16th October UN Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Our Minister's Blog joins many thousands blogging on 16th October in support of the campaign to eradicate poverty.  At St Andrew's, worship on Sunday 19th October will celebrate Commitment for Life, the URC's programme in support of the work of Christian Aid partners in Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Israel and the Occupied Territories and Central America and the work of the World Development Movement.   Three weeks ago, harvest gifts of dry and tinned goods were donated to the Chesterfield Food Bank, supporting local people experiencing severe poverty.

Dance for Parkinson's

Over 30 people attended a lecture at St Andrew's given by Dr Sara Houston, University of Roehampton, on her research on using dance to assist people with Parkinson's disease.

People suffering from the disease, health professionals and members of St Andrew's were warm in their appreciation of the presentation.  Dr Houston was joined by her colleague, Danielle Jones, Learning and Development Officer for English National Ballet, who demonstrated some of the movements and encouraged the audience to participate - which they did with enthusiasm. 

Dr Houston explained that dance is experienced as artistic practice not as therapy or treatment. Participants focus on the dance experience rather than their illness.  The research also highlighted the value of dance as a means for enhancing social engagement and intellectual stimulation. Results from the 12 week pilot project in 2011 gave indications of improvements in the quality of life, confidence, movement capability and stability for participants in the project.  The pilot study is now being followed up by a 3-year research project, led by Dr Houston in continued partnership with English National Ballet.

Dr Houston won the prestigious BUPA Foundation Vitality for Life Award 2011 for her work.



Holimoor Flower FestivalHolymoorside well Dressing

  Holymoorside Flower Festival                           Holymoorside Well Dressing                      


Holymoorside URC celebrated the Flower Festival and Well Dressing at the bank holiday weekend with many visitors - and much rain! 



Members of Rose Hill and St Andrew's URCs and Elder Yard Unitarian congregation remembered the Great Ejection of clergy from the Church of England in 1662 with a Prayer Walk from St Mary's - the Crooked Spire - via Elder Yard, Froggats Yard and Rose Hill.  At St Mary's, Canon Michael Knight praised the integrity of John BIllingsley who chose to leave the church on 24th August 1662 in obedience to the call of God. 

Amid the rain, walkers gathered under a market stall canopy to pray at the location of Froggats Yard, where the first  Congregational Church in Chesterfield met in a barn.



Support for Youth Centre: In August, despite torrential rain, St Andrew's hosted Afternoon Tea for Churches Together in Newbold which raised £260 to purchase equipment for the Eagle Centre youth club in Newbold, initiated by the Community Police.




John Cook with Synod Moderator Rev Peter Meek and Church Secretaries, Gaynor Nunn and Helen Lidgett

Revd John Cook, second right, with the Moderator of the East Midlands Synod, Revd Peter Meek, and Church Secretaries, Mrs Gaynor Nunn, left and Mrs Helen Lidgett, right, following the service at St Andrew's on 3rd March 2012.



We are delighted to report that Revd John Cook has accepted a call to be minister of the two churches. Photo of our new Minister Revd John Cook


John and his wife Ann have moved to Chesterfield in February and he took up his ministry here on 1st March 2012.  Please pray for John and Ann and for the churches as they move towards a new phase in their lives.



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