Fi­nal ser­vice for St James Church

Bush Telegraph - - Focus On Farming - By LEONE COMP­TON Par­ish trea­surer

St James’ Union Par­ish Woodville held its fi­nal ser­vice on Sun­day April 15.

Sev­eral mem­bers of the present con­gre­ga­tion were de­scen­dants of the orig­i­nal pioneers who es­tab­lished Method­ism in Woodville in 1876.

The St David’s Pres­by­te­rian Church was es­tab­lished in 1885 and in 1974 th­ese two con­gre­ga­tions joined to­gether to form St James’ Union Par­ish. The Methodist church and hall and Pres­by­te­rian manse were used for St James and the St David’s church and hall on the cor­ner of McLean/Bowen Streets and Methodist par­son­age in Grey Street were sold.

When Rev Brenda Mar­shall re­tired at the end of Jan­uary the de­ci­sion was made to close St James as num­bers were low and it was not fi­nan­cially vi­able to em­ploy an­other min­is­ter.

Chair­man of the Par­ish Coun­cil Jim Wor­boys is a great grand­son of the first res­i­dent Methodist Min­is­ter, his grand­fa­ther and fa­ther also tak­ing lead­ing roles in the lo­cal church.

He along with Jean McKin­lay were on the Par­ish Coun­cil since its in­cep­tion in 1974 and Es­ther Knight soon af­ter. They were given a me­mento of his­tor­i­cal sig­nif­i­cance — Jim a hand bell given in 1882, Jean a glass com­mu­nion jug given in 1894 and Es­ther a Sil­ver Bowl given in 1928.

A Bi­ble given by John Lloyd in 1887 was given to his great grand­daugh­ters Jean McKin­lay and Kath Bly.

David Harding was given a Bi­ble given by his great aunts, a wooden cross made by his fa­ther and com­mu­nion cloths em­broi­dered by his mother.

Past min­is­ters Mal­colm and He­len Wall, Robert and Bar­bara Al­lan, Wendy Thorn­bur­row and Brenda Mar­shall all at­tended and took a part in the ser­vice. Wendy spoke on Ex­o­dus and the need to re­mem­ber the past with grat­i­tude and to em­brace the new with ex­cite­ment, trust and hope.

While church mem­bers said it was a sad oc­ca­sion to see the clo­sure of St James and end of an era for Method­ism and Pres­by­te­ri­an­ism in Woodville the ser­vice was a fit­ting con­clu­sion to many years of ser­vice to the peo­ple of Woodville over 142 years.

The con­gre­ga­tion will now join with Holy Trin­ity Angli­can parish­ioners and have a con­tin­u­ing pres­ence in Woodville.

St James’ church held its fi­nal ser­vice on Sun­day April 15.

Past min­is­ters, from left, Wendy Thorn­bur­row, Brenda Mar­shall, Bar­bara and Robert Al­lan, He­len and Mal­colm Wall.

Jean McKin­lay, Jim Wor­boys and Es­ther Knight.

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