Maureen & Marjorie honoured by HM the Queen

16th June 2015

Two members of the Diocese of Sheffield have been recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to their communities.

Maureen Greaves, the church community worker whose husband was murdered on his way to church to play the organ on Christmas Eve night in 2012, has been given the British Empire Medal for Meritorious Service.  While Mrs Marjorie Fotheringham, has been awarded the MBE in the Queen's Birthday honours list for her service of over 50 years to the Girl Guide Movement, to St Nicholas Church.   Maureen was also commissioned as a Church Army Evangelist in 2008. 

Maureen and her husband Alan had both spent a lifetime in social work before Maureen began her work in High Green, Sheffield.  The pair had just launched the St Saviour’s Community Project a few weeks before the murder.  After the murder Maureen publically forgave those who took her husband’s life in the light of her Christian faith and desire not to be burdened with bitterness.

Simon Bessant, the Vicar and chair of the community project said, “I am so very pleased for Maureen.  Following Alan’s murder she continued to live out her Christian faith in service to the marginalised in our community and the project has grown from strength to strength.  Not only do we run a shop selling used clothes, household goods, children’s toys and buggies for next to nothing, we also host a job club and a micro finance savings & loans scheme.  Additionally, we run the Friday Feast, a home cooked two course meal for people who are struggling which is especially aimed at tacking child poverty.  The meal only costs £1 per adult and children eat free.  All of this has been the work of Maureen’s inspirational and total commitment to fighting poverty in our community.  She richly deserves the award.”

Marjorie Fotheringham, aged 69, established the sixth Doncaster Thorne Brownies when she was just 16-years-old and has been committed to keeping the group going ever since.

The Vicar of Thorne, the Rev David Green, said: "Marjorie has given a life-time of commitment to the community of Thorne in so many ways.  This recognition is well deserved and we are all delighted for her."

Maureen Greaves said:

“I was completely surprised and shocked when the letter concerning my award arrived, in fact I phoned up the office in Westminster and asked if they have had made a mistake!  To be honoured in this way is a real blessing to me as I continue to grief for Alan and inspires me to continue in my Christian faith and service to the people of High Green.

Marjorie commented:

“I’m very flattered to receive it, I can’t believe it. I’ve spent all my life doing Brownies and working for the church, it’s just what I do.  Some of the mums and children who attend Brownies don’t know my real name, so they call me by my Brownie name, Brown Owl. It’s how most people know me.  It was really hard not to tell my family about the MBE. My husband Brian, who died eight years ago, would have been very proud of me.”


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