Churches to move in together

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Two Rushden churches have taken the unusual step of sharing facilities – after Hope Methodist Church moved from its Park Road premises.

Hope Methodist Church sold its premises earlier this month and the Methodist community is moving to temporary accommodation at the site of the Roman Catholic church, St Peter Apostle Church.

The Methodist community will use St Peter’s Church hall, in Hayway, from September. There will be two churches meeting separately on the one site.

The Catholics will continue to hold their services in the church while the Methodists will hold their usual services in the hall.

John Hardy, acting chairman of the redevelopment working party for Hope Methodist Church, said the temporary move is part of a larger vision to one day build a new church and community centre on the site of the derelict Methodist church in High Street, Higham Ferrers.

He added: “We would like to thank everybody at the Catholic church, who have given us a very warm welcome and have been generous to help us out.

“We would also like to thank the Anglicans at Bede House, who have allowed us to hold our Friday lunches in their premises.

“It is important to remember that the Methodist church will still exist in Rushden and Higham because the building is not the church, it is the people who form the congregation who make the church.”

Mr Hardy added that the group is working with Higham Ferrers Town Council to help realise the vision of a new church and community centre in the town.

He said the hope is to work with the council to create a building that is used every day, by everybody in the community, not just the church congregation.

The auctioning of the church in Park Road was part of the plan to eventually have the new building in Higham Ferrers.

He hopes the plans can move forward as quickly as possible, but added that the many steps needed to get to the stage could take a long time.

In the meantime, Methodist Sunday services, including Sunday school, will begin in their new temporary home on Sunday, September 8, at 10.30am.

The final Methodist service in the building at Park Road, Rushden, will take place on Sunday, August 25, at 10.30am followed by coffee.

Mr Hardy has urged everybody to come along for the final service at Park Road.