Minutes of Northchurch Baptist Church
Part 10 1963 - 1965
[These Minutes are taken from the fifth Minute Book of General and Special Church Meetings which starts in 1963 and from the Annual Church Meeting Book which was a separate record from this time.
Once again we see the fellowship hit another major crisis leading to the appointment of Mr Cliff Bonnett as Lay Pastor in 1965]
Minutes of Annual Church Meeting held on Monday 4th March 1963
20 members were present.
Minutes The minutes of the last annual meeting were read, passed as correct and signed.
Pastor. Mr. Rose said that he appreciated all the help he had received during his recent domestic troubles and he was encouraged to know that there were those willing to assist, especially in the prayer meeting. He asked that he be notified of any illness in the fellowship and expressed thanks to those who had taken part in the Flower ministry. There had been dissapointments during the year but we had much to thank God for. Mr. Rose also mentioned the Baptist Union Operation Outreach and requested that the church consider using Communion Cards in the future.
Secretary The Secretary reported that the membership roll had increased by three during the year making a total of 50. Thee had been two Baptisms. During 1962 our Pastor had lead 32 Services on Sundays, Mr Stratford 13, Herts Baptist Association Lay Preachers34 and others 25. Average attendance at Church Business Meetings had been 16. Many changes had taken place during the year including Treasurer, Caretaker, in the Mid Week Fellowship, on Diaconate and Secretary. The Secretary closed by thanking on behalf of the church all that Mr. Rose had done during a difficult period.
Treasurer Mr. L. Owen reported that we had started the year with a balance of £266-19-0. Income made this up to £668-18-7 and expenditure had been £582-10-1 leaving a balance of £86-8-6. The balance in the Communion Fund was £3-18-0.
Mr. Owen stated that to date the Church Fund stood at about £40-0-0.
Mr. Brooks thanked Mr. Owen for the work he had done and in return Mr. Owen thanked Mrs. Brooks for making the change over easy.
S. School Mr. Owen stated S.School started year with 7 and ended with 8. Average attendance 5.
S.School Treasurer Miss S. Owen reported a balance of £16.1.6.
M.W. Fellowship Treasurer Miss S. Owen reported a balance of £7-14-9.
Womens Own Mrs H. Davis reported a happy year and meetings were well attended. £10- had been raised for a cot in San Salvador. Highlights had been an outing to Clacton, Womens Sunday on 29th October when Mrs. Parks was the speaker and the Womens Rally on the following Wednesday.
W. Own Treasurer Mrs., R. Davis reported a balance of £10-12-9. The preacher on Womens Sunday had been paid before the collection was halved.
Choir. Nothing to report except the Christmas activities.
B.M.S. Secretary Mrs. Parry reported that £6.50.had been raised on B.M.S. Saturday. Boxes £17-0-0
Missionary Heralds £4-0-0.
Flowers Mrs. Shelton reported a balance of £-15-0d
I.B.R.A. Mrs. H. Davis reported 2 less members this year.
Auditor The books had not been audited yet due to bad weather.
Maintenance Apart from winter damage all was in order. Mr. Rose asked for the Maintenance Committee
to meet with him in the future for an inspection.
Sick Visitors had visit when possible and when illness was reported to them.
Home Work Fund H.W.F. Sunday £6-5-6. July Communion £1-12-3Boxes £15-0-0
Officers were elected as follows.
Secretary. Mr. Groome pro. Mrs Owen Sec Mrs. Axtell
Treasurer Mr Owen pro. Mrs. H. Davis Sec Mr. Simmons
Organist. Mrs. Owen pro. Mr. Rose Sec Mrs. H. Davis
Deputy Organist. Mr. J. Purton
Flower Secretary. Mrs. Shelton
Flower Distribution Miss Dell & Miss Mayo
Pianist for Midweek Mrs. Owen
Sick Visitors Mrs. H. Davis and Mr. Shelton.
Sidesmen Messrs. Bruton, A. Delderfield, Jones, Parry, Foskett and Mrs. H. Davis.
Door Stewards Messrs. Bruton, Shelton, King and Bates.
Auditor. Miss Riddle
Home Work Fund
Treasurer Mrs. Groome
Tea Committee Officers & Deacons wives plus Mrs. R. Davis, Mrs. Parry, and Mrs. Bruton
as Life Deacons wife.
Maintenance Committee Messrs. Purton, Axtell and Parry.
B.M.S. Secretary Mrs. J. Parry.
International Bible Reading Ass. Sec. Mrs. H. Davis.
Harold B. Rose. Pastor
Minutes of Church Meeting held on Monday 4th March 1963
This meeting followed the Annual Church Meeting with Pastor Rose in the chair.
20 members were present.
Minutes The minutes of the previous Church Meeting were read, passed as correct and signed.
The meeting discussed the forthcoming meeting with our friends from St Mary's to be held on Wednesday 1st May.
H.B.A. The Church decided that we would not consider nominating anyone for the Vice-Presidency or the General Committee of the Herts Baptist Association.
Communion Cards The members present agreed that Mr. Rose introduce the Communion card system and also agreed that a morning communion be held once every quarter and left the Deacons to arrange the dates.
[These communion cards were presumably to help to demonstrate attendance at the Communion Service]
Bazaar The church Bazaar fixed for 6th April 1963 was put back to Mid October on the proposal of Mrs. H. Davis Seconded by Mrs. R. Davis.
Anniversary The meeting agreed that the Deacons fix a date for the Church and Pastor's Anniversary.
Any Other Business Mr Rose informed the meeting that the church would shortly be having a magazine.
Pulpit Curtains Mr. Brooks asked about the pulpit curtains and was assured that work was in progress and nearly finished.
Communion The question of people leaving before the Communion Service was raised, with regard to the fact that nobody was at the door to say goodbye to them. The Pastor & Deacons would put this right.
Presentation for Mrs. H. Davis. The members present were reminded that Mr Owen would receive their gifts toward a presentation to Mrs. H. Davis.
Easter Flowers The retiring collections for the Easter Flowers was to be made on Sundays March 24th and 31st. This ended the business and Pastor Rose close the meeting with the benediction.
Harold B Rose Pastor
Minutes of the Church Meeting held on Monday 27th May 1963.
16 members were present.
The meeting started with a hymn and prayer with our Pastor Mr. Rose in the chair.
The minutes of the previous church meeting were read, passed as correct and Signed.
Business Arising Mr. Owen asked that it be put on record that the pulpit curtains were a great improvement to the appearance of the chapel.
Presentation At this point in the meeting, Mr Rose on behalf of the church, presented Mrs. H. Davis with a gift in appreciation for the many years Service she and her husband had given to the church as caretakers.
Chairman for Bazaar Regarding a chairman for the forthcoming bazaar it was stated that Mr. Bartlett had declined but had kindly sent a gift of five guineas for the church fund. The members present requested that Mr. J. Brooks from Tring be asked to help and as second choice Mrs. Bradshaw.
Delegates to H.B.A. Assembly Two delegates for the church were required for the H.B.A. Assembly on June 15th. Mrs Owen said that she would be willing to go with someone else and it was agreed to ask Mrs. Delderfield to serve the church in this way.
Church Fund As the financial position of the church gave cause for concern it was discussed from many aspects including the envelope system of giving, insurances, preachers expenses, electric heating and other expenses. It was proposed by Mrs. R. Davis that Mr. Rose preach twice on the first and third Sundays of each month during the coming winter. It was also agreed that the Treasurer ask preachers their expenses instead of paying a standard rate for each. Mrs. Simmons asked to be put on record as not agreeing to this.
July Communion Offering It was agreed that the July Communion Offering be devoted to the Home Work Fund as usual. Proposed by Mr. Rose from the chair. Seconded by Mr. Owen.
