A wonderful service of carols, music and readings by candlelight last night... photography hampered by the record congregation of over 500 people, so no images to show you. Standing room only after 6.55pm. Apologies if you ended up without a seat, candle or service sheet!Great fun was had by all at the Christingle & Nativity service on Saturday afternoon. Here are a couple of photos.
Well done to all involved with the Winter Market, which was a huge success with lots of amazing craft, design, merchandise and lots and lots of shoppers.
Climate demo: Hackney on the People’s March for Climate, Justice and Jobs
A message from Michael White:
Once again, Iwan and I would very much like to invite you to sing in the choir for the carol service which will be held on the evening of Sunday 20 December. Rehearsals for this will take place on Sundays 22 and 29 November, and 6 and 13 December at 4.30pm in the New Church. There will, of course, be a final rehearsal on the day of the carol service. Ideally, we would like you to attend all the rehearsals but please try to come to as many as you can remembering that the final rehearsal is compulsory.
We are holding an Advent carol service on the evening of Sunday 29 November but are intending to include mainly solo items so that the choir can concentrate on the carol service music.
We have not yet finalised the repertoire but will let you know as soon as we can.
Please could you let me know if you are able to sing in the choir at the carol service and also if you are planning to attend Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve because, depending on numbers, we would like the choir to sing at that service too if possible. It would also be useful if you could give me an indication of which rehearsals you are unable to attend.
So just to recap, dates are: Sunday 22 November, 4.30pm Rehearsal
Sunday 29 November, 4.30pm Rehearsal
Sunday 29 November, 7.00pm Advent Carol Service
Sunday 6 December, 4.30pm Rehearsal
Sunday 13 December, 4.30pm Rehearsal
Sunday 20 December, 4.30pm Rehearsal
Sunday 20 December, 7.00pm Carols by Candlelight
Thursday 24 December 11.30pm Midnight Mass
I look forward to hearing from you.
Dilly wins the prize for Superior Mother Superior at Sing-Along Sound of Music at St Paul's West Hackney... and Alexandra as a 'ray... a drop of golden sun' (I think).
There was a huge response to the call for donations for refugees in Calais via St Mary's and the Rose & Crown. This was all taken over at the end of October to some of the people who need it. This is a photo of Flossie sorting it all out at the back of church.
This is a photo of the first six baby gro-bags completed. You can see the craft and love shown in every stitch! More to come, we are reliably informed. All to go out in a shipment due to leave about the middle of November, via Rescue4Children. Any further info from Liz Grande.
Saturday 28 November 10-5: Winter Design Market, St Mary's Old Church N16 (Stoke Newington Church Street next to Clissold Park) - design stalls, mulled wine and mince pies, foodie gifts, music. Get in the mood for the festive season!
We held a moving service for All Souls in The Old Church yesterday evening. Remembering our own loved ones who have died; that they are held by a loving God. We particularly remember George Mills, long-standing member of St Mary's, who died recently.
Hackney Winter Night Shelter is a project run by volunteers that provides basic accommodation in church halls around Hackney for up to 25 homeless people during the coldest months of the year. We aim to provide a warm welcome, a hot evening meal, a bed for the night and breakfast in the morning for our homeless guests. In addition, the Night Shelter employs workers to help our guests find more long-term accommodation. The Shelter will open on the 2nd November this year. Many volunteers, both church members and from the wider community, will help to run the shelter. Our contribution at St Mary’s is to host the Shelter in our church rooms each Wednesday night from late December to the end of March. We need volunteers in various roles: to help set up the shelter, cook and serve supper, stay overnight, and to cook breakfast and clear up in the morning. Could you help? If you are interested, please get in touch with our volunteer team coordinator, Jonathan Gebbie at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 07949-169583. We particularly need people who could help in the morning or volunteer to occasionally do an overnight shift.
There are also opportunities to help at other Shelter venues around Hackney on other nights of the week from the beginning of November - please get in touch if you’re interested. There is more information about the Night Shelter on the web site here.
Many thanks to Jane Pryce! Her sale of pickles over the last two weeks or so have raised a total of £202.41 for St Mary's. And thanks to all who bought some!
Our Harvest collection raised £307 for the Africa Educational Trust - many thanks to all who generously gave.
And finally... the Bishop of Stepney's Discretionary Fund grew by £294 during the Confirmation service last week.
Do you knit?Do you fancy knitting a baby gro-bag and sweater for refugee children in Syria? Then please speak to Elizabeth Grande after the 11am service.
