The Church is part of a United Parish with St Perter's Freshford, and St Mary's Limpley Stoke. More information on the Parish is contained on the Parish web site http://flshc.co.uk/ The Church has a seating capacity for about 160 people and is set in a beautiful well maintained churchyard on the outskirts of the village. The tower contains a carillon of three bells There is a space set apart towards the back of the Church for small children to occupy themselves during  the services and for providing refreshments. There is a toilet and good disabled access. The History of this charming church is contained elsewhere in this site. For details of the names on the War Memorial click here OFFICERS  Church Wardens E Wordsworth, K Grattage
ST JOHN’S CHURCH
NEWSLETTER
FRIENDS OF ST JOHN   .
SERVICE TIMES IN THE PARISH
Mike and Lindy Taylor
This is an organisation that exists with the objective of bringing together all those in the local community who have an interest in maintaining this ancient Church and wish to help in raising money for this purpose. The Committee that runs it  is a sub- committee to the Main Church Committee and its chariman, Elizabeth Wordsworth, is appointed by it.  The Friend's Committee runs its own programmne of events (see diary of events) and decides how the money raised is to be used.  Any projects proposed must be agreed by the Main Church Committee. On 23 April the local band FIREFLY staged a concert of songs and music that had us dancing in the aisles! On 19th November a coffee morning with Bring and Buy raised upwards of £300 A concert by the Freshford Singers was held in the Church on 9th June                                                                  .
All services are taken by Revd Mike Taylor unles specified otherwise
DECEMBER As   I   sit   in   my   study   writing   this   the   sun   is   shining   after   a very   frosty   start   to   the   day.   The   hour   has   changed   yet again,   the   days   are   getting   shorter   and   winter   is   certainly on   its   way.   But   now   we   enter   December   and   the   start   of   the mad   rush   to   Christmas.   For   many   it   will   mean   a   lot   of spending,   a   lot   of   planning   and   hopefully   time   together   as families over the season. The   very   first   Christmas   was   such   a   contrast   to   ours   today. A   quiet   moment   in   a   small   stable,   unnoticed   by   the   crowd gathered   to   register   in   Bethlehem   that   they   were   of   the family    line    of    David.    Bethlehem    was    an    unimportant backwater   except   for   its   illustrious   ancestor.   Yet   it   became the    centre    of    attention    in    this    small    stable    somewhere behind    the    crowds    in    Bethlehem.    The    arrival    of    any celebrity   or   a   royal   –   as   we   saw   recently   –   comes   with   a great    deal    of    planning    and    security    and    it    is    usual    to specially   invite   guests.   I   guess   there   were   only   especially invited   guests   as   the   wise   men   came   at   the   invitation   of God    in    the    signs    that    they    saw    and    interpreted.    The shepherds   came   because   of   the   invitation   of   the   angels, but   neither   Mary   nor   Joseph   had   sent   out   any   invitations. The   place   was   not   prepared,   no   room   had   been   booked,   no midwife,   no   security   for   the   advent   of   God   as   man!   Yet   that is   our   story   this   and   every   Christmas.   God   becomes   man and   walks,   lives,   heals,   ministers,   shows   compassion   and tells    us    about    the    way    back    to    God.    Where    are    the overspending,   the   fuss,   the   last   minute   panic   and   the   family arguments?    It    was    quiet    and    without    pomp    or    seeming preparation   and   yet   the   event   had   been   prophesied   over 500   years   before   with   some   more   recent   prophesies   also explaining   where   this   event   would   take   place   and   what   it would signify. So   God   ‘came   down’,   one   of   those   extreme   moments   in time   where   the   greatest   came   to   live   among   those   who looked   to   them   for   help   and   healing   and   purpose   –   and   so few   even   noticed.   He   came   for   those   who   had   eyes   to   see and   a   desire   to   meet   with   him.   What   a   mixture   of   these   folk there     were:     the     blind,     the     paralysed,     the     hungry, thewidowed,    the    leper,    the    tax    collector,    the    zealot,    the fishermen,   the   Roman   soldier,   the   synagogue   ruler   and   so on.   It   sounds   quite   a   random   assortment   of   people   yet   it was   those   who   sought   him   and   found   him   as   well   as   those whose   life   it   was   to   pass   on   that   encounter   to   others   such as   the   disciples.   Many   things   have   changed   but   some   have not!   The   message   remains   the   same   and   only   a   few   will look    for    it    among    the    Christmas    packaging    again    this Christmas. Will you look for him? Have a blessed Christmas and a Happy New Year.
St Peter’s Freshford St Mayy’s Limpley Stoke St John’s Hinton Charterhouse Old Bakery   Freshford
The Parish of Freshford, Limpley Stoke and Hinton Charterhouse
Sunday Club At the Old Bakery, Freshford @ 4.00pm 1st and 3rd Sunday of the month Starting after half-term on Sunday 5th March Ages 5-14 All welcome Please email lindytaylors@gmail.com or phone 01225 723570
WEDDINGS Because   of   its   picturesque   setting   and   good   facilities   the   church   is   a   popular   venue   for   weddings.   The   current   fees   and charges   (2017)   are:   Statutory   fees   £499,   Organist   £115,   Bells   £45,   Pew   candles   £35,   Heating   (if   required)   £55.   These are   reviewed   annually.   Any   enquiries   to   the   Parish   Administrator   01225   720347.   The   nearby   Homeward   Park   Hotel   can provide a vene for receptions.
