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Sunday, 12 November 2017
This morning we met at 10:45 for our annual Act of Remembrance. The service started in Church with hymns, prayers and readings and incorporated the 2 minutes silence at 11 am marked by the Last Post at the beginning and the Reveille at the end. Father Stephen spoke movingly of his first job working at the National Army Museum cataloguing memorials of young men killed in the First World War, and of how this annual act reminds us to treat every day as a gift from God, remembering those who gave up their lives so we could live in freedom and peace.
The Choir sang 'They are at Rest' words by J.H.Newman, music by Edward Elgar as the Anthem.
After the singing of the National Anthem the congregation, lead by the Church Wardens moved to the War Memorial in the Church Yard, where in blustery sunshine wreaths were laid, representing the Armed services, Village organisations, the Sunday School and the Choir.

Next Sunday the 19th of November is Toilet Twinning day! Did you know that 1 in 3 people on the planet don't have access to a hygienic toilet?As a thanksgiving for having our own new toilets we are going to Twin them with toilets provided by the charity Toilet Twinning, a part of Tear fund. We have 2 toilets and if we can raise £60 for each we can twin them both with a village in the third world, If we can raise £240 we can twin with a school or displacement camp!! So please bring a donation next Sunday, or place your donation in an envelope marked toilet twinning and place in the wall safe in church!

Also please sign up if you would like to come and stir the christmas pudding on Stir Up Sunday 26th November, when we will be making a giant bowl of Christmas pudding mix in the Parish rooms at 3 pm. Bring your own bowl and fill it up (£5 large, £2:50 small) to take home followed by tea!

Sunday, 5 November 2017
The first Sunday of November and so we are celebrating All Saints day. Our Family service at 10 am was a Eucharist, celebrated by Father Stephen. The Sunday School, accompanied by the Young Choristers, with Joanna playing the piano gave us the Saints go Marching in, followed by a presentation about who are the saints (us, trying hard to live up to the title!) and reflecting on the Joy they now experience and they bring to our lives, followed by a poem read by Kate, one of the mothers in the congregation. The intersessions were read by Seth and Hazel, and we sang 'For all thy Saints who from their Labours rest' as the Offertory hymn.
After communion the choir sang 'Give us the wings of faith' by Ernest Bullock as the anthem.

We had our coffee in the Parish rooms.

Stir up Sunday, the 26th of November we are going to make a Giant Christmas Pudding mixture!! Come along and join in, stir the pudding and make a wish, and fill your own bowl with mixture to take home and cook (recipe suitable for steaming or microwaving) Bowl available on the day if you dont have one!! Tea to follow once the pudding is made! Please sign up on the list in Church next Sunday so we can calculate quantities!! All welcome to give it a stir at 4 pm.

Next Sunday we will start our service at 10:45am to incorporate the act of remembrance at the war memorial at 11 am. 

Well into Autumn now!

Hamper for the Christmas Draw awaiting your contributions!
Tuesday, 17 October 2017
This morning we had sung mattins as our 10 am service. We were still enjoying the flowers in the Church for Tim and Emma's wedding on the previous Thursday. The set psalm was psalm 23. The readings from the King James version of the Bible were from Isaiah and St Matthew's Gospel. In the sermon Father Stephen followed up the Gospel reading, the story of the King who held a wedding banquet for his son, the invited guests would not come so he asked in passing strangers, but one man was not properly dressed and he was cast out. The tradition at the time was for the host to provide wedding clothes so this refusal has a particular implication. The passage ends with the famous words, 'many are called but few are chosen'.
The choir sang the Benedictus in the setting by Stanford in C Major, and the anthem was 'O for a closer walk with God' also set by Stanford.
There was coffee after the service in the new rooms.

At 3pm we were back in the church to hear a concert of Piano music by Tom Cooper. On this occasion Tom had chosen a selection of music that had influenced, or was by, Russian composers. He dedicated this concert to the memory of Alfred Lytton, who was a family friend. The music was wonderful, as we have come to appreciate from Tom and once again he also informed us about the background and relationship of the pieces he had chosen. The concert was followed by a Sidlesham Tea in the new rooms, which Tom's concerts had helped us to build!

Dame Jenny gives the vote of thanks

Marjorie Lytton with Tom

Sunday, 8 October 2017
This morning our 10 am Eucharist was celebrated by Father Stephen. The Church was still looking splendid with the Harvest Festival flowers and displays. The Gospel story was another of the Vineyard parables, where the owner sends workers and eventually his son and all are rejected or killed, Jesus asks how the owner will treat the vineyard workers when he comes. In his sermon Father Stephen pointed out that rather than what would seem justifiable wrath from God for killing his Son, faith leads us to grace which at the end will see us enter God's Kingdom.
The Choir sang 'Fairest Lord Jesus' a traditional text as the Anthem. There was coffee after the service in the new rooms.

