The London District Spring Representative Synod met at Methodist Central Hall, Westminster, on Saturday 12th April 2014, to focus on the theme ‘Into the City’. The three District Chairs have spent Lent engaging with people across London on the theme of food poverty, including supporting the End Hunger Fast campaign and visiting local projects. They shared with Synod their experiences and reflections on visiting food banks and meeting with MPs. Worship related the Holy week story to the issues of food poverty. Synod members shared bread and discussed work going on in their own churches and communities.
In the afternoon the Synod heard stories of work being done throughout the district and conducted its formal business. The chairs highlighted the annual District Report, covering dozens of groups, projects and events which have been active across London in the past year. This included the launch of a new DVD and study pack ‘The Extra Mile’ which explores the Wesleyan tradition of doing good for others. This resource, created by Applecart for the district Social Responsibility Commission, can be downloaded for free from the London District website. The Synod also affirmed the District Goals for a further three years.
The Synod endorsed the recommendation by the Chairs Nomination Committee that the Rev Nigel Cowgill be nominated as a Chair of the District from 2015 when Rev Dr Stuart Jordan steps down. Permission was given for the Battersea and Wandle Valley Circuits to combine, and for worship to cease at Oakwood Church in the Enfield Circuit, giving thanks for the Church’s witness and service.
The District gave thanks and prayed for Deacon Guy Austin-Bride, Deacon Marilyn Slowe, Rev Suva Catford and Rev Imran Malik who have been recommended to be received into Full Connexion at the Conference in Birmingham; for Kido Baek, Jacob Donkoh, Charity Nzegwu, Yangsun Yi and Mmasape Zihle who have been accepted for training for the ministry; and the Revs David Gamble, Rob Jones and Julie Underwood who are seeking permission to sit down this year. The Synod also approved the nomination of Mr Graham Russell as District Council Secretary and Mrs Norma Downer-Powell as a Circuit Rep to the Council, as of September. The Synod expressed their thanks and appreciation to Daniella Fetuga-Joensuu for her ministry in both the District and the Regional Network, having moved on from her post. Additional thanks were expressed to the District Officers stepping down this summer, Martin Harker (District Council Secretary) and Hugh Brooman (District Property Secretary). The Synod also gave thanks for Ministers and Local Preachers who have died in the last year and for those moving on from the District in the summer.