#315: What Bertie has been overhearing this week, and writing down in his little pocket notebook

My dear, dear friends,

I have been secretly following Fr Richard round all week, hiding in the turn-up of his trousers and hitching a lift in his pocket, all of the time recording helpful facts and information. (Nothing confidential of course- that would not be ethical- and no one would buy my autobiography in 2029 if I spilled all of the beans now). Here, then, is the news so painstakingly recorded with my own fair hand- I will start with the sad news and then get happier before telling you some of the things which are in Richard’s diary for the weeks to come.

As many of you will know by now, Jackie Alexander died peacefully on Sunday evening at the RBH. She will be greatly missed by her family and friends. Her funeral will be at St Paul’s on Tuesday the 29th of March at 2pm, followed by refreshments in the Parish Rooms.

Also, May Stoneham, a very faithful member of St Nick’s, died today at home. Our thoughts and prayers are also with her friends and family.

Several people asked me to see if I could steal a copy of Fr Richard’s sermon on Sunday, which I was happy to do- here it is…

Volunteers needed… for helping with coffee after the confirmation on Sunday, and for helping with advertising St Paul’s Church and our occasional offices on May the 2nd in the Town during the May Fair by standing at a Market Stall. Talk to Louise if you can help-

Calling all gardeners, readers and hoarders! 

We are planning to have some stalls at the Christian Aid Coffee Morning on 21st May and would be very grateful for contributions towards a Plant Stall, a Book Stall and a Tombola.  So – please get growing if you are a gardener, put aside some decent books if you are a reader and search your cupboards for some good Tombola prizes.  Thank you. There will be more details of this event at a later stage.

Are you in touch still with some of the people from Vaxjo who came to stay and who we stayed with? Have you thought of doing a Zoom with them to see how they are? And who would be interested in a parish Zoom event with our friends in Vaxjo, our link parish in Sweden? Again, do tell Louise if you would like to help think it through or would be keen to be part of it.

Fr Richard was also commenting on how interesting it is that there are always around 25 devices live during the Livestream at St Paul’s, which makes that group of people a significant part of the parish. He was thinking about whether a social event on a Sunday after the service would be popular, over Zoom. Would you come along to it if it happened one week?

Lucky Numbers were especially lucky for some this month…

The March draw took place at a well-attended post Mass coffee at St Pauls today, 13 March.

The lucky winners were:-

£50        No. 95            David and Janet Charlton

£25        No. 94            David and Janet Charlton

£15        No. 85           Francis Self

£10        No. 14            Rhoda Hart

The Draw is a simple way of raising funds for repairs and renewals to the church building. One share (number) costs £24 per year and the draw takes place monthly (either at St Nicholas’s or St Paul’s) for prizes of £50, £25, £15, and £10. All remaining funds go to the Restoration Fund.

If you would like to subscribe, or want further information, please contact Tony Roberts (979 5351), Liz Gallagher (989 1176) or Mary Cassidy (979 5096) – or in person at church (Mary at St Paul’s, Tony or Liz at St Nicholas’).

Coming Soon…

Don’t forget the Parish Quiet Day on Saturday (19th) at Woosehill Church which Jane Kraft is leading- speak to Mary Cassidy for more details, and with any questions.

Also, Saturday is a Churchyard party day- do come along!

This weekend the weather is looking good.  We have been asked to help with setting up of the Wokingham Choral Society evening performance in St Pauls Church.  This will involve moving pews and supply chairs from the Parish rooms – which can only be accessed between 10.15 and 10.45.

There will be the jobs in the churchyard too but these will be listed on the website – as long as I get to edit it!

See you Saturday.

And on Sunday afternoon, Bishop Olivia is coming to confirm 11 candidates at an All Saints Service which we are hosting because All Saints is closed for renovation- please pray for Max and Eliana in particular, our candidates, and also for Stella, who will be admitted to communion at the 9.30am on Sunday.

PCC meet on Monday night- do speak to a PCC Member if there is anything you would like to raise, or anything you would like to ask.

Here is the link for the Lent Bible Study on Tuesday night:

Join Zoom Meeting

Meeting ID: 861 4762 3913

Passcode: 702050

And do come along on the 23rd of March at 2pm to give thanks for the end of the restoration work and to see Bishop Olivia bless the new icon. Everyone welcome! Here is the leaflet to go with the icon, if anyone would prefer it online to a paper copy:

Clocks go forward on Sunday the 27th of March- Mothering Sunday. Do please turn up on time!

The Mothers’ Union has invited a couple of speakers from the Magistrates’ Court to give a presentation on their role at the forthcoming meeting on Thursday 7rd April at lunchtime in St Paul’s Parish Rooms.   The members would be very pleased to welcome anyone else who would like to hear this talk to come along.  If you are interested in attending, please could you contact Teri Austen ( Tel:0118 978 9123) or Jean Vaughan (   Tel: 07796 263677) so we can decide which room to use.

A Social Event for Newcomers and people who want to be friendly and welcoming on Sunday the 10th of April, after the Passiontide Music and Readings Service in Church. Do come along from about 7.30pm- or straight after the excellent and moving service- for pizza and games and chat and enjoyment. Please can you let Louise know if you are coming so we can peel enough pineapples. (Pineapple? On pizza? pineapple only belongs on a stick next to the cheese. And then you eat the cheese and leave the pineapple).

And finally…

It is Lent. So the obvious question and the vital question is- how is it going for you? Are you managing to keep up whatever you committed to do? Do talk to someone over coffee for a burst of encouragement, or read the flags at the back of Church to see what other people are doing.

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