Dear all

Today the church remembers King Alfred, King of Wessex and later of all England, who lived between 849 and 899 AD.  Alfred was a Christian King and his faith was very important to him.  It is said that he directed half of all his income to go to religious bodies, and thus founded a number of monastic houses through which education and health care was provided to those in need.  Alfred’s reign was at a time of significant pressure from Viking incursions, and history shows that through Alfred’s victories on the battlefields, and particularly the battle of Edington in 878, the Vikings threat diminished greatly.  After that battle Alfred and the Viking king Guthrum agreed to a peace treaty at Wedmore, Somerset, a condition of which was that Guthrum was baptised into the Christian faith.  This he duly was, along with a number of other vikings, at Aller.  
Although never canonized, Alfred is often thought of as a Christian Saint, and his influence and legacy as someone who carried his faith boldly and as a priority that greatly informed his decision making, would certainly sit comfortably with that title.  
The collect for today:
God our maker and redeemer,
we pray you of your great mercy
and by the power of your holy cross
to guide us by your will and to shield us from our foes:
that, after the example of your servant Alfred,
we may inwardly love you above all things;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.  Amen.
Sunday 30th October – All Saints & All Souls
This Sunday is the 5th Sunday of the month and so it is a Benefice service.  We will be celebrating All Saints at St Mary’s, Thorncombe, at 1030am.  ALL WELCOME.
During the service we will observe All Souls during our prayers.  Traditionally we pray by name for all those people who we love but see no longer.  There will be sheets of paper at the entrance of St Mary’s for people to write (in capitals please) the names of people you would like read out during the service.  You can also email either myself or Rev Michelle directly with names and we will put them on the list for you.
Wild Church – 29th October
Wild Church is on again this week – 29th October at 3pm outside St John’s, Tatworth.  The theme is Bat and Lights, Burgers and Bites!  ALL WELCOME!  Here is a link to the poster:  Facebook  Any help also gratefully received, especially in preparing refreshments!
Please hold in your prayers all you know who are struggling in any way, in body, mind or spirit.  We are asked to pray by name for:Dave Boyland; Terri Boyland; Sheila Clement; Wendy Cotton; Hannah Knott; Jan Knott; Mary Marsh; Tony Taylor; Margaret Bandy; Dorothy White, Tony Meech, Di Nicholls, Hester Down, Stella Hutchison; Oskar Lee; Margaret Shields.
We also remember all those who we love but see no longer, particularly at this time Monica Parris and John Cotton.  We pray for their families and friends in their mourning.
A Collect for All Saints:
God of holiness,your glory is proclaimed in every age:as we rejoice in the faith of your saints,inspire us to follow their examplewith boldness and joy;through Jesus Christ our Lord.
The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
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