NEWSLETTER – JULY 2009
Surely the Lord is in this place
280 years is a long time - about eleven generations, depending on how you reckon them - and our church building has watched over nearly three centuries of rapid change. When it was blitzed, it became part of that process. Throughout its life, worship has been faithfully offered here, day by day and Sunday by Sunday, almost without a break. ('Almost', because for several weeks during the ritualism riots 150 years ago it was closed, on the Bishop's instructions: this is part of the story we are currently telling.) We will be marking the anniversary as usual, with a Festal Eucharist on Sunday 19 July, at which we hope Bishop Stephen will preside, if his wife Hilary's health permits. It will be followed by a bring and share lunch in the Rectory garden. Bring family and friends and make it a special day!
And to make the most of the summer weather, the following Sunday (26 July) we plan to have a parish barbecue after church. Food will be provided, and you are asked to bring drink and make a contribution to the costs, which will be subsidised by the church.
St Paul's School News
Some of the highlights of the busy last weeks of term include:
a choir performance on 8 June at the Barbican, with several other schools, each paired with an adult choir (in our case, Wapping Great Voices from News International) - a memorable event for all involved
Write On! week, when a number of authors and poets spent time in school working with each class, and children produced writing for a competition - they really enjoyed the week, and so did the visitors!
Founders Day on 26 June, including a service in church, where we discovered more about the remarkable Dan Greatorex, Vicar of St Paul's from 1864-97, and inspected one of his travel diaries
Sports week, with a range of special activities
the Leavers' Service for all Church of England schools in the deanery, held this year at St John Bethnal Green, with Bishop Michael Colclough as speaker and contributions from each school
Our own leavers events are on 16 and 17 July.
to Mark Weston and Christine Cruse, married at St George-in-the-East on 13 June - a very happy occasion, complete with an impressive guard of honour of Sea Cadets and fellow-officers, and a massive floral arrangement. Mark and Christine are dedicated to their work with young people, and now to each other!
to David Baverstock, ordained deacon on 5 July at St Alban's Abbey, to serve in the parish of Mill end with Heronsgate with West Hyde in that diocese. David served us well when he lived in one of the church flats, and we have kept in touch with him during his training. We hope to visit him in his new parish.
We were pleased to host a memorial service for Wilfreda Loverance on 18 June, arranged by her daughter Rowena (a Quaker who values her links with our church) to enable her friends to celebrate a remarkable life marked among other things by a commitment to teaching business skills to young women, and by a love of travel, especially to Greece. Everyone sang favourite hymns enthusiastically, and readings were from Julian of Norwich, the Qur'an and the New Testament.
Concerts in July
There are two concerts this month. The final one before the summer break in our own concert series will be given on Sunday 12 July at 5pm by flautist Laura Elliot, accompanied by Elspeth Wilkes (our own director of music), with music by Poulenc, Copland and Piazzola - just the thing for a summer evening! As with our previous four concerts, we can guarantee that the music will be of the highest standard. Tickets are £10 (concessions £8), including a glass of wine and light refreshments, and can be booked in advance by phone (020 7481 1345) or on the door.
We are grateful to the team who have organised this successful series of concerts; they are planning more in the autumn.
The next day (Monday 13 July) Wapping Great Voices, the News International choir, will present a short summer programme at 1pm, with light refreshments, to enable people to come during their lunch break. All are welcome, and there is no charge. The choir has gone from strength to strength, and it will be good to hear them again.
Committees, and email addresses
A reminder that we would like some members of the congregation who are not on the Parochial Church Council to join our various committees and working groups - Buildings, Worship & Mission and Publicity. These normally meet three or four times a year, and play an important part in the detailed planning of our work. We need to hear your voice! Have a word if you're interested.
We also want to update our parish email list so that we can send out messages and reminders about church events, and other items of interest. Messages are sent on a 'blind copy' basis so that your address is not publicised. Please send a message to <firstname.lastname@example.org> if you'd like to be included.
The Rector enjoyed a short break in Ely with fellow-clergy of Tower Hamlets deanery - a time to reflect and relax together, with some good speakers and lively discussion. It included a presentation about the new Stations of the Cross at St John Bethnal Green, painted by Chris Gollon and well-worth visiting. We were also updated on swine flu pandemic plans for the borough.
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