Latest Rector’s Letter

Dear friends,
Happy New Year! No – you have not picked up the wrong edition of the magazine: it is indeed the September edition. It isn’t 1st January, it isn’t the start of Advent, but it does feel as though September is a new beginning in our church life.
I don’t think that I have ever left the routine of September being a new beginning. Once there were my uniform and school shoes to buy (we had to have indoor and outdoor shoes, which cost Mum a fortune for three of us). Then there were my own children’s, and thank goodness that I only had to buy them one pair each! And I have only really just finished my own formal education in theology, which went on for ten years. I still buy all my new pens and check over my stationery supplies around now, ready for the new season.
We are so closely connected and involved with our own church schools that the rhythm of school life becomes our rhythm too. We are used to St Mary’s being full of children on Wednesdays, and we miss all of our families when they are away on their summer holidays. It makes church seem very quiet.
Of course many families are so busy now on Sundays that weekday church is becoming the norm for them – and that is good! I am very happy that now restrictions are easing we will be able to welcome not just the children and their teachers, but their parents and carers, to our worship on a Wednesday afternoon at 2.45. This will no longer be a school service but Community Worship, to which all are invited. And we are hoping to start a similar service at Smallwood too.
We are really many congregations under the two banners of St Mary and St John. But before we follow our separate communities and ways of being church this year, I would like to invite everyone from the St Mary’s community to come together and bless one another. So the first Sunday in September is St Mary’s Day in which all congregations are invited to come together at 11.00 am.
We will bless the new children starting at school, our head boy and head girl, commission people who are beginning new ministries, bless the different fellowships which meet during the week, bless and use our new hymn books and our new evening services. So please do come along at 11.00 on 5th September, even if it is not your normal time for worship.
With every blessing,
Anne-Marie
PS – I hope that we will also have St John’s Day in the future!