Monday, March 28, 2016

Easter Sunday photos

Some photos from our Easter Sunday service.  Many thanks to all who helped make our Holy Week and Easter activities and services so successful (and to Nicky Harvey for the photos.)

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Friday, March 25, 2016

Good Friday at Seal.

Here are some pictures of our Good Friday activites at Seal, starting with Messy Church this morning, then our Good Friday displays, which will be up in church at least for Easter week. Pop in some time and see them - the church is open all day every day.

Foil crosses and cupcake and clothes peg butterflies from Messy Church.

Cut out Easter Eggs

Some special visitors - newly hatched chicks.

We made a standing cross. Most are carved from stone, but ours was made of banana boxes. We stamped pictures linked to the stories of Holy Week.

Cup cake butterflies in the making - loads of glitter!

We decorated jam jars and put cotton wool soaked in scented oil to remember the spice jars the women took to Jesus' tomb.

A happy throng!

We made Easter cards for our friends and thought about the friendships in the Easter story.

The refreshment team taking a break.

We made a crown of thorns and added our prayers to it.

The friendship display, with our friendship chain.

A display about the arrest of Jesus.

Our High Cross, and the display that goes with it.

Some of our foil crosses.

The High Cross

Candles lit during our Good Friday service.

During the Good Friday service I preached on Jesus as the Second Adam, and the choir sang Newman's hymn, in the setting by Somervell, Praise to the Holiest in the Height. The sermon is here.

The display in the Lady Chapel is about Mary Magdalene. One of our decorated "spice jars" stands in the middle with some scented oil to smell.

What's your favourite smell? You can write it on the jar in the display.

The display stands on the"tomb". The stone is rolled across it, but what will happen on Easter Sunday?

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Messy Church for Good Friday

Come along to our Good Friday Messy Church. Everyone is welcome, of every age. We've got all sorts of crafts planned; a large scale cross for church, and small ones to take home, fridge magnet butterflies, decorated spice jars, banners and cards, among others. There will be something for everyone, and a hot cross bun to finish off. This is always really popular - pictures from last year's event are here
Please share this post!

Monday, March 21, 2016

Palm Sunday

Thanks to Nicky Harvey for the photos of our Palm Sunday service yesterday.
Tonight at 8pm there is a quiet, small scale service of Compline with recorded music to listen to for 10 minutes or so beforehand. The service itself lasts about 15 minutes. There are also services of Compline on Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Holy Week at Seal Church

Holy Week starts this Sunday with our Palm Sunday service. There are services every day through the week. You can find out more about what happens in each of these services by downloading the leaflet here

Wednesday, March 09, 2016

Urgent supplies needed for Calais

A message received from Canon Jean Kerr on Friday 4th March


There is a crisis of aid supplies in Calais right now: because of the demolition of the "Jungle" people assume Calais is "over" and they've stopped bringing donations, BUT there are thousands of people still there and needing help!
·         Please share this message with any other who may be able to help!
On Monday, 1,300 people in Dunkirk will start to move into a new MSF-built camp.  However, due to the risk of scabies, people will not be able to bring their possessions or clothes with them from the previous unhealthy site.  This means that a new set of clothes, boots, sleeping bag – and tents, in some cases – will have to be found for EVERYBODY in only a few days!!  The warehouse run by Auberge des Migrants and HelpRefugees supplies both Calais and Dunkirk, but stocks have run out!  PLEASE do not stop collecting and bringing aid over to the Calais Warehouse because you think Calais is "over" and if you are making a collection, bring it as fast as you can!  There are still thousands of people to be clothed and fed.

You can buy on-line via the LeisureFayre page set up with refugee-specific items at (with a 20% discount at the checkout) but goods take five days to arrive.

For those who have not been over, the warehouse is 15 minutes OUTSIDE the "Jungle" camp and it is NOT DANGEROUS to deliver there at all.  Please, if you can make a trip there, do so as soon as possible.  The warehouse is about 15 minutes’ drive from both the ferry port and the Eurotunnel arrival point if traffic is good.

