Click on the heading below to go direct to the News and Events page content
News and Events page
Registered Charity 1162342
To refresh this page, please press the F5 button. For Android phones, click the three dots at top-right, and touch the refresh icon (a circular arrow)
Please view THIS MESSAGE (follow link) from Revd Patrick Mukholi, our Interim Minister
To access this Sunday's zoomed service please use the [This week's livestream service] button above.
Read the current Parish Mag HERE .
The Parish Mag is not currently published on the Web with ads.
You can look at the ads on their own by visiting the Advertisers' page.
Scroll up or click HERE to return to the top of the page.
Also see fliers on the Friends home page
Members of the Association will be playing our recently restored organ - see flyer for details.
The third concert of the Berkshire Chamber Music Festival will take place in St Mary's church on 29 May 28 at 7.30pm. Details for both attendance in the church and the live stream performance are on the flyer (click on the image for a larger version).
The Magnificent March Fayre re-planned for March 27 has been re-scheduled again and is now the Splendid September Fayre. All our external stall holders have been contacted and notified of the change of date. There will be outdoor activities, and we shall also have stalls from our own Groups, Messy Church, the Guild, the Bell Ringers and the Friends of St Mary's.
The Family Communion service on Sunday 4 October was well attended and led by Rev Patrick Mukholi. It was good to see the return of George Nicholls, one of our organists, who played for us before the service, during the communion and accompanied the choir. Several members of the congregation remained in church to hear his playing after the service. Click the link for the Music-list for the service.
The journey to church began by walking up the path and hearing the bells again, what a glorious sound. The service started with the Bell Ringers hymn played on the organ by Jonathan Holl, and then four young members of the congregation recited the four verses. Before they returned to their pews the hymn was played again on the organ.
The reading for this service was not a bible reading but a poem from Simon Baynes book of Poems on St Mary's church. It was 'Grandshire Doubles', a poem describing the Ringing Chamber.
The service continued and at the next two hymn slots two talented musicians played the piano.
Instead of a sermon Tony Bish, Bell Tower Captain, explained the history of bell ringing and demonstrated with two bells he had brought to the service. This was followed by Jill Glennerster, leader of the Hand Bell Ringers, who described hand bell ringing and then conducted the band ringing Belfry Praise and 'Morning has broken'. Jill then invited children, who had remembered to bring a pair of gloves, to try playing the bell plates, which they did extremely well.
The last hymn slot was Jill, with her daughter and granddaughters playing the bell plates.
Unfortunately there were no trips up the tower this year but hopefully we will be able to do that next year.
The Family Communion service was led by Revd Patrick. A small choir sang the psalm and the Stopford Communion music. What a joy to hear the singing again! Jonathan Holl played the organ preludes, the final voluntary and also during the taking of communion. Another glorious service.
At 9:30am on Sunday 30 August the Family Praise service was held and once again two of the talented members of the congregation assisted with the service. One youngster played the piano during the hymn slots and another read the lesson. Their contributions were much appreciated and admired by those who attended the service. The story this week was of David and Goliath.
This was followed at 11am by Morning Prayer. John Kimbell again led the service. This week there were a couple of extra choir members able to take part. They sang, as John and Madeline had done on 23 August, the versicles and responses, the Venite, Jubilate Deo and final Common Doxology. John also sang the Te Deum. As is usual on 5th Sundays the Hand bell ringers performed and they rang two pieces, 'O Sole Mio' and 'Now Thank We all our God'. Jill Glennester gave interesting introductions to both pieces - 'O Sole Mio' was played at the opening ceremony of the 1920 Summer Olympics in Antwerp in place of the National Anthem, whose score had not been delivered to the band and 'Now thank We All our God' - written some time around the Thirty Years War in the 1630's in the midst of the appalling horrors of the war and the plague - Rinkart still maintaining faith and praising God. Anthony Hodson played the organ preludes and the final voluntary. Another glorious service.
August 9 was Family Matins. For nearly three years the children have prepared and performed a play at these services. During lockdown they continued the good work.During lockdown they continued the good work. The performances were videoed and shown on both the FOSMW and Parish websites.[Link to playlet]
The latest play was also videoed and shown at the service on the screen as five of the young actors were on holiday. As there was no singing permitted, several musical youngsters played the piano, and the final contribution was a performance on the bell plates.
