Parishioner

We used to print and deliver our parish magazine to every house in the parish. Covid-19 precautions mean we cannot do that at the moment, so we’ve moved it online.

If you or your neighbours and friends would like to be on our list to receive the mag by email please let us know. We can also send a paper copy if anyone has no internet just let us know.


Easter Trail is live! 4th-18th April 2021

We had so much fun with the sheep, we are doing another one for Easter! Can you find them all? Read on to see the full trail list!

still time to join in! Text us: 07730609446

(more…)
The Ash Vale Easter Trail!

We had so much fun with the lost sheep trail at Half Term, we are doing another one for Easter!

Please pop an Easter Egg, Easter Scene, Easter Garden, Easter Wreath or even a knitted Easter Egg in your window or front garden in time for Easter Sunday, and leave it up for 2 weeks, so we can all enjoy finding them during the Easter Holidays. We have our Easter Trail web page ready to go, and will add all your trail locations to our list in time for Easter Day.

Trail link: https://ash-vale.org.uk/easter-trail-4th-18th-april-2021/ Click here to see where to start hunting for Easter windows!

Contact Alex on 07730609446 (text, call or WhatsApp), or send an email to projectmanager@ash-vale.org.uk with your location and a photo to add your display to the trail. We are happy to include everyone in Ash, Ash Vale, Ash Green & Tongham, so don’t be shy! We hope you have lots of fun making your Easter displays and hunting for them all during the Easter break.

Alleluia, Jesus is Risen!

#EasterTrail #MessyEaster #AshValeEasterTrail #EasterHope #EasterWalks #CommunityFun

PS: to start the fun, how many Easter Eggs can you find in this Magazine?

St Mary’s invites you to celebrate Easter 2021

Palm Sunday 28th March: Zoom Service 10am

Email parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk for the link or see below for zoom details. Hosanna!

Good Friday 2nd April: Stations of the Cross & Prayer

Follow the stations of the cross trail from The Chapel on Wharf Road to St Mary’s Church on Vale Road. Arrive at St Mary’s for a socially distanced  opportunity for private prayer and reflection in church. (Open 10am onwards)

Easter Sunday 4th April:  Zoom Service 10am

Email parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk for the Zoom link or to book your seat in Church (spaces are limited) We look forward to celebrating the risen Christ!

Easter Trail 4th April—18th April

We had so much fun with the sheep trail, we are doing another one for Easter! Please pop an Easter Egg, Easter Scene, Easter Garden, Easter Wreath or even a knitted Easter Egg in your window or front garden in time for Easter Sunday, and leave it up for 2 weeks, so we can all enjoy finding them during the Easter Holidays. Contact us on 07730609446 or send an email to projectmanager@ash-vale.org.uk with your location and a photo to add your display to the trail. We hope you have lots of fun making your Easter displays and hunting for them all during the Easter break. #AshValeEasterTrail

Easter Trail link: https://ash-vale.org.uk/easter-trail-4th-18th-april-2021/ 

Book of Psalms for our time

St Mary’s is creating a book of psalms reflecting on how we have experienced God and faith in recent times. Feeling inspired? You can send contributions for this to projectmanager@ash-vale.org.uk or pop them through the door at the Vicarage. We will display the new psalms outside St Mary’s on the prayer wall in the car park for Easter. Come end enjoy them on their own or as part of the Easter Trail.

With every blessing this Easter from all at St Mary’s

Alleluia, Jesus is Risen!

What’s on – April & May 2021

Weekly Events at St Mary’s :

Sundays 10am –Join St Mary’s for our weekly Church Service. All are welcome. During lockdown we will be on Zoom only, and once the doors open again at Easter we will be both in Zoom and in person.

Evensong is back too, contact the office for the latest timings.

Contact: Parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk

Mondays 11am: Coffee Chat Zoom Join fellow parents and carers for informal coffee chat and friendship. (Term time only) Contact Alex: 07730609446

Tuesdays 10am: Babies at St Mary’s Support Group We have run this new Support Group on Zoom while COVID numbers are high locally, but will open with restricted numbers after Easter. Booking will be essential once we are back in church, with legal limits on numbers. (Term time only) Contact Alex: 07730 6094446

Wednesdays 11:30am: Toddler Zoom with Chapel Kids and Little Lambs Library toddler groups. Watch this space for “Garden Praise” once it’s allowed! (term time only) For more info please contact: Alex: 07730609446

Thursday Café look out for news on Facebook & website. Once cafés are allowed to re-open we will be risk-assessing and reopening. parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk

10th July – More in the next Parishioner! Sneakin’ Suspicion are booked for an ‘end of covid’ Gig – watch this space!

