Letters to the Church Magazine – March 2017

Dear Sir

I would like to commend the Vicar on his dedication to the 8am communion service.

Last week my aunt Constance was away on holiday at Lake Constance. With her not in the country, I decided to enjoy a lie-in rather than get up so early on a Sunday.

But it was nice to know that Nathan was still there, taking the service on his own. I am sure that he will be rewarded in heaven.

Yours etc

Constanza Nearby, “Donebloggin'”, Woodby

Dear Sir

More trouble with our furry friends at Great Tremlett, I hear.

I am not referring to the seven remaining members of the Congregational Chapel. But rather the badgers and rabbits that have been undermining the churchyard wall.

Well, they will be a problem no longer. And I hear the “Game Pie” went down a treat at the Hanged Man Inn last Friday.

Ask no questions….

Yours,

The Masked Avenger”


Dear Sir

Once again the Vicar allowed George Herbert’s Day to pass by with barely  a mention at Morning Prayer.

I remember the good old days. Every year the Vicar would be chased around the village with sticks by the school children. And then driven to exhaustion by the Trim Valley Hunt, in their last official meet of the season. Although it was a terrible mess the time the hunts caught Old Father Maybold in Marion’s Covert.

Ah, times are no longer what they were.

Yours etc

Chas “Charlie” Charkles, Hanged Man’s Close, Gt Tremlett.


Dear Sir

Why all the noise at Synod about gay marriages? If we just kept quiet nobody would want one. We’re only creating  a demand we can’t fulfil.

Yours etc

Solomon Snodgrass, Station Road, Gt Tremlett.


Dear Sir

I have been mainlining Creme Eggs since mid-January, in the knowledge that I would have to give them up for Lent. This morning I realised in a panic that I would have to eat the three remaining boxes before the end of the day, to avoid having Creme Eggs about the house on Ash Wednesday. 

The temptation would be too great.

Therefore I have eaten them all, bringing on what I believe is called a “sugar rush.”

I am scribbling this note on a church newsletter I have found in my suit. Can someone please get me down.

Yours “par avion de papier”

Major J Dumpling, the top of the church spire, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

I see we had Candlemass again this year.

I’m not saying it was not welcome the first time. But every year? What else did Jesus do beside get born and grow up? Surely we could mention that sometimes?

Yours etc

Solomon Snodgrass, Station Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

As the days lengthen, our thoughts turn towards the Spring Equinox.

The coven will meet on Grumbler’s Tump at 9am on the 20th-21st March. Please note that the Equinox is early this year. Last time this happened, four people turned up a day late, ran around “skyclad” and alarmed some paintballers.

Advance warning that the Vicar will be checking the magazine in future for what he refers to as “pagan goings on”. Publication dates are a bit short this month so I think I’ve got away with it. However please in future check the church notice board. I can normally get the notices up there for a week or two before he spots them.

Yours etc

Mildred Flossett (Mothers’ Union Branch Secretary), Jasmine Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Take me out tonight
Because I want to see people
And I want to see life
Driving in your car
Oh please don’t drop me home
Because it’s not my home, it’s their home
And I’m welcome no more

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

Time for another of my famous “vicar” jokes.

Q – Where does the Vicar go on his holidays?

A – Anywhere with a wi-fi connection. He’s got a lot of rotas to plan for the next few months, and wants to get ahead on the parish admin before he’s back at work!

Yours etc

Tom Chancellor, Primrose Path, Woodby


Dear Sir

I am told that, finding there was no congregation at the 8am Communion last week, the Vicar decided to have another nap and went back home.

Terrible dedication. Of course in these circumstances he could not lead a Communion. But I feel he could at least have sung a few hymns so God knew we cared.

Yours etc

Dr Sandra Ireland, “Dunphlebbin'”, Great Tremlett


Dear Sir

Spring will soon be here!

“Th’Awakening Earth”

Up in the eaves, O welcome sound

The house-sparrows are scratching round

To build their tiny summer home

Where chicks may thrive, and learn to fly

And then in summer start to roam.

The hedgehogs, stirring in the loam

Will soon raise hoglets in their home.

