June Services at Ansley Churches
| 5th June
From the Registers
The Reverend James Martin conducted the baptism of Harper Mae Williams and her older brother, Oakley Jack Williams on Saturday 21st May. The hymns chosen were “Give me joy in my heart” and “I the Lord of sea and sky” This was a lovely occasion with sixty family members and friends present. We join in welcoming these two children into the church and pray for them and their family.
The funeral of Leonard Clifford Edwards was held at St Laurence Church on 25th April 2022. There was a large congregation present to pay their last respects to Cliff as he was known in the village. His two sons talked to John Hitchcock who conducted the service about their father’s tendency to become involved in amusing incidents, some as a result of his role as secretary of Ansley Social Club. He was something of a character in the village and will be sorely missed for his antics of one sort or another and for the caring person he was. He was sure to let you know that he was Welsh, came from Neath and that he worked for Jaguar in Brown’s Lane. These facts plus his undying love and care for his sons, Geoff and Jack were the aspects of his life which made him proud.
The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee
This will be celebrated during the extended bank holiday weekend from Thursday 2nd June to Sunday 5th June. The PCC has agreed that the 2000 history display will be set out around the church, including additional items and some from the last twenty years. The church will be open from 11.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday. Do come along and find out about the history of this area. Light refreshments will be available in the Annexe on these days.
The church bells will be rung at St Laurence for half an hour on Thursday 2nd June from 12.00 noon, as part of the celebration.
A Jubilee Social will be held on Friday 3rd June in St John’s Hall at Ansley Common from 7.00 p.m.
The Sunday service on 5th June will be at 10.30 a.m. in St John’s. The church will also be represented at the Big Lunch that is being organised by Ansley Parish Council from 12 noon to 6.00 p.m. in the Recreation Ground in Ansley Village.
Help in the Annexe or on the Sunday at the Recreation Ground will be much appreciated.
St Mary and All Saints Community Big Knit Project at Fillongley
The Knitted Bible Exhibition will be open in the church on Thursday 2nd June to Saturday 4th June from 11.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. and on Sunday 5th June from 12 noon to 5.00 p.m. Adult refreshments will be available at £2. All funds raised will be shared between the church and Nuneaton Food Bank. The organisers gratefully acknowledge the receipt of a Jubilee Grant from NWBC which has helped to fund the project.
Ascension Day – Thursday 26th May
This year the joint Benefice service was held at St John’s at 7.00 p.m. This service was prepared by the leader (Captain) of the Girls’ Brigade which meets regularly at St John’s on Thursday evenings. The girls read Bible passages and lead the prayers. The service was enjoyed by the congregation and the chat, tea/coffee and biscuit were appreciated afterwards. This was the first time the Girl’s Brigade had been present at a service since the start of the pandemic so it was lovely to see them again.
Disasters Emergency Committee Appeal for Ukraine
The collection plate has been in church over the last few weeks. The collection has now ended. The total raised will be in next month’s magazine.
The church will continue to be open on Tuesdays from 11.00 a.m. to 4.00 p.m. for prayer and contemplation for Ukraine.
National Garden Scheme 2022
On Sunday 26th June six former miners’ cottages and The School House in Old Arley will be open as part of this scheme for the first time. The opening times are from 2.00 p.m. to 6.00 p.m. Combined admittance is £4 for adults, children have free entry and light refreshments will be available.
On Sunday 3rd July ten gardens will be open from 2.00 p.m. to 6.00 p.m. in Ansley under the same scheme. Combined admittance will be £6 with children free. Light refreshments, cream teas and homemade cakes will be available in specified gardens, Sale of refreshments will be in aid of Ansley Gardening Group which meets in Ansley Village Church Hall on the first Wednesday of each month.
Details about Open Gardens can be seen on www.ngs under open gardens Warwickshire or in the published Yellow Book.
Acorns Children’s Hospice
A message of thanks has been sent to our treasurer from Acorns for our support during last year. During the past year the three hospices have supported more than 700 children and over 900 families including the bereaved. 237 siblings were supported at Acorns through their Sibling Support Service and The Acorns Family Services provided 22,091 instances of vital emotional and practical support to family members. It is good to know that our donation from the Flower Festival has helped in this work.
Annual Parochial Church Meeting
This was held on Thursday 28th April at 2.00 p.m. The following officers were appointed for the year.
Churchwardens Moreen Freestone and Margaret Antill
Assistant Churchwardens Margaret Oliver and Diana Kealey
Lay Chair Margaret Oliver
Secretary Diana Kealey
Treasurer Margaret Antill
Deanery Synod Representatives Anthony Truelove and Philip Rees
Benefice Safeguarding Officer Sheena Baird (See www.ansleychurch.org.)
Following the strong winds earlier in the year, some plaster/mortar was found on the nave floor below one of the clerestory windows. Our architect came and had a look at that and a few other areas. A builder has looked at the windows and they need attention. We are applying to the diocese for permission to have the necessary work carried out. There has also been some severe weathering on some stones on the outside south walls and we are awaiting a report on their condition. There is also some concern over the state of the chancel ceiling. Further investigations will be undertaken when the builder and architect are on site during the repairs to the windows.
The current situation and looking to the future
Ansley, like many village parishes, is facing a time of change. Not only is there a shortage of clergy but also few parishes can pay the cost of a full time vicar. At the moment this cost is over £60,000, which includes the stipend, housing cost and a budget for training. Ansley cannot meet such a cost. Our parish has been linked with Arley for over twenty years. The current proposal from the diocese that Ansley with Arley have half a full time vicar, with the other half of his/her time at Fillongley and Corley, as presented in the advertisement for the vacancy, will involve some changes to how we run things in Ansley Parish.
The pandemic brought a dramatic change to our pattern of worship and activities, so perhaps we are more open to change than in pre-pandemic times. There are not the numbers of people to do all the tasks that were done in the past and our volunteers are getting older. If we want to keep a healthy church we will need to adapt.
The diocese has ideas for us to consider. They are setting up hub churches to assist with projects but there is no magic formula to solve our problems. We need to continue to reach out to others and meet them where they are.
Following a presentation on all this, we need to be courageous, find where and what is needed and act accordingly. Not everything we try will work but HOPE is there. God promises he will be with us. Please continue to pray for the church as a whole and in Ansley Parish.
If you would like someone or a particular situation remembered in prayer during this time of disruption, please make contact by email or phone one of the following.
Margaret Antill 018 2787 4520
Margaret Oliver 014 5582 2822
Moreen Freestone 024 7638 1833
Diana Kealey 024 7639 5089