St. Mary's Fete It was agreed that St. Mary's could again borrow the trestle tables for their Summer Fete on June 15th.
Northchurch Village Hall. A letter and questionnaire from the Northchurch Village Hall Appeal Committee was discussed. The members present agreed upon the following:-
(i) That we considered there was a need for a village hall in Northchurch.
(ii) That with certain reservations the church was actively interested in Raising funds.
(iii) That the use the church was likely to make of a village hall would be very infrequent.
(iv) That the church would not at present consider nominating a representative to serve on the village hall committee.
St. Mary's Mr. Rose stated that he had received a letter from Rev. B. Hughes saying how much the St. Mary's church committee had enjoyed fellowship with us on 1st May.
Next Church Meeting The next church meeting was arranged for Monday 19th August 1963 at 7.45 pm.
Any Other Business Mr. Bates asked how arrangements were progressing regarding the concert to be held in October and was informed that Dunstable Girls Choir could not come and that Aylesbury Male Voice Choir were being asked.
Mr. Rose closed the meeting with a prayer and benediction.
Harold B Rose Pastor
Minutes of Church Meeting held on Monday 19th August 1963
17 members were present
The meeting opened with a hymn and Mr. Rose offered prayer from the chair.
The minutes of the previous church meeting were read passed as correct and Signed.
Arising Mrs. H. Davis informed the meeting that her husband wished to thank the church for the kind gift that was made at the previous meeting.
Membership An application for church membership had been received from Mr & Mrs. Bentley and the church agreed that a letter of recommendation be asked for from their old church.
Creche It was agreed to start a creche during the Sunday morning services.
Harvest Festival Mr. Rose Suggested from the chair that the Harvest Sale be discontinued and that instead we have a Thanksgiving Supper and distribute vegetables etc to needy people around the church. Mr. Simmons & Mr. and Mrs. Groome spoke in favour of this. Mr. Stratford suggested that instead we sell the goods as usual and give the money to Oxfam. Mr. Brooks and Mr. Stratford spoke in favour of continuing as usual. At this point the church fund was discussed which at present stood at £22-19-9. Mr Groome proposed that we do as Mr. Rose suggested which was seconded by Mr Simmons. 4 voted for and the motion was defeated. Mrs R. Davis proposed & Mrs Owen Seconded that we carry on as usual which was carried.
Autumn Bazaar Mr. Brooks asked if the church was united over holding a bazaar. Mr. Simmons explained his objection to a bazaar on grounds of scriptural teaching. The Secretary explained his position over not wishing to organise a bazaar. Mr. Brooks proposed that the church cancel the bazaar because we were not united. Mr. Stratford spoke partly in favour of this but did not feel able to second the motion. Mr. Simmons seconded and it was agreed that the bazaar be cancelled.
Mr. Brooks Suggested that as members had made articles for sale at the bazaar the Womens Own hold a small bazaar of their own. This was seconded by Mrs. R. Davis and carried. Mr. Groome proposed that a Special Prayer meeting be held to bring the problem of the church fund to the Lord, which was not seconded.
Church Meeting The next church meeting was arranged for November 4th 1963 for 7.45 pm.
Pulpit Railings It was agreed that the Deacons decide on painting the church pulpit railings gold.
St Mary's Magazine Mrs. R. Davis said how nice it was to see Mr. Rose's letter in the St. Mary's church magazine.
Church Magazine Mr. Brooks gave a word of thanks to those financing the church magazine.
Mr. Rose closed the meeting with the benediction.
Short Church Meeting held after the evening Service on Sunday 29th September 1963.
A letter from Woking Baptist Church was read regarding the transfer of membership to our fellowship of Mr & Mrs. Derek and Sylvia Bentley. The members present agreed that they should be welcomed into the church at the next communion Service.
Harold B. Rose Pastor
Minutes of church meeting Monday 4th November 1963
Mr. Rose was in the chair and the meeting opened with hymn and prayer.
No. 21 members were present.
Minutes Minutes of previous church meeting were read and passed as correct.
Arising It was stated that the Women's Sale of Work was to be held on December 11th and the church agreed that they could display a poster. Mr. Brooks expressed thanks to Miss. S. Owen for painting the pulpit railings.
Election [of] Deacons Only two persons had been nominated for the diaconate - Mrs. Delderfield and Mr. Stratford - and were duly elected without opposition.
Application for Church Membership Mr & Mrs. Shepherd pro. Mr Brooks sec by two others.
Mr & Mrs. Hargreaves pro. Mr. Owen Sec by two others.
The above four by letter of transfer.
Mrs. Preston pro. from chair Sec Mrs. H. Davis.
Sunday Club Mr. D. Bentley was elected temporary Sunday Club Superintendent pro. Mr. Brooks. Sec Mr. Stratford, this appointment to be confirmed at the Annual Church Meeting.
Old Peoples Committee Mr. Rose was asked to represent the church on the Berkhamsted Urban District Council Old Peoples Welfare Committee.
Spurgeons Homes It was proposed by Mr. Bentley and sec by Mr. Simmons that a retiring collection for Spurgeon's Homes be taken up on Young Peoples Sunday the date of which to be fixed by the Deacons.
Notice Board Mr Stratford proposed Sec by Mr. Groome that Mr. Rose ask Mr. Parry to give estimate for new notice board which was carried.
Christmas Day Mr. Stratford proposed & Mr. Owen Seconded that we do not hold a Christmas morning service.
[Christmas day in 1963 fell on a Wednesday]
Gypsy Williams It was agreed to ask Gypsy Williams to come and give us a film show on his work some time after Christmas.
Evening Service 10/11/63 Mr. L. Wright had offered to bring Mrs. Crussel to talk on missionary work and show slides. Mr. Simmons proposed Mr. Brooks Sec. that the church leave the matter to Pastor and Secretary and if the total service was not to last more than 1½ hours to accept.
Mrs. R. Davis proposed and Mrs. Simmons Sec that the service last not more than ½ hour & then to have films. The amendment was defeated. and the proposition was carried.
Door Stewards It was agreed that Mr. Owen & Mr. Bates arrange a rota for door stewards.
Next C/M The next church meeting was fixed for Monday 2nd December 1963.
F.C.F.C Mrs. H. Davis asked the church to accept her resignation as delegate to the B.F.C.F.C. and Miss. S. Owen was duly elected in her place.
S/Club Mr. Bentley raised the question of finance for the Sunday Club and it was decided to discuss this at the next church meeting.
Pastor Pastor Rose left the meeting and Mr. Stratford was appointed chairman. After discussion the church instructed secretary to write to Mr. Rose regarding preaching appointments.
Harold B Rose Pastor
Minutes of Church Meeting Monday 2nd December 1963
23 members were present.
A hymn was sung and Mr. Rose offered prayer from the chair.
Minutes The minutes of the previous meeting were read and passed as correct.
Arising Arising from the minutes Mr Simmons proposed a vote of thanks to Mr. L. Owen for the work he had done in the Sunday School over past years, which was agreed. It had been arranged for Gypsy Williams to come on Wednesday March 25th 1964 in the evening.
Christmas presents for old people On a proposal by Mr. Stratford it was agreed that Mrs. Rose and Miss. S. Owen together arrange for Christmas parcels to be distributed to the elderly people.
Notice Board. Mr. Parry showed plans and gave details of his offer to make a new noticeboard at an estimated cost of £10 with writing to be extra. As a result the following propositions were made and carried.
(i) Mrs Ashby proposed that we proceed as suggested.
(ii) Mrs. R. Davis proposed that Mr. Rickett be asked to space and write the board.
and (iii) Mr. L. Simmons proposed that he be asked informally to do this when next preaching for us.
