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 Rosemary Egerton, Nick Forrest, Barbara Foy, Colleen Jerrold, Tom Reeves (Chairman), Anthony Russell and Rev Christian Merivale. Rev Peter Thomas attends the monthly meetings of this group.
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. PCC members are elected by church members every year at our Annual Parochial Church Meeting, equivalent to an AGM.
We also have 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.
Services 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 Anthony Russell, Mike Toft and Ben Stent
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.