24th March: All Church of England churches will close with immediate effect in line with the Government’s instructions. There will also be no Church weddings or baptisms.
Funerals at the graveside or in crematoriums can still take place, but only in line with the Prime minister’s Statement.
The latest guidance (8th May) is that Clergy can enter the church building for any or all of the following:
- pray the Daily Office and/or celebrate the Eucharist on behalf of the community they serve,
- live stream or pre-record worship.
In a joint statement the bishops said: “Let us continue to pray, to love, to care for the vulnerable, and build our communities, even while separated.”
Please also go to this post to see ideas and suggestions for prayer and worship at home.
For when we’re back to ‘normal’…
For details on baptisms, weddings and funerals please go to our Life Events page.
For weekly services, there is a wide variety to allow us to worship God in a number of different ways.
The Eucharist (Communion) is at the heart of most of our worship services throughout the year. These are led by one of our ordained clergy team. However, once a month there is a morning service without communion usually led by one of our Readers or ALM’s. We believe that preaching is vitally important and you can find a selection of sermons and ‘talks’ in our archive.
On the last Sunday evening of each month we have a praise service led by one of our Authorised Lay ministers. Roughly once a quarter we have a more informal Cafe Church on a Sunday morning, which meets in the Church Hall. These allow room for discussion on matters of faith over a coffee and croissant.
In addition, we have around 4 Parade services a year for our uniformed groups. Please see below for more information.
Please go to our calendar for details, since there is some variation week-to-week, but our worship services are basically as follows:
- 8.30am: This lasts around 30 minutes and features Communion in the Barritt Room (the old Library) which is accessed from the Hall. This is followed by a chance to chat over a brew.
- 10.30am: our main service (with hymns, prayers, a sermon and Communion) in the church. This is normally just over an hour in length, depending on who is doing the sermon! We have a choir to help lead the singing. There’s a creche for under 5’s and ‘Jesus and Me’ for the older children during the service. Everyone is together for the start and finish. The service is followed by refreshments in the Hall.
- On the 3rd Sunday of each month we have a ‘Service of the Word’ at 10.30am which is like our main service but without Communion.
- If there is a 5th Sunday in the month then we have a joint service with Christ Church, alternating venues.
- We have ‘Cafe Church’ about once a quarter. This is more interactive, helping us to explore ideas about God and discuss areas of faith together in ways not normally possible in our usual format. This meets in the Hall.
- We also join with Christ Church for informal Praise services on a Sunday evening at 7.00pm, on the last Sunday of every month.
Wednesdays: 10.00am – Communion in the church, followed by refreshments in the Hall.
Thursdays: 7.30pm – Communion in the Lady Chapel.
Parade Services: the young people from our uniformed groups join us on Mothering Sunday, Harvest and Remembrance Sunday. They have Christingle, normally at the start of Advent, on either a Monday or Wednesday. They also meet mid-week at one other point during the year.
You can join the Vicar for Evening Prayer at 5.00pm in the Church most days, Monday through to Thursday (except Bank Holidays and August when he gives God some time off!). Or come with a small team each month as we take church to the community at Burrswood House and Hamilton House.
Throughout the seasons of the church year you will find lots of variety in word and mood. We use Common Worship for most services and sing from Hymns Old & New. We have a rota of different organists who play for us through the month.
Sometimes we use keyboard rather than organ and every now and then we’ll use music CD’s if no musicians are available – so be prepared for anything!
Activities at St John with St Mark
We also have a range of regular activities to suit most ages:
- Monday: Beavers & Cubs in the evening; Once a month we have ‘Men of the Benefice’ which normally means a trip to the pub…
- Tuesday: Knit & Natter in the afternoon
- Wednesday: Rainbows & Brownies in the evening; once a month we have an ‘Open Group’ for both visiting and homegrown speakers on pretty much anything you can imagine
- Thursday: ABC Mother & Toddler group during term time
- Saturday: once a month, usually the first Saturday, some of us will go for a walk, often 9 or 10 miles. The picture below is from our Benefice boundary walk which was a little longer…
- ‘Girls out Alone’ meet when and where the mood takes us and often that means going out to a restaurant or theatre.
- Plus we have book fairs, coffee mornings, afternoon teas, pantomimes, musical reviews and buffet dances.
- We also have Prayer meetings, Bible studies and Retreats. For more information on these please go to our Reflect page.
Please keep your eye on the Home page & calendar for publicity of particular events. In addition our hall is widely used by the local community. It is hired to a number of outside groups and organisations, including dance groups, pilates, a warfarin clinic and Weight Watchers as well as for private parties.
Please go to our ‘about’ page to find out more about us.