Morley church sends gifts on epic journey to remote island colony

Rev Captain Stephen Wright from Morley Community Church
Rev Captain Stephen Wright from Morley Community Church

Residents of a remote island in the southern Atlantic Ocean have received gifts for the year ahead thanks to a Morley congregation.

Morley Community Church members are in regular contact with inhabitants of Tristan da Cunha, which is home to just 260 people.

The islanders have been sent copies of the Living World picture calendar, which features attractive images of British coastal landscapes, by the Rev Captain Stephen Wright and worshippers.

The British colony lies midway between South Africa and the Falkland Islands, and its population is descended from shipwrecked sailors, earning a living by farming and lobster fishing.

The Morley churchgoers have developed an online relationship with the island’s parish church, St Mary’s, and have supplied enough calendars for each household.

Although they are British citizens, many of the families on Tristan da Cunha have never visited the UK, and the emails exchanged between the congregations have given them an insight into life in Yorkshire.

“This is a unique relationship between a community who have always said that Morley is at the centre of the universe and the world’s remotest island community. We hope the Tristan islanders will find this new year gesture to be an encouragement to them,” said church spokesman Andy Dalton.

Although the calendars were mailed in November, the island has no airport and can only be accessed by boat. It is a week’s journey from the mainland.

Closer to home, the church has also teamed up with Morley Elderly Action and sheltered housing complexes to distribute copies of the calendars to pensioners living locally.