Pentecost Service

Dear all

This Sunday is Pentecost – 50 days from Easter Day and the day we celebrate the arrival of the Holy Spirit.  It is often referred to as the Birthday of the Church.  Following the arrival of the Holy Spirit on the gathered Apostles in Jerusalem they went out and began to spread the word publicly about the Good News of Jesus, thereby beginning the first mission of the Christian Church.  That ‘passing on’ of the truth of Christ still continues to this day, over 2000 years later.
It is easy to be downhearted about declining numbers in church services and wonder whether we are vainly following a dying faith.  We are not.  It is always an amazing thought to think that the Christian faith started with the simple obedience and trust of a handful of ordinary people gathered in a single room waiting patiently for ‘another helper’ as promised to them earlier by Jesus .   
 
‘If you love Me, keep My commandments. And I will pray to the Father, and He will give you another Helper, that He may abide with you forever— the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees Him nor knows Him; but you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.’ (John 14:15-16)
 
And when we look at the global Christian Church we see that far from decline; Christianity is still growing and outpacing population growth.  The Good News of Jesus is not just surviving, it is thriving – but perhaps not in the way that we are used to.  Those first disciples / apostles did not know what they were waiting for.  They did not know what to expect.  There was no established tradition – they simply watched, waited and prayed.  And then responded.  That is all we are asked to do too.  Listen out for the Spirit, receive it with joy, and go where it blows.
Pentecost Sunday – 19 May
8am – You are invited to join Michelle and I in the vicarage garden at 8am for an informal Pentecost service followed by breakfast.  All welcome – but it would be helpful to have some idea of numbers so that we know what food to get in!  Our address is at the foot of this email.
10am – Morning Worship at St Stephen’s, Winsham
10:30am – Holy Communion and APCM; St John’s, Tatworth.  Sunday School have an outing to Axe Valley Wildlife Park.  Rev’d Michelle is organising so if there are families who would like to go along and have not already been in contact with Michelle, then please do drop her a line.
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone, or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Ann Jarvis, David Arnold, Mary Marsh, Louise White.
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Alastair McArthur, Sheila Holloway, Andrew de Pury, Anne Hooper, and all their friends and families in their time of mourning.
Collect for Pentecost:
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.
Amen
Blessings to you all
Philip

The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
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!
 

Ascension Day and Services for 19th May

Dear friends

Today is Ascension Day – the day that we celebrate Jesus’ return to Heaven and the start of the 10 day period to Pentecost and the arrival of the Holy Spirit.  It is both a goodbye and a hello – because it is a moment of unification, a moment when Jesus goes ‘universal’ precisely because he is no longer physically present.  It is a paradox that, like the disciples who find themselves staring into empty space, we have to understand that in the absence is also the presence.  I love this poem from R S Thomas which sits in this space and cleverly weaves around the absence and the presence in both spirit and secular (using science) and thereby demonstrating that God is there in all places.
The Absence
It is this great absence
that is like a presence, that compels
me to address it without hope
of a reply. It is a room I enter

from which someone has just
gone, the vestibule for the arrival
of one who has not yet come.
I modernise the anachronism

of my language, but he is no more here
than before. Genes and molecules
have no more power to call
him up than the incense of the Hebrews

at their altars. My equations fail
as my words do. What resources have I
other than the emptiness without him of my whole
being, a vacuum he may not abhor?

Ascension Day Communion Service – Tonight, 7pm in St Stephen’s, Winsham; all welcome!
SERVICES THIS WEEK AND NEXT:
Thursday 9th May – as above
Sunday 12th May
8am – BCP Holy Communion; St Stephen’s, Winsham
10am – Morning Worship; St Mary’s, Thorncombe
1030am – Holy Communion; St Michael & All Angels, Chaffcombe
Tuesday 14th May – 9:30am Morning Prayer; St John’s, Tatworth
Wednesday 15th May – 9:30am Holy Communion; St Mary’s, Thorncombe; followed by coffee morning
Sunday 19th May  – PENTECOST
8am – Outdoor early service for Pentecost – Vicarage garden, 3 Home Farm, Tatworth; followed by breakfast
10am – Family Sevice; St Stephen’s, Winsham
1030am – Holy Communion and APCM; St John’s, Tatworth
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone, or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Ann Jarvis, David Arnold, Nicola Cunningham, Mary Marsh
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Alastair McArthur, Sheila Holloway, Andrew De Pury, and all their friends and families in their time of mourning.
Collect for Ascension Day:
Grant, we pray, almighty God,
that as we believe your only-begotten Son our Lord Jesus Christ
to have ascended into the heavens,
so we in heart and mind may also ascend
and with him continually dwell;
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and forever.
Amen
With every blessing
Philip

The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
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!