Mrs. Shepherd asked if the times in respect of the Sunday School on the existing board could be corrected and Miss. S. Owen agreed to do this.
Sunday Club Finance Mr. Bentley outlined the type of lessons used and cost which was about 5d per child per week or approx £40-0-0 per year based on the present size of the club. Mr. Brooks asked for further details of system used, which Mr Bentley did, also showing examples of books and materials. Mrs. Hargreaves explained her position with regard to the Scripture Press teaching method. After much discussion Mr. Bentley proposed that the church support the work of the Sunday Club amongst young people as far as the Lord would have the work go. This was seconded in three places. Mr. Simmons asked if the proposition could be amended which was done to the effect that the support be limited to within
£45-0-0 per annum. Eleven voted for and twelve against.
The Deacons were asked to fix a date of next church meeting.
It was decided to have a Christmas tree in the church this year.
Mr. Brooks asked about people not placing an offering in the bag on Sundays & after discussion it was decided not to continue with the matter.
Mr. Rose closed with the benediction.
Harold B Rose Pastor
Minutes of Church Meeting Monday 27th January 1964
28 members were present.
A hymn was sung and Mr. Rose offered prayer.
Minutes The minutes of the previous meeting were read and passed as correct.
Treasurer A letter of resignation as treasurer, from Mr Owen was read. Mr Simmons proposed a vote of thanks Sec by Mr. Parry. Mr. Simmons pro. Mrs. Bentley Sec that Mr Shepherd be treasurer which was carried.
F.C.F.C. The resignation of Mr. Simmons from Berkhamsted Free Church Federal Council was announced. Miss S. Owen also resigned. It was agreed that Mrs. Rose and Miss Mayo represent the church in future.
Village Hall Mr. Simmons resigned from Village Hall Appeal Committee and the church decided that they would not continue to send a representative.
H.B.A. Mrs R. Davis proposed Mr. Stratford Seconded that we do not nominate for the H.B.A. Vice Presidency or General Committee which was agreed.
Youth Rally The church gave permission for a Youth Rally to be held on Saturday 30th May 1964.
Easter Flowers It was agreed to take up retiring collections for Easter Flowers as usual.
Door Stewards It was agreed to approach Mr. Bates with regard to the Door Stewards roster.
Repairs Mr. Axtell gave an estimate of £6 for general repairs to windows, a drain pipe and the crack in the north wall of the church. Mr. Simmons proposed Mrs. R. Davis Seconded that church give Mr. Axtell permission to proceed which was agreed. Mr. Axtell was also to obtain estimates for re-tiling the roof.
Cups and Cupboards Mr. Simmons proposed and it was agreed that leaders of organisations were to meet and discuss use of cupboards in the Schoolroom and cups.
Building Fund Mr Shepherd proposed Mrs. Groome Seconded that building fund boxes be obtained for each member which was agreed.
Gate Mr. Stratford proposed and it was agreed that Mr. Parry be asked to fix wooden slats to the entrance gate of the church.
Appearance of church The appearance of the outside of the church was discussed with regard to an evangelical poster but it was agreed to shelve the matter until the new notice board is in place.
Mrs Owen Caretaker, Deacon, Organ Mrs Owen tendered her resignation as caretaker, Deacon and
organist. Mr. Stratford, Mrs. Hargreaves, Mr. Simmons and Mr. Shepherd all spoke in turn and finally Mrs Owen agreed to leave the matter until the Annual Church Meeting.
Mr. Rose closed with the benediction.
[This original ending is struck out and the following new section added in different ink but the same writing - presumably at a later date.]
Annual Church Meeting It was agreed on the proposal of Mr Stratford that at the Annual Church Meeting in March we begin at 7.30 pm, have half an hour or so of fellowship, then proceed with election of officers, leaving out the usual reports.
Mr. Rose closed with the benediction.
Harold B Rose 20.4.64
Minutes of the Annual Church Meeting held on Monday 2nd March 1964
26 members were present.
Minutes The minutes of the previous annual church meeting were read, passed as correct and Signed.
Pastor Mr. Rose indicated he was not prepared to continue as Pastor after June this year, due to his health. The Deacons had contacted The Area Superintendent with a view to obtaining assistance from the Home Work Fund. Mr. Rose will continue to worship with us.
Secretary Church roll increased from 50 to 55 during the year and two members, Mr. S.G. Purton & Miss Groom had been transferred to other churches. No Baptisms in 1963. Mr. Rose had preached on 36 occasions, Mr. Stratford 11. Average attendance at church business meetings 19/20 members. Secretary reported on Prayer Meeting and Bible Study Group. On behalf of the church he thanked Mr Rose for his work over the past twelve months.
Treasurer Mr. Shepherd reported on the church accounts for the year. We began with a balance of £86-8-6 and ended with £73-16-7. The Communion Fund stood at 15/6d at 31/12/63. The church fund to date was £53-19-0.
Sunday Club Leader Mr Bentley. Two main changes had been effected from the last Sunday in September. ie. the change to the morning and the introduction of departments. There were 33 members, and attendance was between 20-25. The time had come for recruitment, and Mr. Bentley appealed for teachers and helpers.
Sunday Club Treasurer. Mrs. Shepherd reported an income of £37.17.6 of which £27.0.0 had been donated. The Sunday Club now had a balance of £15.3.5.
Women's Own Mrs. H. Davis reported a happy year with a membership of 50. A highlight was the visit of Gypsy Williams to talk about his work. The ladies were dissapointed over the cancellation of the bazaar but their own Sale had raised £28.0.0.
Women's Own Treasurer Mrs. R. Davis was not present to report.
Choir The members of the choir stressed the need for more support from other church members.
Thursday Club Leader & Treasurer Mr. Groome reported on the activities and stressed the need for prayer in connection with this work. At least two of the children had expressed a desire of following Jesus Christ, and accepting Him as their Saviour. The balance of the fund stood at £6.19.0 at 31/12/63.
B.M.S. Secretary Mrs. Parry reported on amounts donated to the B.M.S. from boxes, Missionary Heralds and B.M.S. Sunday collections.
Flower Secretary Mrs Shelton reported a Nil balance at the end of the year.
I.B.R.A. Secretary Mrs. H. Davis reported 24 members taking daily bible readings.
Maintenance Committee Mr. Axtell reported the crack in the wall and windows had been seen to and that he would obtain quotations for re-tiling the roof. It was reported that boxes were being obtained for members to contribute towards a building fund.
Sick Visitor Visits had been made when sick persons had been reported to the sick visitors.
Auditor Miss Riddle had stated that the church accounts were correct.
Home Work Fund Treasurer Mrs Groome reported £14-1-4 Sent to Home Work Fund and made up as follows:-
Boxes £6.8.6; Home Work Fund Sunday £6.8.4; July communion offertory£1.4.6.
Magazine Mr. Simmons reported on the first 12 months of the magazine and asked that members consider making contributions toward the approximate annual cost of £7.10.0.
Creche Mrs. Simmons reported on the activities of the creche, stated that there was a need for this week and requested more help.
Mr Brooks proposed Mr Stratford seconded that a vote of thanks be recorded for reports and the work that had been done.
Election of officers
Secretary:- Mr. L. Simmons pro. Mr. Groome
sec. Mr. Brooks
Treasurer:- Mr. J. Shepherd pro. Mrs. Axtell
sec. Miss. Dell
Organist:- Mr. Purton would remain deputy organist and play once a month in a roster which was to be
Flower Secretary: Mrs. J. Shelton
Flower Distribution : Miss Dell & Miss Mayo.
Sick Visitors: Mrs. H. Davis and Mr. F. Shelton.
Pianist for Mid-week: Mrs Simmons (when available)
Sunday Club Leader: Mr. D. Bentley.
