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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.

Update on Rebecca


I thought this was such a brilliant and lovely Email you should all share it! For those of you who do not know Chichi, she is a Zambian living in Cape Town, sister lives in Lusaka, and she flew up to meet Rebecca and her family before they came down to CT. Rebecca’s mother had to return to Lusaka last Sat.

Dear Jane,

I hope you are doing well, I am glad to know that you appreciate the support I am giving to Rebecca, thank you so much for enquiring about her progress and I am glad you asked.

I was going to email you about the wonderful time I had with Rebecca at the ward, especially after yesterdays experience. I had met your friend Judy, she is such a lovely lady, it was good to see her again.


An Evening with Angels


What a joy it was to attend “An Evening with Angels” that happened last Sunday evening! The standing of singing and playing was extremely high and the church was well attended. Over £2000 was raised for the major refurbishment we need to undertake to the Father Willis organ. Our thanks to Miles Quick,  Andrew Carter,  Andrew Lewis and the choir for all their hard work.  It was  an evening to remember!


Stock the Foodbank Sunday


STOCK THE FOODBANK SUNDAY 1st July – St Mary’s is supporting Taunton Christians Together with the collections for Taunton Foodbank and would like to collect food items between Sunday 1st July and Sunday 8th July 2012.

Although the Foodbank has had two supermarket food collections it does not have the 3 tonnes of food needed to open.  Please bring something from the following list and leave in the supermarket trolley at the back of Church:-

  • Milk (UHT or powdered)
  • Sugar (500g)
  • Fruit juice (carton)
  • Soup
  • Pasta sauces
  • Tinned sponge puddings
  • Tinned tomatoes
  • Cereals
  • Tinned Rice Pudding
  • Tea Bags/instant Coffee
  • Instant mashed potato
  • Rice/pasta
  • Tinned meat
  • Tinned fish
  • Tinned fruit
  • Jam
  • Biscuits
  • Snack bars


Bells of St Mary’s Appeal


Last Friday evening we launched the Bells of St. Mary’s Appeal. The Lord-Lieutenant, Lady Gass and The Mayor and Mayoress attended and we all enjoyed a varied programme including hand bell ringers from Okehampton, young instrumentalists from Queen’s College and the joint chorus of St. Mary Magdalene Choir and Queen’s College Choral Society.  Jeff Knipe, appeal coordinator gave a short talk on the task ahead and refreshments were served. What a great start it was!

The evening was free but we raised £2,735 towards the target total of £300,000.

The new set of twelve bells will be recast and the aim is also to have the carillon functioning once more. I was so impressed with the effort that has gone into this – well done team!

A photo taken on the evening is at the back of church.


Rebecca – the little Zambian girl


Today we can announce some really good news. The little Zambian girl, Rebecca, who had her face badly burnt, has arrived in South Africa for some face reconstruction. The obstacles to this happening have been great but we have pushed through and finally the day has arrived.

I understand that Rebecca will need to be in and out of hospital for about a year until the work is completed. Please pray for her – and her mum, and give thanks for the skills and generosity of the surgeons and nursing staff. Jane and John Maclare have worked so hard on this project and have made it happen. We are very grateful for their care and love. The £2000 we raised as a church is being well spent.

I have a photograph of Rebecca arriving in South Africa and I have pinned to the Mission Board. The quality is not great but you can sense the little girl’s excitement.


Magdalene Fayre – 21st July


MAGDALENE FAYRE -21st July  – We need items for raffle prizes and also for the following stalls: plants and tools, cakes and preserves, puzzles and games, handbags, jewellery, toys, crafts, glass and china, white elephant and the tombola.

Storage is available for certain items but must be arranged with Nik the caretaker first.

Plants and cakes should not brought until the actual day or the day before the Fayre.


PCC Awayday



(The PCC Awayday – Saturday, 26 May, 2012)

“And Jesus said, “Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place…” (St. Mark: Ch. 6, v 31)”

It was in the spirit of Jesus’ invitation to his disciples that, on a hot and cloudless Saturday in May, members of the Parochial Church Council (PCC) made the short journey from Taunton to a winding and hedged Devon lane, just a couple of miles from the Tiverton junction of the M5.  Their destination was the sixteenth century Rockwell Manor Farm, home to Mill House Retreats, where the annual PCC Awayday was to take place.

The entrance to the farm stands on a bend in the lane and the crunch of tyres on courtyard  gravel emphasised the otherwise peaceful atmosphere of the setting.  The two-storey, timber framed building, partly thatched and partly slated, looked at its historic best in the May sunlight and stands on a site listed in the Doomsday Book.  A large garden and grounds at the rear completed the sense of space and sanctuary from the speeding traffic on the nearby motorway.

PCC members were welcomed by Revd. Jane Taylor, who manages Mill House Retreats and, coffee served, the day’s programme began with a short act of worship in an upstairs room with a beamed ceiling and low, medieval doorway, the focal point for the discussions and report-backs to come.


Invitation to the Cathedral of the Holy Cross, Lusaka, Zambia


We have been invited to go to the Cathedral of the Holy Cross to help them celebrate their Golden Jubilee. The key date is 16th September when they will hold a special service.

This is an excellent opportunity to further the link, celebrate with our link partners and have a taste of Africa.

As things stand, this is an open invitation. They will host us for a week. You would then be able to stay on at your own expense if you wish to do so eg: travel to Victoria Falls,  a game reserve etc.

The cost of the flight is approximately £500-700 and we would book through the Diocese and travel as a party.

If you are interested, I need to know ASAP.


Pilgrimage to Florence


10th-16th OCTOBER Revd Jane Eastell is leading a pilgrimage to Florence to see the Fra Angelico frescoes.  There are still places if anyone is interested.

More information from the Parish Office.



Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Street Patry


QUEEN’S DIAMOND JUBILEE STREET PARTY Sunday 3rd June 12.00 noon in the Churchyard (in church if wet).

Our street party will take place after the 10am service as we celebrate her Majesty’s Diamond Jubilee anniversary – 60 years on the throne.


Welcome to our new Website!


Welcome to our new website!  There are now many more pictures, sermons from past weeks can be listened to, videos of events can be looked at, and there is a weekly thought to read.

These and more make a visit well worthwhile.

Please send photos and items to for possible inclusion.

Our Pentecost Banner


Our Pentecost Banner

“When the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire which came to rest on each one of them.  All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit.”    Acts 2:1-4

In September 2005 the idea of creating a banner was conceived and the congregation were invited to submit designs in March 2006. It was a slow  process for the design team of four and it was not until November 2006 that  the final design was approved by the Worship Committee.