Please note that there will be NO PARKING in the churchyard on Saturday 13th May.
If you are working in the church as a volunteer, please keep your car park receipt for a refund.
Last Sunday was a very busy time at St Mary’s. At our 10 o’clock service we welcomed some special visitors from Lusaka in Zambia. Catherine Mwanza, Stella Mataka and Beatrice Mkokweza are all members of The Mother’s Union who were visiting MU branches in Somerset. Thanks go to our Mother’s Union members for looking after them. After the 10.00am service we held our Annual Parish Church Meeting with election of officials and debate on a possible designation of our church as an urban Minster. Then finally, at our Worship@5 service, we were treated to Marcus Paul as guest preacher, along with the presentation of certificates to the winners of the schools’ Carillon Competition. Well done to all!
Two pieces of benefice news. Firstly, our friends from St John’s will be joining us for the Ascension Day Service on Thursday 25th May at St Mary Magdalene. Do put this date in your diary. On Sunday 4th June the Revd Julia French will be licenced to the Benefice during the evensong service at 4 pm at St John’s. Julia will continue her work as hospital chaplain and her parish ministry will be mostly at St John’s. Please pray for Julia and this important time in her ministerial journey.
“The Church Weekend Away at Buckfast Abbey 22nd – 24th September is being planned and I have spoken this week with Bishop Peter. We have agreed the theme, “Snakes and Ladders.” As a fun thing to do, we will enjoy games of snakes and ladders together, so, if you are coming and have a set in the loft, do bring it along. There are still spaces on the weekend and, if you would like to come, there are leaflets at the back of church. If you are new to St Mary’s , a church weekend away is a good opportunity to get to know folks.”
Rod Corke, Vicar
After the 10.00am service today, at 11.45am we will be holding our Annual Parish Church Meeting and we do hope you can stay. After the elections of the Church Wardens and PCC members we will have a discussion about whether we accept Taunton Deane’s invitation to invite the Bishop of Bath and Wells to decide whether we move to being designated an urban minister. There will be a five minute speeches for and against, a full discussion and a straw poll at the end. The final decision will be made by the new PCC. We would like as many voices to be heard as possible. Margaret has worked very hard to produce the annual report and copies are available today. We would like to thank her so much for all her hard work. The booklet details most of the activities that happen at St Mary Magdalene’s and it is amazing to consider how much mission activity occurs.
WORSHIP@5 will next take place on Sunday 30th April. The speaker will be Marcus Paul (retired Deputy Head of Queen’s College). His theme will be “What do our bells say when they ring out and what should they say?” The service will be built around the schools competition to compose a new tune for our new Carillon. We anticipate children and parents will be attending. Do come and support this happy occasion. Door open as usual for a cuppa at 4.30pm.
“This Sunday is also very special though in a different way. We are losing Sheila Murray. Two years ago I wrote of her that we were losing a Curate and gaining an Associate Priest. Now, after the blessings we have received from her over the extra two years, she is finally moving on to pastures new. We wish her well and pray for God’s blessing on her future ministry. We will miss her many skills, whether they be liturgical, pastoral or in vision and initiative. We join in saying a big ‘Thank you’!”
Dennis Cavaghan, Associate Priest
“Last weekend proved to be totally inspiring. The constraints of Holy Week and Good Friday gave way like prison doors bursting open to Easter Day; this was a great blessing. We are so grateful to all who contributed to its impact. Thank you to flower arrangers, choir/choristers and musicians, ringers, preachers and celebrants, servers and welcomers. Everything and everyone colluded together under the guidance of the Holy Spirit to bring us to the very portals of heaven. Thank you.”
Dennis Cavaghan, Associate Priest
There are two meetings at the Old Deanery, Wells, Friday 28th April 10am – 4 pm. The morning will relate to MU matters, the afternoon to Bath & Wells linked parishes with Lusaka parishes. All are welcome but please phone 01278 662240 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org asap if you wish to go. Also on Friday, Choral Evensong 5.15pm at Wells Cathedral. On Saturday the ladies will visit parishes linked with parishes in Lusaka Diocese and places of interest in B&W. Sunday 30th April they will be at the 10.00 am service here at St Mary Magdalene and depart before the APCM. Margaret and Richard Austin, Marlène and Steve Phillips and Sasha Collard-Jenkins have volunteered to host and help with the visitors. We hope that some members of our congregation will be able to participate in the visit. Even at short notice our welcome and hospitality to them will be most appreciated.
The Meeting for the election of churchwardens and The Annual Parochial Church Meeting is in church after coffee at 11.45am next Sunday 30th April. We hope to elect three churchwardens, five members of the Parochial Church Council and four members of Deanery Synod. (Please see the informative letter at the back of church from Stephen Grimshaw, the Lay Chair, Taunton Deanery, regarding membership of Deanery Synod). Nomination forms are at the back of church.
In Ecclesia, Saturday 3rd June 11.00am – 4.45pm Choral Evensong Workshop, directed by Laurence Blyth at St Mary Magdalene Church. Service at 4.00pm. Open to all. Cost £10; Students free. Music by Howells, Wood, Palestrina & Smith. www.inecclesia.org.uk
A happy Easter to you all this morning and a special welcome to our visitors. We greet everyone who comes to St Mary Magdalene’s as fellow pilgrims on a journey of faith. Today, we have left the sparseness of the penitential season of Lent behind and we cry out the Easter response:“He’s not dead, for He has risen!”
The church looks resplendent today, filled with glorious Easter lilies. Each lily is given in memory of a loved one which reminds us that on the cross Jesus broke the power of sin and death and gave us the gift of eternal life. We thank our dedicated flower team for all the work they have put in to arrange the flowers in such a beautiful way. (more…)