Proceeds of Coffee Morning held on 1st May

Very many thanks on behalf of us & Somerset Wildlife Trust for running the Coffee Morning on Wed 1st May 2024.   We were very pleased to find there was such good support and that in the total the amount of £185.35 was raised.   This will boost funds to help with management of SWT Blackdowns Nature Reserve and relaunch of the Private and Community Nature Reserve Network.

 

Several people supported the event from out of area.   26 people enjoyed the walk in Park Wood with a splended display pf Bluebells, Ramsons and other Spring flowers.   It was a bit slippery in places after the evening’s rain but only 1 slip.  Early Purple Orchids and Herb Paris put on a good show in Pouletts Wood to add interest to the walk.   Being cloudy, butterflies weren’t on the wing but it was a fine day in many ways.

 

A very Big THANK YOU from Valerie and John

Next Village Walk to clear footpaths – Tuesday 7th May

Dear all
I am planning a walk after the May Day holiday heading south of the village and over the A30 to Wreath Farm as follows:-
Chaffcombe Village Walk Tuesday 7th May at 10.00 am
 
Village Hall – Summer Lane – Whitemore Hill (taken at a very gentle pace ) – new track past the Clock Tower – track south to A30 – A30 west  –  Up timber staircase and across fields to Wreath Farm – Wreath Lane – A30 west – The Drift north – Avishayes Lane west – Paintmore Lane – Chaffcombe Lane back to village
Now that ploughing and planting are well under way I want to check that footpaths across fields have been reinstated, but just in case we may be crossing muddy and wet fields so good footwear is advised. We may need to do some cutting back.
Hope that this appeals and you would like to come
Best wishes
Anthony Gray Chaffcombe Parish PPLO

Anthony Gray

18 Barberry Drive

Chard

Somerset TA20 1HR

tele 0146065392

e-mail anthony.gray37@outlook.com

CHURCH SERVICES – 28TH APRIL AND 5TH MAY

Dear all

It has been a little while since my last e-letter, for which many apologies and is purely down to sparse desk time since Easter!
This Sunday (tomorrow) brings around one of my favourite Bible readings – John 15:1-8.  Here it is:
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener.  He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful.  You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you.  Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. “I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.  If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned.  If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you.  This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”
 
Many years ago I was on a retreat day in Exeter Cathedral being led by the then Bishop of Exeter, +Robert Atwell.  This was the passage that he used as the theme for the day, and preached on three times (not the address each time!) during the day.  It was brilliant and it has stuck with me.  But what was really striking was that he was able to get into the heart of the meaning of the passage because of his own deep spiritual understanding of what it was to care for a plant.  For before he was in public ordained ministry +Robert was a monk and his key responsibility in the monastery was in the garden.
One of the things that this passage lays bear, and will be immediately obvious to anyone who is involved in horticulture, is that in looking after plants for their optimum health does not just require removal and pruning of the bits that are no good – but very often also cutting back, or doing other seemingly ‘countercultural’ things, to what is essentially healthy plants!  I remember +Robert describing how he had to severely prune back some healthy vines because if he had not done so the whole plant was at risk of dying.  It did not feel right at the time, but come the following year and onwards the plant was even healthier and more fruitful.
We can apply this passage to so many areas of our lives – particularly when we are feeling overwhelmed.  What is fruitful?  What is not?  Where do I need to apply my metaphorical secateurs?  Am I brave enough to contemplate cutting back things that might feel ok – but actually could be even better with some TLC?
Perhaps spend some time with this passage, reading it through a few times in some quiet space – alert to the words and phrases that jump out to you.  What is God saying to you?
SERVICES THIS WEEK AND NEXT:
Sunday 28 April:
8am – Holy Communion; St John’s, Tatworth
10am – Holy Communion and APCM; St Mary’s, Thorncombe
6:30pm – BCP Evening Prayer; St Michael & All Angels, Chaffcombe
Tuesday 30 April:
9:30am – Morning Prayer; St John’s, Tatworth
2pm – APCM; St Mary Magdalene, Cricket Malherbie
Sunday 5th May:
8am – BCP Holy Communion; Forde Abbey
10am – Holy Communion & APCM; St Stephen’s, Winsham
1030am (for 11am worship) – Emmaus Service, St John’s, Tatworth
Tuesday 7th May:
9:30am – Morning Prayer, Tatworth
Wednesday 8th May:
11am – Holy Communion; St John’s, Tatworth
Thursday 9th May:
7pm – ASCENSION DAY SERVICE – St Stephen’s, Winsham
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone, or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Andrew De-pury, Ann Jarvis, David Arnold, Nicola Cunningham.
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Billy Edwards, Keith Portsmore, Alastair McArthur, Sheila Holloway, and all their friends and families in their time of mourning.
Collect for this Sunday:
Risen Christ,
your wounds declare your love for the world
and the wonder of your risen life:
give us compassion and courage
to risk ourselves for those we serve,
to the glory of God the Father.
Amen.
With every blessing
Philip
The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
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!
 

