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St Mary’s Woodford Parish Magazine Volume 7 Issue 4

Jesus, the light of the world - we added to the lighthouse names of people who make us safe

Winter 2016

Welcome The old Prayer Book collect at the top of the opposite page was traditionally used on the second Sunday of Advent, which became known as Bible Sunday. It asks that we might hear, read, mark, learn and inwardly digest the holy Scriptures. For the Bible is the backbone of God’s church, a thread of continuity going back to the first centuries of the Christian faith, revealing the nature of God and his care for humanity, giving us guidance and comfort, encouraging us with examples and promises. The Thirty Nine Articles of the Church of England say that the Bible contains all that is necessary for salvation, and nothing shall be required of anyone unless it can be proved from Scripture. At St Mary’s we normally include at least two texts from the Bible in every service, and there are many scriptural allusions in our prayers and hymns. This is good, but may not be enough to take us all the way in marking, learning and inwardly digesting the Bible. For this reason, many of us read the Bible at home; or take part in home groups which study the texts. There is more about Bible study on page 8. In 2017 we are going to try something new at St Mary’s. A one-hour Bible study session in church, led by one of the clergy, so that a passage of Scripture can be looked at in depth. The first of these will be held on 12th February, between the 10am service and the usual second-Sunday lunch. I have yet to decide which portion of Scripture we should look at first, so I will welcome your suggestions. In the meantime, a very happy Christmas and New Year to all! Revd Canon Ian Tarrant, email: Front cover: a visual aid from our Christingle service in December. More photos from this service on page 24. 2

Blessed Lord, who hast caused all holy Scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant that we may in such wise hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that by patience and comfort of thy holy Word, we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which thou hast given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.

Parish Register Wedding


12th November Stephen Bonser & Polly Newman

2nd October Frank & David Pisch


27th November Frank Pisch Luke Kaminski Deimante Gogyte

9th November Ruth Fisher 1st December Irene Dellow


Frank & David’s baptism

Frank & Luke

Polly & Stephen 3

Life at St Mary’s

Live music day in October with Woodford Wheezards and Natural Voices Choir.

Brownie Bingo night Bob, Becca and Kay helped out at a Deanery youth event called ‘Fearless’ in October.


Bazaar 2016


Life at St Mary’s

Remembrance Sunday


Service of thanksgiving for the bereaved

Woodford Friends & Neighbours Christmas Dinner


The Bible Bible Reading Fellowship

Internet Bible resources

If you are leaving behind the world of books and papers and using the internet more, you will find a wealth of Bible Several members of the congregation use BRF resources as an aid to regular texts and commentary in cyberspace. Bible Reading. The notes are available For example: as a printed booklet, PDF or app. There  is a website with dozens of different are six different series of notes - the Bible versions. You can look up a one used by most in St Mary’s church particular passage, or search for a group, New Daylight is also available key word or phrase. You can as a daily email! compare different translations of a If you would like to find out more passage side by side on the screen. please ask Janet Collins (8504 9982) There is also a Bible Gateway app for a copy of the leaflet Make Time for for Android phones and tablets. God. There are also a few copies of the is a website different booklets by the notice board which offers a downloadable in the foyer. application for Windows and Mac See computers, with Bible versions built-in, so that afterwards you can read and search the scriptures without being connected to the internet. There are also linked commentaries. The program and many Bible versions come free, but for some copyrighted material you have to pay a fee. A similar app for the Android operating system is called MySword again once you have downloaded it, you don’t need a data signal to use it.


