October E-Magazine 2023
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Making Jesus Visible by Norma Felstead
When I was a child, my mother taught me many things which I learnt by heart and for which I have been grateful throughout my life. Scripture, learnt by heart, is a great comfort and encouragement, as people like Terry Waite discovered when a prisoner for his faith, unable to read or write in a dark cell.
However, there are times when phrases and expressions so often repeated become too familiar and even lose their meaning. ‘Thy Kingdom come’ we repeat in the Lord’s Prayer, and in recent years we have used it more in other parts of
our services as a constant reminder that this is what we are striving for in our Christian lives; that God’s Kingdom should come on earth.
Do we really work for this to become reality, or is it so familiar that we lose the truth of what we say?
Another very important challenge to us as Christians is to ‘make Jesus visible’ in our lives. For the last few years each of
our churches has displayed a banner with the words ‘Making Jesus Visible’. Does this still challenge us, or has it lost its initial impact?
As most of you know, on the 8th January last I was admitted to hospital with a broken femur and two additional fractures. It was to be another seven weeks before I was discharged and sent home, hardly able to walk even with a walking aid.
Since then, over the weeks and months my mobility has increased, and I attribute my feeling of wellbeing and recovery to God’s answer to your prayers. Thank you, my brothers and sisters in Christ, for all your loving care, shown in prayer, messages and many visits.
It has been an incredible time and I have experienced something truly wonderful, in that I am able to say ‘I have seen the face of Christ in the love you have shown me’.
This surely is living out the expression ‘Making Jesus Visible’. Letting the world see Christ in us, sharing God’s love with each other and with those who do not yet know Him. Thank you for showing me the face of Christ; may we all be responsible for revealing Christ to those we meet. Then, and only then, can we know the meaning of ‘Making Jesus Visible’ and bring to fruition ‘God’s Kingdom on earth’.
Life as an Organist and Choir Leader
I was appointed full-time Organist and Choir Leader for St Mary’s by Rev Sue Restall in September 1992, after some time on a rota sharing services with Gerry Willis and Ron Fitgerald. We were then using the hymn book Ancient + Modern Revised, later replaced by Mission Praise and more recently Hymns Old and New. Now screens are used to display the words and only the choir have books with music. Choir numbers were much larger at the start with about a dozen members. I started a youth choir which had up to nine singers at one time. We used to sing Christmas songs: I remember one they loved performing was about animals at the Nativity scene with all the appropriate noises! The youth choir was quite strong until the Sunday School discontinued and no more young recruits came along. St Mary’s choir have always worn blue robes. At one time Gladys Fitzgerald donated money for new robes. Val Wilson, one of our sopranos, designed and made them with my help. These robes felt much more modern! Recently we have been wearing more casual jumpers with a logo designed by Revd. Hywel Snook. The way hymns are chosen for services has evolved. Originally I was given lists of what to play by whoever was taking the service. Then a small group helped me choose hymns, followed by me organizing them for several years on my own. Since Revd. Ian Wallace came along, the clergy team have a rota working with me to choose the hymns, usually about three months in advance. This is much more helpful as they know when special services are, and which church is hosting the Parish Service for all the churches. Weddings have decreased dramatically, particularly since so many different venues have been licensed to hold wedding services. At one time the choir were called to sing in St Peter’s, St James and even once in Lincoln. The Choir helps with singing for the Parish Communions at the churches in the parish. Since
Covid St Mary’s Choir sings at St James’ 10.30am Communion Service on the first Sunday of the month. I now plan the rota for organists to play at St James every Sunday. They are Gerry Willis, Diana Williams and Sian Walters who all do a wonderful job. I play at most evening Services at St Peter’s with Diana giving me a Sunday off each month. We are very fortunate to have these organists, and to have such loyal choir members to support church music in the parish. St Mary’s have used several different Communion settings. Congregations do not like change! New ones have been quite challenging to introduce. When I started at St Mary’s we had one written by Brian Snary specifically for us. The most recent is David Ogden’s St Patrick’s Mass. At one time I would organise band concerts with a ploughman’s supper to raise money for the church. In the early 2,000s Thornbury Castle Band played for us, with my daughter as MD. Then we moved on to Avon Fire Brigade where our choir member Ian Taylor was a Saxophonist. In 2019 Covid led to many restrictions on our services and singing was actually stopped! After all the zoom Services it was quite a struggle to restart singing, but thankfully it is now fine to sing. The Royal School of Church Music (RSCM) plays an important part in the life of the church. We use their Sunday-by-Sunday magazine to help with the choice of hymns. They also run courses, some of which we attended in the past, although not quite so many now. As you can see, I have experienced many changes in my 31 years at St Mary’s Church, not least of all seven Rectors. Mary Parker-Perks
Mother’s Union October 2023 It was lovely welcoming our members back to MU in September! We enjoyed hearing about the MU-supported project ‘Gympanzees’. Many thanks to everyone who brought the donations of coffee and tea bags, pot noodles and pot oatmeal, toiletries, and Gregg’s food vouchers for MU Diocesan projects. We gave out our Bags of Love to St Mary’s reception class parents and prayed together for the annual Wave of Prayer service. In October we must all bring an item of clothing that has a story or meaning behind it! Is it that school tie? Or holiday sun hat? Could it be that pair of wedding shoes? Whatever takes your fancy, please bring it along to MU at St Mary’s, Thursday 19th October at 2pm. Save the date: Saturday 14th October, St Nix at 10am for the MU Autumn Gathering!