Cancellation of Garden Party and Plant Sale

Garden Party and Plant Sale
CANCELLED DUE TO THE LATE ARRIVAL OF SPRING
As you have probably all noticed, spring is a bit overdue this year and as a result our gardens are largely having late-winter sulks in the cold and damp. The long-range weather forecast doesn’t offer much hope of a sudden change to warm sunshine in the next few weeks either, so conditions are far from ideal for planting out new stock.
Accordingly we have decided to cancel our garden party and plant sale, planned for 18th May.
But we are undaunted and will try again in the future….
Geraldine Wills

NEXT VILLAGE WALK TO CUT BACK FOOTPATHS

Dear all
I am planning a modest walk for next Thursday to be taken at a gentle pace in the hope that the weather and ground underfoot will improve.
Please note that this month it will be Thursday not Tuesday!
This is what is planned:-

Chaffcombe Village Walk Thursday 18th April 2024 at 10.00am

 

Village Hall – Chaffcombe Gate – Cricket Lane (E)  – Ashton – Knowle Green – Woodhouse Farm – along track to Mill House – along dam  – Chaffcombe Lane (E) – Village Hall

We may need to do some cutting back en route and we must expect parts to be muddy and boggy.
If you would care to join me I would be pleased to see you again
Best wishes
Anthony Gray Chaffcombe Parish PPLO

Anthony Gray

18 Barberry Drive

Chard

Somerset TA20 1HR

tele 0146065392

e-mail anthony.gray37@outlook.com

COFFEE MORNING AND BLUEBELL WALK

CHAFFCOMBE COFFEE MORNING

WEDNESDAY 1st MAY
CHAFFCOMBE VILLAGE HALL
10.30 – 12 NOON
FOLLOWED BY A BLUEBELL WALK AT PARK WOOD LWS at 11.30 a.m.

IN AID OF SOMERSET WILDLIFE TRUST

bluebells

Bluebells in Chaffcombe

 

Come and enjoy a cuppa + cake and a chat with your friends and then enjoy a walk to see the bluebells. (Some steep slopes, could be wet, wear suitable footwear and clothing). Dogs are not allowed.

Join us for the Annual Chaffcombe Village Bluebell Walk!

Date: Wednesday, May 1st

Time: 11.30am
Meet at the village hall at 10:30 am for delicious home-made cakes and coffee.
The walk departs the village hall for Park Wood at 11:30 am.
Experience: Witness a breathtaking display of bluebells in bloom – a true feast for the eyes!
Donations: Welcome at the hall or on the walk, all going to the Somerset Wildlife Trust.
This is a fantastic opportunity to:
Enjoy a leisurely walk through the beautiful countryside.

Learn about the local wildflowers and the importance of their conservation.
Socialize with fellow villagers and nature enthusiasts.
Support the Somerset Wildlife Trust in their vital work to protect our natural heritage.
Don’t miss out on this delightful spring event!
Please contact us should have any difficulty in distance walking.
Contact marybutler10@outlook.com for more information.

Poster to pass around.

Poster for the bluebell walk.

