Our Sunday Services
We hold three services every Sunday, to include a range of styles and traditions. We are evangelical in outlook, upholding God's truth as revealed in the Bible. Please see the monthly service page for details.
At 8am there is a short service of Holy Communion following the traditional Book of Common Prayer. This is a reflective service, without hymns.
At 10am there is a less formal service of Worship in The Memorial Hall in West Street with activities and teaching for children up to age 14. We have a music group who play modern songs and afterwards there is opportunity for private prayer ministry. Once a month we hold a service of Holy Communion. On the first Sunday of the month we hold a Family Service, which is very informal and always led by ordinary members of the church, and usually includes activities such as drawing, gluing or assembling for the children (and any adults who wish to join in!), as well as an opportunity for the adults and young people to discuss the theme of the service and offer their contributions if they want to. We always have coffee after the 10am service which gives us a chance to get to know one another better.
At 6.30pm we have a formal but relaxed service of Evening Prayer, using the modern wording of Common Worship, with Holy Communion once a month. This service has traditional hymns accompanied by the organ.
St Mary's Church is under the authority of the Church of England, Diocese of Bath and Wells.
Our Priest-in-Charge is Rev Peter Thomas, who also looks after the benefice of Norton Sub Hamdon, Chiselborough, West Chinnock and Middle Chinnock. We are led by a team of Readers and PCC members.
The Churchwardens, who have legal responsibility for the church building and are elected every year by the members, are Colleen Jerrold and Sam Lewis.
The Readers, who are trained and authorised to lead services, preach, and carry out pastoral duties in the parish, are Rosemary Egerton, Nick Forrest, Barbara Foy, Colleen Jerrold and Anthony Russell.
The Readers' Group, authorised by the PCC, are in charge of the spiritual leadership of the church and are Nick Forrest, Colleen Jerrold, Anthony Russell, Rosemary Egerton, Barbara Foy, Tom Reeves and Rev Christian Merivale.
The PCC members are in charge of the practical running of the church and are Rosemary Egerton, Derek Ferris, Jo Jacob, Colleen Jerrold (PCC Chairman and Deanery Rep), Michael Kerr (Diocesan Synod rep), Sam Lewis, Tom Reeves, Sarah Russell, Lesley Strutt (PCC Secretary, Electoral Roll Officer and Deanery Rep), Rev Peter Thomas, Mike Toft (PCC Treasurer) and Clive White.
We also have groups of members who have been given specific responsibilities according to their giftings. They gather suitable groups around them for the tasks needing to be carried out. In this way new skills are learned, latent gifts discovered and nurtured, and succession of leadership made easier.
Worship The Readers' Group
Youth Clubs and Youth Church Sam Lewis
Church children & young people Sue Ferris
Outreach Tom Reeves and Derek Ferris
Social Rosie Egerton
Lord's Larder Roger and Lesley Strutt
Prayer Chain Derek Ferris
Pastoral Rosie Egerton
Administration Lesley Strutt
Finance Mike Toft
Church Fabric Sam Lewis
All Saints' Hall Fabric Collleen Jerrold
Flowers Mary White
Music Sarah Barnard, Anthony Russell
Listening Paula Reeves
So it is not just members of the PCC who have responsibility in St Mary's! Many others also work hard behind the scenes, known only to a few, to keep the church building in good shape, and the church body - the people - in good spiritual shape, too.
See the 'Contact us' page if you want to get in touch with us.
Our Churchwardens, Tom and Colleen, made this announcement on 18 March 2012:
We are now able to announce that Rev Peter Thomas, the Rural Dean of this area of Somerset is to be the next Priest-in-Charge of St Mary’s. This will be in addition to his present position of Priest-in-Charge of Norton sub Hamdon, Chiselborough, West and Middle Chinnock; however we will remain a separate parish.
Peter will continue to live in Chiselborough; our vicarage is currently leased out but we will have use of the office area.
This is an interim arrangement. Within the next four years these parishes together with Montacute and Odcombe will be the responsibility of 1 ½ priests.
A service of Celebration and Welcome is planned for Wednesday 6 June when Bishop Peter will officially license Peter Thomas to our parish.
The pattern of services at St Mary’s, which are appreciated by Peter Thomas, will not change. We will continue to hold our three services each Sunday. These will be led mainly by our Readers and Christian Merivale, with visits from Peter Thomas and other priests. The diocesan office will cover the costs of our 8.00am services when we have visiting priests – Michael Kerr, our PCC Chairman, has worked hard to negotiate this agreement.
The Churchwardens, together with the PCC wish to express our appreciation of our members' patience and support throughout this time.