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Golden Jubilee

The Golden Jubilee of the Church in 1987 was celebrated in style under the theme ‘Let us give Thanks’, led by our then Minister the Rev Robert Teasdale.

The Anniversary booklet included some accounts reproduced elsewhere in this website; other pages are reproduced below (there were no images in the booklet.)

There is also a very well written summary of the event in the Epsom & Ewell Herald June 25th 1987, reproduced here.


GREETINGS FROM THE VICE—PRESIDENT OF THE METHODIST CONFERENCE — MRS. ANNE KNIGHTON

Congratulations to the Methodist Church at Stoneleigh on achieving your GOLDEN ANNIVERSARY. This will be a year of celebration and I am sure at the end of it you will be strengthened, and very weary!

When we lived in Stoneleigh I used to stand on the station and read on the wall opposite a large, old, faded advertisement for houses for sale in the area. The price quoted was very low and I was amazed at
the difference in house prices then and now. How times have changed in the area. Between the wars development along the Southern Railway line was fast and furious. Communities gathered around the stations as more and more people chose to live in the leafy suburbs of Surrey, travelling up and down to their work. In response to this growth Stoneleigh Methodist Church was built in the heart of the area.

Over the years this worshipping and caring group of Christian people, in response to their love of God have shown love to their neighbours — young couples have been married here, children have been brought for baptism and teaching, families have been encouraged and nurtured, ageing people have been cared for, and constantly Stoneleigh Methodist Church has witnessed to the Gospel. There
will be much sharing of memories this year, and you will look back with affection, joy, and gratitude for all those who have gone before.

But what now?

We cannot rest on the past but are pilgrim people constantly on the move, always challenged by the present situation. Our mission here continues to be one of love, care and service. With confidence and
hope I look forward to hearing of all that will happen at Stoneleigh.

I join you in thanking God for all that is past and trust Him for all that is to come.

ANNE KNIGHTON.


GREETINGS FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF THE SOUTH WEST LONDON DISTRICT OF THE METHODIST CHURCH
THE REVEREND COLIN G. ROWE
Stoneleigh has good cause to sound the trumpet — that being the meaning of JUBILEE in the Old Testament. Like God’s ancient people there are stories to tell of God’s evident goodness and mercy
which have followed you to this point. The setting of the Church in the heart of a residential community, with none of the customary shops, schools, pubs etc., next door has served to emphasise the people centred nature of the work. Your story is written in people’s lives. So not only locally do we join with you in gratitude for what God has done amongst you, we also recognise the influence
which has spread much farther afield.

Just as Jubilee for the Israelites was not just a time for celebrating the goodness of God but also of responding to some of the most needy people in the community I am greatly encouraged by your
deep involvement in care within the community which heightens your celebration. Throughout the Church generally there is a growing sensitivity in seeing our mission alongside people in any kind of
need. I therefore trust your Jubilee will serve to underline the significance of that contribution.

When I worked down town in Birmingham I occasionally heard people say, “He’s golden”! It was a happy phrase. It spoke of quality, of someone through and through who was good. I hope that as
you celebrate God’s work amongst you, respond again to the needs of the community, you will also look at the quality of the Christian life. We are called to be ‘golden’, to be “all good, even as our heavenly Father is good”. It is a demanding challenge, but I trust the year will include this dimension too.

So, I gladly offer you the warmest greetings in the name of the District. We joy with you in the way you have come and pray God’s blessing on you as you look forward.

COLIN ROWE.


GREETINGS FROM THE SUPERINTENDENT MINISTER OF THE WIMBLEDON CIRCUIT OF THE METHODIST CHURCH — THE REVEREND PHILIP S. MOORE B.A. B.D.
I am very happy indeed to send greetings to all our friends at Stoneleigh on behalf of myself and the Circuit, on the occasion of your Golden Jubilee. It is another great milestone in the life of your
Church.

Over the years different models have been used in thinking about the Church. The New Testament is rich in such symbolic language. There the Church is looked upon as the Body of Christ, the Bride of Christ, the New Israel of God. Of recent years the phrase ‘The People of God’ has come to the fore. One can’t help thinking again about that rich imagery as St. Peter uses in his first letter. Like all other images we must learn to live up to it. We need to become what we already are in Christ.

As you begin to move into the next fifty years may you see yourselves as God’s People, called by God and enabled by Him, spreading His Good News, serving Him in the Church and in the world and living out His life in the neighbourhood.

PHILIP MOORE.


A SPECIAL INVITATION FROM OUR MINISTER — THE REVEREND ROBERT TEASDALE
To a pre-Jubilee weekend of joyful thanksgiving to remember our forebears who met in prayerful fellowship in their homes in Stoneleigh in 1936 to start our church.

