Both St George’s and St John’s held pet blessing services on Sunday 8th October. As this was the Feast of St Francis it was particularly appropriate date to give thanks for our furred and feathered friends. The services were occasionally noisy but equally joyful!
We are grateful and give thanks for all those who donated gifts at our recent Services of Harvest Thanksgiving across the benefice. Many boxes and crates were delivered to West Berkshire Foodbank and Newbury Soup Kitchen who both remain in great need of support.
Please do join us for our next Forest Church service at St Michael and All Angels, Enborne. Sunday 10th September, 6-7pm.
Forest church is a way to consider life, the universe and spirituality through the rythms and cycles of the seasons and through meditating on the wisdom of God in nature. It is very relaxed, and open to all ages.
This year’s St George’s Holiday Club was themed as ‘Seaside Surprise’ with all things ‘seasidey’ including the song ‘Oh I do love to be beside the Seaside’.
Almost 70 young children gathered ‘On the Pier’ on Monday morning on 24th July for a week of fun based on an adventure by the seaside. After a smooth registration process, they gathered in their ‘Beach Huts’ before all coming together for some singing, dancing and stories back ‘On the Pier’. Numbers of children steadily grew during the week as others heard of the fun being enjoyed.
The youngest group, the Leaping Lobsters, based in the church, were usually the first to march into the Hall They were followed by the Smiley Sharks, the Super Seaweed, the Whispering Whales and finally the Shimmering Shells, the oldest group.
They began the day by singing our theme song for the week – ‘Oh I do like to be beside the seaside’ – before dancing with the ‘Pier Maintenance’ to the tune of ‘Surfing USA’. Once again, the church teenagers formed the ‘Pier Maintenance’, who as well as helping in all the Beach Huts, also performed our drama about Tony the Ice who ran the Ice Cream parlour in our seaside town. He recruits others like ‘Phil the Pale’ who runs the Pharmacy but who was constantly being sick, Jude the Dude, a money grabbing trinket salesman, etc to help attract more visitors. Their antics mirrored the daily stories of the disciples around the Sea of Galilee.
Starting on Monday we covered the stories of the call of the disciples, the miraculous catch of fish, storm on the lake, house on the rock, and Jesus’ resurrection appearance by the Sea of Galilee.
And of course, it would not be Holiday Club without ‘The Plank’! – the perennial favourite; a simple but highly effective way of creating excitement, fun and a general soaking for all involved. Each year ‘The Plank’ transforms into something new – this year it was the ‘Big Wave Wipeout’, but children are not fooled and they all wanted a go on ‘walking the plank’!
A Celebration Service was held in the Hall on the Sunday and a fair number of young children and their parents attended. This gave the adults a good taste of what we had been doing through the week. A number of the children presented their crafts they had made, some read Bible readings and others short prayers. We finished the Club thinking about Jesus as the Light of the World.
Our sincere thanks to ‘Pier Maintenance’, all leaders and helpers, including our wonderful technical support! ‘Pier Maintenance’ spent a number of Sunday evenings constructing the decorations, as well as practicing the drama and helping out in the groups. Leaders and helpers spent weeks preparing materials for the craft activities, and we know many a partner was dragged in to help!
And a thank you to the children who made the week so enjoyable, and the parents who donated cakes to keep the children and us going!
During August when many groups and clubs take a break, the St George’s Café remains open and ready to offer a warm welcome. For those with youngsters there’s a children’s area with books and baby toys. Open Monday and Wednesday mornings and Friday afternoons.
The Monday Meet’s Summer Walk is on 17 July, departing from the top of Cope Hall Lane on Essex Street at 5.45pm. This is a six mile walk with stops along the way at local pubs and will take most of the evening. Wear proper walking shoes, and the advice is to wear long sleeves and trousers as there are many stinging nettles along the way! All are welcome. More details from Craig Brown at email@example.com.
Sunday, 25th June saw over 60 people gather for a lovely afternoon in the vicarage garden to enjoy food, fellowship and water play! A big thank you to those who did the cooking over some very warm BBQs, to those who organised the food, to everyone who made a salad, and to Revd Becky and Phil for hosting. A great time was had by all!
The annual St George’s Holiday Club for 5 – 11 year olds returns to a full five days this year with the theme Seaside Surprise! It will run from 24th – 28th July, 10am – 12pm at St George’s Hall which will be transformed into a seaside theme. Children must be registered in advance, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org or pop into St George’s Church office to pick up a registration form.
The Benefice will be celebrating Pentecost with a picnic, kite flying and evensong at St Michael’s Church, Enborne on Sunday 28th May. The picnic will begin at 3.30pm with evensong at 5.00pm. All welcome – bring a picnic, and a chair or rug. Hot drinks will be provided.