I never find it very easy to find my way around a new place (or even, for that matter, a familiar place) so coming to a city the size of Glasgow is a major challenge to my orienteering skills. I must confess I haven’t done a lot of driving yet… More important than grasping the road network, however, is the need for both of us to get a feel for the Strathclyde circuit, to understand the history, as well as the geography, of the congregations and to meet the members. With all this in mind, Andrew has organised a series of walks between different parts of the circuit and today we began in the deep south. A small group met at New Stevenston church where we shared in home-made soup and then in a time of prayer and worship before the seven walkers set out for Netherton.
The route was only around 5 miles, but that afforded great opportunities to chat as we walked and to hear something of the story of these places. Our journey took us across the land formerly occupied by the Ravenscraig Steel Works and we began to grasp how the closure of such a major employer impacted upon individuals and upon the community. In two places we paused to pray, led by Deacon Anita Shaw who ministers in these two churches. After about ninety minutes’ walking, we arrived at Netherton to be greeted by a magnificent afternoon tea – 21st century Methodism may be lacking in numbers or other resources, but there is no shortage of Methodist cake! Jill