They venture out in search of bugs

And as they look, by hedge and brook,

May hap upon some tasty slug.

The rabbits, freed from winter’s frown

Now skip and gamble on the down.

All day they feast on grass so fresh

And at the dusk, when darkness creeps

They venture underground – so nesh!

But summer is so short a time

When grass is free from snow and rime

The days pass swift for mortals all

Though birds may fly, and fill the sky

Half will be dead before the fall.

Death death death

death death death

death death death.

At least half.

Could be more.

Death.

Yours etc

Mellissa Sparrow (Mrs), The Hollow, Grilsby-on-the-Hill

Letters to the Church Magazine: Synod Special

Dear all

Being fortunate enough to get a preview of the “case studies” that the Church of England Synod is discussing today, I was able to run them past Monday night’s Great Tremlett PCC.

For each of the case studies, I asked the PCC to role-play their approach.

The results were oddly consistent. For each study they told me how wise old Canon Westclyffe was when he was in charge, and this sort of thing would never have caused a problem.

Yours etc

Revd Nathan, The Rectory

 Letters to the Church Magazine: February 2017

Dear Sir

Anyone can forget to switch their phone to “silent” before they go to church. We should all forgive them that simple mistake.

But actually taking the call. That’s a bit much. The correct response is an embarassed, whispered apology while switching the phone off. Not answering it and dealing with a three minute discussion about the plumbing.

But during the sermon? That’s just plain rude.

What was  the vicar thinking of?

Yours etc

Maisie Daisy, Church Lane, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

The last PCC may have set some kind of record.

Three resignations by church officers. And all over the question of the cost of the candles over Christmas.

Paying for all the farewell cards is itself now a strain on the expenses of the church. That’s why I have been investigating the possibly of producing cards for outgoing church officers “on the spot” on the printer in the church office.

In the process of carrying out these experiments, I have of course incurred some expenses. I therefore include an invoice to the value £74.22. The good news is that, now I have been elected treasurer, I will have less trouble getting reimbursed.

Yours etc

Norbert Dranesqueezer, Chester St, Grilsby-on-the-Hill


Dear Sir

In these troubled times, we need strong leadership more than ever.

I have been pushing the details of job opportunities in other counties through the Vicar’s door since November. When will he take the hint?

Yours etc

Dr Sandra Ireland, “Dunphlebbing”, Lt Tremlett



Dear Sir

I apologise for the over-excitement I showed last Sunday when we had a visit from a lovely group of Anglican nuns.

I had consumed a gallon of my friend Daniel Winship’s crab-apple cider and I am afraid he may have left the fungal “bloom” on the skins. With the result that I thought the church had been occupied by a group of oversized mutant badgers.

In retrospect, chasing a group of terrified, whimpled octogenarians from the church with a candlestick is not the highlight of my previously distinguished military career.

Yours etc

Major J Dumpling, “Rodney’s Rest”


Dear Sir

I don’t know which is worse.

The hysteria that Norbert exhibited at Tremlett Stores when I was buying a packet of sanitary towels. He having presumably deduced that this means I am a sexually mature woman and not some kind of robot or disembodied spirit.

Then his offer to carry my basket back to the car in case I was “feeling a bit weak.” I hope the right hook he received put him right on that matter.

Yours etc

Revd Joanna, The Old Chapel, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

I was shocked by the Vicar’s performance at the Church Quiz.

A whole round I set on “The History of the Countess of Huntingdon’s Connexion.” And he didn’t get a single question right. I thought he was a man of the cloth.

Yours etc

Charmander McBrayne, Woodby Lane, Grilsby


Dear Sir

Clearly Revd Nathan has been trawling the internet again for the lyrics to modern songs, as printed on the service sheet. How else to explain the references to a “neighbor”? If St Paul had known we would sing about ” blessing and honor” I do not suppose he would have bothered writing Romans at all.

Really, Wycliffe would turn in his grave. If they hadn’t thrown his bones in the river. I used to be in  the Home Office.

Yours etc

Chas “Charlie” Charkles, Hangman’s Close, Gt Tremlett

Dear Sir

Once again a delight to cover for the current Vicar, as he hid himself in his study to deal with six months of administration and claimed he was “on post-Xmas holiday”.

