Weekly Parishes Update – 19th May

Dear Friends

A few days ago I arrived in Thorncombe and was parking my car outside the church when I saw something, rather someone, that made me double take…

It was a vicar!  A young vicar was walking down the road, dog collar and all. 

Now I shouldn’t have been that surprised.  The reason I was there at all was to see how the filming of The Rev was going in the church.  The titular character is the vicar of a rural church and portrayed by the actor Jack Holden.  And it was Jack walking down the road.  It is one of the stranger moments in life to come across your fictional counterpart, even if in this case it is in role only.  We are all looking forward to seeing the production when it is finished! 

At Pentecost we celebrate the arrival of the Holy Spirit, the promised ‘accompanier’ that Jesus promises at his Ascension.  The Spirit fills all believers and lies at the heart of our individual calling from God. 

Jack’s gift is in drama.  He is a gifted actor, and as Christians we might look to God as the source of that gift.  On that day he looked like a vicar – but that is an illusion to his core gift; acting.  I am a vicar!  It is (I think…) my calling to be a priest.  It is what I and others have discerned and affirmed.  Jack is a really good actor – it is what he and others have discerned and affirmed.   

Whoever you are, your life is a gift from God, and your character and your ‘uniqueness’ is your gift of the Spirit.  That might look like different things at different times.  But at its core there is something that is uniquely you. 

Just prior to my ordination as a Deacon a Bishop spoke to me and told me that sustainability in ministry meant trying to ensure that 80% of the time you did the things that nourished you so that you had the fuel to get through the 20% of time that didn’t.  As time has passed I increasingly see how valuable that advice is.


  • What are the things that nourish you – that give you that positive and energy giving feeling?



  • What are the things that deplete you?
  • Have you got those things in a healthy balance?



A prayer for Pentecost:

O Lord, from whom all good things come:

grant to us your humble servants,

that by your holy inspiration

we may think those things that are good,

and by your merciful guiding may perform the same;

through our Lord Jesus Christ,

who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and forever.






Church based:

Sunday 23rd May (Pentecost Sunday):

10am Benefice Service at St John’s, Tatworth.  A creative outdoor service for all.  This will be a relaxed service which will include Communion, centred on fellowship and joy.  Please come with your own refreshments and morning snacks!  We will put out some chairs and tables, but do please bring your own picnic rugs and chairs of you can.  We will have hot water available to make tea and coffee and some disposable cups, but please do bring your own mugs for hot drinks if you can.

We will also be thinking about the Our3Word challenge during this service!  If you haven’t done so already please do see this link.  There will also be the opportunity to complete it on Sunday too.



If the weather is unkind, we will simply hold the service in the church (St John’s).  We believe we have sufficient space available by utilizing various areas in the church if we need to.



Thursday 20th May – 7:30pm TEZ. 

Reflective prayer in the period of Ascension to Pentecost.  We will be following The Examen spiritual exercise this week.


Meeting ID: 851 5624 4352

Passcode: twoshires



The remaining APCM’s in the Benefice are on the following dates and times:

20th May:  11am St Mary’s Thorncombe.

26th May:  11am St Mary Magdalene’s Cricket Malherbie (with service of Holy Communion)

27th May:  11am St Michael’s Chaffcombe

Please see notices at each church for details of elections being held at those meetings.  Once all the APCM’s have been completed I will circulate a compiled list of elected church officers.




We pray for those we know who are sick, and those we don’t know, including those we are asked to pray by name for:


Bishop Peter Hancock; Jan Knott; Hannah Knott; Rob Allen; Lynne and Bruce Applegarth; Phyllis Baker; Margaret Bandy; Sue Bennett; Sue Cheese; Terry Conway; Nick Frankau; David Goodwill; Mike Heywood; Joy Howard; Ann Jarvis; Frank & Celia Long; Peter McHugh;  Diana Rowlands; Ann Ricketts; Jim Tucker; Rosemary Walley; Rosemary Walton; Vivien Wheaton; Alan Wills, Anna Woodward; Pamala Young; Milly granddaughter of Jane & Alan Rudkin; Gillian Muggeridge; Chris Gould; Brian Griffiths; Peter Hathway; Dorothy Down; Max Woehrle; Michael Mutch; Kelvin Yendell; Winnie Barge; Izzie Luty-Wells; Tracy; Mary Butler.


We remember all those whom we love but see no longer, and pray for all those bereaved.  We remember June Ball, whose funeral was held in Thorncombe on 18 May, and Terry Ward whose funeral is being held in St John’s Tatworth on 24th May.


Please also pray for the following couples as they prepare for marriage in the next 3 months:


Charlotte Down & Nick Hawker

Lindsay Blackshaw & James Spurdle

Ashleigh Chislett & Keiren Pope

Julie Hampshire & Chris Bingley

Thomas Palmer & Lisa Bicknell






Acts 2:1-13 – The Coming of the Holy Spirit

When the day of Pentecost had come, they were all together in one place. And suddenly from heaven there came a sound like the rush of a violent wind, and it filled the entire house where they were sitting. Divided tongues, as of fire, appeared among them, and a tongue rested on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak in other languages, as the Spirit gave them ability.

Now there were devout Jews from every nation under heaven living in Jerusalem. And at this sound the crowd gathered and was bewildered, because each one heard them speaking in the native language of each. Amazed and astonished, they asked, “Are not all these who are speaking Galileans? And how is it that we hear, each of us, in our own native language? Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia, 10 Phrygia and Pamphylia, Egypt and the parts of Libya belonging to Cyrene, and visitors from Rome, both Jews and proselytes, 11 Cretans and Arabs—in our own languages we hear them speaking about God’s deeds of power.” 12 All were amazed and perplexed, saying to one another, “What does this mean?” 13 But others sneered and said, “They are filled with new wine.”


A Collect for Pentecost Sunday:


Holy Spirit, sent by the Father,

ignite in us your holy fire;

strengthen your children with the gift of faith,

revive your Church with the breath of love,

and renew the face of the earth,

through Jesus Christ our Lord.




Rev’d Philip

The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
PASTORAL EMAILS – please to: twoshiresrector@gmail.com
HOME PRAYER & WORSHIP:  https://twoshires.wordpress.com
Rest Days – Mondays (Tuesdays where following a bank holiday)
For non-urgent enquiries please allow up to a week for responses.
Mornings are best times for phone contact!

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