Wilmslow church broadcasts good news
Regular worshippers at a Wilmslow church will share their morning service with one and a half million other people around the country on a Sunday this month (February) when their worship is broadcast live on the radio.
Wilmslow United Reformed Church on Chapel Lane has a regular congregation of around 150. It has been chosen for the Radio 4 Sunday worship slot on February 19 partly because this is a very special year for the whole of the United Reformed Church, which has over 90,000 members in England, Scotland and Wales.
It is 40 years since Congregational and Presbyterian churches in England and Wales united to form the new denomination. It is also 350 years since a parting of the ways in church life which leaves its mark today. In 1662, when Anglican forms of worship including the Book of Common Prayer were re-established, some clergy felt unable to conform. Around 2000 independent-minded ministers left the parish churches and sowed the seeds from which many of the oldest Baptist, Congregational and Presbyterian churches were born.
Hymn singing and music are very important in the United Reformed Church and director of music Cliff Crewe is already rehearsing the congregation and church choir to sound their best on February 19.
Another reason why the Wilmslow congregation is being asked to showcase their tradition in this special year is that their minister, the Revd Dr Kirsty Thorpe, currently holds a national leadership role as Moderator of General Assembly.
She says: ‘It is a great honour for our congregation to be asked to broadcast worship in this way. In my sermon I will reflect on the church history which caused our forebears to part company with the Church of England and the positive ways in which different churches are working together now to serve their community.’
Issued Wednesday February 8th 2011
For more information please contact Kirsty Thorpe 415281 or Cliff Crewe on 527204