Christmas Services at St. Mary’s Monmouth

Christmas lights

Please join us at St Mary’s Priory Church Monmouth for the following special Christmas services:

 

Sunday 18th December 6 pm – A Service of Nine Lessons and Carols

Saturday 24th December 5 pm – Christingle Service for children and adults

11.30 pm Midnight Mass

Sunday 25th December 10 am Christmas Eucharist

Church Street and St. Mary’s Making Movies

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On Wednesday 9th November, a film crew working for the BBC and the US network CBS turned Church Street and the Savoy into a setting for the making of “Black Cake”. Charmaine Wilkerson’s novel describes how “two estranged siblings must set aside their differences to deal with their mother’s death and her hidden past–a journey of discovery that takes them from the Caribbean to London to California and ends with her famous black cake.” (Life of a Female Bibliophile)

St. Mary’s was the “green room” for the many extras who were part of the crowd in the 1960s Soho street Church Street had become. Here are some photos taken by Cath Griffiths.

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Our Lady of the Waters

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On Friday 19th August, St. Mary’s Monmouth was filled with music and song, rose petals and incense, to welcome Philip Chatfield’s statue “Our Lady of the Waters.” The statue had been carried along the River Wye on a catamaran, brought by a relay of rowers from Hay-on-Wye to Monmouth, to draw attention to the high levels of pollution in the river. Philip and Father Richard Williams, an Anglican priest from Hay-on-Wye, shared their vision that the spirit of Our Lady should be invoked as a spiritual cleansing and a reminder of how badly humankind has failed in our stewardship of God’s world. The special Evensong was led by Rev’d Dan Damon, who quoted from the Canticle of the Sun attributed to St. Francis of Assisi: “Be praised, My Lord, through Sister Water; she is very useful, and humble, and precious, and pure.”

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Wonder Zone Holiday Club at the Priory

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24 children came to our Wonder Zone holiday club from Monday 15th to Friday 19th August. They enjoyed experiments to help them understand God’s wonderful creation, from the Solar System to the tiniest insect. Among the children were some from Ukraine, some of the refugees who have fled the fighting in their home country. The holiday club gave them an opportunity to improve their English and meet Monmouth children before they go to mainstream school in a few days time.

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W spider small

United Open Air Lammas Sunday Service at Dingestow

Lammas Julie
Lammas Julie
Keyboardist Julie Jenkins

On Sunday 31st July, worshippers from St. Dingat’s Dingestow, St. Michael’s Mitchel Troy, St Mary Tregaer, St. Thomas’s Overmonnow and St. Mary’s Priory Church Monmouth gathered on the village green in Dingestow for a united 5th Sunday Lammas service. Lammas – or loaf mass – is a tradition that has been largely forgotten but which was the first Harvest festival which predates the now traditional October Harvest festival by many centuries. A Celtic pagan celebration to give thanks for the baking of the first loaf from the first flour from the new harvest became an important Christian festival for the early church. It was revived by an eccentric Anglican vicar in Cornwall in 1843 and then was reinvented as the October Harvest festival.

It was such a joy to be able to meet in numbers from different parishes in the open air, to share bread freshly baked by church members with cheese and cider. And it only rained during the last song!

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Lammas Wide

Lammas cheese

Close Lammas

Legendary Tregaer Scarecrow Competition Coming Soon

Scarecrow

From 21st August, the parish of St. Mary Tregaer will be home to some new residents: the 2022 Scarecrow Festival entries. This year’s theme is ‘Royalty’. All local residents are welcome to enter their very own character into the competition. The scarecrows will be judged whilst they are on display around the village. A scarecrow trail map will be available from the church and from churchwardens. price £1. Prizes announced at Parish Hall Monday 29th August.

Last year’s theme, ‘Children’s TV Characters’ saw Wallace and Gromit, Bob the Builder and a Dalek out in the village among many other beautifully made scarecrows.

Entry forms from Raglan Post Office, Tregaer Hall and churchwardens.

A Wedding with a Bridle and Grooming

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If you plan to be married in one of Monmouthshire’s most beautiful old churches in an area with a long equestrian tradition… well, why not make horses part of the occasion? When Kirsty Sullivan and Scott Millar of The Glen Farm, St Maughans Green got married at St. Maughan’s church, they decided that there would be no better way to leave the church than on horseback. (Photos:Jun Tan Wedding Photography)

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Wedding

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Poppy Stowell from Youth Climate Ambassadors for Wales speaking at St. Mary’s Monmouth

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ACE Monmouth And Transition Monmouth are delighted to welcome Poppy Stowell to Monmouth; she is sixth-former Chair of Youth Climate Ambassadors for Wales. After speaking on behalf of the youth of Wales at COP26, she is no stranger to public speaking. She will talk to our teenagers, their parents and other adults about the effect climate change has had on her personally, how she feels it has change her, what action she has take and what she thinks the education sector in Wales should be doing about it.

Poppy Eco
Poppy Eco

Ministry Area formation moving ahead

MAC St. Michaels
MAC St. Michaels
IMAC St. Michaels

Representatives of our 19 churches met at St. Michael’s Mitchel Troy to continue their work on the shape of the Ministry Area Council that will be the centre of governance for the charity that will oversee the group of churches that will make up the ministry area. The interim finance committee, made up of some of the treasurers of our churches, has put forward some clear ideas on how the funding and costs of running the churches might be handled.

There is still a lot of work to do: one decision that will face us in the near future is what to call the ministry area. Other areas in the Diocese have given themselves rather poetic names – Netherwent, Mountain and Marsh – while others are more geographical, like Newport North West.

The meeting on Wednesday 23rd February was led by Archdeacon Ian Rees and Rev Tim and Rev Karen and facilitated by Steve Martin.