Scilly’s Churches Working Together Ten Years After Agreement

two churches methodist anglican
This November marks the tenth anniversary of an historic agreement signed by the Anglican and Methodist Churches in Britain, to work more closely together.

But while there’s debate on the mainland about how much has really been achieved over the last decade, our local church leaders believe it’s what happens on the ground that’s important.

Scilly’s Methodist Minister, the Rev. Charlie Gibbs, says the working relationship is good and says he’s impressed by the friendship that exists between members of the church and the chapel .

He says they regularly organise joint services, such as at Christmas, Lent and Remembrance Sunday.

And he says many Methodists enjoy going along to services at the Parish Church to experiences the differences.

That view is echoed by Anglican minister, Canon Paul Miller.

He feels that when there’s more than one church in a small community, it makes sense to work together, not least because if one of the ministers is ill or away, the other can step in to help.

Paul says that these grand documents, signed by high-up officials in the churches, are often like “moving the deckchairs on the Titanic” and what really matters is what’s happening at the grass roots level.

“It’s driven by friendship and whether people want to worship together,” he says.

He says he enjoys going along to other churches to experience the differences.

But even within each church, there are different types of Methodists and different Anglicans, says Charlie.

He enjoys his Methodist services and hymns, and he wouldn’t want to see that “swallowed up” into another church, but at the end of the day, he says, we have the same beliefs.