Borderlands Rural Chaplaincy (BRC) has added new chaplains to its team. A licensing service conducted by Honorary Assistant Bishop Michael Bourke at Church Stretton Methodist Church brought an additional eight chaplains to the team of five, which was commissioned in 2015. Revd. Jon Chesworth and Revd. Frances Biseker from the Shropshire and Marches Circuit are among those newly commissioned.
Opening the service, which was led by Methodist District Chair Revd. Rachel Parkinson, Chaplain Nick Read stated, “Chaplaincy is as wide as the people who take part in it. Our passion is the farming community, our motivation is the love of Jesus Christ”.
The ecumenical partnership between the Diocese of Hereford and the Wolverhampton and Shrewsbury District of the Methodist Church offers pastoral care and outreach to farmers, farming families and agricultural communities principally within Hereford and South Shropshire.
2016 saw substantial requests for support from the Chaplaincy Team with approximately 250 farming families receiving help and support ranging from a confidential listening ear, farm and home visits, to sign-posting to appropriate organisations and practical, hands-on assistance. Pastoral contacts reach the Chaplaincy through various channels including the national helpline, The Farming Community Network (FCN), members of the agricultural industry and Trading Standards.