Welcome to Bethel Independent Methodist Church, Wigan. We are a community church in Wigan, renowned for its wonderful singing, where you are assured of a warm and friendly welcome. Midweek activities include Ladies Fellowship, Choir, House Groups and Fellowship meetings. 

We have two services on a Sunday; the morning service at 10:45am and the evening service at 6:00pm. We also have a Communion Service on the 1st Sunday in the month at the evening service and the 3rd Sunday in the month at the morning service.

Chris Ormerod – 50 Years of Ministry 

thumbnail_L to R-Pauline Smith, Chris Ormerod, Cathy Speed

Fifty years ago, a special service took place at Bethel Church, Newtown, Wigan. This was the INDUCTION SERVICE OF A NEW MINISTER- SISTER CHRISTINE JOHNSON. That was on Tuesday 19th October 1971 – and we couldn’t let the occasion pass without recognising what a wonderful achievement this is for Chris – as she reaches 50 years as a Minister of the Independent Methodist Connexion.

The following extract is from an article which was in the Wigan Circuit Magazine back in October 1971. It details all the various people who took part in the service and then goes on to say: “All the above spoke very well indeed, their varied contributions blending splendidly to give us a wonderful service which was enhanced by the beautiful rendering of the consecration hymn by Sister A. McFadden and the singing of the choir conducted by Bro. Raymond Gill with Bro. Garth Rigby at the organ. The high spiritual tone of the whole service will live long in the minds of those present.”

And we are sure it did – it sounded like a wonderful service!

Chris was a Minister at Bethel for the next four years until she moved to Minister at Platt Bridge IM Church in 1975, returning to Bethel when Platt Bridge closed in 1999, and she’s been at Bethel ever since, for the last 22 years. It is particularly poignant that this special date coincided with Bethel Ladies’ Fellowship Sunday, and that Chris’s daughter, Cath, took the service – and also importantly – we had a lovely Wigan hotpot ready for lunch!

We thank Chris for her years of service, especially for us at Bethel, but also in the wider Circuit and Connexion and we pray the Lord’s continued blessing on her for many, many more years ahead.

thumbnail_Bethel Church Hall with text



thumbnail_Harry with MedalsFrom an early age, Harry spent most of his Church life at St Marks C Of E, Newtown, where he served as Vicar’s Warden for a number of years. He was a member of the PCC, a Sunday School Teacher, Choir Member, a Home Sacrament Steward, House-group Leader, a member of the Men’s Society and carried out endless maintenance work on the Church premises.

Around the age of 80, Harry and his wife Gladys, started attending evening services at Bethel. Latterly, when the 9.15am service at St Marks became unmanageable – it was Bethel morning and evening for Harry. During this time, he was a supporter of Bethel’s Luncheon Club, and the Last Night of the Proms together with the Easter and Christmas Cantatas.

In 2017 Harry was attacked in his own home. Social media resulted in the Submarine Service making contact and they organized a trip to London for Harry where, as the oldest Submariner in the country, he was introduced to Prince William.

Harry was admitted to a Care Home in 2019 where his health rapidly deteriorated, especially with the restrictions of Covid. Despite this, he was able to respond to hymns and the reciting of The Lord’s Prayer, once visits were allowed. Covid restrictions put a damper on the planned events for Harry’s 100th Birthday on the 18th April 2020. However, through the power of social media he received over 600 Birthday cards, together with his special card from the Queen.

We remember Harry with love and affection and thank God for his faith which encouraged and inspired so many people over the years. Harry’s love and friendship, together with his great sense of humour, crossed over the generations.

The Funeral Service is planned for the 15th October, when members from the Clergy of St Marks and Bethel, together with the Submarine Service and the family, will acknowledge a life lived to the full in the Service of his Master.


thumbnail_Geoff & Pauline

On Sunday 29th August we welcomed Geoff Matthews into membership. Geoff has had a long association with Bethel, being baptised here as a baby in 1957. He attended along with his parents until work took him to various different parts of the world. It has been great to have Geoff back with us for the last couple of years and it was a joy to formally welcome him into the fellowship. 
The service was conducted by our new Minister, Pauline Smith, who spoke on what it means to belong to the local church and to the wider church of God, using our spiritual gifts to encourage and build each other up so that we can fulfill our mission of reaching out to those in our community who need to experience the love of Jesus in their lives. 

Congratulations Geoff, we look forward to sharing fellowship together in the days ahead.


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