People from across the York Methodist Circuit came together at Clifton Methodist Church yesterday (Sunday, 4th September) to welcome two new ministers to the circuit in a service led by the Rev Stephen Burgess, Chair of the York & Hull District.
The Rev John Schofield comes as a probationer presbyter to take on pastoral oversight of Trinity Methodist Church as well as Clifton Methodist Church and Deacon Corinne Brown, also a probationer, will work at Lidgett Methodist Church, in Shipton where new mission opportunities are being explored, and with the Rev Elizabeth Cushion in the northern part of the circuit.
John was born in Manchester but grew up in Lytham St Annes. He was a student for six years at Reading University. He has conducted research and development for a laundry washing products company and also designed household cleaners. Six years ago John and his wife, Ruth, and their son, Andrew (now 20) and daughter Kathryn (19), moved to Knaresborough. Ruth is a ward clerk at a hospital and for the past three years John was working as a PhD chemist for Castrol, the lubricants and fuels people, while at the same time while also doing his theological studies at Birmingham by distance learning.
Corinne came to faith as a teenager in Preston and subsequently moved to Nottingham as a student and later working as a modern languages teacher. She and her husband, Adrian, and their three children moved to Haxby in 2001 where she began to explore a call to the diaconal ministry.
The service included a formal welcome for John and Corinne, by Mr Burgess, circuit superintendent Leslie Newton, senior circuit steward Tim Duffy and representatives from other churches.
Later there was the formal commissioning of a team eight circuit stewards and then there were prayers for Paul Carter, a member of Central Methodist Church and a circuit local preacher, as he prepares to start pre-ordination training at the Queen's Foundation, Birmingham.
The service included Holy Communion and the congregation was invited to stay on for refreshments.
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With thanks to Bob Lawrence for text and photos.