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July E-Magazine 2023

In this edition:

  • What's good about Ordinary Time

  • Called to be Fully Ourselves

  • Pet Service

  • Mothers' Union Project Prayers

  • Llangasty Retreat House

  • Calender Girls

  • Services throughout the Parish


Please click below for a printable copy of the magazine:

Download PDF • 2.75MB




What’s good about Ordinary Time?

We find ourselves once again in Ordinary Time. When considered alongside the seasons in which festivals happen the very name seems uninspiring, even boring! Yet that name is marginally better than the alternatives of ‘Trinity’, which doesn’t seem to mean much in the context of a season, and ‘Proper Time’ which is simply incomprehensible. Whoever named it must have missed the obvious implication that everything else is improper time!

However, for me Ordinary Time is actually the most exciting and inspiring season of the church calendar when we learn from the early church about what it means to have the Holy Spirit living and working within us. The season is let down by its ‘ordinary’ name and I much prefer to think of it as the extended season of Pentecost. The outworking of the gift of the Holy Spirit to the church, the collected people of God, has been truly transformational across history. First came the realisation that God had shifted the tectonic plates of history and that there was no longer any reason to live in fear. Then came the recognition that this message was not just for one small nation but for all people across all nations of the world. And so the Gospel message has been carried across the world: for evidence look at a You Tube video called The World Blessing 2023 where people from 154 nations speaking 207 languages are quite literally singing from the same song sheet. Google it, I hope you will find it as inspiring as I do.

This growth of the church has come about through anything but ordinary people who have had the courage to step out of their comfort zones and venture to new places. When I look back over my life I can see that it is at precisely those times when I have been willing to step out in faith and explore something new that I have grown most in my knowledge and love of God. It has not been about acquiring more knowledge but about putting what I know into practice and discovering God at work in places I never knew existed. Tragically, we can easily get trapped in our comfort zones and fail to discover God beyond the horizons.

One of our values as a Parish is having a courageous faith (as opposed to being risk averse) and another is to have a ‘searching, adventurous spirit, based on hope and a trust in God’. Those values are inconsistent with playing it safe, but I am not sure that we have been that good at living out those values. Maybe this year we should be praying for more courage and allowing the Holy Spirit to expand our understanding of God by leading us into new experiences.

Rev Ian Wallace


Called to be Fully Ourselves

Like many people I was given a mental image of what a Christian should be, and I wasn’t very good. Stereotypes affect us internally as well as externally, they affect how we think of ourselves. Wanda said recently that she didn’t want to be thought of as a Christian because they wore A-line skirts and were po-faced. I didn’t want to be a Christian because I thought they were all old-fashioned. It’s strange that both of us have been in church all or most of our lives but the power of these stereotypes persists in our minds.

This week on twitter the monastery that trained me put up a picture of this year’s crop of students who will be ordained in July. One of them has red hair and someone on twitter complained that a priest should not have red hair. This reminded me of my time in the monastery when I got really cross as I felt that being a priest would be stifling and conformist. I shouted, ‘Resistance isn’t futile; I will not be assimilated’. Now that won’t mean much to non-Star Trek fans, but it is a reference to the Borg, the baddy in Star Trek. The Borg wants to make the whole universe part of huge collective where everyone thinks and acts the same. I was scared that priesthood would be like that, making me into someone I wasn’t. Fr Peter replied, ‘Oh Hywel you couldn’t be more wrong’. As usual he was right and I was wrong.

God calls all of us to be fully ourselves, not to conform to a type. The trouble is that the world tells us day in day out that this is what being a Christian is, being moulded into something we are not, A-Line skirts and all. In truth it is the world that calls on us to conform, to be the way they want us to be, to buy the same things and to think the same way. We live in a world far more conformist than ever before, in my lifetime at least.

