GB Events

         

Jenny and Linda each receive their 30 years` GB Service award

3rd Keynsham Company of the Girls` Brigade.

I was asked to reflect back over my 30 years with the 3rd Keynsham Company of the Girls` Brigade. When our family moved here in 1987 the Boys Brigade was our prime reason for coming to KMC because both our lads had grown up and moved through the sections at our previous two Churches in Exeter and Chandlers Ford and wanted to continue into a BB Company section. Mike and I had been involved not only in BB but all of our younger lives were members of MAYC youth groups and eventually became leaders ourselves. I became a helper not only with the Girls`  Brigade (15 - 18 year olds) but the Senior section also. A highlight of the year in those days was the annual GB camp which was always based in a Church hall in a seaside town and well attended by the girls. As the years went on sadly our older sections declined in numbers, although a few girls did remain and complete their top GB awards and stayed to help and support the younger members and the Company itself. Our last Captain, Claire was still a GB member when I first joined and ended up taking her Officer papers and eventually became our Company Captain. Many uniform organisations today are sadly not so popular with all the other activities on offer, so Linda and I are happy to be able to keep the younger Explorer and Junior sections of GB going with the help of Sarah Seymour our Young People’s Worker. It is not anything like the formal GB of yesterday year but we hold the same core values and follow the GB motto of Seek, Serve and follow Christ. The aim of The Girls' Brigade is to help girls become followers of Jesus learning Christian faith, mission, service, respect for ourselves and each other. We celebrate with them the Christian Festivals and take our part in the life of the Church in promoting our faith and mission in our regular window sill displays in Church including Fairtrade every year and recently “All We Can” last Harvest and learning about mission in other countries . We also have fun at Girls’ Brigade with games, crafts, music, stories and time to share with one another. Having been the only female in a male household it has been a delight for me to work with so many girls over the years. It has also been particularly special for me that my granddaughter Megan has been in the Company for the last 6 years. 2018 marks GB`s 125th year of mission among girls. We thank God for all the Officers, helpers and girls that have passed through the 3rd Keynsham Company in the past. We pray for the future of the Girls’ Brigade not only in this Church but throughout the World and the Churches that support them.                                                                                       Jenny Barrow.

 

            

GIRLS` BRIGADE FAIRTRADE FORTNIGHT 2018 

On Sunday 18th of February at Keynsham Methodist Church  we held a United FAIRTRADE Service at Victoria. The ECO group is responsible for input into three services a year and in one of them we decided to promote Fairtrade. The ECO Matters group met with Jane our Minister and put together a service from the Fairtrade resources. They also invited the Girls` Brigade, through its leaders to be part of the service. Girls ‘Brigade has been involved in Fairtrade for many years and the girls, for their Mission and Justice badges, learn of the hardship that folk in other countries who are not part of Fairtrade have, and the struggles they experience with poor pay, difficult living conditions and lack of education and health care for their families. Through the story of Florentina, a banana farmer in Panama they made a collage which explained the before and after Fairtrade situation for Florentina and her family. This was also the theme for the Service when we were asked “Who is your neighbour ?” We learnt through the photo slides and words from Florentina herself, the difference in her life after Fairtrade. The girls showed their collage in the service and prayed for Florentina and her family and also invited the members of the congregation to join in a Banana quiz.  It was interesting that most folk thought bananas grow on trees. The rhizome (corm) is the banana plant's true stem. They are actually regarded as a herbaceous plant  (or 'herb'), not a tree, because the stem does not contain true woody tissue. At the end of the service there was a Fairtrade stall. As usual, the Girls` Brigade had promotional displays in place at both centres and on the window sills in the sanctuary at Victoria. The photo is the collage the girls made. We have been encouraged to continue to support Fairtrade to ensure that the person, who grew the banana you are eating, or the coffee beans used to make your drink, was paid fairly for their work. Buy your Fairtrade bananas at Co-op, Waitrose, Tesco and Sainsbury’s. FAIRTRADE  asked  “Have you done this? Tell everyone about it: "When you buy food for a snack try to ensure it is Fairtrade in support of the farmers who grow our food.The Girls` Brigade members did this when they met in their next session following the service and ate Fairtrade bananas dipped in Fairtrade chocolate. They also made some banana cakes.

 

           

At the Victoria centre of Keynsham Methodist Church the window sills are decorated for Easter by different groups of the Church .The Girls` Brigade usually work together on a collage. This way it includes all ages taking part to build up one picture.

The theme of Easter 2018 for our GB display was the lovely Hymn from Singing the Faith 332 “  You came from Heaven to Earth to show the way ” and takes us through the death, resurrection and ascension of Jesus returning to Heaven. It was displayed in the Church throughout Easter and is now on the GB board in one of our halls for everyone to see.

The Keynsham Girls` Brigade created their usual Harvest window display for Victoria Methodist Church using the theme “ RAYS OF HOPE”.  They inspired our Church “to let their light shine” and celebrate how God’s gift of light has the power to transform lives and see how communities in southern Malawi are overcoming failed harvests with the introduction of solar powered irrigation. The also made sun catchers to shine through the Church windows. “Rays of Hope” was the suggested theme from the ALL WE CAN material this year
 
 
 
As part of the 100 years Remembrance this year, the older girls from Girls' Brigade painted poppies on pebbles and the name of a soldier from Keynsham or Saltford  who died during World War 1. These will be added to other pebbles painted by groups and individuals from Keynsham and the local area and displayed in the Memorial Park.
 

Inspirational Women and the Centenary of the end of World War 1.

Keynsham Girls’ Brigade was fortunate to receive a small grant from ‘Trailblazers’ which is funded by the Ministry of Housing, Communities, and Local Government . This grant enabled them alongside their leaders to learn and think about Inspirational Women and the Centenary of World War 1. The girls looked at the qualities and characteristics of Inspirational Women.They then learnt about women in history and at the present time. Areas investigated were inspirational women from the Bible, women involved in the suffrage movement and contemporary inspirational women. They also thought about who in their lives were inspirational and how they could become Inspirational Girls themselves.