West Dereham Sign Gary Trouton

St Andrew's West Dereham, Newsletter

December 2003

Services and events for St Andrews in december



(after 7th September, see Churchwardens' Phone Numbers, below)

(also St. Mary's, Denver; St. Mary the Virgin, Bexwell and St Michael's Ryston)


Thursday, 4th Dec: CHRISTINGLE SERVICE for Denver and district at

St Mary's, Denver, 6.30pm, with Glove Puppet Nativity Story

Sunday 7th Dec:

Holy Communion at11am: Celebrant and preacher, the Revd. Niall Johnston

Evensong at St Mary the Virgin, Bexwell, 6.30pm. Mary Hurst

Tuesday 9th Dec:

CHRISTINGLE SERVICE for WEST DEREHAM, 6.30pm with refreshments to follow

Sunday 14th Dec:

Holy Communion, 9.30am

And at 6.30pm, CHRISTMAS CAROL SERVICE at St. Michael's, Ryston, with Mary Hurst and Stan Atkinson

Thursday 18th Dec:

Denver School Infant Performance in St. Mary's Denver, 6pm

Friday, 19th Dec:

CHURCHES TOGETHER CAROL SINGING outside Downham Market supermarkets, 6 - 8pm

Sunday, 21st Dec: No Morning Service

WEST DEREHAM CAROL SERVICE, 3.30pm (also Carol Service at St Mary's Denver, 6.30pm)


6.30pm, Holy Communion, St Mary the Virgin, Bexwell,

9pm, Holy Communion, St. Andrew's West Dereham

11.30pm,Holy Communion, St Mary's, Denver


8am, Holy Communion, St. Michael's, Ryston

9.30am, Holy Communion, St. Andrew's West Dereham

11am, Family Service, St. Mary's, Denver

Sunday, Dec 28th:

Holy Communion, 9.30 am


Will be held in the Community Centre, probably Monday 29th Jan, 3-6pm.

Invitations to individual families of children up to Yr 6 (last year of Primary School) will be sent out well in advance.

Sunday, Jan 4th:

11 am Holy Communion (Revd. Niall Johnston, Celebt.)

6.30pm EVENSONG with CAROLS, St. Mary the Virgin, Bexwell


Mr. Graeme Pressley, "The Plot", Church Road, West Dereham 01366 - 501179

Mrs Christine Vincent, "Aspen", Ryston Road, West Dereham 01366 - 500283

INTERCESSIONS: Please let one of our churchwardens know) see tel. nos. above) if you, or anyone you know, needs prayer. For sickness, or any other personal or family problem (in absolute confidence): No details are needed or made public unless you wish it) We will gladly add any names to our weekly intercession list.

We believe that Our Loving Heavenly Father hears and answers our prayers according to His plan and purpose for each of our lives.


A further meeting has been held in the church, involving members of the PCC, Churchwardens, reps from English Heritage, the Ely Diocese, the Diocesan Heating Design engineer, the Church Architect, and our own (potential) heating engineer, Clive: A thorough re-think was carried out, on-site, with the result that new locations for the boiler, tank and pipework have been agreed upon: When these are re-drawn, we expect a straight run through all further committee stages and an early start to installation


In progress, awaiting source of 100 - 150 mm diameter poly-carbonate translucent tubes: We thought we had found a source on the internet, but seem to have lost touch: If anyone knows of a source, or can find one, please let Chris Young know, on 500470. We shall be using the low-heat, long-life tube-lights, so heat will not be a problem.

ALPHA NEWS: For news of the current series of Autumn Alpha Suppers contact the Rev'd Alan Molineaux: 01366 - 386265


At moment, services are mainly being held in Downham Market Town Hall, at 10.30 every Sunday Morning, but occasionally there needs to be a change of venue, due to prior bookings at the Town Hall.

Please phone DMCF on 384474 , Revd. Alan Molineaux on 386265 or Maggie Smith on 392227 for up to date details

Latest News on DMCF move is that the Borough Council have passed the Reeds Furniture Store on Sovereign Way for a change of use for conversion as a new worship centre for Downham Market Christian Fellowship, which will be known as The Sovereign Centre. Plans are being finalised for the major structural work and internal fittings necessary to convert this empty shell into a 600 seater auditorium with associated conference and office facilities, Nursery and Youth areas,

The Fellowship hopes to be able to use the building pro-tem as soon as it is is clear of the stored goods, and to have an office on site for day-to-day management and small meetings.

When completed the new Sovereign Centre will provide the largest auditorium in Downham Market for stage productions, concerts and other audience shows, as well as allowing space for the congregation to grow four-fold from its present capacity.

Experience of other similar churches across the country show that this is not at all optimistic.


SANTA SPECIALS as a prelude to Christmas


Starting from Sheringham Station (Santas Grotto at Weybourne Station)

10am, 12.15, 2.45 & 4pm

Phone 01263 820800 for Santa Special bookings


Dear Ray,

Ron is quite correct in advising readers that the admissions policy for the new Church High School will be formulated by the still-to-be-formed Governing body: What I stated was, however, a strong reflection of the representatives of the five churches on the steering committee, and including the National Education Officer of the Methodist Church and the Ely Diocesan Education Officer: That admission to the proposed new school should be as open as is possible to those of all faiths and none, whilst allowing sufficient places for those from a Christian background who would choose this school when it becomes available. This has been one of the premises right from the outset of the exploration into the possibilities.

After all, if you are on to "good news", (as Christians certainly believe they are, both now and in the hereafter) then there would be no point in making a school exclusive: Good news is there to be shared.

The James Bradfield School certainly is one of church schools in the Diocese, but, in actual fact the daily acts of worship in all schools are set by law to reflect a mainly Christian ethos: Awe and wonder can be found in many of the assembly topics which do not overtly mention God, but there is often the implication of a higher motive illustrated in the stories used. Somewhere in the act of worship, this may be linked, through a prayer or a song, to God: Father, Son or Holy Spirit.

RE (Religious Education) is a different matter. All the great world religions are explored at different levels as children grow older. Both the Diocese and Norfolk Education take this very seriously, and in Ely there is a large Resources Centre where the shelves groan with books, teaching materials, videos and artifact collections which teachers may borrow for the part of the RE syllabus currently under study.

Each year teachers are invited to go on a coach trip to Coventry, where Sikkh, Hindu and Muslim places of worship are visited, and where artifacts may be purchased for use in schools: Statues, a prayer mat, copies of other sacred writings.

These are widely and frequently used in schools, with the intention of increasing understanding between sections of our world-wide community about what other children believe and gain from their religions, and what Christians believe.

So I hope I have made it clear that there is a difference between the daily act of worship, and RE: And, of course, children and parents who experience the ethos of a church school may not necessarily put into words what it is they feel, but are none-the-less happy to be there, or to choose it for their children, because they sense something beneficial, even if they would not profess any faith themselves.

Now that could be called "hedging your bets". I asked a headteacher the other day what difference he thought being a church school made to the staff the children and the parents., Initially he said not a lot, but then after thinking for a minute, he said that the staff really cared about each other and were very committed (about half of them Christians) and , though the parents probably would not put it into words, they were very keen on bringing their children to that particular school.

The Government recognizes the renowned quality and ethos of church schools nationwide, has enacted legislation to enable parents to have a local choice, wherever possible, between secular (sometimes called community schools) and church schools, and is providing 90% funding towards this end.

Could it be that this obvious quality of input and output is, after all, a consequence of recognising the Higher Influence who would benefit and bless all His children, given the chance.

Chip Ciammaichella

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