Agenda for Annual Parish Meeting

LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972

NOTICE OF ANNUAL PARISH MEETING FOR CHAFFCOMBE

NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN THAT:

The Annual Parish Meeting for Chaffcombe will held at
Chaffcombe Village Hall on Monday 15th April 2024 at 7.30 p.m.
The business to be transacted at the Meeting will be as follows:

1. Report of the Chairman of the Parish Council covering the
activities of the Parish.

2. Minutes of the Parish Meeting 2023.

3. Public Voice.

Mary Butler
Chairman Chaffcombe Parish Council
7th April 2024

Proceeds of Coffee Morning – Weds 3rd April

Our Coffee Morning held on Weds 3rd April made a profit of £185.10 which has gone towards the purchase of items for our Village Hall kitchen.   Thank you to all of you who came and especially to the 17 walkers who came along.

 

Our next Coffee Morning will be on Weds 1st May and this one is in aid of Somerset Wildlife Trust and at 11.30 a.m. there will be a bluebell walk in Park Wood with the Godsmarks.

 

See you all then.     Best wishes

Mary Butler

 

Letter from Philip, our Vicar

Dear Friends

On Sunday it was announced that Reverend Michelle and I have been appointed to become the next Vicar of Minehead, sharing the role in the same way as we do here, and moving to Minehead in the summer holidays.  We will be very sad to leave indeed, but are looking forwards to all that the future holds on Exmoor!

In February 2017 I remember putting the finishing touches to an application form that, little did I know, would change my life.  I was coming to the end of my curacy in Honiton, and Michelle and I had only got married two months before.  This was always going to be a big move, as we embarked on a new life together, living together for the first time, and learning how to do ministry together.  When we saw the Parish Profile (the official document that gets produced for prospective clergy that describes the place and role looking to be filled) Michelle and I remember thinking that this could well be the one.  There was something about it that called us to dig deeper.  I went to see my Bishop (who is now Bishop of London – Dame Sarah Mullaly), who had been so supportive of me through curacy and even given me one-to-one interview training!  She read the profile with me and simply said, “you can do this”.  I can still hear those words now.  The rest, as they say, is history!
The 7 years since then have been such a joy.  We have been through so much with you all, and we have learnt so much from you all.  Just personally we have welcomed two children into the world, been through major bereavement and health issues, learnt how to be a married couple with 4 kids between us, how to job share the role of Rector, and much more – and you have helped us in all of that.  Beyond the ‘normal’ work of the parish priest we have journeyed together through major events, particularly how to do and ‘be’ church through the COVID pandemic; but also responding as churches to events in the life of the nation, such as the Platinum Jubilee, deaths of Prince Philip and of Queen Elizabeth II, and the Coronation of King Charles III.  It has been a privilege to lead the churches of the Benefice through all of these, and a joy to be involved in all that you have done and continue to do.
Michelle and I have discerned over the last few months that God is now calling us to a new horizon, not because we are unhappy here (far from it) but because it is time to move on.  This time comes to all parish priests (just look at the vicar board in any of the churches!) and anyone who has sensed God’s call on their lives will know that you turn it down in vain.  God is leading us to be the Vicar of Minehead in the same way that he led us to you.  We are excited to be entering this new, and very different, time of ministry – but we are also incredibly sad to be leaving Two Shires.  Making the announcement in our churches on Sunday was very definitely the hardest thing I have ever had to do in ministry, and Michelle and I thank you most deeply for your kind words that you have shared since.
We are not leaving just yet – we will be completing the school year here and likely moving in August, so a bit of time to go!  It will be a busy time of tying up loose ends and as far as is possible preparing the Benefice for Interregnum.  It is going to be a daunting time for all us, but I know that God is with you as he is with us and in our departure are the first steps to new beginnings of the next stage in ministry here in Two Shires.  God is already working with whoever is coming next – so trust in that!
As we embark on this time of transition – which perhaps so appropriately begins now in Holy Week, the ultimate week of transition, you might like to reflect on these words from the Sarum Primer (1514) and well known as an anthem by Walford Davies:
God be in my head and in my understanding.
God be in my eyes and in my looking.
God be in my mouth and in my speaking.
God be in my heart and in my thinking.
God be in my end and my departing.
 
This Easter will be extra special for us, and we hope to see as many of you as possible as we journey through it.
With every blessing for Holy Week;
Philip & Michelle
The Reverends Philip & Michelle Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
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!

Proceeds of Coffee Morning held on Weds 6th March

PROCEEDS FROM COFFEE MORNING HELD ON WEDS 6TH MARCH IN AID OF CHARD RESERVOIR LNR
We made a profit of £223.37 which has been given to Hannah, the Ranger of Chard Reservoir.
Thank you to you all who came along to support us and we look forward to seeing you again for our next Coffee Morning to be held at the Village Hall on Weds 3rd April from 10.30 – 12.00. This one is in aid of the Chard Macular Society Support Group.   Everyone is welcome.

