All journeys have a beginning, and CHAPEL is no different. In 1995 Y Parch Brian Griffiths was a Welsh Presbyterian Church of Wales (PCW) minister in the Conwy Valley. Whilst ministering in the Welsh language, he had on his heart to start an English speaking service in one of the Village chapels. After approaching Hywel Hughes JP (Rowen) and Isoline Greenhalgh (Rowen), an English speaking service commenced. This was faithfully continued, once a month for 20 years in Capel Seion, Rowen, organised by Isoline Greenhalgh.
In 2005, Rev Gwyn Parry had just commenced his ministry in Kinmel Bay Church, Kinmel Bay. On 20th August 2005 he heard God speak clearly, to the effect that one day he would leave his pastorate and would help struggling churches and start new ones in rural Wales.
Towards the end of 2013, Rev Gwyn Parry went through a time of 5 to 6 months where he was particularly aware of God's presence. During this time, he would be awake early and would be found in the church at Kinmel Bay at 5:30am and for a few hours would spend time in prayer. On the 28th October 2013, the Holy Spirit spoke clearly though Mark's gospel:
"Let us go somewhere else - to the nearby villages - so I can preach there also. That is why I have come". Mark 1 vs 38
Following this experience, Rev Gwyn Parry started to make preparations to fulfil this call on his life, to help struggling churches and to start new ones in rural Wales. The Conwy Valley had very much been on his heart, and so that is where the journey continued.
In late 2013 Rev Gwyn Parry first made contact with the Conwy Valley through Hazel Elias (Deganwy), who initiated the first meeting with Y Parch Gerwyn Roberts (Llanrwst). Following that meeting, and at various times over a period of 3 years Rev Gwyn Parry was introduced to many more godly people who would be instrumental in the commencement of CHAPEL. These included:
Y Parch Helen Wyn Jones (Eglwysbach), Isoline Greenhalgh (Rowen), Dilys Phillips (Rowen), Angie Mills (Ty'n y Groes), Bryn Jones (Ty'n y Groes), Iola Wyn Jones (Ty’n y Groes), Margaret Fry (Tal y Bont), Beryl Griffith (Tal y Bont) and Y Parch Eric Greene (Bala)
As plans started to develop, Rev Gwyn Parry handed over the baton of leadership and left his pastorate in Kinmel Bay on 31st May 2015 after almost 10 years. Working along side PCW, Rev Gwyn Parry was formally recognised on 28th June 2016, by the Welsh Conwy a Dyfrdwy Presbytery of PCW, as a volunteer minister to the English speaking in the Conwy Valley. The monthly English service in Rowen was taken on by Rev Gwyn Parry and English CHAPEL was established on 1st January 2017 with a celebration in Capel Ty'n y Groes. In June 2018, Kevin and Kim Davis, after 13 years ministering in Libanus Baptist Church Llanfairfechan, came to join CHAPEL to help develop the work.
On 3rd June 2019, CHAPEL was joined by Richard and Melinda Williams and children, an American family, who have come to live in the Conwy Valley as they feel called by God to come to minister with CHAPEL. On the 17th June 2019, CHAPEL became a registered charity, and on 21st July 2019, Rev Gwyn Parry preached his last sermon as Minister in the Local Hub in the Conwy Valley, and passed on the baton of leadership to local Pastor Richard Williams with eldership support from Pastor Kevin Davis.
Rev Gwyn Parry has taken on a Regional role with a view to plant and or strengthen in other rural villages in North Wales. If you would like to speak to CHAPEL in regard to them helping your rural church or chapel, then please contact Rev Gwyn Parry on the email below.