Methodist Women in Britain (MWiB) Weekend

 

On 17th April, Kathleen Skinner, Rachel Collins, Imogen Clarke, Pat Carter (from Greenfield Methodist) and I joined 200 ladies from all over Great Britain at the Methodist Women in Britain residential weekend held in Swanwick, Derbyshire.

 

We enjoyed a variety of talks, workshops, worship and social activities, including circle dancing and a pre-breakfast prayer walk. The rest of the time seemed to be spent eating – the Swanwick Christian Conference Centre is big on meals with puddings and tea-breaks with cake, which gave us ample opportunity to chat and make new friends.

The keynote address, Sunday communion (and quiz night), was led by Revd Jackie Bellfield, minister (and born comedienne!) of the ‘New Song Network’ church in Warrington – the newest Methodist church in the country, with its own unique approach to ‘doing church’.

 

Jackie introduced the weekend’s theme of ‘Being one, being whole, being God’s’ by inviting us to consider how often we let ourselves be defined by what we do, e.g. nurse, Sunday school teacher, Grandma, rather than what or who we are. She asked the questions: Who are we? Who can we be in Christ? And who does Christ want us to be? We studied familiar Bible stories such as that of Jesus healing the blind Bartimaeus, Martha and Mary, and the Samaritan woman at the well, and explored how these characters were defined and subsequently redefined after they met Jesus. This led us to think further about ‘if the world is going to define us as Christian women, how are we going to live it?’ We should love the Lord our God with all our hearts, soul, mind and strength. We are human ‘beings’ not human ‘doings’. Firstly we should ‘be in Christ’ and from that will come our doing. Jesus conquered death and that is how we make it through life.

 

By the end of the weekend we had been stimulated by much food for thought, much food and much conversation. If you would like to attend next year booking normally starts on 1st November and the dates are 15th – 17th April 2016. Speak to any one of us to find out more.

Rosie Banham

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