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A monthly letter

November 2018


Dear All


Remember, remember the month of November


This month, as the Autumn leaves fall in the mist, brings us to all kinds if remembering, both happy and sad.

1st of November is All Saints Day. All those whose names we may not remember, who have held to their Christian faith.

2nd November is All Souls Day when we remember those we know who have died. We have had a particularly sad year with the loss of many we knew. We are remembering this time on


Sunday 4th November 4pm at St Mary's Mudford. The music will be led by the Benefice Choir and we are very pleased to welcome the Rev'd Linda Hann, the Chaplain at Yeovil District Hospital, as our preacher. Names of loved ones will be read out and candles will be lit in their memory. The service will be followed by Afternoon Tea.


5th November Bonfire Night 6pm.The New Rectory Garden, when we remember the foiled attempt to blow up the King and Parliament. I always have plenty of garden rubbish to burn so if you wish to come to this outdoor event I will provide tomato soup, hot dogs and gingerbread. Let me know if you are coming. If wet cancelled.


Friday 9th November

The students from the Park School, who have been learning to ring tower bells, will ring for the service in Chilton Cantelo Church before their Service of Remembrance.

I will be giving an illustrated talk to the Friends of St Mary's Mudford, based on my holiday in Russia back in May.2.30 pm Mudford Village Hall.


9-11th Christmas Artisan Markets. The Bishop's Palace Wells 10-4pm £7.00 entry


Sunday 11th November 10.45am Remembrance Sunday Services at both Rimpton and Mudford. Hopefully new and more experienced ringers will ring the newly tuned and rehung bells at Mudford. If you are interested learning to ring please ring me for times of practice at Mudford Church.


Thursday 15th November War - we remember both World Wars with a fundraising lunch at Mudford Village Hall.1pm. Please wear wartime clothes if you wish.


Saturday 24th November 10-1.30 Christmas Fayre Marston Magna Village Hall.


Friday 30th November, We remember St Andrew, St Peter's brother, who first brought Peter to meet Jesus. Our Cathedral is dedicated to St Andrew.

Solemn Evensong with Wells Cathedral Choir at Wells Cathedral 5.15.pm



Rev'd Barbara Stanton



October 2018


Dear All


Four years ago I came to live in Marston Magna. The time has flown by and I have very much enjoyed being Rector of these five Somerset parishes. I still remember coming for the interview and being shown around Marston Magna Church and strips of sticky tape being pointed out for the proposed toilet for the disabled and the servery. I thought what a go-ahead parish. Just the sort of parish I want to be part of and just what rural churches need to be able to offer, more than a weekly religious service.  I had left both my previous parishes with similar plans afoot. It was a joy to visit one of the churches in Suffolk and see what had now been completed. The appearance of the Church had not changed at all, but the added facilities had made a big difference to the continuing life of the Church.


Should such plans be completed, Marston Magna will be the first in this Benefice to offer what all of us expect in other public places. Mudford Church has water and a servery and hopes to install similar facilities but, as yet, the architect has not found a solution in another Grade 1 listed building.


What I could not understand in Marston Magna was a reluctance to follow up this exciting proposal. Now, at last, a small group of enthusiastic people have been appointed by the Parochial Church Council to investigate the possibility of providing disabled toilet under the tower, leaving some room for storage. The servery is planned to go at the back of the Church on the right with a matching bespoke wooden storage cupboard on the opposite side. No pews will be sold or leave the Church.


The provision of such facilities in rural churches is very much in tune with the Diocese, who actively encourage such provision and so help to ensure the future well-being of both ageing congregations and the provision for activities suitable for children. I have found it very embarrassing over the years at special occasions like weddings christenings and funerals, when I am asked where such faculties are and have to say there are none! Such facilities will make life much easier for those who provide coffee and refreshments after services and concerts, where at present everything has to be brought into the Church and taken away afterwards.


None of this can happen overnight. Naturally there are numerous planning hoops to go through. Finance will, I hope, come partly from grants but a lot of fund raising will have to happen too. However, I think these villages have shown their generosity in raising money for our Benefice Projects and I hope will support the activities we will come up with, to make improvements to what the Church can offer the village. You can rest assured that everything will be done tastefully and in sympathy with this ancient and beautiful building.


Diary Dates

Harvest Services

Saturday 6th October Chilton Cantelo 9.30 followed by Harvest Coffee morning in the Church

Sunday 7th October Marston Magna 9.30 Harvest Supper Tuesday 9th Marston Village Hall

                                Mudford 11am followed be Harvest Lunch  Mudford Village Hall

Sunday 14th October Ashington 5pm


Concert at Rimpton Church 7pm Friday 26th October with refreshments


Rev'd Barbara



September 2018


Dear All


Music can be an uplifting part of daily life.  Younger people listen to music most of the time.

Music has been an important part of worship for thousands of years. In recent centuries organs have been installed in churches. Our problem now is it is not always possible to find musicians to play them and sometimes pay those who can. I heard a comment once from someone that they do not go to Mudford Church as the organ was not used. O that it could be! At Marston Magna we have recently gone down from three organists to one, so like Mudford, the electronic machine will sometimes have to be used. We need people to learn to use this. Is there anyone out there who could play the organ or piano, one of which we also have at Marston Magna? At Chilton Cantelo the person who played has moved. Rather than carrying on singing with no accompaniment we have decided not to sing. This reminds me very much of much of my life, and I suspect many more have the same memories, when I used to go to a said service at 8 o’clock. That left lots of time in the day to do other things, so if a short, said service is something you would appreciate, remember Chilton at 9.30 the second Sunday in the month.


This doom and gloom is not the whole story. We also have bells at Marston Magna rung every Sunday. Our excellent ringers had a much-needed holiday in August. Mudford bells have been away to Bridport to be retuned and have been rehung. There is a national movement this year for more people to learn to ring and thus have all the bells in England ringing to mark the end of the first World War on Remembrance Sunday. If anyone is interested in learning to ring, please contact me. We have a peel of bells in three of our churches.


We still have the advantage of several excellent organists and the Benefice Choir. I heard so many remarks of appreciation for the music after out last service with the Benefice Choir at Rimpton, when we celebrated Lammastide. The next special service is the Patronal Festival which we hold annually at Marston Magna, to remember the dedication of three of our churches to St Mary. At this sung service, using the Book of Common Prayer, the Benefice Choir will lead the singing. The preacher will be the Rev'd Tim Horsington, who many of us know from the interregnum and who often covers for my holidays. The service will be followed by refreshments. Do come and hear the choir and the organ


5pm 9th September. St Mary's Marston Magna


Rev'd Barbara






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