The people at Woodby were so delighted when we restored the use of Lauds instead of the degenerate modern worship they have been used to! 

But a strange thing occurred as I was setting off to Great Tremlett on the Sunday morning. I was stopped by the police in Woodby Lane and told that, under President Trump’s ” Hatred of Foreigners Act” I had to be arrested.

I spent the next four hours tied and gagged in a ditch until a passing cyclist heard my cries for help.

In retrospect I am not sure that was a real police car. It was a 1980 Mini Metro. And the blue flashing light was probably a bike lamp with some kind of blue scarf wrapped round it.

The good news is that the Reader, Doreen, was able to step in and lead the service for me. And even had  a sermon conveniently written for the week! What a treasure she is.

Yours etc

Canon Vyvyan Westclyffe (Retired but still available to take properly-run Occasional Offices), The Old Vicarage, Woodby
Dear Sir

Week five of the vicar’s plan to “make the church more open, less set in its ways.” And there are certainly radical results.

The vicar’s theory, to give us new perspectives on church, was that every week we should sit in a different pew to our traditional place. Well he’s right. I’ve got very different perspectives. In just five weeks.

It is very peaceful staying at home on Sundays. And I get to stay in bed a lot later.

Yours etc

Gabrielle Fitch Thompson, the Old Market House, Little Tremlett


Dear Sir

I may have caused some distress and confusion to Revd Joanne at the Burns Night celebration in the Church Hall. Blame it on the moonlight, blame it on the good times, blame it on the whisky.

I remarked to our lovely lady curate that I didn’t know how she had time and energy for it – what with her four children, full-time ministry and hospital chaplaincy. Said she must be absolutely exhausted at night and  just ready to sleep.

What I was referring to was her prayer life. There was absolutely no need for her to set fire to my tie.

Yours etc

Philemon Doyle, Chestnut Lane, Lt Tremlett 


Dear Sir

You’d better watch out, you’d better beware.

Albert said that e = mc squared.

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

When I heard that the vicar was now allowed to conduct “informal prayers of blessing” I presumed he was referring to rabbit weddings.

Now it turns out that the Church of England was talking about blessings for gay couples.

Not rabbits.

Once again, nobody cares about the rabbits. I suppose they do not buy enough cakes.

Yours etc

Solomon Snodgrass, Station Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

A little poem for St Valentine.

Roses are red
Violets are blue.
Most things are dead
soon we will be too.

Death death death

Death death death

Death death death

Death.

And some nice chocolates.

Yours wishing you a loving “special day”

Mellissa Sparrow (Mrs), The Hollow, Grilsby-on-the-Hill

Letters to the Church Magazine: January 2017

Dear Sir

A couple of years ago, a row of coniferous trees was planted along the northern edge of Gt Tremlett churchyard.

I am pleased to see that they have settled in nicely and are already attracting the wildlife. What an addition they have been to our village! I was impressed with the idea from the start.

Yours etc,

Fennel Bailey, The Old Orchard House.


Dear Sir
Thanks to everyone in the “Golden Girls” over-80s Bingo group for their fund—raising event for the new kitchen. In retrospect, the sponsored Bog Snorkel through Tremlett Marsh may have been ambitious. Still, adding two legacies to the sponsorship money has brought in a tidy sum.
Yours with the funeral fees,

Revd Nathan, The Rectory, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Over the last year, the Church Wardens have given me many reasons why there are only 27 people in Church on a Sunday:

  • Weather too hot
  • People on holiday
  • Weather too cold
  • Rain
  • Children playing football on Sunday mornings
  • Everyone too hung over after the Harvest Supper
  • Everyone gone away for Christmas
  • “A rumour went round that the bishop would be here so they’ve stayed away”

I suspect that there are only in fact 27 church members, but the vicar is trying to keep this a secret.

Yours with the counting machine,

Philemon Doyle, Chestnut Lane, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

With a new year comes a new resolution!

I suggest one for the vicar.  Why does he not visit every single house in the benefice, every month? In this way he will be achieving the church’s mission, getting himself fit, and – most of all – doing his job.

