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Tuesday, 24 November 2015


This Sunday at our 10 am Eucharist, we celebrated the two feasts of Christ the King and St Cecilia.  The  reading from the Book of Revelation about the new Jerusalem, reflected the theme of the coming of Christ as King of all.

 St Cecilia, is the patron saint of music and musicians. Father Stephen told us what is known about her life: a roman matron who married and was martyred, with her husband, for her faith. It has never been clear why Cecilia is associated with music, but in art she is traditionally shown either with a small portative organ or with a stringed instrument like a violin.
There is a saying, sometimes attributed to St Augustine of Hippo, that “those who sing pray twice”: certainly from earliest times music has been used to enhance worship and to emphasise parts of the service – this is true not only of Christianity but of almost all religions, from the sonorous voices of cantors in synagogues to the call of the muezzin from a minaret to the low chants of eastern religion. Father Stephen reminded us that our worship at St Mary Our Lady is enhanced by the work of our choir, and in the intercessions we prayed for our choristers and the work that they do. 

Our Director of Music then came forward and told us that there were four members of the choir who between them have been singing in church choirs for over 250 years: she then sprang a huge surprise by asking Marjorie Lytton, Barbara and Martin Halfacree, and Beryl Rodd to come forward. Joanna and Father Stephen then presented each of them with a special Medal of the Royal School of Church Music to recognise their dedication and service and the congregation gave them a well-earned round of applause.  Of course, after that the only suitable hymn at the offertory was Angel voices, ever-singing round thy throne of light.
The anthem after communion was Above all praise and all majesty by Mendelssohn and the voluntary, again reflecting the theme of Christ the King, was Crown Imperial,  composed by William Walton for the coronation in 1937.

Next Sunday is Advent Sunday, the beginning of the Church's Year, and the Season of expectation of the coming of Christ. On Sunday afternoon there will be the annual making and blessing of Advent Rings followed by Tea.
The following Saturday 5th of December at 2pm in the Church Hall we have the Christmas Fair don't forget to come along and enjoy refreshments, and buy your christmas pressies!












Photos of the presentations and the lovely autumnal flowers kindly provided by Hilary Platts.
Tuesday, 17 November 2015

The third Sunday of November brings us to Matins as our 10 o'clock service.The New Testament reading, from St Mark's Gospel, tells of the coming of the end of time, with warfare and earthquakes predicted, which in the light of the events of the last week seemed very relevant, In his Sermon Father Stephen told us about his grandmother, who disliked changes such as motor cars and much else in the modern world. Many of us find change frightening, and many of our readings in Advent are rather grim, but we look beyond it to the promise of Christmas. We must fix our sights on this hope in the face of suffering and remember that nothing can separate us from God's Love.


The Christmas Fair will be held on Saturday 5th December in the Church Hall 2pm to 4 pm please come along!

In the North Transept there is a display of poppies made by the Sunday School. Each poppy has the name of a person from the War Memorial honouring those from Sidlesham who gave their lives for our freedom.



Tuesday, 10 November 2015


This Sunday, being Remembrance Sunday, instead of our regular 10 am service, we had our service of Remembrance  at 10:45. This short service in the church included the keeping of the 2 minutes silence at 11am, a reading of the Roll of Honour, an act of Commitment to the peace and welfare of nations, and the National Anthem. The Choir sang 'My Soul there is a Country far beyond the Stars' by Hubert H Parry as the anthem. Father Stephen in his sermon recalled that 100 years ago in November 1915, the country was in the midst of the First World War, with no hope in prospect and in fact as we now know the further horrors of the Battle of the Somme to come in 1916. Mechanised war was established and the countries of Europe and beyond remembering the Galipoli campaign in 1915 were locked in terrible conflict. Many of the veterans who paraded in front of the Cenotaph from both world wars are now gone, but sadly replaced by those who have had to fight in more recent conflicts. War is evil, but God is good and humans can show great compassion, courage and love in he face of the worst we can do to one another.
At the end of the service in church, representatives of the Services and village organisations processed out to the War Memorial by the North Gate, followed by the altar party and the congregation, where wreaths of Poppies were laid to remember those from Sidlesham who  gave their lives for our security and peace.







Events in the next few weeks!!
Sunday 29th November Advent Ring Making in the Church Hall, from 3 pm, including Tea. Please sign up on the list in Church so we can have numbers for catering. Each ring including all materials £12:50, In aid of the New Rooms project. Max number 20 so sign up soon!!

St Mary's Christmas Fair Saturday 5th December 2pm in the Church Hall.
Monday, 2 November 2015
This Sunday morning the church was decorated with beautiful white flowers for All Saints Day.In our Family Communion the Sunday School told us of the work they had been doing about Saints. They told the story of Blind Bartimeus who was healed by his faith in Our Lord. The Choir sang 'Give us the wings of faith' by Bullock as the anthem and there was coffee after the service. 













In the evening the mood changed from joyous to sombre as we had our Requiem service for All Souls Day. At the beginning of the service there was a dedication for the legilium fall which has been donated in memory of Valerie Thorncroft. The service included the setting of the Requiem by Gabriel Faure, sung by the Choir plus other singers who joined us for the occasion. The soloists were Sarah Amos (Soprano) and Peter Webster (Baritone) Peter also conducted the choir. The Organ was played by Joanna Chivers Gibbs. There were about 80 people in the congregation, many of whom had relatives who had died recently. A list of the departed was place in repose on the altar during the service. This moving service is a great comfort to them, and has become a valued part of our year at Sidlesham. Many thanks to all who took part.



Our Baritone Soloist and Conductor Peter Webster

Candles for the departed


Autumn is with us

Service Times

Services for the month are as follows:

First Sunday in the Month
8:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Family Service

Second Sunday in the Month
8:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Parish Eucharist

Third Sunday in the Month
8:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Sung Mattins

Fourth Sunday in the Month
8:00am Holy Communion
10:00am Parish Eucharist

Other services and variations are listed in the Calendar Section on this page or in the Parish Magazine

Click here to go to calendar.

Local News

From the Chichester Observer
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