Bible words of comfort God will give you strength. ‘I have the strength to face all conditions by the power that Christ gives me.’ Philippians 4:13 God is a safe place of refuge. ‘God is our shelter and strength, always ready to help in times of trouble. So we will not be afraid, even if the earth is shaken and mountains fall into the ocean depths; even if the seas roar and rage, and the hills are shaken by the violence.’ Psalm 46: 1-3 God can be trusted with our worries. ‘Don’t worry about anything, but in all your prayers ask God for what you need, always asking him with a thankful heart. And God’s peace, which is far beyond human understanding, will keep your hearts and minds safe in union with Christ Jesus.’ Philippians 4: 6,7 Nothing can separate us from God’s love. ‘For I am certain that nothing can separate us from his love: neither death nor life, neither angels nor other heavenly powers or rulers, neither the present nor the future, neither the world above nor the world below - there is nothing in all creation that will ever be able to separate us from the love of God which is ours through Jesus Christ our Lord.’ Romans 8:38,39

God is with you. ‘Do not be afraid. I am with you! I am your God - let nothing terrify you! I will make you strong and help you; I will protect you and save you.’ Isaiah 41:10 Thank you to Jennica Stevens from the American Bible Society for sharing this on the Internet. She says, ‘the next time that you can't fall asleep because of worry, meditate on these verses to remind you that God is with you in the midst of your difficult circumstances.’

Almighty God, we thank you for the gift of your holy word. May it be a lantern to our feet, a light upon our paths, and a strength to our lives. Take us and use us to love and serve all people in the power of the Holy Spirit and in the name of your Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. From Common Worship


From first to twenty-first... from Acts to actions

Not just belonging

This is the fourth in a series of articles based on the earliest church as described in the book of Acts. You may want to use them for personal reflection - or as material for discussion in your home group.

Acts 4:1-4, 32-37

This passage is about the church in Jerusalem, in the early years after the death and resurrection of Jesus. As you read it you may want to ask all kinds of questions, but imagine yourself in that new community of believers.  What would attract you?  What would you find challenging?

Acts 11:19-29

and/or the planned giving Scheme; also by contributing to worship by singing in the choir, reading a lesson, or leading prayers, by being on a rota or a committee, or helping in many other ways…  In these passages from Acts, what signs of commitment to the church do you see? Believing In both our readings we see that it was believing which united the church. Within every church there is some diversity of belief - the New Testament letters reveal that there were points of contention even in the earliest churches - and yet there was a core belief in Christ, his cross and resurrection which held them together. Eventually Christians wrote creeds and catechisms to summarise their faith.  If you had to write a one sentence statement of the Christian faith, what would it be?

This passage is about the church in Antioch (modern day Antakya near the border between Turkey and Syria), founded by Christians fleeing persecution in Jerusalem. They invited local people to join them - including those who spoke Greek, rather than Aramaic or Hebrew.  Can you imagine yourself as a refugee?  And also starting a new church? Belonging People show that they belong to our church not just by showing up for services, but also by joining the Electoral Roll, the Church Directory, 10

Church garden in Antakya - Maarten Sepp, Wikipedia

Becoming When people commit their lives to following Jesus, and open their hearts to the Holy Spirit, they are gradually transformed. Rubbing shoulders with other Christians they adopt the ways of the community. As the Bible is read, good role-models are seen. All these factors contribute to a change in behaviour - becoming a new creation, becoming more like Jesus our Lord. Relationships are restored, debts are paid, bad habits dropped, good habits adopted. Some experts talk about the moment of conversion as ‘justification’, but the subsequent gradual change of lifestyle is called ‘sanctification’ - ie becoming holy. We are saved by our faith, not by our actions - but when we have faith, our actions change for the better.  How have you been changed by God?  What improvements to your character is he still working on? Bringing The churches in Jerusalem and Antioch grew because people shared their faith with neighbours, colleagues and friends; and brought them along to join the Christian community. There were no mass-media for advertising, no books or pamphlets to give away. It was all down to personal contact.  What keeps you from sharing your faith with the people you know?  What keeps you from inviting people to come to church?

The chicken or the egg? Some people belong before they believe: that is to say, they find a home in a church community, before they grasp what are the key beliefs of the faith. Others grasps the good news of Jesus first, and then look for a church to join. For some, bringing others comes naturally even before their character has changed; others need sanctification first.  What sequence of these four, belonging, believing, becoming, and bringing, would best summarise your own journey of faith?

