The Week Ahead

17 January 2019

Hello everyone and welcome to The Week Ahead. This Sunday we celebrate the anniversary of Susanna Wesley’s birth.

Mike Ivatt will be staffing the out-of-hours media emergency support line on 020 7467 5170.

Wishing you all a wonderful week,

Rosie Winn and Mike Ivatt

Media Office

Susanna Wesley 350

This Sunday celebrates 350 years since the birth of Susanna Wesley, the mother of John and Charles Wesley. A page of events has been published on the Methodist Church website, along with a prayer to mark the occasion.

Evangelism and growth

The Methodist Church has announced a new team to encourage growth and confidence within the Church.

The team will focus on supporting churches by promoting everyday evangelism, helping them reach out into their local communities, and plant new churches.

Call for end to vitriol in public debate

Anglican and Methodist leaders have called for an end to the ‘anger and vitriol’ that has characterised public discourse. A joint statement on the issue has been released by the Archbishop of Canterbury and the President and Vice-President of the Methodist Conference.

Universal Credit 

JPIT, the Joint Public Issues Team, has released a
 ‘2 minute briefing’ on changes to Universal Credit and the two-child rule.

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 2019 begins on Friday 18 January. This year’s resources are from the churches of Indonesia, where there is a strong emphasis on the need for unity alongside the nation’s ethnic and religious diversity.

Parliamentary Covenant Service 

As MPs debated Brexit in the House of Commons on Tuesday evening, around 200 Methodists prayerfully renewed their covenant with God at the Methodist Covenant Service.

Pilgrimage to Walsingham

Bookings are now open for the Pilgrimage to Walsingham taking place 19-22 March. The event, organised by the Ecumenical Marian Pilgrimage Trust, includes the Revd Canon Gareth J Powell among its speakers.

Easter Offering 

This year’s Easter Offering service ‘Longer tables, lower fences’ features stories of shared hospitality across the world. It encourages us to consider how we might build such longer tables, rather than higher fences.

One Encounter Programme

The One Encounter programme is offering young people a chance to explore ways of opening their minds. The programme has two opportunities available for this year, in Ibiza,16-28 June, application deadline 25 February, and South India, 17-27 October, application deadline 31 January.

On the radio

Annalisa Is Awkward

BBC Radio 4, 11.00am

Friday, 18 January

Examining research from the disability charity Scope which reveals that 67 per cent of British people feel uncomfortable speaking to a disabled person.

A Dream Vision for Our Times

BBC Radio 4, 4.30pm

Sunday, 20 January

Writer Henry Eliot explores the contemporary relevance of Geoffrey Chaucer’s surreal Dream Vision poems and the complex and messy nature of psychology, experience and what it means to be human.

The TED Interview

BBC Radio 4 Extra, 12 noon
Monday, 21 January
Chris Anderson chats to neuroscientist and philosopher Sam Harris on future morals.


Songs of Praise
BBC One, 1.15pm
Sunday, 20 January

Revd Kate Bottley goes open water swimming to explore the links between faith and fitness.

Handmade on the Silk Road

BBC 4, 7.30pm
Monday, 21 January

Documentary focusing on traditional crafts along the ancient trade route of the Silk Road, capturing the techniques used by master craftspeople at work.

Kate Humble: Living with Nomads
BBC 4, 8.00pm

Tuesday, 22 January

The broadcaster spends time with three nomadic peoples, beginning by travelling to south-west Nepal to work and live with the Raute – of whom just 140 still live as nomads.

Video Thursday:  
Connexional Grants Committee

Membership of the The Connexional Grants Committee (CGC) is is open to laypeople and presbyters. In recent years the CGC’s annual budget has been around £5 million. Watch the video to learn more about the work of the committee and how you can get involved as a member.


In the coming week, the 2018/2019 Methodist Prayer Handbook, A World Transformed, encourages us to pray with Christians in India, East Asia and the the Pacific as well as Britain and Ireland. The theme for next week’s A Word in Time Bible studies is ‘Of the House of David’. Order your Prayer Handbook here.


You can find the UK parliamentary business online here. If you want to find out about the Scottish Parliamentary calendar, click here and the timetable for the National Assembly for Wales, click here.

The Week Ahead is a regular mailing that gives you a heads-up on forthcoming events and opportunities, as well as highlighting new information and resources across the Methodist Church. We cannot know about everything that’s going on, so please do email us if you have any feedback or ideas for items to include.


Office hours: 020 7467 5191

Urgent out-of-hours support from the Media Team:
020 7467 5170

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