Sidmouth minister celebrates 65 years of ministry

Methodist minister celebrates 65 years of ministry with special Sidmouth service

A FITTING start to a service celebrating 65 years of ministry was a hymn written by the man in question.

The Reverend Allan Bowers, a prolific writer of hymns, heard the choir at Sidmouth Methodist Church sing an introit For laughter we Praise you O God, which he wrote.

Led by the Reverend Brian Hadfield, Sunday’s service at the church was a celebration and thanksgiving for Allan’s 65 years of ministry.

Although he retired in 1987, he continued his ministry as a Methodist supernumerary, writing hymns and Christian columns for the Sidmouth Herald.

He is also an author of Christian books, including his latest, Treasure in Heaven, launched the day before.

During the service, Mr Hadfield read a letter written by assistant secretary, Reverend Gareth Powell, on behalf of the Methodist Conference, congratulating Allan on his long ministry.

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Mr Hadfield added his own congratulations, thanking Allan for his many achievements and his kind and knowledgeable assistance to him personally on his arrival in Sidmouth to be minister for its Methodist church.

Allan preached the sermon, entitled In Him we live and move and have our being.

Refreshments were served in the church hall following the service and a 65 years celebratory cake, made by Mary Parsons, was cut and distributed.

Allan began his ministry in 1946, spending two years at Matlock Trinity. From 1951 to 1953 he was army chaplain in Hong Kong, followed by a year in Korea with 1st Commonwealth Royal Signals Regiment.

After various ministries around the UK, he came to Sidmouth in 1980, retiring seven years later, but continues his ministry from his home in Woolbrook.