A simple creed

This text is used in baptism services to unite the whole congregation with those being baptised. Do you believe and trust in God the Father, source of all being and life, the one for whom we exist? I believe and trust in him. Do you believe and trust in God the Son, who took our human nature, died for us and rose again? I believe and trust in him. Do you believe and trust in God the Holy Spirit, who gives life to the people of God and makes Christ known in the world? I believe and trust in him. This is the faith of the Church. This is our faith. We believe and trust in one God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Amen. 11

Beyond our shores overflows with ideas that sometimes win the day simply through male dominance. Nevertheless, he’s a likeable character and one of the few Muslims at HAU. Everyone meets at I’ve been here for two weeks already. 8am for morning prayers and I was surprised to find that although announcements for the day. On the day I knew where I’d be staying and of the memorial service Nasur asked if working, I’d have to re-adjust a lot to someone could pray to God for good being back in Africa. At least back in weather. This open air/tented memorial Kampala urban life! Hot nights, service is open to family and friends of screaming babies, howling dogs. those who’ve died in the previous year. As in London, earplugs are handy. It lasts the whole morning with Experiencing the pollution – red dust religious leaders (RC, Anglican and everywhere, matatus (taxis) belching Muslim) speaking and saying prayers. out black fumes. Then the names of the departed are Our house is spacious and we have read out as their friends or relatives a large bedroom with our own shower. wait and light a candle that’s planted in We share the house with Zena, a the memorial area with photos of the British Italian born in Uganda, who deceased. 250-300 people came. was CEO of Hospice Africa Uganda This week I found myself teaching (HAU) when I first visited in 2012. nurses, two men and two women, on Zena works hard scoping a project for the Diploma in Palliative Care course. the American Cancer Society. Two It was wonderful getting to know them Palliative Care consultants rent and encouraging them to think and ask adjacent houses in this compound: questions. Mhoira set up the Makerere palliative I also talked to Eddie Mwebesa, the care unit; Julia set up Mildmay for new CEO. He’s spent a lot of time HIV/AIDS. So there’s a wealth of working in the USA and has a clear helpful contacts for me to explore. vision for HAU. USAID had been the It was wonderful being welcomed major donor until 2014. New donors back at the Hospice. So many familiar were found but not before a rethink of faces, especially Lisa, who was my personnel and slimming down of research assistant. The academic team HAU’s operations. We had a useful was in the process of completing a discussion to clarify the best use of me. research application and immediately I enjoy clinical work where I meet snaffled me up. It became a lengthy people, but I can see Eddie’s point, that experience with the two coordinators although I’d be valued, there’s a team battling over the research design. I got already doing that. I need to be in to know both of them well by the contact with clinical work as an submission date. Miriam is really inspiration for development, research delightful with a great sense of humour and teaching. All of these feed into and broad approach to life. Nasur each other. I can see where I’d fit in in

Barbara Duncan writes from Uganda


the future. For the remaining month that I’m here, I need to get in touch with African palliative care and how HAU works. Perhaps even collaboration on future projects with other organisations will be possible. Apart from work, I’ve managed to get back on the tennis court, swim a few times and go to the gym at the club across the road. It’s a good place to meet people and get back in touch with friends. However, I’m finding I become a bit irritated with this predominantly white world that charges £1.75 for a cappuccino – twice the price of lunch at HAU – matoke (steamed plantain), beans, rice, potato, bit of meat and tiny amount of greens. I refer to it as the ‘white ghetto’ and so enjoy being with Ugandans at HAU. I have friends who live in this white bubble at work, home and church. Kampala International Church was set

A mural at the Hospice

up by ex-pats for ex-pats. Right, that’s not for me. I’ve tried it and I just don’t fit into that type of church – electric guitar, unstructured ‘worship’ – not enough spiritual depth for me, I’m afraid. So… I’m looking for the right church for me. I’ve been to All Saints Cathedral (Anglican) but I’m going to Namirembe Cathedral (Anglican) tomorrow. They have more traditional choirs (who actually look as though they’re having fun) and communion every Sunday. It’s a bit of a distance to go to but Uber has arrived in Kampala and revolutionized transport. Safer than a boda-boda (motorbike taxi) and not as expensive as a private taxi (£12). So, fingers crossed that it works tomorrow! Barbara Duncan 13

