CH Dodd and the Great British (URC) Bake Off

DSC04960There is a theme emerging in the early days of this Moderator’s travels. We like to mark celebrations with a cake! The 225th anniversary of Salisbury Park, Wrexham was a weekend of nostalgia, celebration, renewing friendships and new beginnings. A 50 strong community choir began the proceedings with the choir director insisting that we all have a voice, we simply have to learn to use it. A sensible piece of advice for any church community. We all have a story of faith to tell, we have simply got out of the habit of telling it or we get put off by criticism or disinterest. I don’t DSC04966know how many wrong notes had been sung before they got to the level of excellence they now enjoyed but they were a mixed ability choir, that turned no one away, and proud of it.

Anniversaries are an opportunity to welcome back former members and minsters who have moved away and to enjoy shared memories. It was good to see people from across North Wales come together for a lively conversation about where they found hope in their churches. None of the congregations represented were large but they all have big hearts and live generous lives. Food banks, Street Pastors and support for the homeless were shared activities. Salisbury Park shares with other churches in the town to ‘Feed the roofless’. They prepare food and set up a stall in a car park and feed all who turn up whatever the weather and despite the opposition of local retailers. Most of those they feed are the victims of alcohol, drug or gambling addictions. It is in reaching out to others that the gospel is proclaimed.

DSC04970And in case you are wondering this is the church where CH Dodd, one of the great New Testament scholars of the 20th century, first become a church member. The great man once commented that the purpose of the parables was to tease the mind into active thought. There is plenty happening in Wrexham and in the URC across North Wales to sir our thoughts and to give thanks for parables lived out by God’s faithful people.

David Grosch-Miller

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