To allow those working in Calais to devote their time to delivering aid rather than to sorting donations, when delivering goods to the warehouse, please first email

·         You will be asked to supply details of the kind and amount of aid you are dropping off; and your intended date and estimated time of arrival. You will then be informed of the delivery address.
·         The donations coordinator does all her admin after a long day in the warehouse and camp.  Please try and give at least 48 hrs  notice when you email her with details of donations you wish to drop off.


Tents, warm sleeping bags, roll mats, toiletries, hats, socks, gloves, tinned food, bottled water.

Men's gloves,
Men's underwear s/m
Men's joggers s/m
Waterproof coats (small)
Shoes/ sturdy trainers/ walking boots - Euro sizes 41 - 43

Please help - or buy online via leisurefayre - thank you!

About 'Seeking Sanctuary':  There are currently still over 5000 migrants in Calais (March 2016) and many more nearby.  'Seeking Sanctuary' aims to raise awareness about this situation and is organising basic humanitarian assistance through Faith Communities and Community Organisations in partnership with experienced aid agencies such as 'Secours Catholique'.

For further information on how you or your organisation can help,  contact Ben Bano on 07887 651117 or Phil Kerton on 01474 873802.  To check the latest news, visit our website on

Canon Jean Kerr
Director of Mission & Community Engagement and Canon Missioner
Prebendal House
Kings Orchard
01634 844508/07791 503123

Sunday, March 06, 2016

V & A trip

We had a great trip to the V & A Museum in London yesterday, looking at some of the wonderful exhibits they have there which illustrate the Church's history, to back up this year's Lent Course. We've been thinking about the things that have been important to Christians throughout the ages; Following Jesus , prayer, reading the Bible, gathering together and sharing the good news in word and action. Many thanks to Nicky Harvey for these photos. You can read about the V & A's collection here,  and entrance is free if you want to go and look for yourself.

Sermons from St Peter & St Paul, Seal, Kent: Mothering Sunday: How many mothers?

Sermons from St Peter & St Paul, Seal, Kent: Mothering Sunday: How many mothers?: Exodus 2.1-10, John 19.25b - 27 How many mothers does a person need? When you are a child you may feel that one is more than enough.



Saturday, March 05, 2016

March news from Seal Church

The March newsletter from Seal Church is now available here,
As you will see, there are a lot of things coming up.

Tomorrow is Mothering Sunday and we will be celebrating with a special All Age Communion service at 10 am, which will include a chance to light a candle to give thanks for your mother, or those who have mothered you, to remember a mother or child you have lost, or to pray for families who are struggling.
There will also be flowers for the children to give to their mothers or carers, of course. A number of us put together bunches of daffodils and greenery last night, so there are plenty available. This involved me doing some impromtu pruning of some of the bushes in the churchyard, in the dark, when we started to run out of greener. If anyone starts a to tell you stories about the ghost of Seal, a woman with a pair of loppers frantically hacking at the bushes by the dim light of a torch, don't believe them; it was me…! I was just glad that no dog-walkers happened along at that moment; it would have scared the life out of them.
There will be a cake and craft sale after the service - contributions are welcome! The cake bakers of Seal are renowned for delicious offerings, so I'm sure there will be treats on offer.

Next Saturday is our "Rock and Roll Bingo" event, It will feature music from the 1950's onwards, so there should be something for every generation. I am sure it will be fun, so do sign up and come along (Cost £5, to include a sandwich supper).
There is also news of a new group starting up on Friday mornings from April 1. Come along for coffee and chat, and various craft activities and board games. It's a group for any adults of any age - men and women - and will feature all sorts of activities, depending on who comes. There will also be a chance to help out with various charity and community projects. At the first meeting we'll be tidying up the village bunting in preparation for the street party to celebrate the Queen's 90th birthday (on Sat June 11 - put the date in your diaries!)