France Le Bec Helloin and the Canterbury connection It is a great delight to explore abbeys and monasteries, to imagine the life of the monks and nuns, and, if the abbey is still in use as a place of prayer and worship, to participate in its life and its services. I have been delighted on two or three occasions to visit with my friends the abbey at Le Bec Helloin. It is situated in the department of Eure in the Haute-Normandie region in northern France. The village is known for its abbey. It has recently been voted one of the most beautiful villages of France. The abbey was founded in 1034 by Herluin, who was a Benedictine and a knight at the court of Brionne. The abbey was damaged in the Hundred Years’ War, closed in 1791 because of the French Revolution and damaged in 1944 in the Second World War. In recent times beautiful restoration work has taken place at the abbey and in the village. It is fascinating to think of the connections this abbey has, and has had, with Canterbury. Herluin after military service lived the life of a hermit. He was however soon joined 14

by others. Among them was Lanfranc, who came to the abbey in 1042 and who became Archbishop of Canterbury from 1070 until 1089 during the reign of William the Conqueror. He was followed by Anselm, who was also part of the community at Le Bec Helloin and who was Archbishop of Canterbury from 1093 until 1109. There are still today ties with Canterbury, clearly visible in the abbey and in the village. We walked along the Rue de Canterbury and although we ourselves had our sandwiches we saw the restaurant Le Canterbury. Guided tours are available of the abbey and there is a well-stocked gift shop. There is a walk up through woodland to the campsite where we stayed. I was very interested to read in the newssheet at Canterbury Cathedral for 10th July 2016 that there was an opportunity for some members of the regular congregation there to visit the abbey at Le Bec Helloin. May the connections continue! Cheryl Corney

Quiz Who or what are we? We are all part of the Christian story and we all begin with ‘P’. 1 Before my conversion my name was Saul. 2 Jesus said to me that before the cock crowed I would deny him thrice. 3 Christians are told not to cast us before swine. 4 I contain much wisdom, often expressed in short statements. I am a book of the Old Testament. 5 My name is Mrs. P_______. I work in the church office. 6 There are a lot of us in church. People sit on us. 7 I am an artist and I have worked with Quest. Members of the congregation have viewed some of my work in exhibitions in town. 8 We are P______ and P_______. We are editors of this magazine. 9 I am a person who journeys to a sacred place as an act of religious devotion.

10 I invite members of the congregation to read lessons at the 10am service and some other services. My name is P_______. 11 Joseph was sold to me to be a household slave. I made him head of the household. My wife was furious at Joseph for resisting her attempts to seduce him. 12 In cathedrals I am the priest responsible for the direction of the choral services. 13 I am a platform found in many churches. I am raised well above the surrounding floor. I enhance audibility and visibility and am accessed by steps. 14 I am traditional church music in medieval modes and free rhythm, sung in unison. 15 We are sacred songs, some of which were composed by King David. 16 I am one of the four cardinal virtues. 17 I am a small box in which the consecrated Host is kept or carried, especially when taking communion to the sick. Answers on page 27 15

Switzerland (and Woodford!)

The elusive Revd Henry Martin

The deeds to our house state that the first owner was the Reverend Henry Martin, Clerk in Holy Orders from Winchester who purchased the land from the British Land Company in 1879. Soon after we moved in 25 years ago we decided to find out more. An archivist at Crockford, the directory for Church of England clergy, confirmed that he was then the Principal of Winchester Diocesan Training College (now King Alfred's College) for 34 years. Martin and I then made an appointment at the Hampshire Records Office and came home laden with photocopies of documents and 16

photographs of this stern looking gentleman, often seen wearing a straw boater in college photographs. His signature was identical to the one witnessed on our deeds. We decided to visit the college and met, by chance, a retired academic who had written a history of the college. It included research about Henry Martin. We found out that he was a keen mountaineer, like many other Victorian clergymen, and had died in Switzerland. As the years passed we thought no more about it until we were planning a trip to Switzerland last summer and decided to find out more. I contacted the Alpine Club and their archivist sent me an obituary written in 1919. Henry Martin had not died in a climbing accident but on holiday in Vevey, accompanied by his wife, having attended the 8 o'clock service at the English Church where he suffered a heart attack. His wife chose to have him buried in the country he loved rather than bring his body back to England. I made contact with the priest in charge only to find that the church had kept few records over the years and there was no graveyard. So in August, while staying in Vevey, we found the church, unfortunately locked, and the local graveyard overlooking Lake Geneva. Again there were few records, and a lot of old graves had been reused. Then an American friend came to

