#398: my old bus to school, when I was littler

Hello! Bertie here, with another exciting update on life, the universe and everything. Lots of people to thank, lots of things to look forward to, lots of things to take note of- so, without further ado, because I know how busy you all are, and because my cheese fondue is warming up nicely as I type and filling my mousehole with delicious smells, let’s go…

This Sunday

Cara is at St Paul’s at 9.30 this Sunday, Colin James is our special guest at 11am at St Nick’s and Jane is taking the service at Woosehill at 10. Richard is leading at Twyford Church because they are in vacancy, in his capacity as Area Dean. Then, in the evening, we have our next service of Choral Evensong with Guest Preacher on the theme of People Jesus Met- and then with refreshments. It starts at 6.15pm, it has been a very strong series and that will continue on Sunday night. Do please come along.

Also, we have weekly prayers at 10.30 on a Wednesday– for the next three weeks this will be happening at 10 Ashton Road and everyone is welcome, as always.

Other News and Notes

We are still gathering quotes for the removal of the oak tree in the Churchyard- it looks as if we are going to be facing a bill of around £20,000 in total so if you have any ideas about Grantmaking bodies in this context, please speak to Lyn, or a Warden, or a member of the Clergy. Thanks.

Many thanks to everyone who contributed in any way to our Harvest Celebration at St Paul’s and St Nick’s at the start of the month. We raised exactly £1,050 from the two Auctions and the Harvest Lunch (£490) which is an excellent and exciting outcome. Thank you!

The next Talk in the Walter Lecture Series on Climate Change happens tomorrow night (the 12th) at All Sts at 7pm- this week we will hear from a member of the Borough Council on Wokingham’s plans to respond to the climate emergency.

Don’t forget the Quiet Day at Winnersh we are organising on Saturday the 21st of October- see Mary or a member of the team to book a place. Days like this are a gift and you are guaranteed to end it refreshed and glad to have come. This time we are looking at ways of praying, with presentations and time to practice.

Huge thanks to everyone who sponsored Richard on his Half-marathon on Sunday, raising money for Macmillan Cancer Care. In total he has raised around £920 which is huge- thank you for all of the messages, support and sponsorship. It was a real gift and blessing as he ran.

At 6pm on Sunday 29th October there will be a special festival Choral Evensong to celebrate Fr. Peter’s 10 years as incumbent of Christ Church, Reading. The service will be followed by drinks and a light buffet. I know that many of you may be busy with church duties, but it would be great if you are able to attend. You are welcome to bring partners, colleges or other guests, but please RSVP, with numbers and any dietary requirements, to Amanda at:

Bazaar- coming soon and wanted…

A number of stall-holders are asking for particular things to be donated- please could you collect any of these things and then deliver them to the parish office at some point in the next weeks- thanks! The Clergy Stall need empty wine bottles with screw-top lids, full wine bottles, wine bags and small cans and bottles of soft drinks.

Grand Draw, from Liz Gallagher

The Grand Draw will take place at the Autumn Bazaar on Saturday 11th November, 12.00noon – 3.00pm. Draw tickets are on sale now. They are available from Rhoda Hart at St. Paul’s and Liz Gallagher at St. Nick’s. The first prize is a Luxury Hamper, the second prize a Wine Hamper and the third prize a beautiful Patchwork Quilt. 

We would be grateful for donations for the hampers. There will be a list at St. Paul’s and St. Nick’s from this.Sunday. Rhoda will be looking after the list at St.Paul’s and Liz the list at St. Nick’s.

Please put the date in your diary and come along and give your support.

News from beyond the parish

The Diocese of Oxford have launched a new Learning Hub on their website which includes a number of interesting courses for people to do online, and these will be added to regularly. Why not have a look? And if you want someone to discuss it with, or to recommend something, please let Richard or Cara know. If you have ever thought that you would like to think more about the faith, or that you would find it exciting to be challenged to think, then this is for you- The Diocese of Oxford (

Here is the latest news from our good friends at Soulscape

Some Prayers for the conflict in Israel and Gaza

Eternal God,

You know our history of complicated conflicts, tense polarization, and situations so politicized that we are afraid to say or pray anything. Yet we know you grieve the violence of war and condemn acts of terrorism. We know you grieve the historical suffering of Jews and Palestinians. May our prayers for peace be uttered out loud for all to hear, our prayers for diplomacy, and for difficult, yet faithful conversation to resume.

God, we groan in grief over the news of this war in Israel and Gaza. Pave a path toward peace in this age-old, tragic conflict. Protect the innocent wherever bombs of destruction fall. Be with those who are captured and the families of those who are captured. Offer a way out for those who are trapped. Awaken us to our common humanity, our common human needs no matter the walls we build.


God of light and salvation, our refuge and our strength,

We pray for the people of Israel and Palestine amid the escalating violence.

We pray for those killed and injured by rockets and the shock attack from Gaza into southern Israel. May your rod and staff comfort them. We pray for those who are grieving. May they know your ever-present help.

We pray for the protection of those who have been taken hostage by Hamas. As they walk through this dark valley, may they fear no evil.

We pray for the civilians of Gaza. May they know that their help comes from the Maker of heaven and earth.

And we pray for those in leadership in Gaza and Israel. May you guide them along the right paths. We ask all this in union with Christ and trusting in the power of your Holy Spirit.


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