It was wonderful to see St Swithun’s packed for our annual patronal service – over 60 of the residents of Martyr Worthy and beyond were able to attend. The service was a traditional BCP Evensong led by Revd Alex Pease, but The Revd. Reg Sweet, the Master of St Cross had been invited and kindly agreed to preach. He was introduced by Churchwarden Robin Greenwood as follows: ‘I would like welcome and thank The Revd. Reg Sweet, the Master of St Cross, for accepting our invitation to preach to us tonight. One of his predecessors, The Revd Oswald Hunt, who had been Master from 1943 to 1953, lived at Wangfield House in Martyr Worthy in retirement. The window over there was restored in his memory and is known as the Hunt window‘
Robin went on to thank the flower arrangers for their work and gave apologies for his fellow Churchwarden Sara Mason who was not able to attend.
The talk Revd Reg Sweet gave was as follows:
After the service there were drinks just outside the church building and brief speeches by Robin Greenwood Church Warden and by John Platt Trustee of the Friends of St Swithun’s.
Robin’s speech was as follows:
This year has seen a changing of the guard with Andrew Impey retiring as a Churchwarden and Sara Mason agreeing to become one.
This evening is when we say thank you to you all for all your help at Martyr Worthy Church. The roles involve:
- lesson readers,
- prayer readers,
- eucharist assistants,
- bell ringers,
- organists and organising them
- making coffee
- bankings after services
- organising car parking and here I would just like to thank John & Nicky Barber for continuing to allow people to park in front of their house and in Texas Field.
- flower arrangers and their organisation,
- church cleaners and their organisation,
- laundering the altar cloth
- helping keeping the graveyard maintained,
- opening and closing the church each day
- organising fund raising events
- acting as sacristan,
- acting as verger,
- sitting on the DCC and chairing it,
- sitting on the PCC and its committees,
- being a Deanery Synod Representative,
- that is 20 roles
- not to mention Alex our Rector, the rest of the clergy team and the support of our Parish Administrator Beccy Clark and Bookkeeper Madeline Quest Ritson.
A few years ago we calculated that 43 people are involved keeping this church alive. This is an amazing achievement. So a very big thank you. I would also like to thank those who produced the canapes this evenings and Simon for organising the car parking.
However, I would like to single out Emily Windsor-Aubrey who organised the church cleaners for 21 years beginning in 1997 in an era when emails and mobile phones had not been invented and I still had brown hair! I also know that Philip has played an important role too including making various woodwork items for the Church building including the wonderful altar candlesticks and the pastoral candle stick for which we are incredibly grateful. In gratitude, we have a small present for you Emily to thank you for all that you did which is truly appreciated. So I would like to present you with this gift from us all. And Liz too has some flowers for you.
Lastly, I would just remind you that on Friday 9th August Martyr Worthy is holding a picnic to thank Andrew Impey for all that he did as a Churchwarden and as Chairman of the PCC during the last Interregnum and to make a presentation to him. The picnic is at 7.00 at John & Liz’s house Meadows. It is bring your own food and chairs. Drinks will be provided. It is open to anyone who worships in the Parish, not just those living Martyr Worthy in case you are wondering. So if anyone would like to participate but has not let Liz or me know, please could you do so.’
John Platt then said a few words about the work of the Friends of St Swithun’s:
On behalf of the Trustees of the Friends of St Swithuns (FOSS), John Platt endorsed Robin Greenwood’s welcome and thanks to all attending. In particular he thanked those members of FOSS for their continued support and was pleased to report that the membership number remained stable at around 85, with approximately ten new members in recent years compensating for losses over the same period. Income was stable and the Capital of the fund had grown slowly.
There had been limited calls on the funds by St Swithuns recently, but the result of the recent quinquennial survey had identified the need for substantial expenditure on repairs. The trustees were in discussion with the DCC and Churchwardens regarding a significant contribution by FOSS towards those costs.”
I added my own thanks to Robin and Sara as churchwardens for the huge amount of work that they do to keep the show on the road at St Swithun’s and to John Platt and the trustees of FOSS for their continued support for the fabric of the building.
I would also like to thank everyone in Martyr Worthy who helped make the evening such a delight.
Revd. Alex Pease