17th March 2020 : Please click here for a formal communication concerning the ongoing Coronavirus situation in the UK, from The Methodist Church in Great Britain and the Vale of Stour Circuit.


Christianity - what’s it all about in the face of Coronavirus
Why not explore...

There is help here, and good news for all.


The Methodist Church has compiled a page of centrally provided resources
to help nourish your spiritual life on a daily and weekly basis :
this can be found here.


Please click here for a letter from the President and Vice President of the Methodist Conference,

a personal message from the President, the Revd Dr Barbara Glasson
about racism in our communities,

an official statement from the Methodist Church in response to the brutal killing of George Floyd,

and a call from Methodist Faith Leaders call for a green recovery.

Take a look at the Church's perspective on Justice in the light of recent events across the world…


(Links updated Saturday 27th February)

Please click on any of the links below, to go to...


We trust and pray that these links may prove helpful, beneficial and a source of comfort for you in this uncertain time.

Please be aware that some of these links will take you to external sites, and although they have been checked, the Vale of Stour Circuit is not responsible for their contents.


Superintendent Minister's VoS Circuit Letter Feb - Lent 2021 pdf, courtesy of Rev Alan Combes

Rev Rachel Parkinson, our District Chair, reflects on Psalm 23 - YouTube link

A Sunday Reflection from our District Chair - Rev Rachel Parkinson - YouTube link


Rev Helen Croft's Welcome Service

Due to social distancing, Rev Helen Croft's Welcome Service at Brierley Hill on Sunday 6th September will be by invitation only : BUT the service will be filmed and made available a few days after on the Circuit Website Virtual Player which can be found here:

So watch out for that….


Bible Study Challenge

Lots of people have said how much they would appreciate daily Bible Study Readings… so please click here

for an advanced list you may enjoy, provided by one of our circuit Churches - Kingswinford.
The readings follow the lectionary readings on the Methodist website “A Word In Time”.

Beginning this coming Wednesday. 8th July, there will be a virtual coffee and a chat at 10:00am to share your thoughts about the week's readings, and all are welcome to log in and attend.

The link is here :


Rev Josephine Soon's Reception into Full Connexion

The Vale of Stour Circuit rejoiced today - Saturday 27 June - to Rev Josephine Soon approaching the end of her journey to ordination.  In a service broadcast to the nation she was ‘received into full connexion’.

Being received into Full Connexion is an amazing moment.  People from all around the country elected as representatives to Methodist Conference, those present to support the ordinands and representatives from the world wide Methodist Church, stand together to affirm the call of God to each ordinand.  In particular conference recognises that this call has been tested over time and by God’s grace, they are now counted as worthy.  This moment welcomes the ordinands into ministry within the Methodist Church and deems them  ready to be ordained as a presbyter or a deacon.

Normally this would be followed on the same day by an Ordination Service but due to Covid-19 other plans will have to be made.

Rev Alan Combes
Methodist Minister
Superintendent - Vale of Stour Circuit


Please see the Spring Newsletter pdf, from Claire Biggs, our Children And Families Worker


Vale of Stour Circuit Services and Prayer Meetings On-Line

As we continue our journey in lockdown, the Biblical Scholar Tom Wright says:
The followers of Jesus are called to be people of prayer at the place where the world is in pain.
May we take up the baton of prayer for the world, the church and ourselves...

We are now able to provide a dedicated Vale of Stour on-line centre for activities such as services and prayer meetings.
See the Virtual Church tab for more information and technical details !

LIVE STREAM - please read carefully… thank you.

Dear Sisters and Brothers

So, at last there is light at the end of the tunnel.  But in the short term we must not take the risks for granted as we continue to pray for the smooth and effective roll-out of the vital vaccination programme.  It has been encouraging to see so many of our church members, friends and neighbours attending appointments and gaining this vital protection which will also protect those you meet.  If you have any questions or worries about the vaccination programme please speak to Rev Alan.

The emergence from lockdown is very gradual and we must therefore be patient in this final phase.

As we continue our journey into Lent there is an open invitation to join one of our three online Lent Online Bible Study Groups - details are listed below.

A second Update on Josephine’s Ordination
We know know that this will be at 3pm on Saturday JUNE 19th at MARLBOROUGH SQUARE METHODIST CHURCH, Coalville.  So please put this date in your diary and we hope we will be able to support Josephine on that day.

Finally please note that Rev Alan is on holiday from Tuesday 23rd for one week.

The links for our online live-streamed services this weekend are below and the full text of Sunday morning’s service is attached here for those that may not be able to access it online.