We are created as unique individuals and God calls us to serve him as those individuals, each person being of equal value to God and knitting together to form the body of Christ. It is through becoming the person we are created to be that God reveals himself and we make Jesus visible. So it’s great that a priest can have red hair, because that’s who she is. We were all told that at ordination we were to wear something that shows who we are, to celebrate God calling us uniquely. I wore my Iron Maiden Dances of Death World Tour T-shirt, under my cassock of course. God calls us all to be who we were created to be, so the next time you think ‘Ugh I don’t want to be like that’, remember red hair and Dances of Death and know that that is lie, it is the world who want us to be automatons, not God.

Rev Hywel Snook


Pet Service

At St James this month we look forward to our Patronal celebration with a parish communion service on Sunday 30 July, but we have another special service the previous week. If you have a (well-behaved) pet who deserves a blessing, or if you just love animals, do come along on Sunday 23 July at 10.30 for this lovely annual outdoor service dedicated to our animal friends. (Inside the church if it rains.)


Mothers’ Union Project Prayers,

July and August: AFIA

AFIA (Away From It All) is an outreach holiday project across Mothers’ Union nationally. In the Bristol Diocese, members of Mothers’ Union fund a day out to Weston Super Mare for families identified as benefitting from this outreach and needing a break.

Last year 5 coachloads from various areas of Bristol and Swindon had a fun day at the seaside. It was the first year we had been able to do this post Covid, and was a great success for all who went. For many it was the only holiday they had and as such was hugely appreciated. This year plans are underway to extend this outreach, including hopefully sending a coach organised by the Yate Children’s Centre.

Please pray for the success of these trips this summer, and contact Christine Dolton if you would like to contribute.

Thank you!

A Prayer for AFIA

Father God, we pray for families around the world, especially this day we pray for the families in need in our communities. We thank you Lord for the ‘Away From It All’ project and for the generosity of members and friends that makes this outreach possible. We pray for our AFIA Coordinator Louise and give thanks for her work. We ask for safe journeys and for happy days for all during this summer holiday period. May we always remember that you are beside us in all our goings and comings. Bless the work of the Mothers’ Union as we seek to share Your love. In Jesus’ name Amen.


Llangasty Christian Retreat House

Llangorse, Breconshire

Friday to Sunday 13-15 October 2023

Terry and Jenny Carter are hosting a Christian Retreat in the heart of the Brecon Beacons. The wonderful location beside Llangorse Lake offers abundant peace and quiet in a setting where you can leave everything behind. The weekend will be led by our very own Revd. Iain Macfarlane, Chaplain for UHBWT.

The retreat consists of a number of addresses based around a central theme together with morning and evening prayer and Holy Communion on Saturday and Sunday. There will be plenty of opportunities to walk or just reflect.

It is a full board weekend starting with dinner on Friday and ending with lunch on Sunday. All meals are served in the lovely conservatory overlooking the lake with all its wildlife.

The weekend costs £200 and shared transport can be arranged if needed. Accommodation is in single and twin-bedded rooms with shared bathroom facilities. The popular house has a maximum capacity of 22 so it quickly fills up.

If you would like to join us and need further information, please contact us on 01454 882280, or of course speak to either of us.

A warm welcome awaits all!


Cancer charities aided by


Calendar Girls” is being performed by amateur group Collaborative Productions at Rangeworthy Village Hall from

21 to 23 September, a charity event raising funds for BUST and Blood Cancer UK.

BUST, started in 1990, supports Bristol‘s breast care centre at Southmead Hospital. Every year one thousand new patients are diagnosed with breast cancer. BUST have raised over £1.5 million and continue to raise funds to provide the unit with state-of-the-art equipment to aid and speed up diagnosis and treatment.

Blood Cancer UK funds world-class research into all blood cancers including leukaemia, lymphoma and myeloma. 360

researchers are being funded across the UK in search of the next breakthrough. Since 1960 when the charity was founded as The Leukaemia Research Fund they have invested over £500 million in blood cancer research. The charity rebranded to Blood Cancer UK in 2020.

