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GIFT & OPEN DAY 2024

Saturday June 8th 11:00 - 16:00

Why are we holding a Gift Day?
Many of you will be aware that during the past few years Penarth Methodist Church has suffered financially due to a variety of reasons. The advent of Covid-19 together with the current challenging economic climate have combined forces to affect not only PMC but many other places of worship.

The maintenance of our Grade II listed building, lovely though it is, does not come without financial implications. Most of these financial problems are the result of ensuring that the church and the ancillary buildings are both kept in good structural order. We are certain that few would disagree that regular maintenance is essential to prevent foreseeable structural and internal problems in the hope of keeping both buildings in good repair. During the past few years the cost of on-going repairs to both the church and the ancillary buildings have severely depleted our reserves.

The failure of both the 1908 Norman and Beard Pipe Organ and the heating system are still proving to be continuing causes of concern. Recently the blower and motor from the organ were dismantled and removed for assessment by a professional firm. Sadly, the outlook for this 100-year-old instrument is not looking encouraging, with much of the invisible damage caused by intermittent leakage of water through the roof situated immediately above the void. This ingress resulted in serious corrosion of the metal casing leading to the failure of the internal contacts. We now know that the original blower is un-repairable and needs to be replaced by a new model. The antiquated electrics are also reaching the end of their useful life and may need replacing in the future. As you can imagine any repair on an instrument of this grand age is not a ‘quick fix’ but a job requiring the expertise of professionals in the hope that they will be able to mitigate any further damage and try to rectify the situation.

Evidence of a fractured pipe situated under the floor of the south aisle has also caused us a headache with regards to the heating. Again, this will be a challenging job for any plumber brave enough to tackle it!

Recently we have noticed areas of damp appearing in the main porch which strongly suggests that this roof urgently needs to be replaced.

 

We have already made significant progress in trying to improve accessibility for those with limited mobility, by installing new glass sliding doors in the Woodland Place entrance which are sensor controlled. This has been much appreciated by many of our users, particularly wheelchair users and those who need walking aids. However, the job is by no means complete as we now need to ensure that the improvement is extended to include the two remaining internal doors. This will enable users to gain easy access to the larger rooms along the corridor, many of which are rented out to groups.

We are fortunate that we can rent out several of the rooms in the ancillary building. These include two substantial meeting / rehearsal rooms with storage space, a Chapel for private prayer and quiet time, a smaller room for informal groups and therapy meetings together with a larger room furnished with comfortable seating and disabled toilet facilities. These rooms are also serviced by two well-equipped kitchens.

Undoubtedly the icing on the cake is the availability of the wonderfully airy Upper Hall which is much in demand by church and community groups alike and used by different organisations for a variety of reasons. These include dance, drama and theatre groups, keep fit and yoga classes, baby and toddler groups, after school clubs, homework clubs, local support groups and members of our own uniformed organisations. The hall is also in demand for other special events such as Messy Church afternoons, fund-raising concerts, children’s parties and family and church celebrations.

We pride ourselves on being a Community Church which aims to reach out to the wider community, and a quick glance at the weekly schedule situated in the Woodland Place foyer will show any visitor just how busy the premises are. We estimate our annual footfall to be approaching 60,000, with more than 30 ‘Community Groups’ using the premises throughout the year. We try to accommodate as many of these community groups as possible while also ensuring that we make space available for our own uniformed organisations such as Rainbows, Brownies, Guides, Cubs, Scouts and Boys Brigade. We even have a full-time professional florist on site!  How many churches can boast that?

Why are we appealing for additional funds?
Our regular giving only covers the day-to-day costs of running the premises. Any additional expense, such as the repair of the organ, the replacement of the porch roof or the completion of the installation of the automatic doors comes out of our monetary reserves (although we must acknowledge the recent generous grant aided financial support made towards the costs of the New Roof to Room 1 and the Solar Panels). As was mentioned earlier, these Grade II listed buildings, many of which are steeped in history, need a lot of regular maintenance. However, they are so worth preserving if only to give our future generations the opportunities to worship, pray, dance, sing, laugh, eat, play, share, enjoy fellowship and know that in this space they can meet in a safe, welcoming and supportive environment.

So………how will it work?
The Gift Day provides everyone with the opportunity to give a financial gift to the church, sometimes in addition to their regular giving. Giving is not only part of our discipleship, but very much a part of our ministry. We are indebted to the generosity of our members, friends and adherents who give, and review their giving, on a regular basis. Without this on-going financial support, we would not be able to function as a church family or be able to support the wider community.

Our minister, Rev Cath Lewis, will be attending on the day to accept gift donations, and a retiring box will also be available for those who would prefer to donate anonymously.

In these challenging times, we appreciate that not everyone is able to donate one-off sums of money on the actual Gift Day, but we would welcome any promises of regular support over an extended period to enable us to budget for the future. We are also happy to allocate (ring fence) your individual gift/promise towards YOUR chosen project, should you have one. Taxpayers can Gift Aid their donations which increases their gift by 25%.

 

As mentioned, this year we are focusing our giving on:-

  • The repair of the organ

  • The completion of the disabled access throughout the downstairs rooms

  • The renewal of the leaking roof above the church porch

  • General Repairs and Maintenance

 

An overview of the day. What to expect.

  • The Open/Gift Day will be held on SATURDAY 8th JUNE from 11:00 - 16:00

  • It will be held IN THE MAIN CHURCH

  • Tea, coffee and light refreshments will be available

  • A small selection of stalls selling (well there to be a cake stall after all!), and will be available for visitors to purchase

  • A display showing people and events in the , as well as images of the organ, will also be available for viewing on the large screens and on the notice boards

  • A designated will be set aside for children (and adults!)to enjoy

  • will be on hand to welcome visitors and disseminate information on the history of the church and leaflets will be available explaining the meaning behind the wonderful stained glass windows situated around the church

  • An information leaflet encouraging visitors to take a self-guided tour, highlighting some more unusual areas of interest in the church, will also be available

  • A selection of reflective ‘live’ music will be played at intervals by our resident musicians*

  • There will also be the opportunity to visit the well-stocked and look at the new automatic sliding doors

  • A special visit by, our organ tuner/technician Nick who will be arriving in his Austin 7 having driven from Swansea. It will be parked up in the church grounds for photo opportunities.

 

Who can come?
As the words to the chorus of hymn 409 in our Methodist hymn book ‘Singing The Faith’ emphasise, ‘All are welcome in this place’.

The Open Day/Gift Day is open to EVERYONE from the very young to the not so young, so please encourage family, friends, neighbours, acquaintances and those from your wider social circles to come.

We would all be delighted to welcome you into this lovely church where you can browse, relax, meet others, enjoy refreshments and immerse yourself in the history of the building. We are always surprised when we discover that many long-standing Penarth residents have never entered the church but, when they walk through the doors, are amazed at what they discover once inside the building. If you are one of them, now is your chance to come and meet us. ‘All are welcome in this place’.

‘Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.’           (2 Corinthians 9:7)    

                      

* Live music will be played from 11:30 - 12:15, 13:00 - 13:15 and 14:00 - 14:45                                                                                                

CLICK HERE TO MAKE A DONATION

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