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We take the protection of our young people seriously. Our safeguarding officer completes all checks for those working with our young people in line with the diocesan guidelines under the 2009 Diocesan Children and Young People Safeguarding policy. The PCC have adopted a policy for the recruiting of volunteers which includes a period of mentoring and the option of taking up references along with the normal DBS checks. Please contact the church wardens if you would like to see a copy of this policy.
Children begin in the church at the 11am service and join in singing the first song. They are then taken by Janet and Nicola to St Mary’s Centre for their own activities. There are two groups: under fives (for which a parent must be with the child) and six to tens. The older children (over ten) go into the North Vestry with Keith for their activities. All the children and young people return for communion. If you are new we will look out for you and invite your children to join with the other children in the Junior Church.
This is our Youth Group which meets every Sunday evening from 5.30 – 7.30pm in St Mary’s Centre. It is for everyone aged over eleven and the young people set the programme and organise the activities with guidance from the adult mentors. There is plenty of socialising and chilling out for those who prefer that. A meal is shared together and this is all included in the £1 you pay to come in. Off-site activities are planned from time to time as well as sleepovers and the annual May Camp at Plumpton race course. If you want further details then please speak to Dianne (01243 586 362).
Our short and fun service especially for toddlers. We start in the church at 10am on Thursdays in school term time (feel free to come in from 9.30 onwards). We sing some fun action songs, hear about a story from the bible, do our action prayer and then we have some snacks while doing a craft activity or playing with the toys. We usually finish about 11am but come and go when you are ready. If you want to know more contact Fr David (01243 583 211) or just turn up on Thursday!
Music plays a big part in the life of St Mary's Church and we are very fortunate to have a strong musical tradition. The Choir is affiliated to the Royal School of Church Music. Indeed, we have two robed choirs! One sings for the 9.30 am Sung Eucharist (mainly NEH and traditional anthems), and our other choir sings for the 11.00 am Sung Family Eucharist (mainly Celebration Hymnal and modern worship songs). The two choirs join forces for our monthly Choral Evensong & Benediction, special services, weddings and concerts.
We are a friendly choir and always welcome new members. There are no auditions, you just need to love singing. Our practice night is Thursday 7.00 pm - 9.00 pm. The Juniors meet at 6.30 pm in the North Vestry during term time.
You can contact the Organist and Musical Director, James Rushman, on 01243 - 582 330.
St. Mary's has a ring of 8 bells, with the oldest dating back to the early 1400s and the two latest dating from the year 2000. Our Band of Ringers practises on Wednesdays 8.00 pm - 9.00 pm, and usually winds up in one of the local hostelries afterwards. The Bells are rung before the 9.30 Sunday Eucharist, and during the summer months are also regularly heard for weddings. Contrary to popular opinion you need to be neither strong nor musical to become a ringer. If you are at least twelve years old and would like to try your hand at the ancient art of change ringing please get in touch with the Tower Captain, Andrew Last, on 01243 - 586 680.
This group meets on the first Friday of the month for socialising, talks and outings. For some of our social events we are joined by the menfolk. For more information, contact Stephanie Bennett on 01243 - 849 358.
Coffee Stop takes place every Saturday morning from 10 am, in St Mary's Centre. Once a month Coffee Stop coincides with a tabletop sale & Fairtrade stall. The Fairtrade stall is also open every first Sunday both after the 9.30 am Eucharist and the 11.00 am Family Eucharist.
To book a table for the tabletop sale contact Roger Bennett 01243 - 849358.
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