Sidesmen: Messrs. Bruton, A. Delderfield, D. Jones, Parry, L. King and Mrs. H. Davis.
Door Stewards : Messrs. Bruton, Shelton, Bates and Groome.
Auditor: The Deacons to seek an Auditor from outside the church membership.
Homework Fund Representative :- Mrs. Groome
Tea Committee : Officers and Deacons wives plus Mrs. R. Davis, Mrs. Parry and Mrs. Bruton.
Maintenance Committee: Messrs. Axtell and Parry, plus Mr. Hargreaves if willing.
B.M.S. Secretary: Mrs. Parry
Birthday Scheme Secretary: Mrs. Parry
International Bible Reading Ass. Sec: Mrs. H. Davis.
Caretaker: Mrs. Delderfield and Mrs. Purton
Creche Secretary: Mrs. Simmons to find Somebody to continue with work.
Raymond .F. Neave
Church Meeting held after Annual Meeting on Monday 2nd March 1964
It was decided to leave for the time being the question of locking the gate to the church premises.
The church asked the deacons to arrange for two vacancies on the diaconate to be filled either by co-opting two members or to arrange an election at some future date. Vacancies had occured [occurred] due to the election of Mr. Simmons as Secretary, and the resignation of Mrs. Owen.
Harold B Rose Pastor
Minutes of Church & Congregation Meeting held in N.B.C. Schoolroom on 1st April, 1964 arising from Pastorate becoming Vacant in July 1964.
In the Chair : Pastor H.B. Rose
Present : Area Superintendent, Rev. Douglas Hicks
also : 21 members & 2 members of congregation = (23 in total)
Opening by HBR. Opening devotions were conducted by Mr. Rose after which he reminded the meeting that following the announcement that he would be standing down, leaving the Pastorate vacant in July 1964 the Diaconate had decided to seek the Area Superintendent's guidance in obtaining a new minister for the church. The Area Superintendent had in turn requested a meeting of the whole Church & Congregation so that the possibilities could be discussed & Mr. Hick's advice received.
Mr Hick's address: Mr. Hicks thanked Mr. Rose & the Deacons for calling him in & also for arranging the meeting. He expressed appreciation of Mr. Rose's services as Pastor to the Church. In addressing the meeting Mr Hicks mentioned that Home Work Fund help had been requested & that there was a shortage of ministerial candidates, making it necessary to settle such ministers as were available wherever there was the greatest need. Financially, it would be necessary for our Church to provide £260 p.a. plus a house for a Home Work Find assisted minister if one were allocated to us, to which the H.W. Fund would add £260 p.a. Bearing in mind our average collections were not much more than £6 per week we could not afford a Minister on this basis at present. Feeling that the population of Northchurch, estimated at about 4,000, might grow, it would perhaps be best to reconsider a Home Work Fund-aided Minister in 2 or 3 years time & have the help of a neighbouring Minister meanwhile.
Mr Hicks mentioned that Mr Harris at Berkhamsted was H.B.A. Secretary as well as very busy in his Church & could not be asked to take on more work. High St. Tring was already linked with Aston Clinton & it seemed unwise to disturb this relationship. New Mill's Minister, Pastor Neave could perhaps be approached - he was an active Minister & might be able to assist if the Church at New Mill & our Church were willing.
Discussion Various points were raised in discussion; the sacrifice which the New Mill Church would be called upon to make, the financial implications and the wisdom of asking Mr. Neave to be the Moderator in the first instance with a view to asking him to take on the Pastorate jointly with his New Mill Church at a later date. Mr Hicks explained that a Moderator would take the Chair at Deacons & Church Meetings, do pastoral visits & conduct weddings & funerals. Mr Hicks advised a short period as Moderator, e.g. 3 months only, before inviting Mr Neave to take on the Pastorate. Among other items discussed were the desirability of looking ahead toward providing a manse, the conduct of stewardship campaigns & stewardship in action, & the problem of disconnected ministry when there is no Pastor in a Church and all services are taken by visiting preachers.
Conclusion. In conclusion Mr. Hicks explained that the Church should regard all that had been said as in confidence & that it would be wise to decide at a Church Meeting if an approach to Pastor Neave & the New Mill Church should be made. It was agreed that Mr Hicks should make the first approach if one was to be made.
Mr. Rose thanked Mr Hicks for his kindness in coming to discuss the future with the members & congregation & Mr Hicks closed the meeting in prayer.
Minutes of Church Meeting held Monday, 20th April, 1964 [in a new hand]
Present: 25= The Pastor, Secretary, Treasurer, 3 other Deacons & 19 members were present.
Opening devotions: Opening devotions were conducted by the Pastor, Mr Rose.
Minutes: The minutes of the meetings held on 27.1.64 & 2.3.64 were read & approved.
Matters arising: 1. Mrs. Axtell mentioned that Mr Axtell was unable to obtain a quotation for the overhaul of the roof yet.
2. Mr. Shepherd reported that he had been unable to obtain cardboard boxes suitable for the building fund & he was making enquiries about plastic boxes.
3. Thanks was expressed to Mr. Parry for the work he had done to the gate.
4. It was reported that with regard to the 2 vacancies on the Diaconate, the Deacons had co-opted Mr. C Groome on to the Diaconate & had felt it right to leave the other seat vacant. This was confirmed after discussion of the co-option procedure.
5. Part of a letter from the Secretary of the Free Church Federal Council was read in which an extra delegate was requested. Miss Dell was appointed by the meeting.* Mr. Rose was asked to report to the next Church Meeting as to whether the request for an extra delegate was for the next F.C.F.C meeting only or for the future generally.
6. Thanks were expressed to Mrs Axtell for the repairs carried out by Mr Axtell.
* (At meeting held 1.7.64 Mr Rose indicated 3 delegates were always welcome at F.C.F.C meetings) AS.
Moderator It was proposed by Mr. Bentley & Seconded by Mrs. Rose Davis that the Deacon's Recommendation that the Area Superintendent be asked to approach Pastor Neave & his Church at New Mill with a view to Pastor Neave being invited to become Moderator at our own Church be accepted & this was carried unanimously. It was pointed out by Mr Brooks that it would be helpful to the Area Superintendent to mention that the date of the Pastorate becoming vacant (July 1964) should be drawn to the A.S's attention so that it was clear that a Moderator would be needed as soon as possible thereafter.
It was also pointed out that so far as the Pastorate was concerned, the possibility of Mr. Neave taking it on jointly with the New Mill Church could be dealt with under Mr Neave's guidance if he was able to accept the invitation to become Moderator at Northchurch.
Legacy - Mr S Delderfield Mr. Rose announced that the £200 bequeathed to the Northchurch Baptist Church by the late Mr. Sam. Delderfield had been received & had been paid into the Church's deposit a/c at the bank making a total of £300 on deposit.
Investment in B.U. Corp. Dep A/c It was proposed by Mrs. Simmons and seconded by Mrs. R. Davis that the Deacons' recommendation that this £300 be transferred to a deposit account with the Baptist Union Corporation where it would be of help to the Baptist cause generally & continue to earn interest, be put into effect & this was carried.
Insurance. It was proposed by Mrs Bentley & seconded by Mrs Shepherd that the Deacons' recommendation that the Baptist Insurance Co. Ltd be asked if, now that the repairs required have been attended to, full insurance cover for the premises against the usual risks, instead of being for fire only, can be provided, be put into effect & this was carried. Mr. Brooks suggested that the help of the B.U. Corporation be sought if necessary over insurance.
Other Business 1. There was a general discussion about fire danger from unguarded gas fires & gas rings on the premises, attention being drawn to the dangers by Mrs Shepherd. It was proposed by Mr. Brooks and Seconded by Mrs. Purton that the Deacons consider the matter of fire guards. It was also proposed, this time by Mr Stratford that Mrs. Axtell's suggestion of having an electric kettle & an electric point from which to work it, instead of gas rings be looked into by the Deacons, & this was seconded by Mrs. Shepherd. Both proposals were carried.