God bless you all and stay safe.
Rev Alan Combes and the team

Lent Bible Study Groups Online
Anyone is welcome to join one of these groups...

  • Kinver Group Monday evenings at 7:30pm
    Contact Ruth Stilton for access details

  • Kingswinford Group Monday evenings at 7:30pm
    Contact Melanie Walters for access details

  • Brierley Hill, Overend & Lawrence Lane on Tuesdays at 2:30pm
    Contact Rev Helen or Martyn Filsak for access details

Sunday Morning Worship Online Continues

ONLINE Services for Sunday 28th February

- at 10:30am led by Rev Michael Payne

- at 6:30pm led by Mr Martyn Filsak

The services will be recorded and almost immediately available for those who wish to watch when more convenient.

Order of Service
For anyone unable to attend or watch the service in person, we attach a full Order of Service here for you to use at home.

Coffee and a Chat

On the live stream page you will see links to Coffee Rooms at the top.  These will be open / staffed after the livestreamed worship.

HOW To Find the Live Stream

For nearly all of you - especially those on computers / laptops, you just need to do what you normally do and in your web browser (eg Chrome, Firefox, Edge, Safari etc) go to:

You will be redirected to the live stream which will begin around 5 minutes before the scheduled time, with an informal welcome and notices.

BOTH Live stream services AND the most recent Recorded service can always be found here:  
AND all previous live-streamed and recorded services can be found on the Circuit Website Virtual Player:

IF you find yourself inside VoSWorship there will be a steward on duty there to help you find your way to the live stream.
Clicking the link above should get you there.

Thank you for sharing this journey and bearing with us along the way.  And thanks to all those working in the background.

We look forward to seeing you on Sunday as we continue to pray for our communities, the church and ourselves.  

God bless

Alan and the Team


Ministers' and Preachers' Reflections, Sermons, and Orders of Service


Health, Guidance, and Support Resources

Young Minds website, featuring

Self-Isolation Conversation Starter pdf
Young Minds Matter pdf


NSPCC website - advice for you and your family with coping emotionally


Looking After Your Feelings And Body pdf from Public Health England


NHS site - tackling Working From Home

NHS site - looking after children and young people during COVID-19


Poster for a Black Country Welfare 24-7 Support Line, showing links to

Sandwell Healthy Minds - 0303 033 9903
Wolverhampton Healthy Minds - 0800 923 0222
Black Country 24-7 Mental Health Support Line - 0345 6460827
Improving Access to Psychological Therapies :
- Dudley IAPT - 0800 953 0404
- Walsall IAPT - 0800 953 0995


New Online Resources from

Run by the Christian Enquiry Agency and part of Churches Together In England.
Visitors to the site can read a number of well written articles or watch short video that may answer their questions.
It’s worth a browse and visitors can then ask questions, request a free copy of Luke’s Gospel, or find a church from the site.  All this is available to your church website for free.


The Joint Public Issues Team

The Joint Public Issues Team is found here -

- and is a great source of contemporary, relevant Christian commentary on the world today.

They are analysis group that looks at all kinds of political and justice issues from a Christian perspective and produce reports, videos and study materials : part funded by the Methodist Church and including Methodist staff

Stay Alert…to Justice

Take a look at the Church's perspective on Justice in the light of recent events across the world…


Links for helping families dealing with children who are grieving : link

Supporting_bereaved_children_through_difficult_times pdf


Click here for MH Self-Isolation Survival Guide pdf

An excellent home-schooling resource
for those of you with older children/teens to help them through isolation.

Provided by Forward Thinking Birmingham NHS Women and Childrens' Trust


URC On Line Resources During the Crisis including Daily Devotions

The United Reformed Church (URC) is offering regularly updated advice and resources from a variety of sources about the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic. Please follow government advice: stay at home, protect the NHS, and save lives. God is with us and being worshipped in creative ways around the denomination as churches are closed. 

The URC has produced a list of its churches providing digital services, available here

The URC Daily Devotions team is also offering a Sunday service in both written and audio formats, featuring a range of voices from around the denomination. Since 22 March, more than 1,000 people have signed up to bring the total number of Daily Devotions subscribers to a whopping 3,988. Sign up to the Daily Devotions here.

While the Coronavirus situation persists, this page will contain useful links to :

We trust and pray that these links may prove helpful, beneficial and a source of comfort for you in this uncertain time.

Please be aware that these links will take you to external sites, and although they have been checked, the Vale of Stour Circuit is not responsible for their contents.