Services for 17th and 24th March (Palm Sunday)

Dear friends

This Sunday is St Patrick’s day!  Patron saint of Ireland, it is a very important day for the Irish people and for all those with connections to the ‘Emerald Isle’.  Patrick is also an important figure in the evangelism and establishment of the Christian faith in this part of the world generally, particularly due to his persistence in faith throughout his challenging life, and his deep understanding that all he did was only possible through the grace of God.  Here is the entry on St Patrick from ‘Exciting Holiness’ (Canterbury Press, 4th Ed. 2012, p123-4), which is a calendar of Holy Days in the Anglican church in Britain and Ireland:
St. Patrick was a Romano-Briton born in about the year 390 of Christian parents, in the latter years of the Roman Empire in Britain. The exact place of his birth – named by him in his Confession as Banaven Taberniae – has never been identified. Claims from places in West Britain as far apart as Dumbarton and Cornwall have been made; present day opinion favours the neighbourhood of Carlisle.He was captured by Irish raiders when he was sixteen years old, and taken to Ireland as a slave. After six years, he escaped and seems to have gone to continental Europe. He eventually found his way back to his own family, where his previously nominal Christian faith grew and matured. He returned to Gaul, and there trained as a priest and was greatly influenced by the form of monasticism evolving under Martin of Tours.  When he was in his early forties, he returned to Ireland as a Bishop, ministering first at Saul near Downpatrick, and later making his base at Armagh, which became the centre of his See. He evangelised the land by walking all over the island, gently bringing men and women to knowledge of Christ. Although he faced fierce opposition and possible persecution, he continued his missionary journeys.Patrick left two pieces of writing which are accepted as genuine, his Confession and a Letter to Coroticus.  These are of immense value as they reveal Patrick the man, humble and aware that all he achieved was by the grace of Christ. Irish Christians today, of all traditions, equally identify with this holy man and draw inspiration from his life and writings.Despite being unsuccessful in his attempts to establish the diocesan system he had experienced in Gaul, his monastic foundations proved to be the infrastructure required to maintain the faith after his death, which occurred on this day in the year 461.
 
On Sunday do pray in thanks for our Irish friends and neighbours, for the faith of St Patrick, and if you are so inclined – enjoy a pint of black Irish Gold! (I can recommend the very good 0%!)
SERVICES THIS WEEK & NEXT:
Sunday 17 March (5th Sunday in Lent)
10am – Family Service, Winsham
10:30am – Holy Communion with Sunday School; St John’s, Tatworth.  Sunday School meets from 10.15am in the Church Rooms.
Tuesday 19 March
9.30am – Morning Prayer, St John’s, Tatworth
Wednesday 20th March
9.30am – Holy Communion, St Mary’s Thorncombe, followed by coffee morning.
 
Sunday 24 March (Palm Sunday)
 
10am – BENEFICE SERVICE – St Mary’s, Thorncombe.  Please see the request below from Rev. Michelle.  
6:30pm – BCP Evening Prayer, St Michael & All Angels, Chaffcombe
LENT WALKS
 
The fourth Lent Walk is on 14 March at 3pm, going from and returning to St Stephen’s, Winsham, followed by tea in church from around 4pm.
The fifth, and final, Lent Walk is on 21 March at 11am, going from and returning to St Mary Magdalene, Cricket Malherbie, followed by light lunch from around 1215.  ALL WELCOME to all or any of these!
PALM SUNDAY – 24 March; St Mary’s Thorncombe – 10am – READERS WANTED!!
 
We have a special Benefice service for Palm Sunday as above at Thorncombe.  This year we will be hearing the re-telling of Palm Sunday and also the Passion itself.  Rev’d Michelle is compiling a list of people who would like to read a part in those narratives.  There are quite a lot of parts to fill, so please can you either speak to, or email, either myself or Michelle in the next few days if you would like to take a role.  It is reading from a script during the service in church.  Once we have a complete list we will work out who takes on which role!  Please don’t read too much into who we give which roles to!!
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone. or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Andrew De-pury, Christopher Mitchell, Ann Jarvis, Tony Arnold’s son.
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Barbara Tolley and hold her family and friends in our prayers at this time of mourning.
 