ON SATURDAY 13th DECEMBER, 1986 AT 7.30 pm
A concert of Christmas Carols for the family presented by our friends of The Ewell Choral Society
ON SUNDAY 14th DECEMBER 1986 AT6.30 pm.
A service of thanksgiving and praise in the style of 1936 to be held in the Church Hall, conducted by our Superintendant Minister, The Reverend Philip S. Moore BA, BD and followed by a gathering in Family Fellowship in the Link Room.
— ALL ARE WELCOME —


PROGRAMME OF SPECIAL CELEBRATIONS FOR OUR GOLDEN JUBILEE 1937-1987

January Sunday 11th Covenant and Dedication Service
REV. COLIN G. ROWE
Chairman of the London S.W. District
REV. ROBERT TEASDALE

February Saturday 14th Celebrate with the Men’s Club
Guest Speaker — Mr. TONY BRETT—YOUNG.
“WESLEY’S LONDON”

Sunday 15th REV. DONALD G. KNIGHTON (Minister 1970)

March Saturday 14th The Women’s Fellowship Iubilee Service and
Anniversary Party

Sunday 15th REV. CECIL H. SMITH (Minister 1966)
April Saturday 11th Enjoy the Stoneleigh Choral Society with The Wives’ Club

Sunday 12th REV. KENNETH W. RICHARDSON (Minister 1954)

May Saturday 16th Celebrate with The Junior Church and Sutton Salvation Army Songsters’

Sunday 17th REV. E. JOHN ROWLAND (Minister 1979)

June Thursday 4th We are honoured to welcome our friend The Vice
President of the Methodist Conference – MRS ANNE KNIGHTON

Saturday 6th Celebrate with us ‘Our Golden Jubilee’

Whit Sunday 7th ” The Church At Home” with the REV. REGINALD K. WALKER (Minister 1950)

]uly Saturday 11th Church Family Picnic and Fun Day with the Guides and Scouts at Boidier Hurst (Box Hill)

Sunday 12th REV. MICHAEL MEECH (Our Special Friend)

August Saturday 22nd The Cheam Male Voice Gospel Choir in Concert

Sunday 23rd REV. MICHAEL CANNON (Member 1960)

September Saturday 12th Special Jubilee visit and concert — The British Methodist Youth Choir

Saturday 19th/Sunday 20th Overseas Missions weekend with REV. DR PETER BISHOP (Member 1961)

October Saturday 17th Re-union of past members of the Youth Club

Sunday 18th REV. BRIAN WEBB (Member 1954)

November Saturday 14th Looking to the future with the younger generation in (the company of the Circuit Youth Choir

Sunday 15th REV. ADRIAN RUSSELL (Member 1975)

December Saturday 12th A Church Family Party

Sunday 13th REV. ROBERT TEASDALE


‘LET US GIVE THANKS’—FOR THE CHOIR
The choir cherishes the privilege, in partnership with the organist and minister, of regularly leading the hymns and other music of the church’s worship. Now small in numbers and occasionally struggling, it looks back with pride and pleasure to a long and varied period of music-making, starting from the first years of the church under Malcolm MacDonald.

When I arrived in Stoneleigh in 1961 the choir was under the leadership of Don Davey, with Michael Cannon as organist. Prior to the erection of the church building and until the organ was installed in 1960 a piano was used as accompaniment. The repertory was already wide, with a choir membership between 20 and 30. From 1963 to 1966 we were fortunate to have as organist the conductor and composer Donald Cashmore, under whom the choir reached the peak of its activity, with membership about 35. It was a thrill to perform superb anthems and a fine Christmas Cantata ‘ This Child Behold’ under the composer himself.

When Donald moved to Ealing his place was taken by Michael Power (now a Lay Clerk in Gloucester Cathedral Choir), and following him we sang for a short time under Robert Blackman,  who was succeeded by Raymond Fiander. In 1974 Angela Mynett became organist and  choirmistress, and is still giving faithful and inspiring service as organist. Subsequently the two functions became separate again and I became the choirmaster.

In 1976 a great change took place. After a period of experimentation both the organ console and the choir were transferred to their present positions at the front of the church. Many and involved were the discussions and emotions but after ten years one can now appreciate that in this arrangement the choir and congregation are seen and felt to be a united worshipping community.

Anthems in services nowadays are very much the exception rather than the rule and the choir now concentrates on giving the lead in exploring the unfamiliar new material and sharing their rich discoveries in the new`Hymns and Psalms.’ However, before saying farewell to the 1933 Methodist Hymn Book it took great pride and pleasure in recording one set of ten hymns for “Operation Goldhawk’, the project to preserve for the archives the contents of that book as sung in the 1980’s.

The Choir has not only worked at providing music. It has also enjoyed an active social life, including Choir Socials during the winter months shared by families and friends, and outings to places of interest such as National Trust Houses, Castles, etc. and to concerts and theatres. Anyone who enjoys singing and who feels a call to contribute to worthwhile music in worship will be welcome to join us. There are few more rewarding activities, and familiarity with great hymns and devotional music is a possession to be greatly treasured and which cannot be taken away.
David Thomas.


