Music | The Choir | The Organ | Bell Ringing in the Round Tower
Bible & Prayer | Baffled by the Bible | Wednesday morning House Group | Friends with Faith
Children’s Activities | Little Lambs
Youth | Light Group | Puppet Crew
Activities | Ladies Group | Churchyard working party | Film and Lunch Club | Beetle Drive
The Pastoral Care & Visiting Teams | The Pastoral Care & Visiting Teams | Bereavement Support Team
Music is a vital part of worship and our church choir is proud to contribute to services by singing every Sunday morning, at special services, major Christian festivals and for weddings.
We are an enthusiastic group of singers who meet together most Friday afternoons between 4.15 and 5.15p. in St Leonard’s Hall. Rehearsals are always fun and lively and have a real sense of fellowship and community. We may arrive having had a tiring week, but music has the power to put everyone in a good mood, so we leave with a sense of achievement and lots of laughter in our hearts.
The choir has at least three rehearsals a month and always prepares for the forthcoming morning service as well as on pieces for singing during communion. At Easter, Harvest and Christmas we work on anthems and have a wide repertoire to suit all tastes.
Most of the hymn singing is done in four-part harmony but anthems in unison, two and three parts are the norm.
You don’t have to be an experienced singer to join us. All are welcome to our rehearsals and reading music is not a requirement. Just a love of singing and a desire to sing together to enhance the worship in church are all you need. So why not come along and find out more about the work we do?
Contact Jill Parkin at email@example.com for more information.
St Mary with St Leonard’s Church has the services of a Music Director and two organists. Jill Parkin is the Director of Music. Jill leads the choir as well as shares organ playing with the other organists.
The organ in our beautiful parish church is a fine two manual Norman and Beard instrument which dates from 1926. It was completely renovated, cleaned and restored in 2022.
Bell Ringing in the Round Tower
There is a ring of 6 bells in our Tower and St Mary’s campanologists ring out regularly for the 10.30 Sunday morning service and for weddings as required. The Bells are rung half muffled for the Remembrance Sunday service each year.
We hold a practice and training evening on Wednesdays and currently have some new ringers under training. On the first Wednesday of each month we practice at Little Waltham Church and ring there occasionally for weddings.
More ringers are required to ensure that the bells of St. Mary’s continue to ring out in the future. If you are interested in learning to ring, or just having a pull of the Sally, speak to us on Sunday (when we stop for a rest) or come over on Wednesday evening between 7.45 and 9pm. You will be very welcome.
Many of our ringers are members of the Essex Association of Change Ringers. This provides us with a source of technical expertise on Bell maintenance matters, training assistance and insurance. For further information please contact our Tower Captain, Chris Marcus, by email at firstname.lastname@example.org or by telephone 07730 796422.
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Bible and Prayer
Wednesday Morning House Group
We are a House Group that meets weekly on a Wednesday morning at a member’s home.
We meet from 10-11am and there are currently around 8 regular members.
Our studies are Bible based with discussion and reflection following. We all find the meetings a valuable aid to our growth in faith and knowledge alongside regular Church Worship. We are a friendly, welcoming group and new members are always welcome to join us.
Baffled by the Bible
This group meets on Wednesdays in term-time at 1.45pm in the Committee Room next to St Leonard’s Hall. We are a small but friendly group of Christians, seeking to expand our knowledge of scripture through careful reading, listening and discussion. Our pattern is to read the scriptures, try to understand how the text was understood by the people who first read it, and then to discuss how we may interpret the text today in our situations. Over the past year we have tackled Old and New Testament books from Job to the Gospel of Mark and we are often surprised by the way that the ancient writings of the Church speak into our present day circumstances. During the periods of Lent and Advent we usually undertake seasonal Bible studies so that we have variety in the materials we are using.
We always welcome new members who are interested in deepening their faith through better understanding of the Bible.
Friends with Faith
This group meets every alternate Tuesday during term time from 9.30am for an hour, and is run by Rev’d. Carolyn Tibbott. It is a group for parents and carers of children of all ages to meet for mutual Christian support and discussion. If parents and carers have pre-school children, they are able to play whilst we chat.
All meetings this year have been face-to-face and no longer on Zoom. We have moved to meeting in the Committee Room.
We continue to enjoy open and relaxed spiritual discussions. It is a group valued by its members providing shared support, a great opportunity to talk about issues beyond day-to-day family life and also explore members’ Christianity. Discussions are mostly based around scripture, and we are currently following the book of John. Additionally, we are able to give support to each other through open chat both face-to-face and via our WhatsApp group. All discussions have enabled us to deepen our Christian understanding and faith and find the support we all need from each other.
