At West End Church we are part of the worldwide Methodist Church. Methodists are Christians and believe that God loves us so much that he sent his son, Jesus, to live with us, to bring us fullness of life and to repair our relationship with God. We celebrate Jesus’ birth at Christmas and during his life Jesus taught us about God and His kingdom. When Jesus was killed he was buried but rose from the dead three days later. We celebrate the resurrection of Jesus at Easter because it gives us hope that there is life beyond death, without which our lives on earth would have less meaning. When we do things wrong we often feel guilty and that can affect us and how we live our lives. God promises to forgive us which removes the guilt we feel and allows us to enjoy life in a good relationship with Him. God’s Holy Spirit makes God real in our daily lives, helping us do God’s will and giving us love, joy and peace.
Being a Christian isn’t just about our relationship with God – Jesus calls us into a community. Here we learn to love and forgive each other and to work together for God. More information about Christianity. https://christianity.org.uk/
‘But Methodists are the ones who don’t drink or gamble aren’t they?’ Methodists have always had a heart for the poor and those in need in our society and many problems are caused by excessive alcohol consumption or being addicted to gambling. Early Methodists recognised this and encouraged people to abstain from such ‘evils’ for their own benefit and those around them. These days most Methodists would happily enjoy a glass of wine or a beer and you might even be asked to buy a raffle ticket at a coffee morning on Methodist premises but, like most things, moderation is encouraged.
Methodist worship tends to be simpler, with fewer rituals and symbolism than some other churches. We have a reputation for singing and certainly music forms a vital part of our worship. We tend to use a modern hymn book compiled by the Methodist Church, during worship on Sundays. At VisioN, our informal worship meetings, we may sing some more recent songs as well as familiar ones which have been well loved for years.
In Hexham the Churches have a strong group called Churches Together in Hexham, who work together to further God’s kingdom. There are some joint ventures such as the Hexham Holiday Club which attracts many children and parents during the school summer holidays and introduces them to the Christian faith. We usually have a group of children meeting in our building and some of our members help out during this week.
We communicate with God by prayer. This could be to thank God for His creation and what He has done for us; it could be to tell God how great we think He is; it could be to ask God for help for us or for someone else; or it could be to ask for forgiveness for something we’ve done that was wrong. Prayer is a very important part of our lives as Christians and at West End we have a monthly prayer breakfast on the first Sunday of the month. All our services will have some time of prayer in them.
If you want to reach out to God and don’t know where to start here is a prayer (from Christianity.org.uk) that you could say:
“God, if you are there, help me. I am reaching out to you because I don’t know what else to do. Thank you that you hear me and care about all of my needs. Please be with me right now and let me know your presence, your comforting arm around me. Please show me what I should do next. Thank you that you love me, whether or not I love or even know you. Please guide my feet, and be with me as I try to work out what to do. Amen.”