Thanking Charlton's churchwarden

Published: 6th July 2020

Eighty-year-old Helen Fowler recently stood down as churchwarden at Charlton church, after serving for at least ten years. She was surprised in lockdown with a presentation from the Revd Sarah Dangerfield and Parish Wardens, Meredith and Celia.

Helen said: “I’ve lived in Charlton for around 38 years and have always been involved in the church in different ways, serving on the PCC and helping with pastoral care. I was also a Foundation Governor of our local church school and helped with a mother and toddler group. I cared for my husband who had dementia for many years and it was after he died that I was able to become churchwarden.

“Charlton Church is very small – it holds around 70 people. It was originally a Tudor barn, but was opened as a church in 1872 when a local benefactor felt we needed a church in the village. We’ve always been linked with Cropthorne, but twenty years ago joined with Fladbury, Moor and Wyre Piddle to become the 5Alive benefice. That’s been the best thing ever – we’ve cross fertilised with ideas, help and support and I’m not sure our church would still exist if we hadn’t become part of the group. Whenever we have events, people come from all of the different churches.

The Revd Sarah Dangerfield with Helen Fowler“Being a churchwarden has been a very rewarding time. I’ve really felt as if I was doing God’s work and it has definitely strengthened my faith. I was totally overwhelmed by the presentation made to me. I’d had a phone call from our vicar, Sarah to say that she wanted to come and see how I was and then she arrived with Celia and Meredith. They gave me a big basket of fresh summer flowers and a huge card, which was full of messages! There were nine pages inside the card with contributions from around 30-40 people which had all been printed out. There were some wonderful messages.

“Charlton village has always been the most wonderful place to be. Whatever I have given in time and effort to either the church and the community has come back a thousand-fold and I’ve made some lovely friends. Throughout everything, I’ve always worked as part of a team, but also wouldn’t have been able to do what I’ve done without the help of the Lord – I’ve always tried to do His will.”

Revd Sarah said:  “Helen’s volunteering to the Five Alive, the school, and more widely is always given with such thought, dedication and enthusiasm. Her faith and her love of people shines through, and though Helen retires from official roles, her care of people by the phone calls she makes, and the letters she sends, and in prayer, we know continues. “Thank you” Helen on behalf of us all.”  

Page last updated: 6th July 2020 11:10 AM
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