An 'Arts, Crafts, Christmas Produce Fair' is being considered for 28th November to raise money for St Mary's. If you want to get involved in the planning of this event please come along to the Rose & Crown at 8pm on Wednesday 14th October.
Hot off the press. Find it here.
Here's Dilly speaking at the Hackney Alevi Centre in Ridley Road, joining with them in celebrating the British Alevi Foundation being granted charitable status. This is something they've been working hard towards for a number of years.
Politicians and community and religious leaders were there to celebrate with them.
As always, the afternoon ended with true Alevi hospitality and a delicious spread of food.
Even more celebrations than usual this morning at St Mary's! Bishop Adrian led a service of Holy Communion with baptism, confirmation and reception into the Church of England.
Congratulations to Daniel, Sakir and Samantha who Bishop Adrian baptised and confirmed; Joanna, Jade, Alexandra and Michelle who he confirmed and Kaarina who was received into the Church of England.
Almighty and ever-living God,
you have given these your servants new birth
in baptism by water and the Spirit,
and have forgiven them all their sins.
Let your Holy Spirit rest upon them:
the Spirit of wisdom and understanding;
the Spirit of counsel and inward strength;
the Spirit of knowledge and true godliness;
and let their delight be in the fear of the Lord.
A wonderful evening of classical, folk, jazz, musical theatre and music hall tunes last night in The Old Church.
Sarah Warren's voice, Iwan Davies' piano and Sam Elwin's guitar combined to raise money for ALMA and the Church of the Epiphany in Tete, Mozambique.
St Mary's has a long relationship with the Church of the Epiphany in Tete and has helped them to build a new church that was completed this year with some St Mary's folk visiting Mozambique for the dedication ceremony. Funds will also assist in their outreach and community work.
Many thanks to Sarah, Iwan and Sam for a great evening's entertainment!
Wondering what to do with the scores of plastic carrier bags you have stuffed in a draw or hanging on the back of your kitchen door? Feel bad throwing them away? Want to see them used again?
The Hackney Migrant Centre give away a significant amount of donated food to users of the centre each week and they need carrier bags to put it in. Supermarkets will soon be charging 5p for each carrier bag (which is a great way of encouraging recycling) but that means HMC need to start collecting donated bags.
If you have bags you can donate then please bring them to the church office during the week or give them to Matt on a Sunday morning.
Hackney Migrant Centre need local volunteers! This is a great way to support migrants from across London and beyond.
People who have a car to help with food donations on Tuesday evenings. This involves collecting food from Wholefood on Stoke Newington Church Street at 9.30pm and then bringing the collected food to St Marys New Church Rooms at 9am the following day.
Volunteers are also needed to help with collections on Wednesday morning, this involves doing some food shopping locally, collecting food from Growing Communities at 9.15am and dropping everything off at St Marys New Church Rooms for 9.30am.
If you are available to volunteer please email email@example.com
Sessional setting-up volunteers:
HMC are also looking for people who could help set up the session on a Wednesday by putting out tables and chairs, setting up the laptops etc and help to pack away at the end. If you are free on a Wednesday between 9.30am - 10.45am and/or 4pm-5pm.
Please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Hackney Citizens (which St Mary's is a member of) has a team of people working to gather pledges across the community to support Hackney council as it responds to the refugee crisis and hopes to resettle refugees in the borough.
If you would like to pledge support then please print off this form, fill it in and return to Dilly or Matt or the church office. There are also printed copies at the back of church.
We see violence all about us, on our TV screens, in our newspapers. Many of us live in fear. Many of us have moved from our homes to escape it.
In response to the United Nations' International Day of Peace on 21st September, take a moment to sit with these words regularly at midday.
If you have ideas or a desire to act in building a more peaceful world then please contact Just Peace N16 (twitter @JustPeaceN16).
We had a service with a difference on Sunday morning, led by the St Mary's folk who visited our friends in Mozambique earlier this year. They gave us a flavour of their joyful and inspiring experience at the Anglican Church of the Epiphany in Tete through words, music, colour and video.
You can find out more about ALMA (the Diocese of London's link with the Anglican church in Angola and Mozambique) here.
The July edition is now available here.
The New Church hosted ‘The Forgiveness Project’ in June: a startling and deeply moving exhibition recounting stories of horror, reconciliation and healing from people of all faiths and cultures across the globe. Thanks to Just Peace N16 for bringing this to us. On the back of this, sixteen of us went to the Forgiveness Project’s Annual Lecture: a talk by Karen Armstrong on the link between Forgiveness & Compassion. Take a look at the website and be inspired!!