THE GUIDES IN 1986
Guiding in 1986 differs very little from when Olive Civil started the Guides at Stoneleigh Methodist Church in 1938/39. Times have changed, with many outside attractions, but the enthusiasm of the
girls remains the same. We still have two Companies of Guides and these are run on similar lines, with Badge work, hikes, rambles, adventure days and, of course, Camp. Camp is the highlight of Guiding, with girls learning to live and work together in ‘primitive’ surroundings and conditions, including cooking over wood fires! With the increase in transport facilities we can now attend many outside activities and are not restricted to one Camp a year. We still have district events where we compete for various trophies, i.e swimming, arts and crafts, sports days, etc.

The highest award to be attained in Guiding was the Queen’s Guide Badge, which two years ago was replaced by the Baden-Powell Trefoil. Over the years the 2nd Stoneleigh Guides and the 4th Stoneleigh Guides have had many Queen’s Guides, and this tradition is continuing with the Baden-Powell Badge. The Church has kindly allowed us to have a display board at the rear of the church, which shows the names of all girls awarded the Queen’s Guide badge and the years in which they attained it. The twenty-seven names inscribed reflects the devotion and enthusiasm of the leadership of the Companies over the years.

We have been lucky, and still are, to have such superb premises in which to meet — the 2nd Company on Thursday evenings and the 4th Company on Friday evenings, and we thank the Church for their support. Between the two Companies we have over 60 girls, ranging in age from 10-15, and I know I speak for all the Guiders – Valerie Miles and Cathy Gourley from the 2nd, Joanna Gransden, Sarah Dutton, Karen Dutton, and myself, Brenda Petley, from the 4th, when I say that we receive back as much, if not more, than we put into Guiding.

Brenda Petley


LET US GIVE THANKS — FOR THE MEN’S CLUB
Early in the 1960’s a need was expressed for the opportunity for the growing number of men in the church to meet together in an informal way for fellowship not provided by other meetings on the
church premises. As a result, the Men’s Club was inaugurated on 2nd November, 1964, with the aim “To provide a club for men where they can meet for talks, discussions, recreational and cultural activities”.

Some of those who attended the first meeting are still in regular attendance on the second and fourth Mondays of each month from October to May and participate fully and enthusiastically in ensuring that the programme continues to fulfil the aim, including arranging for guest-speakers by personal invitation, acting as chairman for meetings and providing a short epilogue, as rostered.

Such is the success in the fulfilment of the need within the local community that many of the most regular attenders are not Methodists but are glad to be welcomed into the ecumenical atmosphere of the Men’s Club. Attendance maintains a good average in the region of 25-30 and the club continues to live up to its avowed intention of being “a fellowship of friendly fellows”!

Frank Rainey.


LOOKING TO THE FUTURE WITH OUR MINISTER – THE REVEREND ROBERT TEASDALE

Fifty Years Old; Over the Top; Growing Old;Not as adventurous as once; Past It? Today people and things that have been around for a while tend to be written off. Is this where Stoneleigh is, looking back to the good old days, enjoying it but with nothing ahead? Or is Stoneleigh like the cricketer who having made his fifty, settles down to get his century?

Stoneleigh has always been a Church in the process of change. Many have come and gone again in the first fifty years. Today we are still in midst of change with an unchangeable Gospel. The Jesus we
proclaim is still the only one who is able to meet the deep needs of each individual in the world, if they will only let him meet their needs.

What of the next 50 years continuing to serve the community, a place of worship and evangelism? Reaching out with Love, the transforming Love of Jesus, reaching out in friendship, in service and in evangelism. Part of the Christian community in Ewell and Epsom, sharing with the other local churches. Proud of our Methodist heritage, proclaiming the need of a personal faith in Jesus Christ.

Knowing Jesus as Saviour and Lord is the only thing that makes sense both of this life and the future. I believe that with ]esus the best is yet to be. What of the future? Today’s Church must have the vision to pray, to plan, to work that God’s will might be done and His Kingdom might come on earth and in the heart of the individual believer. Come on down and join as in the next part of the great adventure. With Jesus we can do all things. He promised his disciples, “Greater things than these will you see”. Come on down, don’t sit on the fence, get stuck in with us in working his purpose out.

Jesus did just that: “Came on down” into our world to die for our sins, that we might find forgiveness and freedom through faith in him.

Join that great company of the redeemed people of God, militant and triumphant, committed to working his purpose out in the local community through the local Church.

Robert Teasdale.

‘LET US GIVE THANKS’

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Foodbank latest

For our Christmas 2017 Appeal we are in need of: Advent Calendars (by the end of November), Tinned Potatoes, Sponge Puddings, Mashed Potato packets, Nutella or Chocolate spread, Alcohol-free Christmas Puddings, Tinned Rice Pudding, Peanut. Butter, Shampoo, Washing up liquid