When Poynton Christian Fellowship’s founding minister Glyn Thomas died in March 2009, the church and his family and friends were parted from a man who completely fitted the bill of the parable of the talents.
Just as Jesus said to the one who used his talents best, “Well done, good and faithful servant”, Glyn lived his life here completely committed to what he believed in, and made extensive use of his considerable skills.
Born in 1932 and son of a Welsh-blooded preacher himself, Glyn became a minister young and pioneered churches in Glasgow, Ripon, Bollington and Grimsby before feeling a clear call at the end of the 1970s to start a new church in Poynton.
In line with his association with the Assemblies of God (internationally the largest Christian grouping outside the Catholic church), Glyn founded Poynton Christian Fellowship (PCF) as it is today – a congregation thriving on full personal expression of their faith and worship.
Starting in Glyn’s own home with just a handful of people, PCF was, by 1980, able to complete the purchase of the former Methodist building at 307 Park Lane, Hockley. Hundreds have since made it their spiritual home, many of them under Glyn’s leadership going on to form new sister churches in Bollington and Cheadle Hulme.
Most recently, the Park Lane buildings have been transformed by a development programme approaching £500,000, thoroughly modernising PCF’s home and adding new social and meeting facilities in the form of the Hockley Centre.
In addition to a large and close family, Glyn’s greatest legacy, though, is in the people he taught and influenced. He and his wife Betty have three sons, of whom two have also become ministers.
In more recent years, with Andrew Allan now pastoring the Poynton congregation, Glyn and his wife Betty travelled the world preaching, teaching and supporting other ministers in their work. Their missions work took in countries as widespread as Ethiopia, the Philippines, USA, Lebanon, France, South Africa, Holland, Ghana, various parts of India and also Central America.
As was said at his funeral service on 26 March, Glyn was always there with new technology, maybe not expert at it but always interested! He taught himself to paint and became an accomplished artist – many people treasure one of his works on their wall.
He was a musician, a keyboard player, even playing the accordion. Glyn was skilled in woodwork and joinery, and he could turn his hand practically to almost anything. He loved cars, and was once known as the ‘White Streak’ as he sped past in a personally prepared white Ford! He loved his football (Doncaster Rovers and later Man Utd) and he enjoyed his golf – at least when it went well, which was not always!
Needless to say, the PCF building was packed for his funeral, with people coming long distances to be there and tributes coming in from many parts of the world.. It was a remarkably joyous occasion as speaker after speaker quoted his feats and his foibles. A memorial service is also planned.
For those of us who knew him, he cannot and will not be forgotten.