Donations for St Mary’s: https://givealittle.co/campaigns/47eb21e6-c2b0-4a23-a526-8d13fd24fa56  This will be a huge help in challenging times. Thank you!

Chapel Arts Monthly Makes

Artists in Residence Debi & Jono Retallick host a ‘monthly make’ fundraising event for The Chapel, Ash Vale. Ashvalechapel.com

Email Debi for event details, Zoom links, and to book your place on the workshops: debiretallick@googlemail.com

6th April 4pm: Monthly Make:

Wire & paper birds (Zoom): A 60 minute session where Debi will take you through the process of creating a wire armature and hand building with paper to create a Bird form. Suitable for 11rs+ Kit £6 & please make a donation to The Chapel.

4th May 4pm: Needle-felting flowers (Zoom) Learn the art of needle felting whilst creating a flower of your own design to celebrate the arrival of spring! 11+Yrs, Kit £10 incl p&p.

Donations for The Chapel : https://givealittle.co/campaigns/8d80cd98-df9f-494e-9808-b8898744146f Your support is very much appreciated. Thank you!

Chapel Poetry Group Workshops: 

April: Fr 23rd April 7:30pm (Zoom & Garden)

May: Fr 14th May 7:30pm (Zoom & Garden)

Contact Alex: 07730 609446

St Paul’s Tongham Baby Plus:

· Mondays 4-4.30pm. Toddler Storytime  – stories, actions and songs

· Tuesdays 2.30-4pm Mum Plus— friendship and facilitated discussions

· Wednesdays 4-4.30pm. Toddler Storytime

· Thursdays 10.30-12am. Baby Plus  – Informal chat session for mums, with some singing and action songs for the little ones.

Contact: CommunityWorker@stpaulstongham.org.uk

Or via the Church office: 01252 783081

All events are subject to change due to Covid-19 safety rules. Please keep in touch!

Poetry Competition – Mirror Mind

Reflections on memories in poetry

The Chapel Poetry Group invites you to get creative and submit poems reflecting on your memories. All the winning poems will be published in our 2021 poetry collection “Mirror Mind”, and celebrated at a launch event either in person or online, as covid regulations permit.

First Prize for our overall winner is a £30 book voucher, and all winners whose poems are published will receive an author’s copy of the collection with your poem in it. This is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate local poets and explore treasured memories.

Everyone is welcome to participate, whether you are an established poet or a beginner, young or old. The important thing is, you must write about your own memories and experiences. Here’s how to enter:

Submit your poems by email to: ashvalechapel@gmail.com 

Subject line: Mirror Mind Poetry

Deadline: Friday 30th April 2021

Format: Please attach your poem to your email as a word document or PDF, all entries will be anonymised by our administrator before being sent for judging.

Make sure you include your name, address and phone number in your covering email.

Maximum 3 poems per poet, maximum length 40 lines per poem (no minimum length)

£2 suggested donation per poem to enter. https://givealittle.co/campaigns/feafddb7-d1b7-4686-810d-a66d0d0914c6

Would you like to pre-order a copy of “Mirror Mind”? Text Alex: 07730 609446

All donations & proceeds from the sale of “Mirror Mind” will go towards the running of The Chapel Project, further details here: www.ashvalechapel.com

An invitation to the Table

By Revd. Neil Lambert

Once again, a huge thank you Dan Austin for another great Easter cover for the Parishioner Magazine. For those reading this on the web page you get it in glorious Technicolor too! You might remember, last year he took us verse by verse through the chapter in the gospel of Luke 24 and the road to Emmaus. This year, we have a picture of an English hedge row, with a tree that clearly represents the cross.

The painting was inspired by a wounded blackbird that Dan found in the road, and brought home to nurse. With the mother and father blackbird, and the eggs in the nest, it’s almost like a holy family. On the lft, representing our business that we are all involved with is the car, whizzing past. On the opposite side, a field, and the hope of something different. The Sun is shining, like a beautiful pearl.

When I showed the painting to the local Chapel Poetry Group, someone said that reminded them of their favourite poem, The Bright Field  by R S Thomas. We had a look at it and it is miraculous how well it fits.