2. Attention was drawn to an appeal for money received from the Northern Baptist College, Manchester, & on the proposal of Mr. Stratford, seconded by Mrs. Brooks, it was decided to leave this on the table.
3. A request was received from the local scouts per Mrs Shelton that they might borrow the trestles & tables as had been done in previous years & this was agreed.
4. The time of the evening church service was discussed & after a further discussion of our procedure, it was left that the Deacons consider the desirability or otherwise of a change from 6pm to 6.30 pm & report back to the church meeting with a recommendation. It was agreed that to help the Deacons in considering the matter the Secretary should arrange for the members & congregation present at services to indicate their preference by making a list to be made available in the vestibule.
5. Mrs. Purton asked if the curtains in the church windows could be removed, due to their poor condition & this was agreed.
6. Mr. Brooks remarked on the announcement that a department of the Sunday Club had been closed due to a lack of a new helper coming forward in response to appeals, & expressed the hope that a solution could be found. Mr. Bentley, the Superintendent, reported that it had not been possible to do anything so far, & there had been no helpful development at the meeting of helpers & interested persons the previous evening.
Mr. Rose closed the meeting in prayer.
Raymond F Neave
Church meeting held 1st July at 7.45 pm
Present: Our Moderator, Pastor Neave & 22 members (including Secretary, Treasurer & Deacon).
Opening Devotions: - were conducted by Pastor Neave
Minutes of previous meeting: were read and on the proposal of Mrs. R. Davis seconded by Mrs Axtell. were approved.
Arising from the minutes: 1. Mr Shepherd reported that he had been able to obtain suitable cardboard Building Fund boxes from Mr. Rickett & these would be to hand shortly.
2. Also arising were questions about the proposed fireguard, electric point & kettle & general discussion of kitchen facilities followed.
Fireguard & copper. It was proposed by Mr. Groome and seconded by Mr. Rose that the Eastern Gas Board's estimate of £2 for supplying a guard to the vestry gas fire and making a new supply pipe for the copper be accepted, and this was carried.
Electric point & kettle. It was then proposed by Mrs Simmons, seconded by Mrs. R. Davis & carried that the Eastern Electricity Board's estimate of £1.10.= for supplying & fitting an electric point in the kitchen be accepted & a kettle for use from the point be purchased.
Resignation of Mr. Rose from the Pastorate. After several expressions of appreciation of Mr. Rose's faithfulness & devotion in his ministry as our Pastor, it was proposed by Mrs. E. Davis , seconded by Mrs. Simmons & passed that the Deacons' recommendation of the acceptance of Mr. Rose's Resignation from the Pastorate be confirmed.
Resignation of Deacons. After expressions of regret that Mr. Stratford, Mrs. Delderfield and Mrs. E Davis had felt it necessary to tender their resignations from the Diaconate, it was proposed by Mrs. Simmons & seconded by Mrs. R. Davis that the Deacon's recommendation for acceptance of these resignations be confirmed, and this was carried.
Election of Deacons Arising from the last item, it was proposed by Mr. Groome, seconded by Mr. Shepherd and agreed that arrangements be made for an election of Deacons in the near future instead of waiting until the usual November elections.
Resignation of Mr & Mrs Owen & Sylvia On the matter of the Deacons' recommendation that the resignations of Mr. & Mrs. Owen & their daughter Sylvia from the roll of Church Members be accepted, it was left that these friends should be approached and the position explained to them. Accordingly, although the recommendation was proposed for acceptance by Mr. Parry, the proposal was withdrawn & the recommendation was left over.
Request for transfer of Mr & Mrs Brooks. The request for transfer of Mr. & Mrs. Brooks membership made by the Berkhamsted Baptist Church was reported, and it was proposed by Mr. Shepherd, seconded by Mrs. Bentley and carried that the transfer be given. It was the wish of the members that their loving remembrance of the long period of work and service at Northchurch of Mr. & Mrs. Brooks be placed on record, with their regret at their departure after so many years.
Evening Service It was proposed by Mr. Parry, seconded by Mrs. Groome & carried that with effect from the 1st Sunday in August for a period of six months trial, the evening service be held at 6.30 pm instead of 6.00 pm.
[It has remained at 6.30 ever since]
Scenery It was proposed by Mrs. Bentley, seconded by Mrs. Purton & agreed that the old stage scenery should be disposed of, this being a recommendation of the Deacons.
St. Mary's Magazine It was proposed by Mrs R Davis seconded by Mrs Ashby that the Deacons recommendation that £2.2.0 be donated to St. Mary's Church Newsletter in consideration of their kindness in allowing us to publish articles and announcements therein be confirmed & this was carried.
Notice Board Thanks were expressed to Mr. Parry for his work in making the board. After a lengthy discussion it was proposed by Mr. Groome and seconded by Mr. Rose that the Deacons decide the wording to be placed on the board and that the Sunday Club be referred to on the Board by that name with the added words "Bible teaching for children". Mrs. R. Davis proposed an amendment that the Sunday Club be renamed "Sunday School", but this was later withdrawn and the original proposal voted upon & carried, 11 voting for & 7 against.
Caravan Mission Outline particulars of the 10 days visit of the Caravan Mission's visit to the Village commencing 12th July were given.
Thanksgiving Concert After discussion, it was proposed by Mr Parry seconded by Mr Rose and carried that the Secretary endeavour to arrange a thanksgiving evening at which donations & gifts to the Church Fund would be received, with an address by Mr. Neave, items by the Kings Langley Church Choir, and refreshments served, would all form part of the programme, the recommended dates being 17th or 24th October.
Mr Rose as Visitor It was proposed by Mrs. Axtell, seconded by Miss Dell and carried that Mr. Rose's offer to serve as Visitor be accepted with thanks.
Berk. Council of Churches Mrs. Rose Davis resigned as delegate to the Berkhamsted Council of Churches & on the proposal of Mrs. Ashby seconded by Miss Dell, Mr. Rose was elected as delegate in place of Mrs Davis.
Moderators expenses. It was proposed by Mr Simmons, seconded by Mr. Rose and carried that the Deacons should arrange with Mr. Neave some regular basis for contributing towards his expenses in acting as our Moderator, & appreciation was expressed to Mr Neave for his help to our Church at this time in which the Pastorate is vacant.
Close The meeting was closed by Mr. Neave with prayer.
Raymond. F. Neave,
2nd Sept. 1964
Minutes of Church Meeting held Wednesday, 2nd September, 1964 at 7.45 pm.
Present: Pastor R. F. Neave & 19 members including Secretary, Mr SimmonsTreasurer, Mr Shepherd. Deacon, Mr. Groome.
Opening devotions - were conducted by the Moderator, Pastor Neave.
Apologies for absence - were received from Mr. & Mrs. H.B. Rose.
Minutes of previous meeting were read & approved.
Matters arising from the minutes - Mr Shepherd reported that the fireguards, gas copper tube, electric kettle & point had all been fixed.
Resignations of Mr & Mrs Owen & Miss Sylvia Owen from membership: The Secretary reported that after going to visit these friends a letter had been received confirming their desire to resign from membership thus the deacons had no alternative but to regretfully recommend acceptance. It was proposed by Mr. Groome, seconded by Mrs Rose Davis & carried that the resignations be accepted with regret. The Secretary was asked to note with gratitude the good work and faithful service of this family in our fellowship for so many years and our sorrow that they should wish to leave us.