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A traditional parent and toddler group, where those who care for pre-school children are welcome to meet for fellowship, refreshments and a safe place for the children to play. All of our helpers are CRB checked and regular members of our church congregation. The group meet in St. Leonard’s hall on Thursdays in term time from 10am till 12noon.
For more information please contact Margaret Deacon on 01245 901413 or just turn up. You will be most welcome.
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The Light Group meet generally on the last Wednesday of the month between 6pm and 7pm. Together we seek to learn more about the Christian Faith. Members of this group have either completed a course to admit them to Communion before Confirmation or are thinking about doing this.
We have discussions, watch film clips, listen to music and enjoy a tea-time treat together.
The Group is open to anyone between the ages of 8 – 16 and if anyone would like to learn more about what we do please contact Rev. Dawn
Our puppet ministry was set up to provide a new and fun way to engage adults and children alike in worship. We currently have 7 rod-arm puppets. We perform approximately once a month during services at St Mary’s Church we have also performed at fetes and for outdoor events such as the Songs of Praise on the Green. All our members get involved in prop making, choreography, musical ideas as well as the puppetry.
The Puppet Crew are not meeting or performing at the moment. Do let us know if you would be interested in this group and we can think about re-forming it when we have enough people to start it up again. You would need to be age of 13 upwards.
For further information, please contact the Vicar.
Our membership is increasing and our meetings are very well attended, including visitors at some meetings and everyone is welcome to attend. Our group meets at 7.30pm in St. Leonard’s Hall usually the third or fourth Thursday in the month and continues to be run by an organising committee.
We support the Church by having a stall at the Autumn Fair, and by providing refreshments at various Church occasions. Birthday cards are sent to all 2 & 3 year old children Baptised at St. Mary w. St. Leonard Church, inviting them to attend Family Services.
Our meetings are varied with speakers on topical issues, some of a charitable or spiritual nature, and some meetings are light hearted, and member led. A donation is given to the speaker for their charity or a charity of their choice.
Details are published on the calendar.
Group Leader is Sue Cole
Churchyard working party
We are a group of people who love gardening who gather together at 9am every Tuesday morning. Our role is the maintenance of the churchyard by cutting grass, tidying graves and flower beds, trimming bushes and trees and general clearing up but also any other tasks which may be required. The maintenance regime in the Churchyard is geared towards conservation and we have drawn up a management plan in association with the Essex Wildlife Trust.
We are a sociable group and welcome anyone who would like to join us.
Group Leader is David Marcus
Film and Lunch Club
Film club has thrived in the last year: attendances regularly top 20 and new people come along almost every month. This is a real opportunity to welcome members of our community into our church building to enjoy a film and a chat.
We have watched a variety of films: from the gently entertaining to the emotionally demanding and disturbing. Every film has offered us an opportunity to reflect theologically on its content and its message. By doing so together, this enables each of us to begin to see the world and all its delights and pain through Christ like eyes, and to &ldqou;be church&rdqou; together on week days as well as on Sundays.
The Film Club meets at 12.30pm on the first Monday of each month, unless that Monday is a Bank holiday when we meet on the second Monday. Tea and coffee is provided; we just ask that you bring your own lunch with you.
The terms of our viewing licence mean we cannot advertise our film club outside our church community: this should, of course, be regarded as an opportunity and not a restriction. Invite a friend along!
Details are published on the calendar.
Group Leader is Sarah Clarke
We are a small group of enthusiasts who meet on the third Thursday of the month at 2pm in the Church Hall. We managed nine sessions through 2022 and varied from 6 participants to 12. The most complicated part of the proceedings is deciding which table to move to after each game – up or down!
Do please join us for an afternoon of light hearted game playing followed by a cup of tea, piece of cake and a chat, appeals. All for just a £1. You can’t go wrong.
Group Leaders are Margaret Powell, Margaret Deacon
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The Pastoral Care & Visiting Teams
The Pastoral Care & Visiting Teams
The pastoral team have continued to visit those who cannot attend church and taking Holy Communion to them where requested.
We offer worship at the care homes in the village:
All of the members of the Pastoral Care and Visiting Team are DBS checked and have undergone Adult Safeguarding training.
If you are unable to get along to church due to ill health and would like the Eucharist brought to you at home or in hospital, please do contact the Vicar who can arrange for someone to bring it to you.
Some of the members of the Pastoral Care team are officially anointed and commissioned for their work with the bereaved and this is a much welcomed addition to the pastoral care undertaken at St Mary’s.
After a funeral one of the team will contact the family of the deceased, if they have indicated that they would like further contact from the church, to discuss their needs.
The Bereavement Visitors may chat on the phone, or meet people in person. The Team also arranges the Bereavement Service and the Blue Christmas service. They are always willing to chat to anyone who has suffered loss or bereavement whether they have been to the church for a funeral or not.
For further information about accessing a Bereavement Supporter please contact the Vicar
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