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Mike Claridge

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Profile

I'm Mike Claridge and I live in Cotteridge (Birmingham) with my wife Susan and our daughters, Rose and Anastasia.

I run this website as a way of keeping together various resources and links connected with my work and personal life. I hope that you find the site useful and interesting.

I work as Minister of The Cotteridge Church which is a joint Methodist, United Reformed and Church of England congregation. It came into existence in 1981 when the then three seperate churches in Cotteridge formed a Local Ecumenical Project. In 1985 the three churches came together in one building and The Cotteridge Church was formed.

From July 2003 until March 2017 I was based in West Bromwich. There I worked 'on a joint and equal basis' for the Church of England and The Methodist Church. I had pastoral care of St Andrew's (Carters Green), Ryders Green Road Methodist Church and joint pastoral care of Wesley, West Bromwich.

I am a son of the Black Country, having been born and brought up in Pelsall, but my wife is from Shrewsbury. Our daughters are also Shropshire born, having entered our lives while I was serving at Christ Church, Wellington, Telford, Shropshire from 1995 - 2003.

While at Wellington I was very proud of the links I developed between Christians and Muslims. Our Church Hall was used as a mosque school and for Friday prayers. For a short time, when the hall was out of action, the group used the choir vestry in church as their prayer room. I maintain my interest in interfaith dialogue.

I was ordained Deacon in 1992 and Presbyter in 1993 and served at The Church of the Holy Spirit in Shrewsbury from 1992 - 1995. During this time I was involved in founding Emmanuel Church, a Church of England and Methodist Local Ecumenical Partnership, that initially met in community centres before planning it's own building.

I trained for ordination ecumenically at The Queen's Foundation, Birmingham. During my final year there I was one of two ordinands selected by the Church of England to attend l'Institut œcuménique de Bossey of the World Council of Churches (near Geneva, Switzerland). There I completed their Certificate in Ecumenical Studies validated by the University of Geneva. The course there was themed 'Towards New Models of Community' and was attended by participants from around the world, several of whom I've maintained contact with.

Prior to ordination I qualified as a Member of the Institution of Environmental Health Officers and worked with the local authority in Wolverhampton for ten years specialising in Food Hygiene and general Public Health.


I am a supporter of Inclusive Church and OneBodyOneFaith. I support equal marriage in church, although I recognise the pain that is felt on all sides of the discussion.

I enjoy cycling and am the proud owner of a custom built Rourke bike. I completed a 300 mile London - Paris Sponsored Bike Ride in both 2008 and 2012. Another great passion is genealogy and some of my research can be accessed via the link in the menu at the top of the page. I am also a member of The Labour Party.

I also enjoy 'treading the boards' and appeared in Wesley Church West Bromwich's Pantomime productions of 'Babes in the Wood' (2015), 'Aladdin' (2016) and 'Sleeping Beauty' (2017).

Notes:

This website also hosts a website from my previous appointment; St Andrew's Church, West Bromwich. That website is no longer updated but can be found
here.

The website for The Black Country Circuit of The Methodist Church, formerly hosted by myself, is now at a new address
here.

Above: With (l-r) Anastasia, Rose and Susan.

As 'The Emperor' in Wesley's
2016 production of 'Aladdin' with Widow Twanky (Carl Philpott) and Abanazer (Revd Phil Thomas)

Above:
Welcome Service as Minister of The Cotteridge Church
23rd March 2017
With (L-R):
Revd Steve Faber, Moderator, West Midlands Synod (URC).
Revd Helen Jobling, Superintendent Minister, Birmingham Circuit (Methodist Church).
Rt Revd David Urquhart, Bishop of Birmingham (C of E).
Hayward Osborne, Archdeacon of Birmingham (C of E).


Below:
Taken during my 2012 London - Paris ride for Christian Aid including across the battlefields of The Somme area.

“Be compassionate as God is compassionate:
(Luke 6:36))

“We have just enough religion to make us hate, but not enough to make us love one another.”
(
Jonathan Swift)

“Be good to orphans and the needy.
Speak nicely to people. And help the poor.”
(Quran 2:83)

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