MORE than 100 worshippers gave a fond farewell to two retiring Methodist ministers at St Mary’s Newent Local Ecumenical Partnership.
Rev Christopher Cory and Rev Heather Upton were both given permission to “sit down” by this year’s church governing body, the national Methodist Conference when it met at the end of last month in Birmingham.
Both received gifts, including a rose plant called ‘Tranquillity’ from circuit officers Andrew Owen and Brian Cook to mark the occasion, which was attended by worshippers from across Gloucestershire.
Rev Cory arrived four years ago and served as a minister at Tewkesbury, Apperley, Hartpury, Newent St Mary’s and Tibberton.
For the past seven years, Rev Upton has been a Methodist minister in the Forest of Dean, including Aylburton, Clements End, Coalway, Lydney, and Woolaston.
She was also in pastoral charge of Ellwood Methodist Church which closed last year.
The worship at the Sunday, July 2, service was led by Gloucestershire Methodist superintendent minister, Rev Dr James Tebbutt, and included, hymns, readings and testimonies.
Both Chris and Heather told how they became Methodist ministers and paid tribute to family members, congregations and colleagues, past and present for their love, care and support during their ministry. They are retiring to different parts of Gloucestershire.
New ministers have been appointed to both areas by the Methodist Conference and they begin work on September 1.