St Mary’s church has changed over the years, from the tin hut it used to be in Victorian times, to the brick building it became, then the extensions of the entrance hall, office and small hall on one side and the large community centre and kitchen on the other side. The need to accommodate those with extra needs meant a change to the front steps by the building of a ramp and extending the steps.
What an amazing event the Christmas Market & Carols was at St Mary’s! We want to say a huge thank you to everyone who had a stall, all who came to support us and of course the choir who led us in the beautiful carols afterwards. We enjoyed being able to invite the whole community to be a part of Christmas at St Mary’s even though we couldn’t do our usual events indoors.
Happy New Year! So much has happened since my Christmas letter. We hugely enjoyed welcoming you to St Mary’s to celebrate Christmas in lots of creative ways. Thank you for joining in with our (mostly outdoor) adventures and keeping one another safe throughout our Celebrations. We made 85 pizzas on Christingle night alone, it was a joy to welcome you all. What an amazing community we have here in Ash Vale.
As we draw near to Christmas, and so much vies for our limited attention, energy and resources, this letter penned by the apostle Paul whilst in prison provides a timely reminder of how we might approach this season whilst remaining mindful of the “reason”…
The central theme is captured in verses 6-11, which takes the form of a poem or hymn, and expands on what we might think of as our core Christmas message – that God himself was born as a baby and shared our human life with us.
Why not make your own ‘stained glass’ paper lantern, to help bring a cosy atmosphere to a winter’s night? You can even bring it with you on the St Nicholas Lantern Walk on the 6th December, to help light the way!
Looking for some new things to try this December, that aren’t the usual paper chains and ice skating? Embrace the frosty weather and the long evenings, and light up your winter from the inside out with these ideas.
Apparently, people in the UK have been reading much more since the beginning of the pandemic, and between escapism and boredom it’s not hard to think of reasons why. If you’re not one of those who has yet started—or returned to—reading, the return of winter could be the perfect time.
In discussions with the St Mary’s PCC, who take Eco-Church principles very seriously, we have decided to strike a balance between ecological considerations and the need for paper copies of the magazine, now that we have approval to deliver through your doors once again. Our Christmas and Easter editions will now be a full print run, delivered all around Ash Vale. The other issues in between will be mainly online with limited printed copies available to collect from St Mary’s or pre-order on 07730 609446. The magazine is available online via St Mary’s website and social media as well as being sent out to all those on the email distribution list. With Christmas wishes to all our readers