stay, and under our instruction, whilst staying with friends in Vevey soon afterwards, tried to find out more. He attended a Sunday service at the English Church and took some photos of the interior for me. Then he and a Swiss friend went to the local records office but could find out no more. When Henry Martin had our house built he was already living in a gothic-style mansion with his family next to the college. He was not a local man and our house was sold two years later for only a modest gain in value. So why did he need a house in Woodford? Penny Freeston

Coming to terms with grief

The Aberfan tragedy remembered In the Welsh valleys there has been a tragic anniversary. 50 years ago the village of Aberfan lost 116 of their children in one morning. The coalwaste tip on the mountain overlooking the village slid down the mountain, over two farms, before burying several houses and part of the primary school. The memories are still vivid and many survivors still bear emotional scars. Bishop David Wilbourne (Llandaff) preached at the Anniversary Service. Below are some extracts of an article of his which made an impression on me. ‘Only minutes before the disaster the children had been in the school hall, their assembly ending with All Things Bright and Beautiful. Unlike the rest of the school, the hall was unscathed by the landslide. Springing history’s ultimate ‘if only’ moments. If only Mrs CF Alexander had penned an extra couple of verses to her hymn. I watched the children’s mass funeral on our grainy black and white TV. The rain was still pouring, the parents’ heads were bare, over a hundred little white coffins lined up for burial. They sang in Welsh Jesu lover of my soul to the tune Aberystwyth; the same hymn the Welsh infantry had 18

sung as they marched into Mametz Wood on the Somme before being cut to ribbons by machine gun fire. Both Judaism and Christianity have tunes at their heart, laments and songs of glory: the Song of Songs, the psalms, the Benedictus, the Magnificat, the Nunc Dimittis. Tunes help you believe more easily, to coin an advertising slogan. The music of the Gospel leads us home. They get that in Wales, all that Godimpaled stuff, as St John Chrysostom said ‘No use worshipping God in the sanctuary unless you pity him in the slum.’ In the weeks following the disaster Glyn Simon, the Archbishop of Wales, thought ‘blow disestablishment’ and visited every single bereaved home and had a cuppa around the hearth with every grieving parent. Fifty years on our memories are jogged by ‘iconic’ images of that dreadful day: a Welsh policeman, a rugby-lock in full uniform walking through the rubble at Aberfan carrying the crumpled body of a little girl, his face contorted, barely able to control his emotions. But that picture was no deadly Pieta, instead an icon of resurrection because marvellously, miraculously, the little girl was still alive. God may be impaled on the world’s sorrows, but He’s there aching for Easter’s dawn. The Last Supper of the Upper Room, marking Christ in every broken body, every drop of spilled blood, gives way to the First Supper of Emmaus, marking the promise of resurrection.

To turn Chrysostom on his head, ‘No use pitying Christ in the slum unless you worship him risen in the sanctuary.’ Chris Meikle

'No Man is an Island' No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as any manor of thy friends or of thine own were; any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

We are collecting non-perishable food for the Redbridge Foodbank. The collection box is now in the church foyer every Sunday.

Olde English Version No man is an Iland, intire of itselfe; every man is a peece of the Continent, a part of the maine; if a Clod bee washed away by the Sea, Europe is the lesse, as well as if a Promontorie were, as well as if a Manor of thy friends or of thine owne were; any mans death diminishes me, because I am involved in Mankinde; And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; It tolls for thee. MEDITATION XVII Devotions upon Emergent Occasions John Donne


Faith in action Encouraging international friendship can you help?

