Newsletter - June 2019 to August 2019



Dear friends,

There are few things worse than reading a book and finding that a page is missing.  It’s worst of all when it’s the last page.  I experienced this a few years ago, when to save a bit of money I ordered a used book on the internet.  To my disappointment the last two pages of the book were missing, so I had to order another copy of the same book in order to find out what happened at the end.

Few of us would even start to read a book if we knew it would be cut short, yet, with Jesus, we sometimes do something very similar, celebrating his resurrection, and the gift of his Spirit at Pentecost, but virtually overlooking his Ascension.  One reason for this, perhaps, is that our account of the Ascension is caught in a time-warp, reflecting the cosmology of days gone by.  God is seen as ‘up there’ and so Jesus is portrayed as vanishing up into heaven, the disciples staring stupefied into the sky.  Such language serves to obscure the underlying message of Ascension as surely as the cloud hid Jesus from the Apostles’ sight.

Yet, if the details of what happened are a mystery, the significance is clear enough.  This was a watershed moment for the Apostles when they realised, for the first time the full magnitude of who Jesus was.  They had followed him during his ministry, believing him to be the Messiah; they had rejoiced at his resurrection, greeting him as the risen Lord; but now they recognised that he was the Son of God, the King of kings and Lord of all and they worshipped him.  So, let’s not forget Ascension Day.  Above all let’s not forget what Ascension Day means, for it reminds us that Jesus is greater than words can begin to express, sovereign over all.  It gives us the complete picture, without which our faith is infinitely the poorer. Ascension Day is traditionally celebrated on a Thursday, the fortieth day of Easter, though some Churches have moved the observance to the following Sunday.  The Ascension Day also marks the beginning of a 10 day period of prayer and reflection and this year we will be observing that under the banner of the prayer initiative ‘Thy Kingdom Come’.



Asif Das

May  2019  


Ron Akerman

The death of Ron brings a time of great sadness for all who came to know him during the final decade of his life when he decided that rather than travel to his former United Reformed church in Leatherhead, where he and his wife Joan had played such an important role, it would be sensible to find a church in the village where he lived.  It was our good fortune that he chose the Methodist chapel, liked what he saw there and stayed to become very much part of our church family.  He enjoyed the singing, the variety of preachers and the fellowship.  It was only in his final year that life became increasingly burdensome and he was no longer in control as he always had been  His increasing health problems were irreversible and one feels that death, in all probability, came as a friend.

Looking back on Ron’s life, he was born in Dulwich in 1927 and was virtually an only child because his brother and sister were considerably older than he was and almost a different generation.  During the war his school was evacuated to the north of England so any contact with his family was limited.  Those war years were formative and defining, never to be forgotten by those who survived.  One of the highlights of Ron’s life was playing football and also watching it.  He remembered that when he was a child, his father would take him to watch football in Dulwich Park.  Later in life, he played for the Bank of England team.

Following his School years, Ron completed the statutory two years of National Service.  It was at this time that he had a period of training with the Paratroopers.  He told us that if you did a parachute jump, which presumably he did, a shilling was added to your pay. Ron’s working life was with the Bank of England.

The great love of Ron’s life was his wife Joan, they were truly a devoted couple.  Sadly, Joan developed Rheumatoid Arthritis and became wheelchair bound.  Ron dedicated his life to caring for her and giving her the best life possible in the circumstances.  He became “chief cook and bottle washer” which included the maintenance of the lovely garden which he and Joan had planned together.  The great sadness in Ron’s life was Joan’s death in 2002.  Life could never be the same again, but he found some solace in his memories of the wonderful times they had together.

So we say goodbye to Ron, the epitome of a true English Gentleman, a good friend, a quiet and caring person, a loyal and generous member of the church. We shall always remember him with gratitude and affection and we thank God that our paths crossed when they did.

There is a photo of Ron on the penultimate page of this newsletter.



Teach us Lord

To conquer anger with gentleness.

To subdue greed with generosity.

To overcome apathy with fervor.

To forget ourselves and reach out to others.

To be courageous in risk tahing.

To be patient in suffering,

And attentive in prayer.

Pope Clement X1 1649-1721

Keith Yule

It was a sad day for our church when we received the news that Keith had passed away, but for him a blessing after his long battle with dementia.

Keith lived in Merrow for decades and for many years attended the Methodist Church there before coming to worship at West Horsley around the time of the Millennium.  Whilst still giving help to Merrow from time to time he quickly put his energies into updating the health & safety practices here.  He brought a professionalism with him and established the mandatory maintenance Log Book which we still use today.  He similarly created Log Books at Merrow and Stoughton and when building surveyors came to do the Quinquennial Inspections they recognised Keith's work and swiftly ticked the box on their inspection sheets. 

Despite being retired, one of the aspects particularly admirable about Keith was the fact that he continued to keep right up to date with the latest health & safety legislation and the British Standard for electrical installations.  As a result he was a very reliable source of reference and willing gave his knowledge and advice freely when asked - and sometimes when not, if action was needed! 