Next Sunday we will welcome Tom Cooper to play a piano recital of Russian Music, 3pm in Church followed by Tea in the new rooms, a retiring collection for St Wilfrid's Hospice and St Mary's will be taken up. Tom has dedicated this concert to the memory of Alfred Lytton.

On Saturday October 28th do join us for the Eucharist for the repose of the souls of the dead, Faure's setting of the Requiem sung liturgically.

Sunday, 1 October 2017
We continued our busy weekend with a Family Eucharist and Service of Harvest Thanksgiving this morning. We came to church on a rather soggy October day to discover the church had been transformed by the Flower team into a wonderful display of harvest fruit, veg and flowers. The Sunday School made a presentation on the theme of Harvest, and during the offertory Hymn harvest goods were brought to the alter by representatives of the Farmers, Growers and Gardeners of the Parish, followed by contributions from individual families.
The Choir, in fine voice, sang 'Look at the World' by John Rutter as the Anthem.
There was coffee in the New Rooms after the service.

Coming up we have a Concert by our good friend Tom Cooper on October 15th at 3 pm in the Church. Tom will be playing a concert of Russian music, and dedicates the concert to the memory of our dear friend Alfred Lytton. A retiring collection in aid of St Wilfrid's Hospice and St Mary's will be taken up and of course this will be followed by tea in the New Rooms!

On Saturday the 28th of October at 6 pm, we shall have our Eucharist service for the repose of the souls of the departed. This will include the singing of the Faure Requiem as the setting for the liturgy. If you have a loved one you would like remembered ( the names are place on the alter during the service) please add them to the list in Church.

Further off but approaching fast we have a new event,  Sunday 26th of November, the last Sunday in Trinity, is traditionally known as 'Stir up Sunday' and so we shall be stiring ourselves up in the new rooms, making Christmas Puddings. A giant bowl of christmas pudding mixture will be assembled and stirred by all, and you can either bring your own basin to fill, or basins will be there for you to use at extra charge, following the making of the pudding we shall have tea. Look out for more details nearer the time!!

Another very busy weekend for St Mary our Lady. On Saturday morning the choir were again invited to take part in the Eucharist organised by the Prayer Book Society in Chichester Cathedral. This Eucharist uses the liturgy of the Book of Common Prayer, which is used less often these days. The setting used was that by Darke in F major, and the anthem was Ave Verum in the setting by W.A.Mozart. It is a wonderful experience for our village choir to be able to sing in our 'Mother Church' the Cathedral, and the choir greatly appreciates the support from members of the congregation who came along to the service.

In the evening we gathered in the Church Hall for our Harvest Supper, over 70 people came to join in the festivities, and a fine meal of cold meats, salad, tomatoes potato salad, apple pie and cheese and biscuits was consumed with relish by all! Our entertainments this year were some excellent readings and some brain challenging Quizes! It was a fine evening enjoyed by all. A big thank you to the organising team!!!

Sunday, 24 September 2017
This morning we met at 10 am for the Eucharist in lovely late autumn sunshine. Today's gospel was from St Mathew and told the story of the workers in the vineyard. This story only occurs in St Mathew, tells of the workers being hired all through the day but at the end of the day every one received the same pay! In his Sermon Father Stephen suggested that this approach to industrial relations was unlikely to be very successful, but of course the story, which seems so unfair is in fact a demonstration of the fact that God's grace is available to all who come to him, whether at the beginning of the day or the end. It is not about what we deserve, but the fact that God gives us his grace, when we turn to him, whether we have been good or not, not an excuse to behave badly however!!

The Choir sang the Ave Verum in the setting by W.A. Mozart as the anthem.
There was coffee after the service in the new rooms. Next Saturday the Choir will sing in Chichester Cathedral at 10:30 at a Eucharist in celebration of the Prayer Book Society, do come along and support them. Next weekend is also our Harvest Festival. The Harvest Supper in the Church Hall will be on Saturday night, tickets available from the Church Wardens. Next Sunday we will have a Family Eucharist of Harvest Thanksgiving at 10 am. Please note this is the only Harvest Service this year.

A touch of Autumn in our flowers this week
Friday, 22 September 2017
As it is the third Sunday, we had Matins.

