Following the announcement that the builders are going to start on Monday 23rd January a group of wonderful people have been clearing out all the sacristy, the Parish Room and storage areas around there. This was dusty work and gave me good reason to check everything we got stored in there – storage room is precious and we do not want to keep anything we don’t regularly use or need. By now everything looks sort of tidy in the hall and a number of things have been thrown out for good. The asbestos survey has happened last week and I am waiting for the results…

Originally in 1903 the Parish Room was dedicated to the former Vicar Fr Samuel Godber – and the brass plaque still exists. Following the building work I am looking forward to it reinstalled in a visible spot.

Some of you took some pictures and books from the ‘white elephant table’ yesterday and I am pleased that usable things did not need to go to the tip.
One issue: Fr Stephen (in his ultimate wisdom) put his overcoat on the table and somebody (quite legitimately) took it. If you find dog biscuits in the pocket I am afraid the coat belongs to Fr Stephen…. Everybody who heard the story yesterday had only a very limited sense of pity. 😁
Would you be so kind to give it back? Mick has brought in a new and rather lovely coat of the same size and you are most welcome to have that one instead.

There aren’t too many extra things happening in the coming 2 weeks – once the builders start building there will be some amount of disruption, but I am very pleased that the hall remains usable for us and for others. This also means that we continue to muddle through with hospitality as it stands – following the building work we need to split the roles of welcomers and those who help with hospitality in the hall in two different roles – with numbers increasing this is getting too much for one combined role.
We are particularly short of people on 29th January and 5th February – which offers an opportunity to try this out and see whether this might be something you want to do regularly. Could you imagine to help? Please talk to me!

Dates and events ahead:

On Sunday 5th February Bishop Saju Muthalaly is our guest preacher at the 10.30am Mass. He was born in Kerala before coming to the UK as a child and it will be very good to welcome him to St Andrew’s.

On the same Sunday we also restart the monthly service of Compline & Benediction at 7pm – which is a rather therapeutic and calming experience.