Election of deacons: - Mr Neave announced that 2 nominations had been received, one in respect of Mr. Derek Bentley (per Mr Shepherd) & one in respect of Mr. Colin Groome (per Mrs. Simmons), and as these were the only nominations for the five vacancies, these brethren would, if appointed as Deacons, be desired to act as such until November, 1967. In view of the insufficient number of nominations for the five vacancies, no ballot as such was necessary & after a discussion it was proposed by Mr. Simmons, seconded by Mr. Bruton & agreed , (9 voting for, 3 against with 7 abstentions) that Mr. Bentley & Mr. Groome be appointed to serve as deacons until November 1967.
Commendation of Mr. C. Groome for membership of H.B.A. - L.P. Assoc. It was proposed by Mrs. R. Davis seconded by Mrs. Parry & agreed that the Deacons' recommendation that the Church commend Mr. Groome to the Hertfordshire Association of Baptist Churches for membership of the Lay Preachers Association be accepted & that Mr. Groome be commended accordingly.
Baptist Union Corporation Ltd - Bell Lane Site It was proposed by Mr. Bentley, seconded by Mr. Parry and agreed that the Baptist Union Corporation Ltd's recommendation that title to the Bell Lane burial ground and chapel site be properly established be put into effect, and that the Corporation be appointed Trustee, the Church to contribute £3.3.0 toward the legal costs.
Insurance of Church Premises The Secretary reported that following the decision reached in Church Meeting on 20th April 1964 to obtain full comprehensive insurance cover on the Church Buildings & premises enquiries with the Baptist Insurance Co Ltd indicated that after an inspection of the building, suitable cover might not be available from that Company. Mrs. R. Davis proposed & Mr. Bates seconded & it was confirmed that the Church permit the Deacons to arrange suitable insurance with another company if it proved necessary.
Harvest Festival arrangements It was agreed that Mrs Jean Shelton be asked to make the usual arrangements for church decoration including the receiving of produce for the Harvest Service arranged for 13.9.64. It was proposed by Mrs Ashby & seconded by Mr. Shepherd that in regard to the Deacons' Recommendation that the produce be given to suitable persons in the locality that arrangements be made with the Darby & Joan Club for a distribution on Monday 14.9.64 & this was agreed.
Faith Tea It was proposed by Mrs. R. Davis, seconded by Mrs Simmons & agreed that a Faith Tea be held as part of the Harvest Festival arrangements, this to be held in the School Hall at 6.30 pm on 14.9.64. and to be organised by the tea committee & other helpers led by Mrs. E. Davis. The hope was expressed that Pastor & Mrs Neave could be present.
Mr H. Bruton as Life Deacon Mr. Simmons mentioned that some two or three years ago Mr. Bruton had been asked to accept appointment as a Life Deacon and it seemed uncertain as to whether Mr. Bruton had accepted the appointment. It was proposed by Mr. Simmons, seconded by Mr Bentley & agreed unanimously that Mr. Bruton be asked again to accept so that the Deacons might have the benefit of his advice & support from time to time & Mr. Bruton accepted this appointment.
Notice Board: Mrs. R. Davis proposed, Mrs. E. Davis seconded & it was agreed that Mr. Rickett be sent a book token value £1-1-0 in appreciation of his kindness in painting the various announcements on the new Board free of charge.
Thanksgiving concert: The date of 21st November at 7.30 pm was confirmed.
Close Mr Neave closed the meeting in prayer following the singing of the Doxology.
Raymond. F. Neave,
Minutes of Church Meeting held 7.30 pm Wednesday, 25th November, 1964
Present Moderator, Pastor R.F. Neave and 16 members, including Mr. J. Shepherd (Treasurer), Mr. H Bruton, Mr. C. Groome & Mr. D.L. Bentley (Deacons) and Mr. L Simmons (Secretary).
Opening of Meeting: Pastor Neave opened the meeting with Scripture reading & prayer.
Minutes of Meeting held 2.9.64 were read & on the proposal of Mrs. R. Davis seconded by Mr. Groome were adopted & signed as a correct record.
Matters arising: Pastor Neave expressed thanks to all those who helped with the work of arranging the Harvest tea. The secretary reported receipt of several letters of appreciation of gifts of Harvest Produce including one from the Darby & Joan Club.
The Thanksgiving service held 21.11.64was discussed, including attendance (about 120 came), publicity and the avoidance of clashes with other bodies. Pastor Neave suggested that the Free Church Federal Council might be able to be approached by our delegates with a view to making arrangements which would avoid clashing dates.
Adjournment: The meeting was then adjourned for a short time while a meeting of the brethren in membership took place concerning the trusteeship of the Bell Lane land.
[it seems that such matters had to be agreed by just the males in membership]
Minutes of Special Meeting of male members held 25.11.64 during adjournment of Church Meeting.
Present= Moderator= Pastor R.F. Neave
Mr. L. Axtell
Mr. G. Bates Members
and 7 brethren (as shown) Mr. Bruton
Mr. Bentley Deacons
Mr Shepherd= Treasurer
Mr Simmons= Secretary
Also 9 sisters as observers.
Bell Lane Land
1. The recommendation of the Baptist Union Corporation Ltd "that title to the Bell lane land be properly established be put into effect and that the Corporation be appointed Trustee, the Church to contribute
£3-3-0 toward legal costs," was discussed.
2. The minute of the Church meeting held 2.9.64 recording the proposal by Mr. Bentley, seconded by Mr. Parry, & the resolution by majority vote of the meeting that this action be taken was read to the meeting by the Secretary upon the request of Mr. D.L. Bentley to the chair.
3. Mr. Bentley explained that when making this proposal he had been under the impression that the appointment of the Corporation as Trustee was compulsory, but now believed that private trustees could be appointed if preferred by the meeting, & that in the light of this new information he regretted having made the proposal. It was observed that the meeting of male members could not rescind the decision of the Church Meeting but that any such action would be a matter for a future Church Meeting.
4. The Secretary reported that the Deed of 1840, setting out particulars of the land & appointing trustees was in the hands of Ellis & Fairburn, the Corporation's solicitors.
5. After some discussion it was proposed by Mr Shepherd, seconded by Mr Bentley & agreed that the Secretary should 1) obtain sight of the 1840 deed & 2) discuss the matter with a Christian solicitor & obtain general advice, including an estimate of the cost, of appointing private trustees & establishing title, 3) the meeting being adjourned meanwhile, & to be resumed at a later date.
This concluded the business of the meeting as far as possible thus the adjournment took place:-
The Meeting was resumed on 24.3.65:
present: Pastor R.F. Neave
Mr. J. Shepherd
Mr. C. Groome
Mr. D. Bentley
Mr. A. Stratford
Mr. G. Bates
Mr. H. Rose
Mr. F. Shelton
Mr. L. Simmons
Mr. D.L Bentley reported that after considering with the Deacons the advice of Mr. P.D. Warren, Solicitor, he desired to propose that the Baptist Union Corporation Ltd is appointed Trustee of the Bell Lane burial ground & chapel site held in connection with the Northchurch Baptist Church & being the land comprised in a Deed dated 8.8. 1840, & that the Corporation is requested to declare that the said land shall henceforth be held upon the Baptist Model Trusts known as the Fairburn Trusts. The motion was seconded by Mr. Colin Groome & carried.
This concluded the business of the meeting.
[The initial Special Meeting of male members, before its own adjournment, had taken place in an adjournment of the Ordinary Meeting held on 25th November 1964.
This Ordinary Church Meeting then resumed].
Presentation to Mr. & Mrs Rose: following the adjournment, the Secretary read a letter from Mr & Mrs Rose expressing appreciation of the gifts presented in tokens of gratitude for their service during Mr. Rose's term as Pastor at a recent evening service.
