Centenery Celebrations 

The centenary was celebrated in 1973 with Divine Worship on Sunday 20th May at 10:45 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. led by Revd. Wilfred Bridge, Chairman of the Birmingham District with special singing at both services.  On Monday 21st there was a Service of Thanksgiving at 7:45 p.m. led by Revd. Derek H Jefferson, Revd. Barrie G Cooke and Revd. David J Hare followed by refreshments.  The celebrations concluded with a Garden Party at Beechcroft, Node Hill by invitation of Miss G. M. Wilkes at 3 p.m. on Saturday 7th July.

A special booklet was printed, containing an introduction from David J Hare, Minister, and greetings from the Superintendent Minister of the Redditch Circuit, Revd. Derek H Jefferson B.A. B.D. and the previous Minister Revd. Gordon A Turner.  A summary of the story so far is somewhat sketchy and not completely accurate, but includes some extracts from Circuit Meeting minutes quoted earlier and these gems from a Pulpit Notice Book –

23rd July 1899: “Collections today, after the sermon, are in aid of the Worn-Out Ministers’ Fund”.

5th March 1899: “Friends will be worked upon during the coming week for contributions to the Special Fund”.

It notes that Studley Wesleyan Chapel was renamed as Studley Methodist Church at Methodist Union in 1932 and concludes –

“On this Centenary occasion, we feel privileged to celebrate one hundred years of Methodist witness in our present Church and, in grateful memory of those who served the Kingdom of Jesus Christ in the village through Methodism, we commit ourselves to continuing cheerfully and faithfully the work they began and the heritage they bequeathed us.”

The booklet concludes with “What Next?”, describing some planned initiatives.  These lines have certainly come true –

“It may mean that we shall risk new and untried ways in conducting our worship, fellowship and outreach.  It may mean taking steps to enrich our fellowship with other Christians in the village to a degree not known before.”