One More Step Along The Golden Thread is Revd Mary Randle’s home-grown, humble and heart-warming account of growing up with a disabled parent, working in prisons and social services and becoming a Methodist minister. Sales have already raised more than £100 for the Society.
Mary’s captivating story opens with a shotgun blast that changed her father’s life forever – when he was just a teenager. The gun went off by accident. Mary’s father Jack survived, but his sight didn’t. Yet that didn’t stop him from visualising a future for himself.
He set up his own basket making business. One day, a young woman, Elsie, saw him trying to cross the street. She offered her hand to help Jack avoid the traffic. The two stepped onto a road of romance. They married in 1937.
They started a family, and daughter Mary was dedicated as a baby at a Baptist church. But their nearest Sunday school was at Whittleford Methodist Church. So she went there.
‘Someone said, “What are you going to do?”,’ Mary recalled. ‘Deep down I wanted to do something to care. The idea of working with prisoners came to me. I didn’t even know where the nearest prison was!’
In 1961 she started working at Strangeways, Manchester. ‘People said I wouldn’t last five minutes,’ Mary remembered, ‘but I did!’ She spent seven years in the prison service.
Mary met Eric, who was working for British Leyland. They married in 1968 (the couple are pictured). Sadly, Eric died recently, just as we were putting together the Spring 2018 edition of Roof ‘n’ Roots.
How did the title of her book come about? ‘That came at my interview to go into the ministry,’ Mary recalled. ‘I felt like it was God’s initiative and he’d been leading me along this golden thread.’
Copies of One More Step Along The Golden Thread cost £4.50 each. For the full story, see Roof ‘n’ Roots.