAYC (Methodist Association of Youth Clubs) and in the spring of 1978 he wrote two reports about special MAYC activities for our newsletters of March 1978 and April 1978.

March 1978


MAYC’s 1978 theme ‘Living Patterns’ was used. At the Friday’s Family Evening a game, role play, discussion and an epilogue brought the theme to life.

On Saturday afternoon the MAYC National President, Jean Milburn (Bradford) and Miss MAYC, Jean Castle (Newark), joined us as 35 people besieged the Hull Bowl.

At the evening event we welcomed MAYC District President, Don Lusby (Brough), and District Personality Girl, Louise (K.W.), and the event started with an excellent four-course meal kindly prepared by the ladies of the Social Committee.

Don then spoke about the theme and Jean about her experiences as President. Glynis was selected as our new Personality Girl and by the time you read this she will have taken part in the District Contest at Goole.

The ‘Generation Game’, thought out and performed by Sutton people, with contestants from the clubs present, formed an extremely enjoyable part of the evening, which ended with a disco.

Both Sunday services were led by Jean, with help from our other guests. ‘Happy Families’ was the morning theme but we reverted back to ‘Living patterns’ in the evening, when some of our own members took part.

Different life styles were shown, ending with that of Jesus, the one we need to follow. The weekend concluded with Jean leading discussion about MAYC’s ‘Living Patterns’ poster.

Finally, sincere thanks go to all who made the weekend a great success.

Barrie Renwick

MAYC DISTRICT CONGRESS at Goole – 4/5th March

After the Saturday lunch, our activities were one of a visit to Epworth Rectory, a ramble, a trip on a barge, a visit to a bird sanctuary, entertaining old people, painting a chapel vestry.

Tea was followed by a disco, during which Edwin Smith of Scarborough was inducted as District President and Sally Benn of York was selected as District Personality Girl. We spent the night in people’s homes where we all received excellent hospitality.

Sunday morning’s theme was ‘Living Today’ – to really live we must follow Jesus and accept Him as saviour and friend. A three-course lunch concluded a weekend of great value to Goole’s young people.

Barrie Renwick

Sutton Flower Rota:

4 March J Lloydr
11 March P Tinkler
18 March vacancy
25 March J Tyler
1 April Easter/td>
8 April L Thomas
15 April P Dixon
22 April vacancy
29 April vS Holder

Cakes as per rota.

Apr 1st Siddles, Phil
Apr 8th Marge, Sue Ann
April 15th Brenda, Ruth, Margaret
22nd April Elaine, Andrew
Apr 29th Andrea, Doreen, Sue

Please set out the chairs and cups etc. before church and if you are unable to do the date allocated please arrange a swap.