 
God of our wilderness and despair,
when our chaos is too loud to hear you,
lead us to the quiet place.
Open the ears of our hearts to hear you in the deepest of ways.
Amen.
Every blessing
Philip & Michelle

The Reverends Philip & Michelle Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
 
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!
 

Chaffcombe Calendars

2024 CHAFFCOMBE CALENDARS

Thank you to everyone who purchased a 2024 calendar.
We made a profit ol £245.00 inctuding donations, which
was shared between the Church (£106;75 + 25% gift aid =
£134.47) and Newsline Talking Newspaper (£138.25 – no
gift aid possible). Profits are slightly down on last year,
because of postage costs, people were not sending them
abroad. There are a few small ones left over, wlrich are in
the church. Please help yourselves.

We hope you liked the calendar and will continue to
support it.

Dave & Val

Church Services – 25th February and during the week

Dear Friends

The Archbishop of Canterbury’s chosen Lent Book this year is ‘Tarry Awhile’ by Selina Stone.  It is a book on the wisdom of Black Spirituality, particularly focussing on the tradition of ‘tarrying’ (waiting) as a community to draw closer to Jesus and to each other.  The Church of England has produced a Lent Booklet that people can follow through Lent, which draws on the content of the book, called Watch and Pray.  If you would like to use this really good resource in your own prayer life you can either get a copy here:
or you can get content emailed to you direct each day by subscribing here:
Here is the reflection for today:
Reading
I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of the calling to which you have been called, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, making every effort to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to the one hope of your calling, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all, who is above all and through all and in all. (Ephesians 4.1-6)
Reflection
Ancient Greek and Roman thinking was strongly influenced by the notion that nature and life needed to be separated between the world that we can sense and the perfect world that we can only imagine: between the real world, and the ideal world.The Letter to the Ephesians rejects this kind of “dualism”, insisting on the reality of one God, one faith and one Christ. Yet dualistic thinking has caused problems for the Church from the outset. Accepting non-Jewish believers was the first hurdle of the Early Church. Later, European Christian missionaries to Africa and the Americas from the fifteenth century onwards treated indigenous cultures as idolatrous. Yet, these cultures were fertile grounds for the development of Christianity. Such “dualism” is dangerous because it creates division and conflict unnecessarily, hindering the good news of Jesus Christ.
WatchNotice any moments when you begin to see life in black-and-white terms.
 …and prayfor the humility to accept grey and multi-coloured realities in life.
SERVICES IN THE BENEFICE THIS WEEK & NEXT:
 
Sunday 25 February (Second Sunday in Lent)
8am – Holy Communion; St John’s, Tatworth
10am – Holy Communion; St Mary’s, Thorncombe
6:30pm – BCP Evening Prayer; St Michael & All Angels, Chaffcombe
6:30pm – Service of Light; St Stephen’s, Winsham
 
Tuesday 27 February
 
9:30am – Morning Prayer; St John’s, Tatworth
 
LENT WALKS 2024
 
The first Lent walk is tomorrow, Thursday 22nd February at 11am, meeting at St John’s, Tatworth, followed by a light lunch (soup) from around 1215 / 30.  All Welcome to the walk and lunch, or either part!!  The weather is not looking wonderful, so be prepared!  No stiles, but cannot rule out mud…
Slight change of timing for the walk on 29th February in Chaffcombe.  This is now at 3pm followed by 4pm tea in the hall.
Wild Church
 
Wild Church had a well attended walk at Chard Reservoir on 17 February in the drizzle!  22 of us (adults and children) explored the puddles, streams and mud, finishing with hot chocolate from the boot of the vicar’s car.  Good fun and fellowship and thanks to all who came!  The next Wild Church gathering will be for Good Friday morning at 10am on 29th March – All Welcome!
 
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone. or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Andrew De-pury, Christopher Mitchell
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Denis Hunt, Ruth Rogers, Barbara Tolley, and Anthony Johnson.
A Prayer for this week from Watch & Pray:
 
Holy and mighty Trinity, teach us of your oneness.
Give us grace to see the ways in which we reject the unity you desire
in favour of division and conflict.  Amen.
Every blessing
Philip
The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
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!
 