The 2023 Christmas Tree Festival This year’s tree festival at St Mary's Church Yate has as its theme 'The Christmas Story'. It will open on Friday 1st December with an evening concert of colourful music from local group The Dixie Belles supported by Olga’s Ukrainian Choir, and will run until Saturday 9th December. Throughout the week there will be a variety of musical interludes, craft activities and refreshments. Pot-grown Christmas trees will be provided in situ within the church ready for decoration. If you as a group, business, family, school, or individual would like to sponsor and decorate a Christmas tree at the festival, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information. Your tree must be booked in advance – early application guarantees a space! All funds raised will be shared equally between St Mary’s Church for improvements, ensuring its use by and for the wider community for years to come, and the From Bristol with Love local charity who are supplying and delivering generators for use in Ukraine.
Join us for Music and Singing and a Scone tea. Donations to be split between the Dementia Society and St. Peter’s Church
At Barley Close Farm BS37 6RX on 7th October at 2pm. For more details contact Jenny 07879680118
Christmas wreaths and Cakes from St James 2023 Place your order by email to:- email@example.com or call 01454 318157
Services throughout the Parish
Services throughout the Parish Sunday 1st October 17th Sunday after Trinity—Green Deuteronomy 28:1-14 2 Corinthians 9:6-end Luke 12:16-30 St Mary 8.15am Communion 10.30am Harvest Festival Parade Service 6.30pm 630 Praise St Nix 10.30am Communion St James 10.30am Communion St Peter 6.30pm Evening Worship (Book of Common Prayer) Sunday 8th October 18th Sunday after Trinity—Green Isaiah 5:1-7 Philippians 3:4b-14 Matthew 21:33-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 with Baptism St Peter 6.30pm Communion (Book of Common Prayer) Sunday 15th October 19th Sunday after Trinity—Green Isaiah 25:1-9 Philippians 4:1-9 Matthew 22:1-14 St Mary 8.15am Communion 10.30am All-Age Service with Baptism 6.30pm 630 Praise St Nix 10.30am Communion St James 10.30am Communion St Peter 6.30pm Evening Worship (Book of Common Prayer) Sunday 22nd October 20th Sunday after Trinity—Green Isaiah 45:1-7 1 Thessalonians 1:1-10 Matthew 22:15-22 St Mary 8.15am Communion 10.30am Communion 6.30pm 630 Praise St Nix 10.30am All Age Service with Baptism St James 10.30am Morning Worship St Peter 6.30pm Parish Communion (Book of Common Prayer) Sunday 29th October Last Sunday after Trinity—Green Nehemiah 8:1-4a, 5-6, 8-12 Colossians 3:12-17 Matthew 24:30-35 St Mary 10.30am Parish Communion
Find out more about The Connection and Those Vicar Blokes on our website at yateparish,org under the heading Explore our Faith
At a Glance Dates for your Diary Friday 4 August—Beetle Drive 2.30pm @ St James Sunday 6 August—1pm Mission Walk @ St Mary’s Saturday 12 August 9-11am Westerleigh Village Breakfast @ St James Sunday 3 September—1pm Mission Walk @ St Peter’s Frampton Cotterell Saturday 9 September—9-11am Westerleigh Village Breakfast @ St James And from 11am Ride+Stride Walk for St James & St Mary’s Saturday 16 September—7.30pm Harvest Auction @ The New Inn, Westerleigh Saturday 14 October—7-10pm Autumn Supper & Quiz @ Westerleigh Village Hall
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
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.