Cradle Roll gatherings in the garden


In the July 1964 edition of the Wesley Memorial Methodist Church Newsletter Eleanor Beard, the cradle roll secretary writes:

In the Baptismal service we all promise that, with God’s help, we will endeavour “so to maintain a fellowship of worship and service in the Church that the child may grow up in the knowledge and love of God”.

We also pray that our Church may be “so endowed with heavenly wisdom that it may nurture the children received by holy baptism….and by loving care and godly counsel guide their feet into the way of peace”. In this spirit we seek to care for the children on the Cradle Roll of this Church and to bring them into the fellowship of the Church, front the very beginning, in the regular Sunday morning creche.

On Saturday, 13th June, all the children on the Cradle Roll were invited with their parents to our first Garden Party which was held in the garden of 98, Woodstock Road. Although not everyone invited came, there were about 30 children and nearer 40 adults who spent a very happy afternoon together in providentially warm and dry weather. The informal surroundings broke down many barriers and American, Canadian, British Guianean, Jamaican and English children mixed happily, playing with dolls and cars and sailing boards (and getting wet!) whilst their parents were able to talk together in peace. We do pray that those who have not been able to meet us very often before will recognise our unity in the family of God and come to know we are concerned to “nurture the children received by holy baptism”

For a personal reflection on the diverse nature of the church family at the time, see Wendy Spray’s thoughts on her cradle roll certificate.

In the Summer 1969 edition, Eleanor makes the following contribution:

The weather could not have been better for the annual Party for the ‘Under 4s’ in our congregation. After weeks of dark, wet days the sunshine brought a large crowd of youngsters with their parents to 98 Woodstock Road on the afternoon of June 7th.

Two short of a hundred, parents and children, spent a happy afternoon in very varied ways from sleeping to football or just talking together over cups of tea. As always it is particularly pleasant to relax and enjoy one another’s company somewhere where the children are free to run about without getting into trouble and to welcome the less familiar faces who are able to join u on these occasions.

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