Christmas Decorating of Church: It was proposed by Mr Simmons that Mr. Bentley & Mrs Simmons make the necessary arrangements. After discussion an amendment was moved by Mrs. R. Davis that Mrs Shelton, & failing this, Mrs. Simmons, assume responsibility for the arrangements. This was seconded by
Mrs. E. Davis & agreed, with mention being made that the custom of retiring collections being made for meeting the expenses be observed. Mrs. Axtell & Mrs. R. Davis made offers of help with supply of the Christmas Tree, etc.
Sunday Club Seating: It was proposed by Mr. Simmonds seconded by Mrs Axtell & agreed that £12 be provided from the general fund for the purchase by the Sunday School Superintendent of 24 small chairs for young children.
Morning Communion: It was proposed by Mrs. R. Davis seconded by Mrs Simmons & agreed that the Deacons' Recommendation that morning worship be usually concluded with the Lord's Supper on the third Sunday of every month take effect from the New Year (from 1.1.65)
[This pattern is still in place 50 years on]
F.C.F.C. Delegates: The resignations of Miss Dell & Miss Mayo as Free Church Federal Council Delegates was announced & on the proposal of Mrs E Davis Seconded by Mrs. R. Davis the Deacons' action in appointing Mr. Bentley & Mrs. Simmons as delegates was confirmed.
Literature Table: The provision of this table by the Deacons was mentioned by the Secretary & the hope that everyone would make full use of it by bringing or taking literature was expressed.
Leaflets for Visiting: On the proposal of Mrs R Davis seconded by Mr Axtell, the action of the Deacons in arranging for a suitable supply of leaflets at a cost not exceeding £6 to be met from the Church Fund was confirmed.
Anniversary 1965: The Deacons' recommendation that a Prayer Meeting be held on Friday, 19.3.65, followed by a gift day on Saturday 20.3.65, with a service to follow was discussed. It was eventually amended that the service should be for thanksgiving, with the bringing of gifts & that a gift day as such should not be held & on the proposal of Mrs Simmons seconded by Mr. Bentley this was agreed.
Resignation of Caretakers: The resignation of Mrs. Purton & Mrs Delderfield from their appointment as caretakers was announced & after an expression of appreciation of their service it was proposed by Mrs Axtell seconded by Mr. Bentley that the resignations be accepted & this was carried. On the proposal of Mrs Simmons seconded by Mr Bentley it was agreed that Mrs. E. Davis should enquire of the Women's Own members as to whether anyone was willing to take up this work.
Other Business: The arrangements for the evening service on 20.12.64 were discussed & it was mentioned by the Secretary that Mr. A.F. Stratford was arranging the service. The morning toy service arrangements were also discussed.
On the proposal of Mr. D.L. Bentley seconded by Mrs. R. Davis, it was agreed that Miss Dell & Miss Mayo should arrange the packing & distribution of Christmas parcels this year.
Close of Meeting: Pastor Neave closed the meeting with prayer.
[The second part of the adjourned Special Meeting of male members to discuss the Bell Lane land was held on 24th March 1965. For details see earlier under the entry for 24th November 1964]
Minutes of Annual Church Meeting 24th March, 1965.
Present: Pastor R.F. Neave: Moderator Rev. D. H. HicksArea Supt
Mr. L. Simmons: Secretary Rev. S.A. Harris: Area Sec & Minister, Berkhamsted.
Mr. C. O. Groome: Deacon Mrs R. Davis Members
Mr. J. Shepherd: Treasurer Mrs. E. Davis
Mr. D. Bentley: Deacon Mrs. Bruton
Mr. A. F. Stratford: Members Mrs. J. Shelton
Mr. H. B. Rose Mrs. J. Groome
Mr. G. Bates Mrs. J. Simmons
Mrs. Preston Miss J. Verney
Mrs. M. Delderfield
Mrs. S. Bentley
Mrs. J. Purton
Miss J. Mayo
Mrs L Axtell
Mr. F Shelton
Opening Worship: Was conducted by Pastor Neave.
Welcome: Was extended to the Area Superintendent, Rev. D. H. Hicks, and Rev. S. A. Harris, Minister of the Berkhamsted Baptist Church & Secretary of the Hertfordshire Association, both of whom attended at the invitation of the Diaconate.
Minutes of the Annual Meeting held 2nd March, 1964were read & approved.
Consideration of Reports:
Moderator: Pastor Neave spoke of his acceptance of the call to come following upon Pastor Rose's resignation from the Pastorate & how he had tried to lead at Church & Deacons' Meetings, at the Prayer Meeting & sometimes at the Women's Own. He outlined the position of the Church, the shock at the impending removal from the district of Mr. Simmons, Mr Shepherd & Mr Groome & the need for God's guidance in finding successors. If the Church was of man it would die, but if Christ's Church it would go on. Pastor Neave expressed appreciation to the Secretary & Treasurer for their work.
Secretary: Mr. Simmons thanked Pastor Neave on behalf of the Church for his help in the past month & added his personal thanks for the help of Mr. Neave over various difficult times. He mentioned that the membership was now 43, & there had been major changes in the year with the resignation of Pastor Rose & some of the Deacons. He spoke of the Anniversary Services, Caravan Mission, Youth Rally, Harvest Festival & Tea, & Christmas Services and expressed appreciation of the services of lay preachers & men of the fellowship who had taken services. The fellowship of prayer at the Tuesday meeting was mentioned & thanks expressed to all who had helped & supported in the year's work.
Treasurer: Mr Shepherd reported an opening balance at 1.1.64 of £73.16.7 & a closing balance of £34.8.5. An expenditure totalling £362.19.3 was detailed, the income being £323.11.1. Mr. Shepherd said he was not standing for re-election as he was not good at figures. While he was moving away later on, this was not the reason for giving up the work.
Women's Own: Mrs E Davis spoke of a happy year with 45 members, & reported on the Womens Sunday & Women's Rally which had taken place in the year.
Sunday Club: Mr. D. Bentley reported a membership of 33 & an acute shortage of teachers. He spoke of the Youth Rally, Caravan Mission & Family Service held during the year. Income was £83.11.10, & expenditure £96.6.-
Thursday Club: Mr. C.O. Groome spoke of the changing of the Club from the 10-15 age group to the 7-12 group. Average attendance was 11 & was rising. The programme included games & always had a period of Bible teaching. Two 12 year old boys were becoming increasingly interested in Bible Study. Mr. Groome spoke of close co-operation with the Sunday Club.
Adoption: It was proposed by Mrs R Davis, seconded by Mrs D Bentley & agreed that the reports be adopted.
Election of Officers: As a preliminary, the Area Superintendent, the Reverend D.H. Hicks was invited to speak. Mr. Hicks, speaking on behalf of Mr. Harris & himself, expressed thanks for the invitation to be present. He appreciated the serious blow which had fallen on the Church due to the sudden news that Mr. Groome & Mr. Simmons found their work meant their removal to Biggleswade & that Mr Shepherd, too, was expecting to move to Hemel Hempstead. He felt the need was to buy time, & to elect a temporary committee of management which would not be decisive & would need to bring all its decisions to a Special ChurchMeeting. Mr Neavementioned that with a view to seeking help, he had, with the consent of the Deacons, gone with Mr. Harris to visit Mr. Rose & Mr Stratford. Mr Harrissaid he had been panic-stricken to hear that only Mr Bentley would be left on the diaconate & the suggestion that if a Treasurer & Secretary could not be found the Church would close. Mr Simmons - observed that while mention had been made by Mr Harris of the Area's interest, the original desire of the Deacons in approaching Mr Harris was to ask the help of the Berkhamsted Church. Mr. Harris replied that if a committee was formed it could approach Berkhamsted if a need arose. Mr. Simmons asked who would do the jobs such as locking, unlocking, preparation of communion, attending lighting & heating etc, & the constant correspondence with preachers. Mr Stratford felt this could all be arranged by the Committee. It was mentioned that Mr. R. Jones (worshipping at Northchurch but in membership at Kings Langley) would serve on the Committee & be treasurer.