Church Services etc. for 11th and 18th February

Dear all

It is often in the most unexpected moments that we discover a time of joy.  Joy is not something that you can ‘book’, or order on Amazon.  Although Joy can be that sense of excited anticipation as you open an Amazon parcel as the little kid inside you pretends it’s a present! (even though it is something you ordered!).  You can arrange to do things that you know from experience or expectation might bring happiness, but that is not the same thing as Joy.  Joy is something much deeper.  A sense of joy is not just possible when things are going well, but when things are difficult too, in fact, especially so.  It is a state of being, through which we can also bring joy to others.
One such moment that I became aware of the power of Joy was on Tuesday.  I had some time between meetings and Michelle was using the office, so I decided it was a good opportunity to sit down and either read or watch something interesting.  Scrolling through the documentaries on BBC IPlayer I landed on the documentary “Mission : Joy”, which is the film of the meeting in 2015 between Archbishop Desmond Tutu and The Dalai Lama.  It was spell binding, and the joy shared between those two great spiritual leaders, and in their answers to some huge questions, is simply infectious.  If you have time, please do watch it!  BBC iPlayer – Mission: Joy – With Archbishop Desmond Tutu and the Dalai Lama
This Sunday our Gospel reading is the Transfiguration (Mark 9:2-9).  Jesus has taken 3 of his disciples away to a mountain top and in a moment of shining glory is transformed in front of them.  They are literally awestruck and ask to remain there – but after the moment has passed Jesus leads them back down the mountain to their companions and the continuation of their work.  This is joy – the hard work continues, but it continues in a new way, transformed by the joy they experience and receive (and carry with them).
There will be moments of joy in your everyday.  They may be hard to find – but they are there.  Take note of them, let them dwell deep within you, and let them be transformative for you, and those around you.  As Mother Teresa said, “Joy is prayer; joy is strength: joy is love; joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls”.
SERVICES IN THE BENEFICE FOR THE COMING FORTNIGHT:
Sunday 11th February:
8am – BCP Holy Communion; St Stephen’s, Winsham
10am – Morning Worship; St Mary’s, Thorncombe
10.30am – Holy Communion; St Michael & All Angels, Chaffcombe
 
Tuesday 13th February:
 
9:30am – Morning Prayer; St John’s, Tatworth
 
ASH WEDNESDAY – 14th February:
 
Holy Communion with Imposition of Ashes is being held through the following two services on Ash Wednesday.  Ash Wednesday is the start of Lent.
11am – Said service of Holy Communion for Ash Wednesday; St John’s, Tatworth
7pm – Sung service of Holy Communion for Ash Wednesday; St Stephen’s, Winsham
Sunday 18th February:
10am – Morning Worship; St Stephen’s, Winsham
10.30am – Holy Communion; St John’s, Tatworth.  There is a Sunday School running at this service, which meets from 10.15 in the Church room at St John’s.  It is a Pancake special this month!
Tuesday 20th February:
9:30am – Morning Prayer, St John’s, Tatworth
 
LENT WALKS 2024
 
The Lent Walks in 2023 were a huge success and we are looking forward to them again this year.  The first one is on Thursday 22nd February at 11am, meeting at St John’s, Tatworth, followed by a light lunch (soup) from around 1215.  All Welcome to the walk and lunch, or either part!!  Like last year, I will host a Bible study series after Easter, between Easter and Pentecost / Ascension.
Wild Church
 
Wild Church 2024 starts on 17 February!  The first gathering is for a walk and explore at Chard Reservoir, meeting in the main car park (Chard end) to start at 3pm.  This is obviously slightly weather permitting, so please do check for updates if you think it’s looking doubtful!
 
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone. or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Andrew De-pury, Christopher Mitchell
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Denis Hunt, and Mona Harding.
The collect for this Sunday:
 
Almighty Father,whose Son was revealed in majestybefore he suffered death upon the cross:give us grace to perceive his glory,that we may be strengthened to suffer with himand be changed into his likeness, from glory to glory;who is alive and reigns with you,in the unity of the Holy Spirit,one God, now and for ever.
Amen.
Blessings
Philip
The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
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!
 

Proceeds of Coffee Morning held on Weds 7th February

COFFEE MORNING – WEDS 7TH FEBRUARY

Our Coffee Morning held on Weds 7th February made a profit of £197.70 which has been donated to our

St  Michael & All Angels Church.   

Thank you to everyone who provided cakes, raffle prizes and bric-a-brac items which all helped in the above total.