The readings were taken by the youngsters and our collection taker guided people to the green bowl!
See another account of this service below.
St Mary's held its first service since March 15 and what a joy to be back! The service was Family Communion. There was no Crucifer, Chalicer or servers and the elements were prepared by Revd Patrick Mukholi, and not taken to the altar by the children. Jonathan Holl provided the music, finishing withe Bach's magnificent Prelude in D.
The second Crafty Church on Sunday 27 September was Noah and the Ark. Families collected their bags of craft tools as they entered church. Two of the children read the bible readings and a young musician played the piano during the hymn slots. The story of Noah was told and then the boats were made. All looked very professional.
Morning Prayer followed led by John Kimbell. A small choir sang the responses, psalm and canticles. The organ preludes and voluntary were performed by Jonathan Holl. A most uplifting service.
The Rev. Patrick Mukholi led the Family Praise service on 20 September. The Story was all about Matthew the Apostle and Evangelist. Two young member of the congregation gave the readings with one of them also working the PC. Another young musician played the piano for us. It was much appreciated.
At 11am Patrick also led the Holy Communion service. The small choir sang the psalm and Meerbecke communion settings. William Taylor was welcomed as the excellent organist for this service. It was good to see William again.
The Bells rang out - after 20 Sundays of silence, what a glorious sound to hear as one walked up the path to attend the service at St Mary's church. This was the second Sunday of reopening (and bell-lovers will appreciate the fact that the handbell ringers rang before the service on August 2.
The Revd Patrick Mukholi said a few words to the congregation before sitting at the back of the church so that he could slip away quietly to lead another service.
No hymn singing yet but, instead, several young musicians gave musical performances at the piano during the hymn slots and one family played the bellplates at the end of the service.As usual the bible readings were taken by youngsters and the playlet was shown on the screen simply because 5 of the young actors were on holiday. [Link to playlet]
Our collection taker for Family Matins stood next to the green bowl offering guidance to all!
The 2020 Berkshire Organists' Association Concert finally took place at St Mary's on Saturday 12 September following two lockdown postponements! Our Interim Minister Patrick Mukholi was present to open the event, which featured the excellent recitalist Jonathan Holl.
This concert was in celebration of the organ's 200th anniversary and a very varied programme was heard, with music which had been carefully chosen either to demonstrate the instrument's capabilities or else to mark a significant anniversary.
The first of four commemorative items, Walton's 'Spitfire' Prelude had been included because the original recital date was June 6 - just before the 75th anniversary of VE Day. Instead, its performance (by a professional pilot) took place 80 years after the Battle of Britain!
Jonathan's second piece, a Voluntary in G, was by Walond who died 250 years ago in the same year that Beethoven was born (1770). The latter's delightful Music for a Flute-Clock is one of his very rare organ works.
By contrast, Vierne's reputation rests almost entirely on compositions for the church organ. The touching Berceuse (lullaby), dedicated to his daughter Colette, was written to be performed during the Offertory.
Having been a key consultant for recent restoration work on the 200-year-old organ at St Mary's, Jonathan was understandably eager to bring to the fore some of the particular features of our instrument when selecting the other items in his programme.
The oboe stop was used to good solo effect in Zipoli's Pastorale in C whilst the distinctive colours of two other individual stops were illustrated in a pair of compositions by du Mage:Tierce en Taille and Basse de Trompette.
If those pieces served to highlight the versatility of specific registration which the instrument possesses, then the remaining works in this recital showcased the overarching capabilities of our newly-rebuilt organ.
With J.S. Bach's Prelude and Fugue in G (BWV 541) Jonathan demonstrated the agile keyboard action of not only the manuals but also the pedalboard, and he ended the concert by unleashing the power of full organ in Guilmant's Grand Choeur in D (alla Handel).
Having been treated to some fine musical entertainment, as well as an aural guided tour of the organ, the audience showed its appreciation to Jonathan, and thanks were also given by the Berkshire Organists' Association. Refreshments were served at the end of the evening.
Generated 15-Jun-2021 18:36:58