A CONGREGATION gathered for the induction service of its new minister – who used the story of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland to highlight her message.

The Reverend Kate McKenna began her work at Bury Unitarian Church in November last year, but was officially installed on Saturday, March 4.

Alluding to Lewis Carroll’s famous children’s story, Ms McKenna asked her congregation if it was willing to strike a bargain. She said: “If you will believe in me, I will believe in you.

“I want to assure you that, for as long as I am your minister, my commitment to ministering to you, and with you, will be at the forefront. My ministry with Bury Unitarians will continue to be far more than a job. Whatever I do will always be done in the right spirit. It has been a privilege to begin to get to believe in you.

“Your welcome and understanding have been magnificent, and I very much want that to continue.”

The Reverend Cody Coyne, minister at Cross Street Chapel, Manchester, conducted and devised the service, with help from Ms McKenna, and the sermon was delivered by the Reverend Jim Corrigall, from the Lancashire Constabulary Ministry.

The charge to the minister was offered by the Reverend Lynne Readett, who stressed that ministry is a vocation, and one which always concerns the minister in many aspects of community life.

However, she advised Ms McKenna to leave sufficient time for her own personal development, despite the demands of her work.

The Reverend Gillian Peel issued the charge to the congregation, suggesting to members that they use their minister wisely, involving her in all aspects of church life and keeping her informed of their needs.