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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.

The Epiphany

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Tomorrow we are celebrating the Epiphany – when we remember the wise men coming to Mary and Joseph and bringing gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh. At 10.00 am there will be a Family Communion and the children will make celebratory crowns which they will parade during “Joy To The World” -the final carol. The wise men figures, who began their annual tour of St Mary Magdalene’s at the high altar, have passed through the organ shelf and finally arrived at the crib. They have a message for us all.

Our Christmas Time

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There is so much to report since Christmas day.  The crib service was wonderful fun, the children and adults hearing a retelling of the nativity story and experiencing Jesus as “The Light of the World. “ The First Communion of Christmas was special this year with “The First Noel” being played on the carillon at the end of the service. The angel doors were opened and this heavenly music drifted into the church. It was a magical moment when the Holy Spirit felt close to us. Bethlehem was the theme of the 8.00am and 10.00am services on Christmas morning and the children brought their presents to show us. On New Year’s Day this year, we were invited to join our friends at St John the Evangelist for their Patronal Service. We enjoyed a great fellowship and we had a worshipful morning praising God together. St John’s will be joining with us in the summer when we celebrate our Patronal Festival.

Revd Jane Eastell would like to thank everyone at St Mary Magdalene who came and supported the Patronal Festival Benefice service on Sunday 1st January 2017.  This was a wonderful start to the new year and we now look forward to sharing with you in July!

Vicarage & Coffee Shop Plans

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Over the last two months, our coffee shop has been exceptionally busy and has a wonderful community atmosphere. Plans are afoot to extend the area and open the north door and these will be discussed at the PCC on 17th January. This is an important meeting and so I would like to encourage as many PCC members to attend as possible. The agenda and papers will arrive shortly.

The vicarage building is beginning. We have met the builder and he is beginning to disconnect the existing services. Then the demolition of the Glebe House will begin. We have been told that the project will be complete by September.

Prayer Meeting

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Date for your Diary!  Our next Prayer Meeting is 12th January.  There are two sessions: one from 2-3pm and one from 7-8pm.   The first half hour of each session will be silent prayer at prayer stations/tables set up around the church, and the second half hour (2.30pm and 7.30pm)  there will also be open prayer in the Chapel for those who wish.  We shall be focusing our prayers on some of the connections we have with outside organisations as well as events/services in church.  We do hope you will be able to join us at one or other of these sessions.  Please speak to Diana Fletcher, Jean Lee or Sheila if you want further information.

Healing Service

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Our next Healing Service, together with the Laying on of Hands will be held  at 5.00.pm on Sunday 29th January. All those wishing to receive the Healing Ministry by way of prayers and/or the Laying on of Hands are welcome. Do please extend this invitation to all those known to you who need to seek God’s healing grace at this time.

Accession Service

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ACCESSION SERVICE  February 5th. Choral Evensong thanksgiving for the 65 years of service that Her Majesty has given to the Country and the Church.  Let us fill St. Mary’s to show Taunton’s appreciation. We are privileged to welcome Rev. Dr. Daniel Newman to lead and preach at this service.

Beetle Drive

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There will be a BEETLE DRIVE with wine and cheese on Saturday 11th February 7.00pm in the coffee shop area.  Everyone is welcome, please sign the list at the back of church if you would like to come.

Compass Carers

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Compass Carers provide a free service to unpaid carers providing information on how to access care services and respite care.  Information is also given about other services and benefits to which they may be entitled as well as emotional support and details of carers’ support groups and training courses.  For more information  tel 01823 255911 or email us: info@compassdisability.org.uk.

Happy New Year!

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Happy and prosperous New Year and may the blessing of the Lord be on you.

‘Elizabeth’ The Somerset Bell Ascends

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This is the largest of the set of our 15 bells. At 27cwt 2 quarters 18lbs, a diameter of 1334mm (4.3ft) and a height of 1067mm (3.5ft), she is a sight for sore eyes. The lift only just raised her off the lorry, but nothing could stop her ascending on high and disappearing through the 70 foot high hole in the vaulted ceiling.

The largest of the set of the 15 bells.

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‘Mary’ The Magdalene Bell Ascends

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After arriving in Taunton on the 9th December, The Magdalene Bell called ‘Mary’ was hoisted up into the tower today. Even at 13cwt and 24lbs, block and tackle made light work of raising it. Clergy and bellworkers were in attendance, as was also the case when its predecessor was rehung in December 1955.

Mary’s predecessor in 1955 (left) and Mary’s hoisting today (right)

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Yemen Children’s Appeal

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This Humanitarian Crisis is beyond belief. Currently there are 7 million people in Yemen who do not know where their next meal will come from.  This includes 2.2.million children malnourished, and dying as a result.   After today’s Service there will be a Retiring Collection to help feed some of these children through the established  Aid Agencies, who are working day and night to feed these children.  Your generosity during this Christmas time will save at least one child’s life and that is the best gift of all.

Please remember the children of Yemen in your prayers today and give generously to the retiring collection for the Yemen Children’s Appeal.