It was eventually proposed that the diaconate of Mr. C. Groome, Mr. D. Bentley & Mr. H. Bruton be augmented by a committee of 5 persons, to make a total of 8, & leaving 7 after the departure of Mr. Groome. The proposal was made by Mr. J. Shepherd seconded by Mrs. R. Davis & agreed. In reply to questions to the chair it was indicated that the committee would appoint persons to the various duties & that the retiring Treasurer & Secretary could hand over to them at their first meeting.
The following were then proposed and seconded for the committee :-
Mr. A.F. Stratford prop. Mrs R. Davis sec. Miss J. Mayo
Mrs. E. Davis prop. Mr. A. Stratford sec. Mr. F. Shelton
Mr. H.B. Rose prop. Mrs. E. Davis sec. Mrs. Bruton
Mr. R. Jones prop. Mr. D. Bentley sec. Mr. H. B. Rose
Mr. G. Bates prop. Mr D. Bentley sec. Mrs. R. Davis
These persons were voted for en bloc & with two abstentions were elected.
Mr. Hicks advised that should further members be desired they should be elected to the committee by the Church & not co-opted, bearing in mind its temporary nature. In reply to a question about the constitution, Mr Hicks stated that the constitution did not provide for the extremely difficult circumstances which had arisen & that in his view it was right to take the action of appointing the committee as a temporary measure.
Mr. Hicks & Mr Harris were thanked for coming & the meeting adjourned, and the meeting of male communicant members adjourned from 25.11.64 was reconvened.
[For details of this meeting - see above]
After the adjournment Mr. Neave closed the evening's business with prayer, the Annual Meeting remaining adjourned until after the initial meeting of Deacons & Management Committee planned for 2.3.65.
Raymond .F. Neave
Church Meeting held March 30 1965. [written by a new hand]
There being no Church Meeting since the meeting attended by the Rev Douglas Hicks, and the Rev Sidney Morris, an explanation was given as to the reason for lack of minutes.
At the meeting attended by the two previously mentioned gentlemen, owing to the fact that the Secretary Mr L Simmonds, the treasurer Mr Shepperd, andone of the Deacons Mr C Groome were leaving the district, a committee was formed to act temporarily to carry on and maintain the routine work of the Church, which owing to the smallness of numbers would of necessity be hampered by the loss of these members.
The Committee was as follows
Mr R NeaveModerator
Mr H B Rose,
Mr G Bates,
Mr R Jones, who consented to act as Book-keeper.
Mr A F Stratford
Mrs E Davis,
Mr C Groome,
the last two being ex-officio, as members of the Diaconate.
This Committee met, and at the Church meeting on March 30th a resume of their first meeting was accepted as minutes which are recorded in the minute book of the Diaconate.
The first item on the Agenda was the opening and closing of the Church on Sunday. There being no Sunday Club, this duty being previously done by its leader Mr D Bentley.
Mr F Shelton offered to undertake this duty, and it was proposed, seconded and carried that his offer be accepted.
It was noted that someone was needed in the vestry, to receive the Lay-Preachers and whoever might be conducting worship. This was somewhat difficult at the morning services.
Mrs E Davis undertook this duty.
After this many things were discussed though no firm decisions were taken although Mr R Jones reported that the finances were not in too bad a position.
Further discussion took place and unfortunately some statements caused distress amongst the members, which precluded any further business being undertaken. Under these circumstances, it was thought the best course to adopt was to close the meeting
This the moderator Pastor R Neave agreed to, and closed the meeting.
Raymond .F. Neave,
May 25th 1965
Church Meeting May 25th 1965
Under the Chairmanship of Pastor R Neave who opened the meeting with Prayer and Bible-Reading.
Minutes of the previous read and confirmed.
The question of the Deeds of the Church having been raised by the Baptist Union Solicitors, who advised that a Statutory Declaration was needed, given by someone who knew within reason the history of the Church.
The only person who might be able to help in this connection was thought to be Mr L King.
[Len King had been active in the church when the original chapel building had finally been pulled down in 1920. He had been one of 3 named on the £100 bond in which the surplus had been invested and for many years (until 1939) he was Burial Ground Superintendent. As such, in 1965 he was possibly the last surviving person in NBC to remember the old Chapel from before it was demolished.]
It was resolved if necessary to proceed along these lines.
Announced that the Herts Baptist Union Meetings would be held on June 18-19th.
Mr D Bentley offered to represent the Church at these gatherings.
Resolved that a letter of Thanks be sent to Mr Simmons.
The main item of business was next called, being the repairs to the Church roof.
The estimated figure was £350 being given some months ago it was appreciated that it could well be slightly advanced on this figure. After much discussion it was decided to have the work done, Mr D Bentley generously consented to stand surety for excess money up to a certain amount if the Church council could not raise the money by the time required.
Resolved that Mr D Bentley be the representative on the Council of Christian Churches.
Mr C Groome representative on the Free Church Council and Mrs Shelton to the Old Peoples Committee.
Resolved that the Building Fund Boxes be redistributed and returned at the Harvest Supper.
Pastor R Neave closed the meeting with Prayer and Benediction.
Raymond .F. Neave,
July 20th 1965,
Church Meeting held July 20 1965
Pastor R Neave presided and opened the meeting with prayer.
The main item of business was the Lay Pastorate.
After the reading of a letter from Mr C.F. Bonnett it was unanimously decided to ask him to undertake the Lay-Pastorate of the Church.
The deeds of the Church were then discussed, as there had been much correspondence between the Baptist Union Solicitors and Mr Rose regarding the matter.
However in view of the insistence of the Baptist Union that they did not hold the deeds, a former minute book was found of the year 1953, and it was clearly stated in the minutes that the deeds were held by the Baptist Union.
In view of this Mrs D Bentley offered to extract and type the portion of these minutes relating to this subject, to be sent to the solicitors of the Baptist Union.
This was agreed to, with thanks to Mrs Bentley.
The financial position was reported as reasonably good, although there might well be a less favourable position when the repairs to the roof were completed.
It was stated that the repairs to the roof should be completed about the end of August.
It was unanimously agreed, on the advice of Mr R Jones that the Consols held by the Church should be disposed of.
[These bonds originally amounting to £100 had come from the sale of materials following the demolition of the old chapel and schoolroom building in 1920].
It was decided that the service of Holy Communion should be held at the Morning Service, once a quarter.
[This sentence struck through and the change initialled by Cliff Bonnett the new Lay Pastor.]
It was suggested agreed [agreed substituted for suggested and again the change is initialled by Cliff Bonnett] that there should be 2 tables of Magazines etc 1 on each side of the Church on the rear pews.
The Meeting closed with the Benediction.
[The following document sets out the arrangements agreed with Cliff Bonnett as Lay Pastor]
Conditions relating to the Pastorate
(1) The Pastor will conduct one service a Sunday only.
Generally this will be arranged as follows:-
1st Sunday in month - evening(Communion)
2nd " " " - morning
3rd " " " - morning(Communion)
4th " " " - evening
5th(when applicable) - morning.
Other services will be conducted by ministers or
other laymen as agreed with the Pastor.
(2) The Pastor will be allowed one free Sunday a
quarter and four holiday Sundays a year in addition
to special Sundays e.g. Anniversaries.
(3) Pastoral and sick visitation will be shared by the
Deacons and the Pastor.
(4) The Lay Pastor shall be called by the Church for a
specified period, not exceeding two years, at the
close of which the matter will be completely
reviewed. At any time the pastorate may be
terminated by either party giving the other three