A new chapter has started in the life of Tynedale Methodist Circuit, following the arrival of two new Ministers and the formal appointment of a new Superintendent Minister.
Rev Fiona Calverey and Rev Michael Holland have arrived from South Africa and Sunderland respectively. They were formally welcomed at a special service at Hexham Trinity Methodist Church on Sunday 4th September.
Rev Fiona is the new Lead Minister for Methodist churches in Prudhoe, Stocksfield and Wylam, while Rev Michael is the Lead Minister for churches in the Allen Valley and Haltwhistle.
The day also saw Rev Jenny Porterpryde officially installed as the Circuit's Superintendent Minister, having carried out the role on an interim basis since May. Rev Jenny has moved from Prudhoe, Stocksfield and Wylam, where she served for about a decade. She is now Lead Minister at Hexham Trinity, as well as supporting Rev Gareth Sherwood at Hexham West End and Acomb.
The new Ministers were greeted by a large turnout of people from across the Circuit, while the service was also live-streamed online for those who were unable to attend.
Chair of the Newcastle-upon-Tyne Methodist District, Rev Dr Stephen Lindridge, led the service alongside Ministers and officials from the Tynedale Circuit, while ecumenical friends from other churches in the area attended.
Senior Circuit Steward Millie Robinson said the new Ministers had the friendship, support and prayers of everyone in the Circuit, and drew inspiration from the words of Jeremiah in the Old Testament, to declare them as a gift and a real blessing.
"On behalf of our Circuit, we would like to extend a very warm welcome to Michael and Fiona, and to Jenny in her new role," she added.
Rev Fiona praised God's sense of humour as she completed her journey from Newcastle in KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa, to a community within the Newcastle-upon-Tyne Methodist Circuit.
She added: "The welcome and the love I have received from everyone has been amazing and I feel really blessed. I am embracing you all as we welcome a new dispensation of spiritual growth in our Circuit, moving into the future."
Rev Michael Holland, who has previously worked in Cumbria, as well as overseas in Nepal and Togo, said: "Thank you for your warm welcome. It is lovely to be here and I'm looking forward to sharing the good news of Jesus Christ with the people that we share life with here."