Barely Light at Barley

In between Sunday’s two services, I cycled from the chapel up to Twiston and then up by Pendle towards the pretty village of Barley. I called at the village’s Methodist Chapel which was once known for its vitality. Sadly, the noticeboard indicates that it provides worship but one Sunday a month, and of those planned for future months, October’s is a ‘Pet Service’ (‘All Pets Welcome’).

Although a service had been held that morning, the inner doors when I approached were firmly locked. The chapel’s webpage states:

It is the only place of worship in the village, attractively positioned opposite one of the main paths up Pendle Hill. As well as its symbolic importance – offering light in an area where there is much talk (both light-hearted and more serious) of witchcraft…’

Well at a rate of twelve services a year, the offered light is well and truly fading. The pet service might be fun for those who come, but Jesus never came to save Labradors and budgies, but fallen people. National Methodism is in a poor state and its malaise slowly travels out to the far-flung chapels. Barley needs light; let us pray that that Christ’s light shines even from a spluttering candle whose wick is almost gone.