The Bright Field – R. S. Thomas

I have seen the sun break through

to illuminate a small field

for a while, and gone my way

and forgotten it. But that was the pearl

of great price, the one field that had

treasure in it. I realize now

that I must give all that I have

to possess it. Life is not hurrying

on to a receding future, nor hankering after

an imagined past. It is the turning

aside like Moses to the miracle

of the lit bush, to a brightness

that seemed as transitory as our youth

once, but is the eternity that awaits you.

Although Dan didn’t know the poem, he had illustrated it, just as the poem illustrates the passage, inspired by Matthew 13: 45-46 which reads:

“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.  (NIV)

Of course the field and the pearl represent the great good news of Jesus Christ, which we celebrate every week in church, and more than any other time at Easter.

The poem talks about missing something that is so precious, because we are too busy to stop and notice. So this is an invitation to stop, and find something that is for all eternity this Easter. 

The ‘old normal’ that we find ourselves longing for was never really that normal. Let’s face it, we were stressed out and spread thin. Now is an opportunity to discover what truly is important and where our treasure lies, not in holidays or big houses or fast cars, but in connecting to our creator through Christ. 

Certainly, something that I have missed greatly during lockdown, is sitting around a table together with friends and strangers, easting and sharing. I personally can’t wait to make that part of my ‘new normal’.

During lockdown, we have of course been meeting around a table, whether in church or on zoom. It’s called the Lord’s table, and we remember what Jesus did. His last supper, crucifixion and resurrection. It is that hope of resurrection that has brought us together each Sunday around a table. To give thanks, to share, and to pray for one another— and it has been priceless. 

As we come out of lockdown we want to invite you to the table, whether it’s for a cup of tea, or to celebrate Easter. Come and join us, as we rebuild our lives as a community.

Whoever you are, whatever you believe, you are welcome. 

Neil

revneil@me.com


The Ash Vale Easter Trail!

We had so much fun with the lost sheep trail at Half Term, we are doing another one for Easter!

Please pop an Easter Egg, Easter Scene, Easter Garden, Easter Wreath or even a knitted Easter Egg in your window or front garden in time for Easter Sunday, and leave it up for 2 weeks, so we can all enjoy finding them during the Easter Holidays. We have our Easter Trail web page ready to go, and will add all your trail locations to our list in time for Easter Day.

Trail link: https://ash-vale.org.uk/easter-trail-4th-18th-april-2021/ Click here to see where to start hunting for Easter windows!

Contact Alex on 07730609446 (text, call or WhatsApp), or send an email to projectmanager@ash-vale.org.uk with your location and a photo to add your display to the trail. We are happy to include everyone in Ash, Ash Vale, Ash Green & Tongham, so don’t be shy! We hope you have lots of fun making your Easter displays and hunting for them all during the Easter break.

Alleluia, Jesus is Risen!

#EasterTrail #MessyEaster #AshValeEasterTrail #EasterHope #EasterWalks #CommunityFun

PS: to start the fun, how many Easter Eggs can you find in this Magazine?

St Mary’s invites you to celebrate Easter 2021

Palm Sunday 28th March: Zoom Service 10am

Email parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk for the link or see below for zoom details. Hosanna!

Good Friday 2nd April: Stations of the Cross & Prayer

Follow the stations of the cross trail from The Chapel on Wharf Road to St Mary’s Church on Vale Road. Arrive at St Mary’s for a socially distanced  opportunity for private prayer and reflection in church. (Open 10am onwards)

Easter Sunday 4th April:  Zoom Service 10am

Email parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk for the Zoom link or to book your seat in Church (spaces are limited) We look forward to celebrating the risen Christ!

Easter Trail 4th April—18th April

We had so much fun with the sheep trail, we are doing another one for Easter! Please pop an Easter Egg, Easter Scene, Easter Garden, Easter Wreath or even a knitted Easter Egg in your window or front garden in time for Easter Sunday, and leave it up for 2 weeks, so we can all enjoy finding them during the Easter Holidays. Contact us on 07730609446 or send an email to projectmanager@ash-vale.org.uk with your location and a photo to add your display to the trail. We hope you have lots of fun making your Easter displays and hunting for them all during the Easter break. #AshValeEasterTrail

Easter Trail link: https://ash-vale.org.uk/easter-trail-4th-18th-april-2021/ 

Book of Psalms for our time

St Mary’s is creating a book of psalms reflecting on how we have experienced God and faith in recent times. Feeling inspired? You can send contributions for this to projectmanager@ash-vale.org.uk or pop them through the door at the Vicarage. We will display the new psalms outside St Mary’s on the prayer wall in the car park for Easter. Come end enjoy them on their own or as part of the Easter Trail.

