On the weekend of the Queen’s official 92nd birthday, two ‘Local Heroes’ were honoured in a special ‘Society Sunday’ Service at Methodist Central Hall on Sunday, 11th June 2018.  The national ‘Society Sunday’ service was hosted by Methodist Central Hall Westminster, and was one of 500 events that took place celebrating those who are making a positive difference in our communities.

Laira Gold, a volunteer for the Ignite Trust in Harrow, London received an award in recognition of her work with troubled young people, particularly young girls involved with gangs.   Tim Parsons from Gillingham also received a local hero award.  Tim is a Chaplain to Paramedics, a School Governor and is currently writing a children’s book to increase awareness about the work of paramedics and he was nominated by Paramedic Chris Treeves.

Peter Kerridge, CEO of Premier Christian Communications and organisers of Society Sunday said,  ‘We are delighted to  recognise Laira and Tim as two of  Society  Sunday’s  Local  Heroes.  To see their selfless compassion in action is an  absolute inspiration and exactly the kind of role models we want to highlight through this campaign.’

Revd Tony Miles, Acting Superintendent Minister of Methodist Central Hall Westminster said, ‘This is the fourth year that we have partnered with Premier and hosted their national ‘Society Sunday’ service. This was not only an opportunity to honour ‘un-sung’ heroes who work tirelessly in our communities, but also to recognise the difference that faith communities are making through often quiet, but significant, acts of loving service.’

The service used a liturgy prepared by Revd Michaela Youngson, (President elect of the Methodist Conference) and worship led by Dave and Pat Bilborough and the Choir of Methodist Central Hall Westminster.  The service was recorded for broadcast and is available to listen to on Premier Christian Radio’s website until mid-July,  (https://www.premierchristianradio.com)

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  1. With  over  500  churches  around  the  country  taking  part,  ‘Society  Sunday’  takes  place  on  the  nearest  Sunday to  the  Queen’s  official  birthday,  which  this  year  was  June  10th  and  the  campaign  is  officially  recognised  by the  UK  Government  department  for  communities  and  local  government.  Now  in  its  fourth  year,  churches  are  encouraged  to  pray  for  the  Queen,  civic  leaders  and  ‘local  heroes’  and celebrate  the  ways  they  are  making  a  positive  difference  in  our  communities.
  2. Methodist Central Hall is a global Christian family following Jesus at the heart of London.  With members from over 35 national groupings the church has been based in its historic building since 1912.  In 1946 the church moved out for two months so that the first meeting of the United Nations could take place in the Great Hall.  In 1966 the Jules Rimet World Cup trophy was stolen from the building and the first performance of Joseph and Amazing Technicolored Dream coat took place.


1 Comment
  • David Parsons Posted July 20, 2018 7:49 pm

    It was with some (understandable) pride that I attended this service. What has never been said at this service, an interview by Kent Local Radio and also on Songs OF Praise is that Tim has accompanied paramedics/ambulance crews at very difficult and traumatic times. One such occasion was he accompanied two female paramedics when there was thick snow over all the area. It was on a night shift too.

    Tim suffers from Chrones and Colitis and at the time had a large kidney stone which prior to treatment meant he was doing everything with a stent in his uretha. Yet in spite of being in considerable pain and discomfort he never flinched from being with the ladies on their shift.

    (The kidney stone has now been dispersed and he has started a course of a revolutionary new treatment for Chrones and Colitis which to date looks very promising).

    At present he is exploring a call to Baptist ministry.

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