Father Stephen's sermon was about forgiveness, echoing the readings today.

If someone does something horrible, human nature wants revenge. But as Christians, we should not want revenge.  Revenge is up to God. Christ spoke of forgiveness.  In recent years we have witness amazing acts of forgiveness.  Gordon Wilson lost his daughter Marie in the Enniskillen bomb attack. Marie's last words were "Daddy I love you very much". He prayed for the terrorists every night, drawing on his deep Christian faith to forgive.  It can seem impossible to forgive, but as we are forgiven, we can also forgive.

In the parables, Jesus uses exaggeration to show forgiveness.  We must forgive "77 times", echoing Genesis cursing 77 times. Jesus is the second Adam, restoring us to God.

Forgiveness is a free gift from the Lord, there for us to take.

The Anthem was "O Lord My God" by Samuel Sebastian Wesley.
Sunday, 10 September 2017
This morning at our 10 am Eucharist  we felt 'back to normal' after the excitement of the visit from the Bishop last week! The gospel reading from St Mathew included those words so important to us 'where ever two or three are gathered together I am with you' Father Stephen in his sermon reminded us that we are still in the Year of the Bible. He told us something of the assembling of the Bible as we now have it at the beginning of the 4th century, the test for inclusion being that the book  gave sight of the real Jesus. There were many other accounts circulating at the time, but the 4 Gospels and Acts, the Epistles and the Revelation of St John were decided on by the Holy Fathers as meeting these criteria. Worship in a community we are promised makes Jesus present with us in Word and Sacrament, although private prayer is commended to us in other parts of the Gospel. We strive to have Jesus present in our lives every day and to be guided by Him to a christian life.

The Choir sang 'A New Commandment' an anthem by Peter Nardone during the distribution of Communion.
One of the delights of having the new Rooms open is that the Sunday School were able to join us at Communion and stay with us to the end of the service. We then all repaired to the Rooms for coffee and to look at the work the Sunday School have done during the morning.

Our good friend Tom Cooper will give us a recital of Russian piano music on the afternoon of the 15th October from 3 pm followed by Tea in the Rooms. A retiring collection will be made. Tom has dedicated this concert to Alfred Lytton, who recently died, and the collection will be divided between St Wilfrid's Hospice and St Mary's. Please do come along.

Sunday, 3 September 2017
This morning we were truely blessed to reach a moment that sometimes seemed as though it would never arrive! Bishop Martin came to St Mary our Lady, to celebrate the Eucharist, and to bless and officially open the new Parish Rooms. It was also our celebration of the birth of our Patron, St Mary Our Lady, and finally as the first Sunday in the month it was very much a family service!
Bishop Martin pointed out to us that the Bible didn't mention much about committees, but was very keen on the creative and artisan activities that lead the Israelites from their tabernacle of the exodus to Solomon's Temple and the glory of God. All these activities which had contributed to our new building, but of course committees have their place, especially when issues of fairness and justice are to be decided. He also told us of the tradition in the Eastern Orthodox Church that St Mary was educated in the Temple, and was involved in the weaving of the Veil that separated the public area from the Holy of Holies. This veil was riven in two pieces at the time of the Crucifixion symbolising that the Holy is no longer separated from us, Our Lord is amongst us, in the Eucharist, and every day through the Holy Spirit, this is our belief and by this we pass along our Christian Journey.

After his sermon the congregation followed the Altar Party to the door of the new Rooms, where Bishop Martin blessed the threshold, and marked it with the sign of the cross with Holy Oil, we then all entered the building and the main area, the Kitchen, the Office, and the 'facilities' were all in turn blessed. We then returned to the Church, with the peace, and our Eucharist proceeded.  During Communion the Choir sang Ave Maria, setting by Ricard Dubra, The service ended and everyone repaired to the Parish rooms for a Champagne  Reception, Chris Field said a few words of thanks to everyone who had helped, with activities, donations, design and building skills, to produce these new facilities. She told us that the earliest reference to providing lavatories at St Mary's was in a PCC minute from 1974! She was followed by Dame Jenny, who thanked both Chris and Janet our Churchwardens for all they had done and they were given flowers and presents. A call for three cheers for Dame Jenny and the two Church Wardens jolly nearly took off the new roof!!
As is traditional at Sidlesham, there was plenty to eat to soak up the champagne!!

The Bishop stayed and spoke to members of the congregation of all ages, and at the end we were able to test out the new dishwasher!!

Congregation members from the youngest to the most senior!

Janet, Chris and Jenny without whom non of this would be here!

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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