The Good News is that Jesus is risen from the dead!
Read the Parish Magazine here:_
The current Electoral Roll is due for complete renewal.
All individuals must complete a new membership form to be part of the electoral roll – no names will be carried over automatically from the existing list.
The electoral roll is open to all aged 16 and over who live in the Parish, are baptised and worship regularly.
Application forms are available in St. James’ Church or from the Electoral Roll Officer (Annette Whittle). Please return the completed forms to Annette, the Vicar or a Churchwarden before 17th March
All Saints Churchyard. Take a walk through the churchyard and you will see thousands of snowdrops looking their best (see photos below). We also have some aconites that were planted last year in flower too.
Can we also remind you that Christmas flowers and wreaths on graves, should now be removed.
From Sheila. The evenings are starting to get lighter. Spring is definitely on its way. The churchyard is full of snowdrops, and we have much to look forward to. We are hoping that a lot of the bird boxes that we put up, will be occupied this year. Holy Mowers are fortunate to receive a cheque for £200 from the East of England Co-op token scheme. This will pay to refurbish of the trailer that we have been given. We have found storage for all our mowers, so I am finally off to see Mr Bellett at Alresford to ask him to find us a suitable, good, second hand ride-on mower. How exciting, then we will be ready to go! Several of us have been working off the extra calories that we consumed over the Christmas period, and we have raked many more bags of leaves. Beneath the leaves are snowdrops and primroses just waiting to unfurl. Nature is a wonderful thing. We have had some lovely cards made from a beautiful photo that Angela took in the churchyard in 2018. The inside is left blank so they can be used for a variety of occasions. We are hoping to produce cards of all the seasons. The Mowers have some really good photo skills. The cards will be available to buy and monies raised will be put towards projects planned for the churchyard. We are urgently looking to get some notice boards. Users of the churchyard need to know about the regulations, the types of trees/ birds/wildlife we have in our churchyard, and tell the story of the war graves. Hopefully within a few months they will be in place. We have also held our celebration lunch; it was a wonderful occasion. 14 of us sat down together for good food and laughter. When we started the Holy Mowers three years ago, there were about five of us, and now we have 17. They don’t all turn up every week, but many hands make light work, the results are amazing, and we are always happy to welcome more. [If you want to join the Holy Mowers, just turn up at 10.00 at All Saints any Thursday or ring Sheila Crow on 01206 306574]
If you would like to join the Holy Mowers just turn up at 10.00 on any Thursday morning or give Sheila Crowe a ring on 01206 30 65 74
Damage to All Saints’ Lychgate on 20th Nov.
The aftermath of a car going out of control, crashing through the lychgate and wrecking some 10 headstones. Rev’d Caroline has called for prayer for the driver, for those distressed by the incident and for wisdom in dealing with the aftermath. Thanks to all who have given money to help restore the gate and headstones
Caroline’s Installation on 6 11 18: a memorable occasion for our church family, for Caroline’s family and the town.
Our new Vicar, Rev’d Caroline Beckett, B.A. (Hons).
Caroline was installed as Vicar on 6th November before a big congregation of over 250, with Bishop Roger of Colchester, Archdeacon Annette, all of the local church leaders and many other ordained ministers beside. Members representing the various organisations of the town welcomed her, her husband Michael and their children Danielle and Tom. Many of her wider family were present. There were many people from Alresford where she grew up, from St Margaret’s Berechurch Colchester her previous parish, and those who knew her from her days of training on the ministry course and at theological college. The familiar reading from Philippians 2:5-11 reminded us that, despite all this panoply, Jesus is exalted to the highest place because he was humble and obedient to God the Father, obedient even to death on the cross, a humility which the Bishop took as his theme for his sermon. Caroline is noted for her love of and commitment to God and the poor, and an ability to deliver rivetting sermons off the cuff without any notes – something she proved in her first sermon the next day at mid-week communion. We hope her stay with us will be a long one and bring many into the kingdom of Jesus. Do please pray for her, for Michael and the children.
If you wish to hire St James please contact Administrator Sue Wills at the Parish Office (in St James) on 01206 30 23 78 or email her at email@example.com The rate of hire is £15.00 per hour
Memories of London Community Gospel Choir
Judith Gibbons writes: The night of 13 October 2018 is one that will live in many memories for months, if not years, to come.
We welcomed the Rev Bazil Meade and his band onto the platform. The concert was opened by our very own ‘Gospel Singers’, 65 men and women who had their first experience of gospel singing at the July workshop. The audience loved it!
And then the nine LCGC professionals entered from the vestry. These gifted musicians don’t just have a faith, they sing their faith and their energy was infectious. Their warmth and enthusiasm swept out from the platform and embraced us all so we laughed, clapped, danced and even sang with them.
Rev Bazil spoke of our common hope for the world’s future and our belief in the ultimate goodness of creation. “I feel part of this loving community tonight. Love is what brings us and binds us together.”
The ‘Holy Mowers’ meet at All Saints on Thursday mornings 10.00-12.30 with a half-hour break for coffee. Come as often and for as long as you want. The churchyard looks as it has never looked before! Contact Sheila Crowe on 30 65 74.
Mission of the Month:
Traidcraft plc pioneered fair trade in the UK, but in common with many retailers currently, they are struggling to remain viable, and are at risk of closure having made a loss of £500,000 in 2017. Many of our Saturday Coffee regulars will recall the stall run for several years by David and Linda Salmon, selling colourful packets of tea, coffee, dates, cocoa and chocolate and more. In churches around the country, there are still similar stalls, though their numbers are gradually dwindling. The Traidcraft venture started in Newcastle upon Tyne in 1979 importing handicrafts and food from impoverished parts of the world, and guaranteeing the producers a fair, minimum price and improved working conditions. They claim that anything you can think of that’s fair trade today, Traidcraft did it first.
While the Traidcraft business struggles, sales of goods bearing the Fairtrade Foundation’s fairtrade logo (which Traidcraft helped to set up) are booming. Rising by 7% in 2017 compared with the previous year. The Fairtrade message is now so mainstream that customers who care about ethical consumption can find their fairtrade products (mostly foodstuffs) from any supermarket. The big concern is for producers who only have access to market their goods through Traidcraft.
For example, around 700 women in India are employed making hand-stitched cards. In seeking ways to keep their business afloat, Traidcraft may concentrate mainly on the handicrafts in future. Fairtrade is about more than just a product; it is about a whole way of thinking, being and living and that doesn’t die. If you care, look for the Fairtrade logo when you shop, even if you can’t find Traidcraft.