Christmas 2018 At All Saints

Join us this Christmas at All Saints.
Sunday 16th December:
6.30pm Carol Service
Thursday 20th  December:
6.30pm Leavesden Green Hub Carols
Christmas Eve: 3pm Crib Service 11.30pm Midnight Mass Christmas Day: 8.00am Holy Communion 10am Family Communion

Reflections on 2014-2015

It has certainly been quite a year at All Saints!

A year ago we were squeezed into the hall, and now we have returned to our church building refreshed and renewed. All of this has only been possible because of the generosity and energy of members of the church family. Special thanks must go to my wardens over the last year, Peter and Ashley, and the very many others who make All Saints life so rich and diverse. I would like in particular to thank those involved with our major fundraising events, our Ball and Christmas Fair, as we pay off the remainder of the ‘mortgage’ on our roof.

So what is God doing at All Saints? He certainly keeps surprising me. I had expected a period of quiet reflection after we returned to the church, a ‘Selah’ as the writers of the psalms would have it. Instead God keeps sending us new people of all ages. We have Robert arriving as curate and other placements as a possibility. With Sue now completed her training and Charles, Wendy and Fr. Peter sharing ministry in the Parish it is getting rather difficult to squeeze everyone into the sanctuary. Members of the congregation may well be feeling the same as we welcome new people to the church. But still I pray that we continue growing even if we have to shove up a bit in our pews!

The growth God is bringing to All Saints does require planning for the future. In this I have found our action groups invaluable, working with the PCC and Churchwardens. Our Worship group has provided some excellent reflection on our Sunday services and is taking responsibility for the 5th Sunday services, a space to be stretched and challenged. Our Pastoral group has begun to visit people on a more formal basis and be trained in prayer ministry. Our Mission group has been praying about welcome and witness as we share the love of Christ with others. All of these groups are open to all – and are not committees, although you may find you leave with a job to do.

As our main Sunday worship service grows and develops a lively character we do need to return to that ‘Selah’. Quieter more reflective services are available at 8am and 6.30pm as well as on Wednesday evenings. I greatly value these services as well as the other services we offer during the day in the week. Fr. Peter’s leadership of the lunch club Eucharist, combined with retaining the service in the hall has been a great blessing. Wendy’s leadership of Cameo and Evensong draws from her many pastoral and spiritual gifts. Sue’s prayer walks and monthly reflections will I pray become an essential part of our spiritual rhythm. On Wednesday evenings, we have adopted a monthly pattern of votive intention, The Departed, Healing, The Mission of the Church, Mary the Mother of God and The Unity of the Church. I would like to see these services grow too whilst retaining their character.

God is also strengthening our links with the community. Last year the visit from Bishop Alan, the Flower Festival, the Art display, the School services and other events brought new people through our doors to experience the love of Christ. As a ministry team we are involved in the life of the wider community as are the members of the church. Our hall users and groups are especially valued and prayed for. This year has also seen strengthened ecumenical links, especially through Christians across Watford.

My prayer for the year ahead is that God continues to do the work he has begun in us and we continue to grow. When any family grows there is change, when asked how much I always reply ‘no more change than a new baby brings!’ Just like being a growing family being a growing church will have its ups and downs – not just for the congregation but for the ministry team too. We will get some things right, and we will get some things wrong. Some things will be hard, and others will be a joy. But I believe all is worth it to be the Church that God is calling us to be.

With much love,

Fr. Eddie

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