Friday, November 04, 2005

Cheadle Hulme Methodist Church

Location:

Station Road, Cheadle Hulme, about 200m Bramhall side of the station.

When visited:

29th May 2005, 10am

Type of Service

morning service, not communion.

First Impressions:

The building is essentially a 100ยบ degree sector of a circle, with tiered seating. Colourful banners at the front, ones round the back giving titles of Jesus with illustration. Looks pretty nice actually.

The service started at 10am with about 90 people and a very kid-friendly service complete with puppet dramatisation of the reading. At 10:30, it split into a "more traditional service", a "cafe church" and childrens' groups. Lots of older folk then arrived, so there were over 150 in the main service. Good mix of ages, including teens and young adults.

Welcome:

None. I was given a hymn book and notice sheet as I came in. Otherwise, no-one greeted me either beforehand or afterwards, though it seemed very friendly otherwise.

Music:

From 10-10:30, a band with drums, singers, etc. Great to sing some lively songs passionately and loudly. They had lots of potential, but sometimes needed to know what they were doing in advance... Most of the songs in the "main" service used the organ. Sadly, I noticed quite a few older men in the congregation refusing to sing the one modern song the band did during the main service, even though it was pretty sound and done fairly quietly. The teens and young adults seemed to sing the older hymns though.

Sermon:

Following a lectionary, while recognising it wasn't ideal. The sermon was on the end of Matthew 7. It was clearly from the passage and was definitely ok, but didn't even mention judgement, which is a big theme in the passage. It did, however, have challenges as to how our daily lives should be affected, which is always good. Piles of Good News Bibles were at the end of the benches.

Overall:

It feels as if there's quite a bit of (one-sided?) tension between some of the older members and some of the younger members, and it was unsettling that no-one greeted me really. There's a lot of good stuff going on here, but it seems quite a few difficulties as well. I'd probably fit in at least as much as I do anywhere else, but it might take a while.

Website:

www.chmc.org.uk

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