This edition of the newsletter also has details of all our services and events for Holy Week and Easter. There is something for everyone, whether you like the peace and quiet of our nightly, small scales service of compline at 8pm during Holy Week, or the activity and buzz of Messy Church on Good Friday morning, with art and craft for all ages to explore the Easter story together. Holy Week starts on Palm Sunday as we process from the lych gate into the church with our palm crosses and hear the story of Jesus crucifixion read as a dramatic reading by members of the congregation. There is compline on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, and on Thursday evening the Maundy Thursday Communion service, when we remember Jesus Last Supper. There will be hymns and music from the choir, and the services finishes with Tenebrae. As we hear a series of readings, twelve candles on the altar are blown out one by one, symbolising Jesus and the eleven disciples (leaving out Judas, who had betrayed Jesus by this time in the story) The service finishes in darkness and silence, taking us into Good Friday.
On Good Friday, after Messy Church there will be various "prayer stations", displays to reflect on, dotted around the church for the rest of the day, and we will gather for our Good Friday service at 2.30, which will include music from the choir, hymns, readings and a chance to light a candle.
On Easter Sunday our 10 am service will include the lighting of the new Easter candle, and lots of joyful music to celebrate the resurrection of Christ and the new life we find in him. More details of all these services are on the front page of the newsletter.

Come along and join us - you will be welcome at any of our services and events. And don't forget, you can keep up to date with all our activities on Facebook or Twitter , or h ereon the church blog or our website .

See you soon
Anne Le Bas

Rock and Roll Bingo Sat 12 March

Sign up in church or phone Maggie on 762840 (or email the vicar) to reserve a place.


Thursday, March 03, 2016

March News from Churches Together in Kent

Is your church an eco-church? Claim your award.., Celebrating the Queen's 90th with HOPE, Women's World Day of Prayer, gearing up for Easter outreach...

Tomorrow is the Women's World Day of Prayer. We come together to celebrate with the womrn of Cuba. The international committee writes, "The Christian women from Cuba gave us an invitation to learn from each generation their own gift, to put children at the centre of God's kingdom, and to hear Jesus' call to be that child." Read more here.

It's just two days to go til the Annual Forum of Churches Together in Kent. Hope your local area is represented. There's still time... just! Book now!

Her Majesty the Queen celebrates her 90th birthday this year. She has written a foreward to a book published by the HOPE organizaton called "The servant queen and the King she serves."  Follow this link to ideas from Premier Christian Radio for celebrating with your community, or this link to HOPE and the booklet.

An Easter video reflection.
The prayer is below. Great ecumenical prayer site here.

"Eco-church is a new joint project between Christian Aid and the eco-charity A Rocha, the Methodist Church and the Church of England. See if your church could qualify for an Eco-Church award. Take the survey...

Many churches together groups have packed up their homeless shelters for the winter. I was just wondering whether those organizing winter shelters acoss the county are aware of each other and would value meeting up. If you would, let me know and I'll put you together. Email your County Ecumenical Officer here...
Churches Together in England have just accepted their newest member: the UK World Evangelsim Trust. For a full list of member churches of CTE, click here. This can be very helpful to a Local Churches Together Group as they make decisions about who to partner with locally,

New Pro-Forma Constitution for Local Groups
In order for relationships to thrive between churches, for mission and worship to be done together, it is sometimes helpful to have some common understanding of commitments to one another and a framework for our common life. Churches Together in England offers to local groups of churches this all-new pro-forma constitution. It is intended to be permissive, not restrictive. Let the County Ecumenical Officer (Chris) know if you'd like any advice in this area. Email or ring me on 07808 728670.

In conjunction with the Bridport Arts Society, Churches Together in Bridport and District plan to display fourteen 'Stations of the Cross' at various locations throughout the town of Bridport and West Bay in West Dorset this coming Holy Week and Easter. There must be good things going on in Kent this Easter! Email me your stories of your ecumenical Easter celebrations and I'll share them next month...

2017 marks the 500th anniversary of the Protestant Reformation. The presidents of Churches Together in England have released a joint statement as we reflect on how relationships have changed in that time. Read it here.

Love overcame
Emerging from a cold tomb
All the truth, majesty and creativity of a living God
Transforming a broken heart
Making a quiet return, in a still and sorrowful garden
The grave stone rolled away, to release redemptive love
Jesus resurrected and restored
Comforts a weeping woman
Speaks with travellers on a journey
Meets with his faithful friends
And they bow down before Christ alive
And acknowledged that the saviour has arrived
That the word of God has come alive
And that the extraordinary transformation of heaven and earth
Is complete
"Love Overcame" copyright © 2014 Julie Palmer