With every blessing this Easter from all at St Mary’s

Alleluia, Jesus is Risen!

What’s on – April & May 2021

Weekly Events at St Mary’s :

Sundays 10am –Join St Mary’s for our weekly Church Service. All are welcome. During lockdown we will be on Zoom only, and once the doors open again at Easter we will be both in Zoom and in person.

Evensong is back too, contact the office for the latest timings.

Contact: Parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk

Mondays 11am: Coffee Chat Zoom Join fellow parents and carers for informal coffee chat and friendship. (Term time only) Contact Alex: 07730609446

Tuesdays 10am: Babies at St Mary’s Support Group We have run this new Support Group on Zoom while COVID numbers are high locally, but will open with restricted numbers after Easter. Booking will be essential once we are back in church, with legal limits on numbers. (Term time only) Contact Alex: 07730 6094446

Wednesdays 11:30am: Toddler Zoom with Chapel Kids and Little Lambs Library toddler groups. Watch this space for “Garden Praise” once it’s allowed! (term time only) For more info please contact: Alex: 07730609446

Thursday Café look out for news on Facebook & website. Once cafés are allowed to re-open we will be risk-assessing and reopening. parishoffice@ash-vale.org.uk

10th July – More in the next Parishioner! Sneakin’ Suspicion are booked for an ‘end of covid’ Gig – watch this space!

Donations for St Mary’s: https://givealittle.co/campaigns/47eb21e6-c2b0-4a23-a526-8d13fd24fa56  This will be a huge help in challenging times. Thank you!

Chapel Arts Monthly Makes

Artists in Residence Debi & Jono Retallick host a ‘monthly make’ fundraising event for The Chapel, Ash Vale. Ashvalechapel.com

Email Debi for event details, Zoom links, and to book your place on the workshops: debiretallick@googlemail.com

6th April 4pm: Monthly Make:

Wire & paper birds (Zoom): A 60 minute session where Debi will take you through the process of creating a wire armature and hand building with paper to create a Bird form. Suitable for 11rs+ Kit £6 & please make a donation to The Chapel.

4th May 4pm: Needle-felting flowers (Zoom) Learn the art of needle felting whilst creating a flower of your own design to celebrate the arrival of spring! 11+Yrs, Kit £10 incl p&p.

Donations for The Chapel : https://givealittle.co/campaigns/8d80cd98-df9f-494e-9808-b8898744146f Your support is very much appreciated. Thank you!

Chapel Poetry Group Workshops: 

April: Fr 23rd April 7:30pm (Zoom & Garden)

May: Fr 14th May 7:30pm (Zoom & Garden)

Contact Alex: 07730 609446

St Paul’s Tongham Baby Plus:

· Mondays 4-4.30pm. Toddler Storytime  – stories, actions and songs

· Tuesdays 2.30-4pm Mum Plus— friendship and facilitated discussions

· Wednesdays 4-4.30pm. Toddler Storytime

· Thursdays 10.30-12am. Baby Plus  – Informal chat session for mums, with some singing and action songs for the little ones.

Contact: CommunityWorker@stpaulstongham.org.uk

Or via the Church office: 01252 783081

All events are subject to change due to Covid-19 safety rules. Please keep in touch!

Poetry Competition – Mirror Mind

Reflections on memories in poetry

The Chapel Poetry Group invites you to get creative and submit poems reflecting on your memories. All the winning poems will be published in our 2021 poetry collection “Mirror Mind”, and celebrated at a launch event either in person or online, as covid regulations permit.

First Prize for our overall winner is a £30 book voucher, and all winners whose poems are published will receive an author’s copy of the collection with your poem in it. This is a wonderful opportunity to celebrate local poets and explore treasured memories.

Everyone is welcome to participate, whether you are an established poet or a beginner, young or old. The important thing is, you must write about your own memories and experiences. Here’s how to enter:

Submit your poems by email to: ashvalechapel@gmail.com 

Subject line: Mirror Mind Poetry

Deadline: Friday 30th April 2021

Format: Please attach your poem to your email as a word document or PDF, all entries will be anonymised by our administrator before being sent for judging.

