The Rector's letter - December 2018
Christmas is a terrible time of the year. Already busy schedules go crazy. Pressure mounts to spend, not only on finding the 'right' present for everyone, but buying more food and party snacks than you could possibly eat. All this is not to mention the time and expense to get and write Christmas cards, many sent to people you only contact once ayear. But worst of all, all the Christmas glitz and glamour focuses on images of having the ideal family and friends.
The sad truth is all this hustle and bustle emphasises what we don't have. It highlights the inequalities of our society as the wealthy splurge and the poor shiver and starve. But above all, it exacerbates the problem of loneliness that so many of us feel as a result of family break up, bereavement or social isolation, even in the midst of people. The sad fact in the UK is that nearly one fifth of adults in the UK say they are lonely all or most of the time.
It doesn't have to be this way. That first Christmas we were given the gift of God's presence with us in the person of the baby Jesus, who would grow up, live and die to save us. It was not intended to spark a madhouse of overindulgence, well intentioned as it may be. Rather the announcement of that heavenly choir was a call to pause and come back to the God who loves us. It was meant to help us realise that we are not alone and to understand that life does not consist in the abundance of things - but in a loving relationship with the God who gave himself for us. And that relationship with God works out in helping us both to love and be loved by others.
This Christmas may you receive the greatest possible gift - the gift of the knowledge of God's love and his presence with you whatever you are facing this year.
God bless and have a peaceful and joyful Christmas and New Year.
Improvements to the Church Building
A new oak door has been installed in the outer entrance to the main porch, and new glass doors with an engraving have replaced the inner porch timber door. This creates a much needed draught lobby, as well as introducing a fine piece of 21st century art to our beautiful building.
All Saints’ new heating system is installed, and the Church is now beautifully warm for our Services in the cooler months! Come and see for yourself and enjoy being warm at All Saints'.
All Saints’ regularly supports the MK Food Bank, the Tearfund, and Crisis at Christmas.
All Saints’ has an enthusiastic small choir, who lead the singing at Sunday Services. Choir members enjoy joining the Royal School of Church Music for some of their ‘Come and Sing’ events. The Choir is supported by the Village Embertones at Weddings and special Services. For further details please contact Hilary Proud via the Rector.
There is an active band of bell ringers, who ring All Saints’ 6 bells before Services, and also practice on a Tuesday night 7.45 – 9.00pm. New recruits are very welcome. Please see the Bell Ringers’ page on this website, or contact Sheila Watts 07703 279165 for more information.
The Children’s Church meets in the Institute on the 2nd Sunday each month at 11.00am under the leadership of Maddi Forrester and Judith Taylor. See the photographs for some of their activities, and please contact Maddi Forrester, 01234 714903, for more details.
The Homegroup meets on alternate Monday evenings to discuss various aspects of the Christian message. The group includes people from other parishes, and new members are always welcome. Please contact Judith Taylor on 01234 240690 to find out more.
Friends of All Saints’
All Saints’ is supported by the Friends’ group (FOAS), who are a registered charity. They work with the Parochial Church Council to preserve and protect the fabric of the Church and Churchyard and to raise funds to assist with improvements to make the building suitable for use by the community for a wide variety of activities. Please see the FOAS page on this website.
A Brief History of the Church
It is believed that the building was constructed between 1340-1410. It is in the ‘Decorated Gothic’ style. Work began on the Chancel, with its magnificent east window and progressed through to the building of the tower. During this period, England was at war with France and the Black Death killed thousands of the population resulting in a shortage of skilled masons. This led to wages and prices soaring, which explains why the decoration becomes plainer on the west side of the Church.
Unusually we have a portrait in brass of Reverend John Morden, who was the priest when the Church was completed. His brass records that he gave two bells, one of which had the inscription ‘In Multis Annis Resonet Campana Joannis’ (John’s bell shall sound for many a year).
An interesting ‘rumour’, for which there is some corroborative evidence is that the remains of Sir Everard Digby, hung, drawn and quartered for his part in the Gunpowder Plot, lies buried in the Chancel.
By the mid 19th Century, the Church was in danger of falling down. Very extensive restoration work was undertaken by the Reverend Campbell Hulton - many of his relations and descendants gave generously to the scheme and are commemorated in the mural tablets and windows which are such a dominant feature of the Church interior. Restoration and improvements continue to this day, with the recent addition of cloakroom and kitchen, as we strive to bring the building into the 21st Century.
Rector: Revd Richard Caddell, The Rectory, High Street, Haversham, MK19 7DT. 01908 312136
Churchwarden: Maddi Forrester, Cedar House, High Street, Emberton. 07769 923787
Parochial Church Council Secretary: Janet Gamlen 01234 711729
PCC Treasurer: Warwick Clarke 01234 713174
PCC Members: Louise Cook, Sandra Cortez, Bill Moody, Hilary Proud, Sheila Watts, Libby Wemyss
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