It was a slightly drizzly morning but seven of us set off from the beautiful Italianate church at Hoarwithy on a circular 6 mile route on both sides of the Wye. The terrain was varied and fairly level and the chatter more than compensated for the weather and a few stiles to surmount. Lunch was enjoyed in the shelter of the church cloister at the end of the walk. Many thanks to Mike C for leading us.
This month at Wednesday Club we held a very successful Coffee Morning with Bring & Buy in support of St. Michael’s Hospice. We were also treated to a culinary feast (samples from their wide range of prepared foods) by Wiltshire Farm Foods. And finally we did not go to the races, but were enchanted by a demonstration of retired greyhound dogs.
As the winter was approaching and the nights drew in on 2017, the Price family invited the HBC youth band to light up their lovely country home with a BBQ, bonfire and some acoustic worship.
We played a few of our favourite songs in the cold Autumn air, which was really chilly but a great adventure, and then spent the rest of the evening chatting and laughing around the bonfire.
One of our friends from the youth group said:
“I really enjoyed having the opportunity to spend time with other young people who love and want to know Jesus. The bonfire gave a social aspect to the evening and the outdoor worship was fun and intimate. It was great to experience something different.”
For about 6 months now I have been considering the idea of shaving my hair for charity, I have always been interested in fundraising, and charity work is one of my career aspirations.
Recently one of my best friends was diagnosed with a rare type of cancer (Hodgkin Lymphoma), and ever since she has been my inspiration to help beat cancer sooner through the Race for Life and other charity events.
I have studied cancer as part of my Health and Social Care A Level and I am very interested in the impact of cancer on friends and families of sufferers. I know that cancer can affect almost everybody; whether it’s affecting a relative or close friend, it is ruining lives of people we know and love.
As you can see, I am very passionate about raising as much money as possible, and trying to impact on people’s lives by fundraising and raising awareness. I would really like to bless people around me by doing something challenging to me.
That is why on the 17th July my hair was shaved off to raise money and awareness for sufferers of cancer! All the money has gone to Cancer Research and my hair is being donated to the Little Princess Trust. I have raised more than £1,000 so far which is already changing lives, and I would love to raise even more.
The Little Princess Trust: littleprincesses.org.uk
Make a donation to Cancer Research UK at Salome’s Just Giving fundraising page here
TWO Hereford residents were honoured by the Queen on Tuesday, 10th May 2016 by receiving an invitation to a Buckingham Palace garden party, for their services to local revellers and partygoers.
Brian and Mair Granthier, of Hill Farm, Dinedor, were prompted 13 years ago to create a safe and peaceful haven for late-night clubbers in Commercial Road.
Members of Hereford Baptist Church, they were given permission to open the front of the church on Saturday nights and early Sunday mornings as a place for clubbers to have a rest, tell their story to people who would listen without judging, or just have a coffee and use the toilet. They have been leading a team who have been doing this ever since.
Brian Granthier explained what prompted them to start Night Shift. He said: “In a word, it was rubbish! It was the fact that the forecourt on Sunday morning was in a terrible state. People who came into town at night said that we were the black spot on the road, so we decided we needed the light of Jesus to shine out on Saturday night.
“We started on the second Saturday of November 2002. We sat in the foyer with a meal of lasagne and played board games. We didn’t dare go out because a police friend had told us to keep ourselves locked in because, he said, ‘It’s a dangerous mob out there’.
“However over the years we have found a friendly bunch and have made friends with club staff and bouncers. The bouncers come into Night Shift and are amazed to see people they have thrown out for being drunk and disorderly drinking tea and chatting to us.
“Someone, seeing us in our hi-vis tabards, said: ‘Gosh this must be a rough city, even the church has got bouncers!’”
The team frequently hear people say they are grateful that there are people around who can help when it’s needed.
Mair Granthier said: “Being invited to the Palace garden party is such an honour for Night Shift and for all the people who have given up their Saturday nights over the years – 20 to 30 people in total volunteering over the years, sometimes from other churches as well.