Our next Coffee Morning is on Weds 6th March from 10.30 a.m. – 12 noon and this one will be in aid of Chard Reservoir Nature Reserve.   Please feel free to come along and enjoy a cuppa and a cake and enjoy meeting all your friends and make new friends.   Children are welcome.   Any queries please contact Mary on 01460 64592.

Thanks again for all of your help and generosity.

Church Services – 28th Jan and 4th Feb

Dear friends

This Sunday we celebrate Candlemas, or as otherwise known, The Presentation of Christ in the Temple.  Jesus is 40 days old and, as per the Jewish tradition of the day, Mary and Joseph take him to the Temple to thank God.  At the Temple the Holy Family meet the priest Simeon and the prophetess Anna.  Simeon recognises the baby as the Messiah and proclaims that Jesus is “a light for revelation to the Gentiles”.  As such, for hundreds of years, it has also been the tradition to bless candles during the service to celebrate the Presentation, and for this reason it is also called Candle-Mass, or Candlemas!
We will be celebrating Candlemas at St Mary’s Thorncombe this year, with a special service of Holy Communion at the end of which we carry the light into the world.  All are very welcome – the service is at 10am on 28 January and there will be children’s activities at the back for church for younger ones and the young at heart!
SERVICES IN THE BENEFICE FOR THE COMING FORTNIGHT:
Sunday 28th January
8am – Holy Communion; St John’s, Tatworth
10am – Holy Communion for Candlemas; St Mary’s, Thorncombe
6:30pm – BCP Evensong; St Michael & All Angels, Chaffcombe
6:30pm – Service of Light; St Stephen’s, Winsham
Sunday 4th February
 
8am – BCP Holy Communion; Forde Abbey
10am – Holy Communion; St Stephen’s, Winsham
10:30am – Emmaus Service; St John’s, Tatworth (Refreshments from 10:30, service starts at 11am)
Winsham School Pupil Chaplains & Faithful Friends!
Today it was wonderful to celebrate the commissioning of 5 pupil chaplains in Winsham Primary School.  5 children have volunteered to be pupil chaplains within the school, helping to look out for their peers and each other and be at the forefront of our strong relationship with the school.  Helping them on that journey are three ‘faithful friends’ from within the St Stephen’s church family.  Thank you to all of them for embarking on this new wonderful journey!  Also, thank you to Rev’d Michelle and the head of Winsham School, Emma Johns, for spearheading the work to get the scheme going – and for the excellent support of the Diocese through Rev’d Mike Haslam.
RSPB Birdwatch 2024
 
This weekend is the annual RSPB Birdwatch survey where we are all invited to spend an hour outside and count birds that land in our area!  It’s a really important bit of work to help get an understanding of bird populations and therefore inform how we can respond positively ecologically.  It is actually one of the 5 Marks of Mission (key focusses) of the Church of England – the 5th of which is “To strive to safeguard the integrity of creation and sustain and renew the life of the earth”.  It is also a lot of fun – so do please have a go!  Here is a link with the information you need…
Prayers
We hold in our prayers all those we know who are ill or struggling in any way, and we are asked to pray by name for the following.  If you would like to add someone. or yourself, to this list, then please do get in touch.
Margaret Bandy, Dave Boyland, Andrew De-pury.
In memoriam:
We remember in our prayers all those whom we love but see no longer.  Particularly at this time we remember Sylvia Massey, Denis Hunt, and Mona Harding.
The collect for Candlemas
 
Lord Jesus Christ,light of the nations and glory of Israel:make your home among us,and present us pure and holyto your heavenly Father,your God, and our God.
Amen.
Blessings
Philip & Michelle
The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
TA20 2SH
01460 221286
 
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!
 

Epiphany Cake and Cuppa

Dear all

Just a reminder that there is an open invite to all to pop along to the vicarage on Saturday morning for a slice of Epiphany cake and a cuppa!  Those who were at Thorncombe on ‘Stir up Sunday’ at the end of the year will have seen it mixed in the service, and even possibly lent a hand!
All welcome! 10am to 12pm at the Vicarage, address below.  If you haven’t been before, Home Farm is a gravel drive found after about 50yds along School Lane opposite St John’s Church, Tatworth.
Blessings
Philip
 

The Reverend Philip Butcher
Rector – Two Shires Benefice (Tatworth, Thorncombe, Winsham, Chaffcombe & Cricket Malherbie)
The Vicarage
3 Home Farm
Tatworth
Chard
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!