At the recent meeting of the Lord Wharton Charity Trustees the news was shared that 2019 had been a very positive year for Bible distribution. After the financial crash of 2008 the trustees had had to restrict applications until the investment fund capital was rebuilt. This was achieved and gradually more Bibles could be given again. Funds carried forward into 2019 meant that all applications were responded to positively. In 2019 1173 Bibles were given away – these were mainly to Year 6 school leavers, but also to a significant number of church young people’s groups. With regular investment income now stabilised the Trustees hope to be able to distribute another 1000 Bibles in 2020. Church applications can be received at anytime; school applications will be dealt with on 1st May 2020 and monthly after that.
Please see the Request Bibles page to make an application.
Some of the children at Silverstone Primary School
receiving their Lord Wharton Bibles,
The Whittlewood Benefice, in Northamptonshire, were delighted to receive the bibles from the Lord Wharton Bible Charity for presentation to the children leaving the 3 primary Church of England Schools in the benefice. Each bible had a book plate with the child’s name and date put in the front.
Silverstone Primary School is the biggest of the three and 24 Youth Bbibles were presented at a Leaver’s Service at the school by one of the Churchwardens, Mrs. Judith Paybody, the Vicar arriving later during the event. The children were called up individually to the platform to shake hands and receive their bibles and they were very pleased to have such an important and lasting gift. The other schools’ leavers were also presented their bibles during the last week of term.
“Our most grateful thanks to you for this excellent gift to our Village children which we trust will be much appreciated as they grow up. It would have been quite a big expenditure for us on our limited budget to fulfil this valuable presentation.”
Anne Pullen, PCC Secretary St. Michael’s Church, Silverstone
Jonathon Buckley writes:
We’ve had the privilege of working with a group of young people over the past 18 months in Parson Cross, a estate in North Sheffield. With a grant from the Lord Wharton Bible Charity, we were able to purchase 12 bibles for a group of young people we work with, the majority of whom have never read or owned their own bible before.
Due to our positive relationship with them, they’ve appreciated having their own copy. It’s led to further questions around faith and God and Christianity which we’re looking forward to building on over the next few weeks.
This year the Trustees are pleased to report that Bible gifts are on the increase and much good work is being done to encourage young people to read the Bible.
In 2017 donations have been made to:
Hemsworth Parish Church 23 copies of NRSV
Netherton Methodist Church 10 copies of NIV
Cyngor Ysgolion Sul 28 Welsh Bibles
YMCA White Rose, Sheffield 12 Youth Bibles
Report of the work of the Lord Wharton Charity – Autumn 2015
Having been encouraged to think about how the death of Jesus 2,000 years ago could change their lives today, the young people from the Cumbria Network of Youth Churches were each given a Bible from the Charitable Trust founded by Philip, 4th Lord Wharton who died 320 years ago.
Saturday 17th October saw nearly 100 young people drawn from across Cumbria to “Ablaze”, an event run by the Carlisle Diocese to support the county’s Youth Network drawn from the Anglican, Methodist and United Reformed Churches across Cumbria. The afternoon was spent in study, activities, talks and games culminating with worship led by a band from Whitehaven and an evangelistic call from Rev Chris Casey. The day ended with every young person taking home a copy of the Soul Survivor NIV Youth Bible funded by the Lord Wharton Bible Charity.
In 1692, four years before his death, Philip, 4th Lord Wharton put land and money into a trust to be used to give the children of Cumberland, Westmorland, Yorkshire and Berkshire (the counties where he held land and had his various homes) a Bible. Over 1,000 were given every year. Ever since the Trust has followed his wishes and children and young people, having learnt a number of Psalms by heart, have received Bibles bearing his name. Many readers may have one in the house given to them or a relative from an earlier generation. The Charity Trustees are ordained ministers or lay people from the Methodist, Baptist, United Reformed Churches as well as the Church of England. Philip, Lord Wharton was from a Presbyterian background but supported toleration during a time of great upheaval including the English Civil War. He was a friend and critic of Oliver Cromwell but also spoke against the beheading of King Charles 1. His Bible charity was for children of Anglican and non-conformist churches.
Unfortunately the financial crash of 2008 badly affected the Charity’s finances and since then it has been impossible to make regular gifts; so it was also a great day this month for the Trustees to be able to resume this important work. The Lord Wharton Charity was represented by the Reverend Peter Sheasby (the Methodist Trustee) who heard Carolyn Dykes (the Project Development Officer for the Carlisle Diocese responsible for the Cumbria Churches Youth Network) speak at Germinate, a Conference held in October 2014 by the Arthur Rank Centre. She had explained about the work of the Network Youth Church in Cumbria and it seemed an ideal way of restarting the disbursement of Bibles in an area which was part of Lord Wharton’s initial bequest.