“Night Shift has had quite an impact. We now work alongside Street Pastors, and we were put on the radio link and recognised as part of the night-time economy. There have been no real scary moments, and we have never felt threatened. People who come in look out for each other, and if someone says or does something inappropriate the others say ‘We don’t do things like that here’.”
There have been stories of lives changed and encouragements remembered. Several people have come back and told the team “I don’t know if you realise how much you helped me”. One couple met through Night Shift and subsequently got married, and the speech at the wedding mentioned how Night Shift had changed their lives.
Mair and Brian were interviewed on Sunday, 15th May 2016, by Michael Collie during BBC Hereford & Worcester’s Sunday Breakfast Show.
We are grateful for the BBC’s kind permission to include a recording of this interview here:
During the 2013 Autumn half term some 30 – 40 children aged 5 to 11 filled the building of Hereford Baptist Church with healthy fun, laughter… and noise!
The L-Factor took place on three afternoons with plenty of activities on offer. The close resemblance to a certain national competition of nearly the same name was “purely incidental”. There were the three judges to mark the various entries to the competition, plus ‘Gary Barlow’ making a welcome guest appearance on the panel. Indeed, there was much talent on offer – and that not only by the children!
The theme of the Holiday Club was three-fold
- LIVE life to the max
- LAUGH and enjoy life
- LOVE others as God loves you
All craft and physical activities were geared to these three aspects of the theme. Every day there was a story time featuring the theme of the day, such as ‘The Prodigal Son’, ‘The Lost Sheep’ and ‘The friends who lowered the sick man through the roof’. The vigour with which the theme song “WHOA, WHOA” was sung must have been felt all along Commercial Road.
During the Morning Service of the following Sunday the children had the opportunity to present to the congregation, greatly swelled by parents and families, some of their activities. And, of course, every child was rewarded with a prize.
Richly deserved thanks were expressed to all who had worked extremely hard for a long time to make this Holiday Club possible.
Any plans for next year?
October 2015 marked a very important milestone for Hereford Baptist Church’s Wednesday Club for the over 50s, when members celebrated its 40th anniversary. It was October 1, 1975 that the late Mr Fred Porter welcomed some 50 members of the church’s congregation and their friends to its first meeting.
The club’s objective – to provide Christian fellowship and friendship – has always been held in high regard through all these years.
To mark the occasion, the Wednesday Club featured in the morning service on Sunday 4th October. The meeting on Wednesday 7th October was a 40th anniversary celebration party with a variety of activities recalling some of the past 40 years and a buffet lunch for members and invited guests.
The Wednesday Club meets weekly – except during August – in the large hall of the Baptist Church from 10.15am to 12noon. A time of lively chatter over a cuppa and a biscuit is followed by a few items of business, including family news, birthdays and general announcements, after which the meeting is handed over to the guest speaker of the day. Topics include presentations by charitable organizations, Herefordshire City Council departments, travelogues and many other topics, all being of interest and entertaining. Twice a year the club holds a coffee morning with bring and buy in support of a charity chosen by the members. Members also contribute weekly to a special charities fund by donating loose change. This is donated to charities represented by guest speakers, or through an annual gift.
Chairman Carol Newman speaks for all members: “I have been a member at the Wednesday Club for more than 15 years now. Members are more than friends, they are like family supporting each other in many ways, not least praying for one another as well as for others.
“My husband and I moved away to Worcester ten years ago, but come rain or shine, have been able to continue coming to Hereford each Wednesday to share fellowship together.”
Rev Jason Borlase, minister at Hereford Baptist Church, comments: “To mark such an occasion as 40 years highlights just how much people value community and friendship as well as the support and encouragement in times of difficulty and celebration. This is part of the church’s mission as it seeks to live out its Christian vision into the community.”
Pentecost Sunday marked a special occasion in the history of Hereford Baptist Church when two members of the Young People’s group went through the act of Baptism in the River Wye.
Senior Minister Antony Wareham and Youth Pastor Jason Borlase conducted the church’s first baptism in the river near the Victoria Bridge on the special request of Ben Menzies and Joseph Meiklejohn. A large group from the church lined the bridge to witness this unique event.