HOST is a charity, founded 29 years ago by the British Council, Foreign & Commonwealth Office and Victoria League, which encourages international friendship and understanding by arranging for adult international students at universities in the UK to spend one to four days in a British home. Hosting is a wonderful opportunity to meet people from around the world and introduce them to our customs. HOST’s work is even more important at the moment with the recent increase of racist and xenophobic abuse across the UK. More information can be found on the HOST website,

Talking point ‘Any religion worth its salt exists to offer its believers a comprehensive view of life, a vision of transcendent reality combined with a pathway of transformation for the human condition.’ Alan Race, Chairman, World Congress of Faiths.  Do you agree?  If so is there anything else you look

for in your religion?

 If you do not agree, why not?  What do you look for in your


Rowena Rudkin

East London Three Faiths Forum 2017 An outline of the programme for the coming year. 26th January - Does faith build bridges or barriers? 9th March - Modern theologians 27th April - Book launch: A father's journey and a son's dream 25th May - A holy life: becoming God's person 13th July - Visit to the Gardens of Peace (biggest Muslim cemetery in UK) 13th August - Barbecue 14th September - Scriptural reasoning: family rights and duties 9th November - Rights and duties in society December - Party Keep up to date by visiting 20

Book Review Little Books of Guidance: Finding answers to life’s big questions SPCK has published a series of short books titled Little books of guidance, at £3.99 each. There are currently seven in the series. Details of two are given below. The other five are: What do we mean by God? by Keith Ward Where on earth is Heaven? by Paula Gooder How do I pray? by John Pritchard Why are we here? By Alister McGrath Why Does God Allow Suffering? Robin Gill

Why read the Bible? by Tom Wright ISBN: 978-0281073269   

Why go to Church? by John Pritchard ISBN: 978-0281074419

What is the Bible? Why is it important? How is it to be interpreted?

John Pritchard, formerly Bishop of Oxford, takes an honest look at what the Church is really for and how it works, in the following chapters: ‘It’s a big book, full of big stories  Reasons for not going to with big characters. They have big Church ideas (not least about themselves) and make big mistakes. It’s about God,  Why is it worth going to and greed and grace; about life, lust, Church? laughter and loneliness. It's birth,  What is the Church for? beginnings and betrayal; siblings,  So you're going (back) to squabbles and sex; about power and Church prayer and prison and passion... And  Making the most of the service that’s only Genesis.’ Mind the gap (between hope Tom Wright unpacks the contents  and reality) of the Bible and explains the meaning of its inspiration, authority and continuing influence in the world today. 21

Music at St Mary’s

An unexpected concert ‘So, perhaps we could do a concert together’ said Deborah Aloba to me during a visit to my house in October 2015, after she had noticed the Yamaha upright piano sitting in the front room. Her statement was, to say the least, somewhat of a surprise, since Deborah had at that time recently been hired by the Memorial Hall trustees to do an historical project about the hall, and she had actually come to visit to talk about how a website might be created for this project. I knew she had trained as a lawyer, and had been hired as an historian, but there’d been no hint of music in any of this. Thus, during our first meeting in October 2015, I had no idea that Deborah sang, or how well. Nonetheless, I have long ago learned that if I was asked to play in a concert the correct answer was almost always, ‘that would be lovely!’ So, that’s what I said. During my life in Toronto and now in London I had accompanied perhaps fifty or so singers, mostly but not exclusively amateur, and had, almost always, enjoyed doing it. So, then she said, ‘well, perhaps we could do a concert of opera arias’. Now, this was a little more of a surprise, because opera arias demand a lot from a singer. I thought to myself, ‘she’d have to be pretty good!’ ‘What opera do you like?’ she asked. This was also a surprise – normally an opera accompanist doesn’t really get a say in 22

what the music is going to be – it has to be what the singer knows, after all. Nonetheless, I responded that I particularly liked Mozart and Wagner, and was rather less fond of Verdi. Surely, I thought, this would have to be a stopper, because, although this was all true about my personal likes and dislikes, Verdi is a major staple of most opera singers’ repertoire, and Wagner is really challenging for a singer! ‘OK, then,’ she said, ‘how about some arias from The Marriage of Figaro, and the Liebestod from Wagner’s masterful opera Tristan and Isolde?’ ‘Wow’, I thought, ‘that’s ambitious stuff!’ Wagner’s Liebestod is famous as one of the pinnacles of the opera singer’s art, but it is really demanding, and it is no pushover for the accompanist either! Then Deborah went on to say, ‘perhaps we could do the concert as a benefit for the Memorial Hall’. Well, as a former trustee, the Hall is a cause I could believe in, so I knew what to say: ‘Great, let’s do it!’ After this rather surprising conversation, Deborah and I then carried on with our meeting about website alternatives, and she left. I

