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Maundy Money recipient – Peter Hutchinson

Two individuals from the Diocese of Sheffield are to be given Maundy Money in recognition of their longstanding service.

The Revd Anne Parr, a retired teacher with a PTO (Permission To Officiate) for the Parish of St John the Baptist Church Penistone, has been selected along with Dr Peter Hutchinson, a Focal Minister at Holy Trinity Ulley.

The Maundy Service is taking place in Worcester Cathedral today (Thursday 28th March) at 11am, with 75 men and 75 women chosen from across the UK. The tradition of the monarch distributing silver coins dates back to the 13th Century, when the Royal Family took part in ceremonies washing the feet of poor people and giving money and gifts. This year, Her Majesty The Queen (formerly HRH The Duchess of Cornwall) will distribute the coins.

Read more below on Peter Hutchinson, in his own words:

About Me

Raised in a devoted family in which my Dad became a Methodist Minister, I trained in a theological college and served in the church until concern for the paucity of pastoral care led me to retrain as a Psychiatric Social Worker. That was the time when social work was re organised, transformed, turned about and struggled. So I never actually worked with mentally ill people, but was directed to different jobs through six turbulent years. I returned to Sheffield to be responsible for hospital social work and the relations between the city council and local health service. I spent 2 years as a member of the Mental Health Act Commission. I also seconded to the Regional Health Authority for 2 years. I eventually retired, becoming Director of the Alcohol Advisory Service in the city.

In the year 2000, responsible for the Drink Driver Rehabilitation Scheme throughout Yorkshire, and approaching 70, I needed to plan for retirement. We bought a small empty farmhouse in Northern France to renovate, moved into Treeton, found the lovely church congregation in Ulley and I retired from preaching. For the next 17 years that remained our life – moving between the two homes until we finally needed and moved fully back to Treeton. I was also then elected as Lay Chair of the deanery, and as I reflected on church life, the shortage of clergy and its impact disturbed any relaxed, calm feelings I might have had. Without any reason I could see, God seemed to prod me by “you ought to be preaching again”! Eventually I met with Bishop Pete to see if that would be possible and he said Yes.

Commencing preaching once again brought to the fore a concern about the use of the Lectionary. It’s general use began in 1983 and in 1995 had been revised and accepted worldwide. By 2019 it had been in wide use for 24 years in reality concentrating congregational preaching to a 3 year cycle. Previously as I preached to many different congregations the concern had not been personally felt. Now, preaching to one congregation, I proposed to the PCC that I prepare our own lectionary based on St John’s gospel. They required me to consult with two nominated clergy, who accepted my proposal and I set about preparing a “Year D” lectionary to commence use on Advent Sunday.

Once completed I sent it to Bishop Pete out of curtesy and he chose to set aside time to study it carefully before replying. He approved its use, made minor suggestions and called it “elegant”! Every visiting clergy accepted and used it throughout the year. It was a deal of work and has left me with the problem of how I can raise my concern and show the result to a wider audience.

In 2020, the need became a necessity as our Rector moved on. Our church Warden wonderfully found, and continues to find, clergy willing to lead Holy Communion for us, every other week. The remainder de facto became my responsibility, especially as the Covid pandemic meant we had to zoom our services. As the strategy developed and Focal Ministers became a reality, 3 of us felt it fitted like a glove. There are opportunities which daily challenge us to explore change, that we might impact more and serve our village community better.

How did I hear about the Maundy Money news?

One of the day’s most ordinary tasks is to pick up the post on the floor. It may be advertising, confirmation of appointments already in the diary – barely is there anything to stimulate or excite. So imagine picking up a cream envelope with “Buckingham Palace” printed on it. “Whatever is this?’ was the overriding question. It was bewilderingly answered, saying I was to be a recipient of Maundy Money this year, if I wished.

Details of receipt

The details were given that this year’s ceremony is to be at Worcester Cathedral on Maundy Thursday, when seventy five women and seventy five men, the same number as the monarch’s age, would receive the Maundy Money in the annual service starting at 11 am. Feelings sort of shut down. I am not use to receiving plaudits like that. We began to share it with family, to see lovely smiles and phrases such as “What an honour”. Slowly the sense of recognition and honour began to seep in. Being a tiny cog in whatever I do, and yet being recognised, is a humbling but satisfying experience confirming that God is involved in the minutiae of human life.

What does this mean?

Then, of course, planned and mundane matters have to be dealt with. What about Good Friday’s “Stations of the Cross”? The church has all the material, including a service and others are available – so it only needs readers and there will be enough folks to deal with all that will be required. Easter is planned, the visiting Minister already booked so there will not be any difficulties there. Where would we stay? A hotel would need to be sourced and booked, but will we drive down and drive back over the two days or what? No family live near but friends are not far away. Some will be already organised but.. and a telephone call brings a joyous invitation – the icing on the cake as it were, to spend the weekend with friends. Last time we saw her she painstakingly and wonderfully conducted a family funeral for us, now we can celebrate together. What a joyful Easter it is going to be. Every ministry is a very personal matter which has directed this writing. I know that in moving to social work I made some serious mistakes, but that is behind me. This I see as a recognition that, in general, my ministry is accepted, has some value and is recognised and helpful.

Easter message

Hearts and minds are full of the tragedies and horrors facing humanity at present. It’s overwhelming not only for us but also for leaders of the nations most involved. I reflect on Jesus and try to imagine him, as a man, travelling through his last few weeks and as he determined to go to Jerusalem. He remained calm and prayed for a long at Gethsemane. Any inner conflicts, doubts, fears remain undeclared and uncertain but it must have been an horrendous journey. What we know and experience today Jesus knew then, in himself, yet was firm in continuing his journey. But Jesus’ horrors were not the end, even though they cost everything they were lived through, accepted because ultimately “HE IS RISEN” was his and is the outcome for those who walk Jesus’ journey.