HINTON BABY & TODDLER GROUP At Hinton Charyerhouse Memoril Hll 10.30 - 12 noon every Wednesday
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Famil Focus Service
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NOVEMBER For    where    your    treasure    is,    there    your    heart    will    be    also.’ Matthew   6   verse   21   I   have   been   away   recently   on   a   esidential core    module    for    a    course    I    am    undertaking    and    though    full onwith   teaching   and   seminars   I   had   moments   to   think   and   in coming   away   to   reflect.   So   I   was   surprised   when   my   thinking   all came   together   as   I   read   the   above   verse   from   the   Bible   the   day after   I   returned.   It   has   left   me   with   a   question   about   ‘treasure’. What   is   it   that   I   treasure   and   that   I   would   indeed   even   sacrifice my   life   for?   What   is   the   ‘main   thing’?   We   spend   most   of   our   time and   energy   focussing   and   working   for   a   treasure   that   is   very temporary.   It   is   with   us   for   a   time   then   it   is   not.   Money,   objects and   even   status   are   some   of   these.   Money   has   a   habit   of   getting spent,   like   the   woman   who   managed   to   spend   £16,000,000   in Harrods    recently    revealed    on    the    news.    Objects    wear    out, however   much   we   value   our   new   car   or   TV,   or   computer;   it   very quickly   needs   maintenance   or   even   replacing.   Status   can   come and   go,   a   wrong   decision   or   a   word   in   the   wrong   ear:   just   watch ‘The   Apprentice’   TV   series   to   see   that.   Yet   these   things   occupy most   of   our   striving   and   therefore   our   attention   and   time   and   are the     treasures     we     hope     to     obtain.     So,     what     did     Jesus actuallymean by this? It   has   to   be   those   things   that   endure   beyond   this   mortal   life   we are   all   living.   So   that   could   be   things   such   as   a   memory   left   for others   to   appreciate   and   remember   you   by,   a   character   trait   you showed   and   was   valued   by   many,   or   indeed   simply   a   legacy   left that    makes    a    genuine    difference.    Maybe    some    art    form    or achievement   or   dare   I   say   what   we   now   invest   in   our   eternal existence    beyond    death.    That    cannot    be    money,    objects    or status   because   none   of   these   will   survive   our   death.   It   can   only be   something   that   is   relational   with   the   one   who   lives   eternally. As   a   Christian   the   answer   is   simple   –   get   to   know   God   through his   human   representation,   Jesus,   and   to   learn   now   how   to   live   in relationship   with   him,   investing   in   that   relationship,   enjoying   the stability   it   brings,   until   that   day   when   we   meet   him   ourselves. Being   a   Christian   is   not   about   how   we   do   things   but   put   simply about   how   we   relate   to   God   and   to   each   other   following   the pattern    of    Jesus.    Anything    less    than    this    is    probably    not Christian   behaviour.   If   your   experience   of   a   Christian   is   less than   one   who   follows   these   principles   of   a   healthy   relationship with   God   living   in   the   pattern   of   Jesus   as   much   as   we   are   able; then   please   don’t   assume   that   is   Christianity   that   is   just   weak humanity. I   wish   it   was   that   simple,   but   it   takes   a   life   time   to   achieve   and not   one   of   us   is   there   yet.   The   church   is   indeed,   as   someone once   said,   ‘a   hospital   for   those   who   know   they   are   sick’   not   a place   where   the   righteous   gather.   I   am   so   far   from   this   ideal myself,   but   I   know   it   is   to   where   I   must   aspire.   That   is   where   my treasure is and that is worth pursuing. Autumn   has   now   come   and   the   days   are   getting   shorter   –   in   our gathering   in   of   autumn   give   yourself   a   chance   also   to   think about   where   your   treasure   truly   is   and   are   you   putting   too   much effort into something that is not truly treasure at all?
Sunday  25th  - Trinity  26 10.30am St  John’s Family  Focus 5.00pm St  Mary’s Evening Communion Sunday  2nd  December  - Advent  1 10.30am St  John’s Parish  Communion
NOVEMBER
Sunday 2nd December 6.00pm St Peter’s Advent Celtic Service of Light Sunday 9th 5.00pm St Mary’s Carol Service Sunday 16th 6.00pm St John’s Carol Service Sunday 23rd 10.30am St John’s Pop up Nativity, followed by short informal communion 6.00pm St Peter’s Carol Service Monday 24th: Christmas Eve 4.00pm St Mary’s Christingle Tuesday 25th: Christmas Day 9.30am St Mary’s Christmas Communion 11.00am St Peterford Christmas Morning Service
DECEMBER