“Calendar Girls” is based on the inspiring true story of a group of friends from a Yorkshire WI who do something extraordinary and spark a global phenomenon when they persuade one another to pose for a charity calendar with a difference! The WI ladies joined forces to raise funds for Leukaemia and Lymphoma Research when one of their husbands died of a form of blood cancer, wherein lies our link to Blood Cancer UK and the local breast cancer charity BUST.

Suitable for anyone 16 or over, there are three evening performances at 7.30pm plus Saturday matinee at 2.30 pm. Tickets costing £12 and £10 (concessions) are on sale from 1 July. Visit or ring 0333 666 3366 (booking fees apply). Cash bookings also available at the Rose and Crown in Rangeworthy. Book early to see a great play and support two wonderful charities.



St James Church 9am - 11am Westerleigh Village Breakfast Saturday 8 July Saturday 12 August Come to St James in Westerleigh to enjoy a full English breakfast freshly-cooked for you. Spend time with old friends and new. Lighter and vegetarian options available. After breakfast you may like to join a small group setting off for a country walk at 11am.



Services throughout the Parish

Sunday 2 July

4th Sunday after Trinity—Green

Jeremiah 28:5-9 Romans 6:12-end Matthew 10:40-end

St Mary

8.15am Communion

10.30am All-Age Service

6.30pm 630 Praise

St Nix

10.30am Communion

St James

10.30am All Age Service

St Peter

4.00pm Evening Worship (Book of Common Prayer)

Sunday 9 July

5th Sunday after Trinity—Green

Zechariah 9:9-12 Romans 7:15-25a Matthew 11:16-19,25-end

St Mary

8.15am Communion

10.30am Communion

6.30pm 630 Praise

St Nix

10.30am Morning Worship

St James

10.30am All-Age Service

St Peter

6.30pm Communion (Book of Common Prayer)

Sunday 16 July

6th Sunday after Trinity—Green

Isaiah 55:10-13 Romans 8:1-11 Matthew 13:1-9,18-23

St Mary

8.15am Communion

10.30am All-Age Service with Baptism

6.30pm 630 Praise

St Nix

10.30am Communion with Archdeacon Christopher

St James

10.30am Communion

St Peter

6.30pm Evening Worship (Book of Common Prayer)

Sunday 23 July

7th Sunday after Trinity—Green

Isaiah 44:6-8 Romans 8:12-25 Matthew 13:24-30,36-43

St Mary’s

8.15am Communion

10.30am Communion

6.30pm 630 Praise

St Nix

10.30am All Age Service

St James

10.30am Pet Service

St Peter

6.30pm Communion (Book of Common Prayer)

Sunday 30 July

8th Sunday after Trinity—Green

1 Kings 3:5-12 Romans 8:26-end Matthew 13:31-33, 44-52

St Mary’s

6.30pm 630 Praise

St James

10.30am Parish Communion


Join a community of women in St Mary’s Church at 11am every Friday (term time only). Mammas Club is a drop in café for you and your family. Come along and enjoy the company of other women on the journey of parenthood. We will have tea, coffee and light bites!

Third Saturday of every month 10am at St Mary’s Youth Centre. Come for breakfast with the children. Toys and chat, share precious time with the little ones.



Morning prayer in Yate Parish

Do you find prayer a little difficult? Would you like some inspiration? Go to the Yate Parish Facebook page to join in Morning Prayer led by our ministry team. You can watch live at 7.30am Monday to Saturday, or watch at any time later in the day. Many people have found it a great start to their day.


Weekly at St Mary’s

Thursday Communion at 10.00am


Compline @8pm

Before the lockdown happened, we had recorded the saying of Compline. We ask that each evening at 8pm we light a candle in our window and pray together for our nation using the words of the Compline service - it takes just over 5 minutes.

Visit the parish website and click on the recordings to listen; you will find the words of the service there too.



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