News
  
CHURCH WARDENS REPORT   September 2017
 
From the registers –
 May 31st           Funeral & Burial            Rosemary Gregson
August 5th        Marriage                       Hannah Foy to Joshua Benjamin
August 13th      Baptism                        Benjamin Robin Shepherd
August 15th      Memorial Service          Yvonne Howard
August 15th      Burial of Ashes             Ada and Rodney Andrews

September 9th – Ride and Stride –
This is a sponsored fundraising bike ride (or walk or horseback ride!) round as many churches in Essex that you are able to visit. The sponsorship money is split between our Parish church and Friends of Essex Churches Trust.  Fiona Watson is our regular rider who will hopefully be joined by other volunteers and with a bit of luck others will take up the challenge too. If anyone else feels like joining them and doing a bike ride around Widdington and the surrounding areas, then please do contact any of us. There will be sponsorship forms at the back of the church or contact Fiona, Christine or myself.
 
 
October 1st – Harvest Festival –
This year our Harvest Festival will be in the Family Service, the first of October. We will be collecting dry goods for Jimmy’s Night Shelter & Kitchen in Cambridge, so all contributions will be gratefully received. The service offertory collection will be discussed at the next PCC meeting.
 
Jimmy's Kitchen is so named in memory of Jim Dilley, who slept rough in the region, using Cambridge's temporary shelters. 
His moving story so inspired a small group of people from the churches that they established a permanent night shelter in Cambridge in 1995. 
Crucial to setting up the shelter was funding and donations from many organisations and individuals. 
Jimmy's was reliant on an army of volunteers who worked tirelessly to get the Shelter up and running. There is an endless list of volunteers coming from all over, including the wider church community, universities, individuals, retired and business people. All of this helps makes Jimmy's a very special and unique night shelter.
Along with food donations (examples listed below) a lot of important services and advise are provided.
Services like Jimmy's Night Shelter will always be needed. The aim is to ensure that whatever the future holds, Jimmy’s will continue to offer love, support and a place of safety and security for all its guests - in memory of Jim Dilley and the many others like him.
Donations of hot drinks and sachets, cuppa soups, juices, jams and marmite, long life milk, snacks, tinned foods, clothes (especially pants and socks) and toiletries. They also need donations for the dogs that accompany some of the guests – bowls, beds, collars, food.
November 5th – Shoe Box Service – We are going to run our Shoe Box service, in the same format as we did last year, in the 9.30am Family Service on November 5th. The boxes filled are for either boys or girls and aged from 2-4, 5-9, 10-14 years old.
Could you offer help in one or more of the following ways:
 
Help in setting up the church the day before.
Donating Items. We would welcome any items that would be suitable for inclusion in the boxes but in particular the items listed below.
Pack your own shoe box and bring it along to the service (or drop off beforehand). See https://www.samaritans-purse.org.uk/what-we-do/operation-christmas-child/what-goes-in-my-shoebox/ for further information about what to put in your box.
Make a contribution towards the cost of sending the boxes.
Items needed:
 
Clothing – hats, gloves and scarves.
Toys - All types of, ‘as new’, games and toys that sometimes fill party bags are brilliant shoe box fillers. Soft toys, (sadly no knitted stuffed toys allowed)
Finger puppets, toy cars, small dolls, balls (not filled with glittery liquid), skipping ropes all traditional-type toys. Items for teenage boys, unwanted party bag toys & games.
Hygiene items- Flannels, toothpaste, hair brushes, combs, make up for teenage girls (no liquids),
Stationary – notepads (preferably A5), pencil cases, rubbers, sharpeners, stickers.
Sweets – wrapped (no chocolate). Must be best before March 2018.
 
Drop Off Points- Either bring any contributions to a regular church service or drop them into one of the Coffee Mornings on a Wednesday or give me a ring and I’ll come and collect them.  Thank you very much.
   
CHRISTMAS SERVICES
December 3rd              Christingle    9.30am
December 17th            Carol Service 3.00pm
December 24th               Crib Service    3.00 pm
December 25th           Christmas Day 10.00am
           
Fabric update.
The tower has been inspected and photographed by specialist abseilers to assess its current state of repair.   Although we have not as yet received their report we have been told that there is a considerable amount of stonework to be repaired and made safe.  We very much hope that this will not be too costly as we are also having to make repairs to some external stonework between the chancel and the nave on the south side. This will very much depend on whether we have to surround the tower in scaffolding.  We are hoping that all this work may be carried out this autumn.   Needless to say, we shall be continuing with our fund-raising to help with all these expenses!
 
The up-date of the audio system will not be carried out until October as we have to wait for the bat roosts to be unoccupied.   We look forward very much to having this improvement completed.  It will greatly help those of us who are a little hard of hearing.
 
We are still hoping that some members of James Court’s family (he was rector here for about sixty years and died in 1950) may be found to help us with the expense of renewing the wooden cross on his grave which is badly rotted.  We have had a quote for £900 to put a small engraved stone in place and have so far received a couple of kind donations from the village.
 
Unfortunately, our organ broke down in the midst of a village wedding, but this allowed our new digital organ to come into its own and the music continued!  We are waiting for our original organ to be repaired which will cost in the region of £450.
Christine Rhodes – Fabric
  
Dates for your Diary
September 27th       Macmillan at the Coffee Morning 10.30am
October 1st            Harvest Festival in Church 9.30am
October 7th            Music at St. Marys Lucy Wakeford playing the Harp                       6:30pm
November 5th         Shoe Box Service in Church 9.30am
December 2nd        Christmas Quiz, Village Hall 7.30pm
December 3rd         Christingle Service in Church 9.30am
December 9th         Tombola at the Christmas Bazaar – all donations gratefully received!
May 26th,27th,28th 2018 Flower Festival in Church – see below for details
 
 
Irene Wilkinson has offered to organise a Flower Festival for Widdington Church in 2018 - 26/27/28 May which is, of course, a Bank Holiday weekend. The theme will be about managing our environment through recycling and conservation. I know there are lots of talented people out there with innovative ideas and skills who she would be most grateful to hear from. We will be appealing for sponsors to assist with putting the whole thing together so if you are able to help in any way that would be great and Irene can be contacted on 01799 543458.
                           
                                                                                                            Sonia Whalley - Church Warden

Little Fishes
Widdington Village Hall
10.30 -11.30am  
Every Tuesday morning during term time St. Mary’s Church invites you to join in a fun filled morning of Singing, Bible Story, refreshments and Play!
 
Pre-school children and babies are welcome with their Mums and Dads, Grannies and Granddads, nannies and carers.
  
Sept 12th, Sept 19th, Sept 26th, Oct 3rd, Oct 10th, Oct 17th, Half term 24th, Oct 31st, Nov 7th, Nov 14th, Nov 21st, Nov 28th, Dec 5th  then off for Christmas Holidays.
  
If you would like any more information please feel free to ring or email Sonia (Whalley) on
01799 540066
soniawhalley@aol.com
Or just turn up on Tuesday morning for a chat.