A fundraising book of humorous cartoons has been published in time for Christmas by Wesley Memorial Methodist Church in Oxford.

Jim Godfrey has drawn a cartoon every seven days since late March for the church’s new newsletter, the Wesley Mem Weekly.

The first 32 of these cartoons have been put together into a book, spanning the period from the beginning of lockdown to Halloween.

Inspired by faith, they are designed to be irreverent and amusing.

Jim Godfrey spans two of Oxford’s main church traditions - working in the cathedral at Christ Church, whilst leading the worship band at the Methodist Church.

Oxford Mail:

Jim Godfrey

His cartoons should chime with many and have even won the backing of the Bishop of Oxford, Rt Rev Steven Croft.

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The Bishop said: “Finding something to smile about is vital in the midst of adversity. Jim Godfrey’s cartoons are a real tonic in testing times.”

Leslie Griffiths, Methodist minister in the House of Lords, said: “What an art! Here is a little offering that helps see the funny side of things without diminishing the seriousness of the crisis we are all in, to laugh at our own sillinesses without playing down the anxiety we all feel. Bravo!”

Wesley Mem Weekly Editor Alison Butler added: “Jim’s superb cartoons not only reflect that state of the world, they uncannily express the mood many of us are feeling at the same time. It is a huge blessing to have them feature in our newsletter but as a book they make an ideal Christmas gift too.”

Inheriting his ability to draw from his father, Mr Godfrey was keen that profits should go to Action for Children, a charity with Methodist roots, which support vulnerable children and their families.

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Wesley Memorial’s new minister Rev Peter Powers was delighted, adding: “As a church we are deeply concerned about the impact that the pandemic has had on the most vulnerable in our society.

Oxford Mail:

“Buying copies of Trying Times not only gives us a good laugh, which we sorely need, but more importantly will help youngsters who through no fault of their own are having a really tough time. Well done Jim!”

Trying Times, cartoons for a pandemic costs only £5 including p&p within the UK. Orders can be delivered to you at home, sent by the church to your friends and family or a mixture of both.

Wesley Memorial Church in New Inn Hall Street is a Grade II listed building and dates back to 1743.

Oxford Mail:

Jim Godfrey

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There has been an extensive programme of refurbishment inside since 2010.

To order the book visit the website wesleymem.org.uk or call 07979 767630.

You can also email churchoffice@wesleymem.org.uk