When the church decided to replace the old wooden school room with what was to become the Wesley Room, Keith wrote the M&E Building Specification which was, thankfully, patiently typed up by Tina.  Keith subsequently oversaw the mechanical and electrical (M&E) aspects of the building work.  His lasting health & safety contribution are the diagrams on the walls today which show evacuation routes in the event of an emergency.

But Keith was not only a true engineer; he was also a loyal member and friend of the church and always stayed after services for coffee and to join in the church family. 

Before his mind faded completely, when visited at the wonderful home where he went to be near Tina and Brian, Haviland House, Worthing, he always genuinely asked about his old friends at West Horsley and it was appreciated that similar kind thoughts were returned to him from friends here.  We have lost a true gentleman and friend.

Keith’s love of the sea and ships was reflected in the hymn we sang at the crematorium and in the clever use of a model sailing ship in his floral tribute – which Celia has used on the front cover.


Church Charity

Please continue to support our church charity- the Prisoners Education Trust through the 20p Smartie tube.  We’ve already raised over £100.

We’ve also recently raised £133 for the No. 5 Project for homeless men in Guildford, £56 for Overseas Missions, through the Easter Offering, and £99 for Christian Aid.

We continue to support Action For Children, having raised over £500 since September last year at the Coffee Morning and from the sale table.  On 7th July we will be celebrating the work of AFC when Megan Dudzika, who works as part of their regional fundraising team, will be giving us a talk.  There will be an opportunity to make further donations.


Church News

The Bible Study Group meets fortnightly at the church on a Monday afternoon and is open to all.  They are about to choose a new topic and would welcome suggestions.

House Group meets at Ruth Isaac’s home at 7.00 on the fourth Tuesday of the month.  However, the next meetings will be on Tuesday 4th June when we will be led by Rev Paul Hulme on his last visit to us before he retires after 51 years of active ministry.  Then on 27th June, 23rd July and 27th August.

Occasional lunches.  The next Occasional lunch will be on Thursday 4th July, please let your friends know the date and encourage them to come to this event.  Meanwhile, the Thursday Coffee mornings continue weekly, so please come and join us for company and a natter, any time from 10.30-12.00. 

West Horsley Fete – we have booked a stall at the Fete to be held on Saturday 14th Sept.  Please put the date in your diary as we will be needing volunteers to help.  More information in due course.

Whitechapel Mission

The Circuit is making the usual collection of items for the Whitechapel Mission from 29th June to 8th July.  There is an urgent need for items of men’s clothing (including socks and underwear), toiletries and non-perishable breakfast foods.  (See the notice board for the full list.)  Please bring any items and put them in the box in the Wesley Room and we will arrange for them to be taken to Godalming.

The Whitechapel Mission provides showers, breakfast and advice to 300 people every day.  The need has never been greater than today.

Thy Kingdom Come    30thMay – 9th June

Thy Kingdom Come is a global initiative, in which Christians are called to pray for the nine days between Ascension Day and Pentecost.  We are invited to pray for God’s Spirit to move within the Church, to equip us to share God’s love with others.

There is much need for prayer in our churches, in our circuit, in our country and across the world but the combined power of prayer will make a difference.

The Circuit is holding a 24 hour prayer vigil on 1st -2nd June.  West Horsley has been allocated the following times:-

01/06 - 6 - 7 pm and 02/06 - 4 - 5 am

Please sign the list on the notice board if you are willing to allocate some time to this initiative.  If you are an insomniac or know of a member of our congregation who is abroad such that they could pray at ‘normal’ time for them but the wee small hours for us, it would be great to ensure that the night hours are covered. 

There will also be an event at Guildford Cathedral on Pentecost Sunday, 9 June, from 4pm, Christians of all denominations will gather in praise and prayer – come along and join others from around the area at this special event.

The timetable for the Festival of Prayer on 9 June is below:

16:00 - 18:00: Festival - An opportunity to gather outside the Cathedral for a picnic.  Food stalls will be available, and entertainment will be on offer in the form of live music and a theatrical production from Manna Ministries.

18:00 - 19:00: Contemporary Worship - Led by the soon-to-be Bishop of Southampton, Debbie Sellin, we will gather together in praise for a time of contemporary worship with a talk by Pete Greig.

19:00 - 23:00: Prayer Vigil - From 19:00, there will be an opportunity to join in prayer led by the Bishops of Guildford and Dorking with space for some creative responses.

More information about the festival can be found at:



Dates for your Diary


Sat/Sun 1st – 2nd         Circuit Prayer Vigil

Tuesday 4th   7.00      House Group meeting at Ruth Isaac’s – Rev Paul Hulme

Sunday 9th    10.30      Pentecost Service with Rev Allan Taylor

9th   16.00 – 23.00       Thy Kingdom Come events at the Cathedral

Tuesday 25th 7.00       House Group meeting at Ruth Isaac’s


Thursday4th  12.15     Occasional lunch

Sunday 7th    10.30      AFC Service

Wednesday 10th  10.00 – 13.00 Safeguarding Training at Merrow


Tuesday 27th  7.00      House Group meeting at Ruth Isaac’s


Saturday 14th              West Horsley Village Fete at West Horsley Place

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