heard nothing more about the concert for months, and I must confess that I thought that it was all going to come to naught. However, I was soon to find out that Deborah had not forgotten about it. In the late spring of this year she sent me an email with a list of proposed arias, and she said that she would provide me with copies of the music that I could pick up from the church. She had selected some fine music indeed, including Porgi amour and Dove sono from Figaro, Una voce poco fa from Rossini’s Barber of Seville, When I am laid in earth from Dido and Aeneas, some excerpts from Camille SaintSaëns Samson et Dalia and Dvorak’s Song to the Moon from his opera Rusalka, as well as Wagner’s Liebestod. And, oh yes, one bit of Verdi, his O don fatale from Don Carlos. Perhaps the concert was really going to happen after all! Now reinvigorated, I proposed that we get together for a run through of the music. This was really to be a test of the two of us as a duo: would we be compatible? Would we enjoy performing together? Our first run through was a delight and we both could see immediately that the concert was likely to work very well indeed. Indeed, our time together proved to be a great deal of fun! Furthermore, I had recently acquired a new Yamaha grand piano, and it was

proving to be an extremely supportive instrument for both instrumental ensemble and for voice. We had both become believers that this concert was possible, and it was all rather exciting. The rest of the story is, perhaps, more predictable, involving more rehearsing, the scheduling of the concert, the preparation of a poster and program, etc etc etc. I was also particularly pleased to be able to use the church’s newly repaired and maintained Blüthner piano in the concert. Before all the work, the piano had always been rather disappointing to a player – only able to give so much, and then unable to give any more regardless of the amount of effort put in. But, a significant amount of work had been put into the piano over the spring and summer. Would it now be better able to support the demands that accompanying full opera excerpts required? The concert day arrived on Saturday, the 29th of October. I think the terrific selection of music and Deborah’s evidently warm and open personality as well as her excellent voice, and (I like to believe) my playing resulted in a very satisfying experience for Deborah and me, as well as for our audience. Deborah certainly gave her all and produced many very fine performances, including in the extremely demanding Liebestod. After it was all over, Deborah came up to me and said, ‘we must do this again sometime’. This time, I believed her immediately! John Bradley 23


focus Christingle All-Age service in December

Santou and Bob led the service with the Rainbows


The second Advent banner remembers the prophets


Pictures from the Big Draw event Held every year, this is a chance for anyone, children and adults, to have a go at different styles of drawing, organised by Peter Webb and Mark Lewis and friends. This year’s theme was ‘Dress to draw’.


Christmas Word Search


Quiz Answers: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12

Paul Peter pearls Proverbs Mrs Pamplin pews Peter (Webb) Penny and Peter pilgrim Philip (Swallow) Potiphar / Potifar Precentor

13 14 15 16 17





pulpit plainsong psalms prudence pyx


Refurbishment has continued at the Memorial Hall, with work on the low roofs at the High Road end of the building, and a thorough rainproofing and redecoration of the ornamental fleche.

A big thank you

to everyone submitting contributions and photographs to this edition Please keep them coming, as without them we wouldn’t have a parish magazine. Articles, prayers, book reviews, favourite music, recipes, gardening tips etc. We would love some children’s drawings as well: the choice is yours! Email directly using a subject heading to: or pass to Penny Freeston who will type up your handwritten copy. Our next copy date is 12th February 2017. Magazine team: Penny Freeston, Beverley Fuentes, Cheryl Corney, Ian Tarrant, Sam McCarthy, Peter Wall. 28

St Mary's Magazine Winter 2016  

The latest version of our quarterly magazine

St Mary's Magazine Winter 2016  

The latest version of our quarterly magazine