#358: when is it a journalistic mouse’s turn to go on strike?

On the road to Santiago…

Hello! Your good friend Bertram here, the journalistic mouse- I was meant to be following a lead today on a story which would grip the nation- well, the parish- well, those who share my obsession with tracking down the legendary lost cheeses of Heligoland- but I waited and waited and my train never turned up so instead, I tried to break into a house in East Wokingham so I could reveal the Quiz Questions ahead of Saturday night- but I couldn’t break through the tide of well-punctuated signs being carried by the teachers in the Marketplace- so instead I popped over to the Rectory and shared a piece of Danish Blue with the Rector and asked him what I could do to fill my column given that my Pullitzer-winning scoop will have to wait for another day- and this is what he told me…

Services and Coming Soon

This Sunday we have services at 9.30, 10 and 11, as usual, with the latter two being Livestreamed. Richard is covering at Winnersh and Bearwood but everything will be very much as usual. Do come along- do join in on the Livestream if you are away or not able to come to Church- and if you are on the Livestream do use the chat bar so people can see who is there and give a cheery wave.

Or, actually, not coming soon- the Soulscape Event which was planned for this Sunday for Yrs 6 to 11 on Green Issues has been postponed until the 25th of June in the Parish Rooms because we didn’t have enough numbers to make it the great event we were dreaming of. We are hoping more people might come in the Summer- please can you put the date in your diary now, especially if you were planning to come this weekend? Thanks for your understanding.

Notices and Announcements

Huge thanks to those who returned green Worship Questionnaires– there are a lot of helpful and interesting ideas included, as well as a sense that we are not going to be able to please all of the people all of the time, hard though we try. The results will be discussed at the next Worship Committee and a report sent on to the PCC, which will then be made widely available to everyone. Louise is doing a fab job of collating all of the ideas and answers.

The one thing we have drawn out already is the question of when we will reintroduce the Chalice at St Paul’s. PCC agreed that it could happen, subject to the results of the Questionnaire. Of the 40 responses we had on that question, 8 felt that it was probably too early and that they would not want to take the chalice yet and the other 32 said that they would be happy to have the chalice back now/ or at Easter/ or whenever the majority wanted it. This equates to 80% keen or happy to have the chalice back at Easter, which is what we are working towards. There are good arguments to have it on Maundy Thursday and equally good arguments for Easter Day so the Worship Committee will take soundings on that and make a decision when they meet. The key thing to stress is that the chalice will be optional- people can stay at the rail and take it, or stand up and go once they have had the wafer- it is a personal choice and both options are equally faithful and valid. Thank you again for all of the replies.

The Tuia App is something you can download onto your phone, and is basically Daily Prayer from the cutting-edge Church of New Zealand. It is poetic and moving and different and a good compliment to Daily Prayer. Do have a look at it!

Positions Vacant

There are a number of key roles which are not filled at the moment, or which we know are going to be vacant soon. This is a golden moment, perhaps, for someone who has been coming to Church for a while and is not sure how to get more involved to step up, or for someone to change jobs, or add something to their week. The key things are that asking for more details is not the same as being committed to do it- and that you can also chat to a friend and suggest that they might think about something. These are key roles and it will be great to fill as many of them as possible.

PCC Roles: the PCC is the Committee which runs the church, essentially, in terms of planning, oversight, priorities, accountability and support

We know that we will need a PCC Secretary from April, and we will need a Churchwarden, and also 3 PCC Members. It is a great way to find out more about the Church and to make an impact on what we do and who we are. Being a PCC Member is not a huge commitment- obviously, being Secretary or Warden or bigger jobs, but we are an effective, warm and encouraging group and we welcome new ideas and opinions. It’s also worth noting that some of the things that, for example, Peter Wells does are not part of the Warden’s role per se- he has a wide portfolio of roles (Bertie is especially proud of the phrase and would like to claim both full credit and a trademark on it) which can make the Warden’s role more onerous and overwhelming than it actually is.

Other Roles

We also need a Safeguarding Manager (who would work with Chris Barker and the Clergy to make sure that we are doing everything we should be to make sure everyone is safe) and a Health and Safety Officer (who would enjoy writing risk assessments) and a Treasurer for the Parish Rooms Trust (which would suit someone who is comfortable with finances and could do the job whenever they wanted to, say two hours a week).

Another two roles we are looking for are: a Concert Verger to help organise, support and oversee musical concerts and Christmas Services, and a Verger for Funerals who will be available during the week to support that vital ministry. (This last role can be paid). Again, if you would like to find out more, please speak to a member of the Clergy.

Which of them might God be calling you to find out more about?

A Few Last Links and Ideas

This is an excellent article by Nadia Bolz-Weber on courage and endurance and daily living:

Bravery Is Relative – The Corners by Nadia Bolz-Weber (

And this links to a new report about a Vicar in Milton Keynes, the suicide of her autistic son and her painful journey since:

Milton Keynes vicar’s world fell apart when her son took his own life – BBC News

Mary Cassidy has sent this note, about joyfulness:

Looking Through the Lens of Joy – Ignatian Spirituality

Cara has sent this article on journey and home, on acceptance and love:

home: month 1 – enfleshed

And this article is from the Diocesan website about the new Prayers for Love and Faith which is part of the outworking of the LLF process- please do pray for General Synod as they meet next week with so much attention on them and so many people who are praying for more than crumbs from the table:

Prayers of thanksgiving and for God’s blessing for same-sex couples published – Diocese of Oxford (

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