Make sure you include your name, address and phone number in your covering email.

Maximum 3 poems per poet, maximum length 40 lines per poem (no minimum length)

£2 suggested donation per poem to enter. https://givealittle.co/campaigns/feafddb7-d1b7-4686-810d-a66d0d0914c6

Would you like to pre-order a copy of “Mirror Mind”? Text Alex: 07730 609446

All donations & proceeds from the sale of “Mirror Mind” will go towards the running of The Chapel Project, further details here: www.ashvalechapel.com

An invitation to the Table

By Revd. Neil Lambert

Once again, a huge thank you Dan Austin for another great Easter cover for the Parishioner Magazine. For those reading this on the web page you get it in glorious Technicolor too! You might remember, last year he took us verse by verse through the chapter in the gospel of Luke 24 and the road to Emmaus. This year, we have a picture of an English hedge row, with a tree that clearly represents the cross.

The painting was inspired by a wounded blackbird that Dan found in the road, and brought home to nurse. With the mother and father blackbird, and the eggs in the nest, it’s almost like a holy family. On the lft, representing our business that we are all involved with is the car, whizzing past. On the opposite side, a field, and the hope of something different. The Sun is shining, like a beautiful pearl.

When I showed the painting to the local Chapel Poetry Group, someone said that reminded them of their favourite poem, The Bright Field  by R S Thomas. We had a look at it and it is miraculous how well it fits.

The Bright Field – R. S. Thomas

I have seen the sun break through

to illuminate a small field

for a while, and gone my way

and forgotten it. But that was the pearl

of great price, the one field that had

treasure in it. I realize now

that I must give all that I have

to possess it. Life is not hurrying

on to a receding future, nor hankering after

an imagined past. It is the turning

aside like Moses to the miracle

of the lit bush, to a brightness

that seemed as transitory as our youth

once, but is the eternity that awaits you.

Although Dan didn’t know the poem, he had illustrated it, just as the poem illustrates the passage, inspired by Matthew 13: 45-46 which reads:

“Again, the kingdom of heaven is like a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.  (NIV)

Of course the field and the pearl represent the great good news of Jesus Christ, which we celebrate every week in church, and more than any other time at Easter.

The poem talks about missing something that is so precious, because we are too busy to stop and notice. So this is an invitation to stop, and find something that is for all eternity this Easter. 

The ‘old normal’ that we find ourselves longing for was never really that normal. Let’s face it, we were stressed out and spread thin. Now is an opportunity to discover what truly is important and where our treasure lies, not in holidays or big houses or fast cars, but in connecting to our creator through Christ. 

Certainly, something that I have missed greatly during lockdown, is sitting around a table together with friends and strangers, easting and sharing. I personally can’t wait to make that part of my ‘new normal’.

During lockdown, we have of course been meeting around a table, whether in church or on zoom. It’s called the Lord’s table, and we remember what Jesus did. His last supper, crucifixion and resurrection. It is that hope of resurrection that has brought us together each Sunday around a table. To give thanks, to share, and to pray for one another— and it has been priceless. 

As we come out of lockdown we want to invite you to the table, whether it’s for a cup of tea, or to celebrate Easter. Come and join us, as we rebuild our lives as a community.

Whoever you are, whatever you believe, you are welcome. 

Neil

revneil@me.com

Easter Trail is live! 4th-18th April 2021

We had so much fun with the sheep, we are doing another one for Easter! Can you find them all? Read on to see the full trail list!

still time to join in! Text us: 07730609446

(more…)
Letter from the Vicarage

By Revd. Neil Lambert at St Mary’s                                   

A Happy New Year to you all, and a blessing on you and yours.

As we face a new lock down and schools closing once again, I have been reflecting on what we can learn about successfully surviving a crisis. How are you coping with “Lockdown 3.0”? Have look at the ‘what’s on’ page if you are looking for opportunities to connect with like-minded locals.

Looking for best practise, my thoughts turn not only to recent times, but also to the challenges faced by past generations. You may remember Eric, one of our local heroes who shared his wisdom via a video on Remembrance Day at our carpark & zoom service. I learned so much from my visit to his doorstep last year. Here are 3 things to remember as we face the latest challenges in 2021:

(more…)

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