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News & Updates

Here’s what we get up to at St Mary’s. Activities, news, notices – lots to interest and inform. You can also take a look at the Today sheet (pdf) and selected articles from our Together magazine.

Worship@5 – Is it right to save for tomorrow?


Worship@5 on Sunday 20 August @ 5pm. Revd Dennis Cavaghan will be talking on ‘Is it right to save for tomorrow?’

Bring your friends to enjoy a friendly reception, accessible worship and a relevant message, all within a 45 minute service.  Come early at 4.30 to have a drink and chat.

“A Kolourful Kaleidoscope” Organ Recital


Friday saw the St John’s “Music at Lunchtime” series here at St Mary Magdalene. Our very own Musical Director, Miles Quick, gave a wonderful organ recital and it has been a pleasure to work with our sister church, St John the Evangelist, for this occasion.


Foodbank – Soups Needed


“We are really short of soups in the Foodbank warehouse so we would appreciate your help with soup run for a month. If you have a tin of ‘in date’ soup or could buy a tin, we would be so grateful.”

Diane and Derek

A couple of ‘Teas’


A couple of “teas” to make you aware of. The first is a special afternoon tea in the Coffee Shop on Sunday 10th September at 3.30pm in aid of Dene Barton Hospital. We are holding this fundraising event as a “thank you” to the staff team for their help in enabling Val Oates to recover from the terrible car accident she and her husband Paul suffered. Please help us raise some funds and enjoy afternoon tea with us (I can guarantee it will be very good!). Tickets are on sale in the Book Shop and cost £8.00 per person and £15.00 per couple.

The second “tea” is the Welcome Tea. If you have begun coming to St Mary Magdalene in the last year (and several folks have) you are invited to a Welcome Tea in the Coffee Shop on 29th October at 3.30pm. We would love to tell you a bit more about the church and find out more about you.

‘Our Giving’


REGULAR ATTENDERS: If you have not yet received an ‘Our Giving’ envelope please collect one as you leave the church today. For those who have received one but have not yet returned the response form, it would be helpful if you would do so in the envelope provided as soon as possible. Thank you.

Sheila’s Licensing


Coach and overnight accommodation can be arranged leaving Taunton at 09.00 on Friday 29th September staying at The Mercure Wetherby Hotel, Wetherby. Saturday morning leaving for Ripon some 25 minutes away, £85pp sharing, single supplement £20. This includes luxury coach with on board toilet facilities, evening meal overnight accommodation and breakfast on the Saturday morning.


A new sign up sheet is at the back of church.

Wednesday Breakaway Meetings


Wednesday Breakaway

  • August, no meeting
  • 6th September 9.30am- Decorating with mosaic tiles
  • 4th October, 10.30am – Quilling workshop with Philippa Reid. There will be a small charge of £3 to cover materials.

Chamber Philharmonia Cologne Concert


SATURDAY 26th August at 7.30pm at St Mary Magdalene, Chamber Philharmonia Cologne Concert, Vivaldi, Handel, Tchaikovsky, Paganini and Boccherini. Tickets from Taunton Visitor Centre and at the door (cash sales only). Adults £16, Seniors £14, Students/Children £12.


Special Performance of Omega and Alpha


About “Omega and Alpha”

“Omega and Alpha”, written and composed by Martin Emslie, was premièred in Wells Cathedral in 2013 to great acclaim. The oratorio tells the story of the events leading up to the crucifixion and subsequent resurrection of Christ with the “Omega” referring to the death of Christ and the “Alpha” being the resurrection and birth of Christianity.

Since the première, it has attracted attention all over the world with performances currently being planned in a number of countries. A special performance of the work will be performed in Hull as part of the “City of Culture 2017” celebrations. The oratorio is currently being translated into German.

Martin was awarded the prestigious Fellowship of the London College of Music for the composition of the work and is delighted to be conducting the Castle Cary Choir (who sang at the première) and the Extended St Cecilia choir in this performance. The three soloists all come from Somerset and the performance will feature the accompaniment played on the Willis organ by Paul Hawkins ARCO.

The concert will raise funds for the appeal to raise money for the restoration of the Willis organ and for Masonic Charitable funds.  The performance is likely to finish about 9pm but there will be refreshments and a “meet and greet” with the performers after the concert has finished.

Ride + Stride


So what’s this about?  Somerset Churches Trust provide funds for necessary repairs to churches. The aim is to have as many people as possible visiting participating churches. How does it work? First and foremost, it’s a fun event, based on people either cycling or walking around a local group of churches on 9th September.  Each church visited will offer basic hospitality. Participants simply ask family and friends to sponsor them, either by a lump sum or an amount per church visited.  Half the money raised can be returned to your own church. After a few years’ break, St Mary Magdalene is re-entering the event both by keeping the church open for Ride + Stride and hopefully, fielding our own Ride + Stride group.  Interested?  Pick up a leaflet at the back of church and shortly we will give details of the St Mary Magdalene Ride + Stride group.  For more details please contact Valerie Gaskell.

Organ Donors Urgently Needed!


Organ Donors Urgently Needed!

Not hearts or kidneys, but PIPES!!

Taunton is very fortunate to have two ‘Father Willis’ pipe organs – in St John’s and St Mary Magdalene Churches.  Willis was the English ‘Rolls-Royce’ brand at the end of the nineteenth century when these instruments were built.  Unfortunately they are both in urgent need of repair.  As part of the fundraising programme, along with a ‘sponsor a pipe’ campaign, there will be a lunchtime concert of 45 minutes of colourful organ music by great composers in St Mary Magdalene Church at 12.45 pm on Friday 11th August.  Refreshments and light lunches will also be served.  The concert will be given by Miles Quick (Music Director at St Mary Magdalene), who will aim to demonstrate the beautiful colours and wide range of this ‘King of instruments’ – which is what Mozart called the organ.

Please come to enjoy a musical feast and help to make Taunton’s organs fit for purpose in the 21st Century!

Admission free, with a retiring collection to support the organ renovation funds for both churches.

“The Beatitudes”


We have enjoyed Jackie Frost’s exhibition entitled “The Beatitudes” and we hope to host a similar event in March 2019. The Mayor, Cllr Hazel Prior-Sankey and her husband Adrian visited the exhibition on Tuesday and we were delighted to welcome them.