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September 2019

This month’s letter comes from Victoria Chester

‘Tis the season . . .

Having been a Reader (a lay minister) in our parishes for a number of years I am about to take the plunge into ordained ministry – or as a friend of mine puts it ‘getting collared’!  As the year turns from summer to autumn I will be ordained in Exeter Cathedral on the 14th of September and then serve as a self-supporting curate in our Mission Community parishes of Colyton with Colyford, Branscombe, Southleigh, Musbury and Northleigh.

Although the days may still be warm, there’s no doubt that September marks a turning of the seasons for many of us, from holidays to the start of the new school year for some and the return to work for others.  The same is true for our religious festivals, those times in the Church year that recall special moments in the life of Christ and in the life of the Church.  Some of the most familiar festivals and seasons seem to come round with startling speed – can it really only be just over 100 days to Christmas?!

Here in our Exeter diocese July marks a special time commemorating St Peter and Christ’s call to him to be “a rock” on which the Church would grow.  Whether or not these were the exact words used it is always an important anniversary in the life of any community when we remember the foundations we are built upon.  Church, village and family all have roots that remind us of our beginnings, where we have come from, and where and with whom we hope to grow in the future. 

For Exeter Cathedral, Petertide, the season of St Peter, has particular significance as the Cathedral building itself is dedicated to St Peter and each year the community there uses this as a focus for special celebrations.  This significance also carries through into other seasons in the life of our diocese.  Ordinations in the Church of England usually take place at Petertide, but here in Exeter we wait until Michaelmas, mid-September, for the service at the Cathedral that marks the start of our new ministry.  I for one am grateful for this later season and celebration; just as the disciples waited in Jerusalem before starting their ministry so the period between the end of my study course at Petertide and my ordination at Michaelmas has given me much needed time to rest, to give thanks for the care and support that has given me the foundation from which to take this new step, and to look forward with joy to the journey to come.

Victoria becomes a Deacon

Many of us already know Victoria Chester, who has been exercising her Reader ministry here in Holyford Mission Community for a number of years. She has now completed her training for ordination and will be ordained Deacon at Exeter Cathedral on Saturday 14th September at 3.00 pm. Please pray for Victoria as she prepares for this new chapter in her ministry.

She will be welcomed among us in her new role on Sunday 15th September at the Breakfast Service in Colyton: breakfast at 10.00 followed by the service at 10.30. So that everyone who wishes has the opportunity to be there, the morning services in the other Holyford churches that day have been cancelled. Other services which will still take place that day will be 8.00 am Holy Communion, Colyton; 6.30 pm Evening Prayer, Colyton.

She will be continuing in her secular job as CEO Bristol Animal Rescue Centre while working among us as our Assistant Curate (self-supporting).

Harvest weekend at Northleigh

Northleigh will be a hive of activity with events spread over three days.

Friday 6th  Harvest Supper – 7.00pm for 7.30pm, Village Hall . Tickets – Adults £10, Children under 16 years £5 – Please call Norma 01404 871422,

Saturday 7thHarvest Show from 2.30 pm at the Village Hall We are planning a brilliant harvest show this year, on the theme of ” Our Planet  Matters” with craft entries photographers, artists, gardeners and flower arrangers. Presentation of Cups 3.00pm – Cream Teas available – Entrance £1- Under 16’s free  for more details call Hazel 01297 552416

Sunday 8th  The Harvest Festival Service in St Giles Church –  11.15am

Teddy Bear Service at Southleigh

Beach Songs of Praise

This year we continue our popular Songs of Praise services on Branscombe beach on

Sunday 9th June at 6.00 pm and

Sunday 18th August at 6.00 pm, when the singing will be led by Honiton Town Band.

If wet it will be in the Sea Shanty. Do join us for these most enjoyable events.

Southleigh Fair Aug 14

Come and enjoy Southleigh’s Annual Fair, August 14th, 2.30-5.

Adults £4.00, children go free. All the usual stalls, bird of prey display, sheep shearing and racing, cider pressing demo, dog show, tea tent and bar, Bar-B-Que. Any profits are divided beween the church, village hall and local charities.

Location Lees Farm, EX24 6SA