Old Fr Honeywicke managed to visit everybody in the parish every month in 1935. Admittedly he had just the parish of Grilsby, and only nine people lived there in those days. But Revd Nathan has a car. There is no excuse.

Yours etc

Charmander McBrayne, Woodby Lane, Grilsby


Dear Sir

How I loved the traditional Christmas events! And yet at this time of purity and holiness, I bet some members of the congregation were still considering the sins of the flesh.

I did invite everyone to fill in a questionnaire – “How long is it since you succumbed to the temptations of your lower beastly nature?” I thought it would help the vicar to get some better control over his congregation’s enthusiasms – something he has paid no attention to over the last few years.

But only one person – Mrs Sparrow – filled it in. And included far more detail than I was expecting. I have not been able to sleep for a week since reading it. I suspect I now understand how Mr Sparrow feels.

Yours etc

Martin Moraine, “Purity House”, Little Tremlett


Dear Sir

I can only apologise for my behaviour at this time of festive celebration.

I know I have occasionally allowed my susceptibility to aromatic substances and ardent spirits to influence my behaviour in church and around the village. So this December I felt sticking to natural, wholesome produce would be sure to keep me on the straight and narrow. I kept to a strict diet of the mushrooms I found growing under the compost bin.

I have no idea what possessed me to scream “Aliens! Run!” throughout the Christingle. Nor challenge my friend Mr Charkles to a  throwing competition. I apologise to Maisie, and promise that if I every throw Christmas Puddings competitively again, I won’t light the brandy first.

Yours etc

Major J Dumpling, “Rodney’s Rest”, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Once again Dr Ireland has posted a list of the year’s “notorious sinners” around the village. I would like to make it clear that I have no interest in Mrs Dermer, except as a faithful member of the congregation and able mezzo soprano.

Yours etc

Revd Nathan, the Rectory, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

I see the Creme Eggs have appeared in the shops. Outrageous, at this time of year. If they came out in early December, I could eat them at Christmas.

Yours etc

Solomon Snodgrass, Station Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Thanks for letting me advertise our inter-faith event on 2nd February: “Imbolc Awareness”.

If you’re coming please bring a lamb and some mint sauce. “Cutlery” will be provided.

Yours etc

Mildred Flossett (Mothers’ Union Branch Secretary), Jasmine Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

There she stood in the doorway
I heard the mission bell
And I was thinking to myself
‘This could be heaven or this could be Hell.

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

A new year brings a new one of my famous “vicar jokes.

Q: What’s black and white and flat out?

A: The vicar on Christmas Day after lunch.

Yours etc

Tom Chancellor, Primrose Path, Woodby


Dear Sir

A poem at the end of a year of goodbyes.

“2016”

David Gest, David Bowie,

Carrie Fisher, Cliff Mitchelmore,

Arnold Palmer. Jean Alexandra,

Paul Daniels, Zsa Zsa Gabor

Jimmy Perry, Bobby Vee,

Jimmy Young and Harper Lee,

Rick Parfitt, Peter Vaughan,

Liz Smith, Caroline Aherne,

Johann Cruff – magician with a ball

“Boutros Boutros-Ghali” to you all.

Death death death

death death death

death death death.

Death.

Wishing you a joyful 2017.

Mellissa Sparrow (Mrs), The Hollow, Grilsby-on-the-Hill


Dear Sir

What a lovely Christmas Nativity Play that was! Seeing the little ones so nervous, and yet so proud as they told us the greatest story every told! And what a nice twist – the baby Jesus receiving a Hatchimal along with the more traditional gifts. You have to move with the times, while keeping the important ingredients of the season.

Although I am a regular Christmas attendee, I will certainly be joining the congregation more often in the New Year!

Yours etc

Jasmine Jones, “Chitterings”, Wheezy Lane, Gt Tremlett

Letters to the Church Magazine: December 2016

Dear Sir

The people who have voted for Donald Trump in the United States seem to have disliked Mexicans, Muslims and gay people. This is outrageous. There are far more people that need to be put on a register. These include:

  • Catholics
  • Radicals
  • Catholic Radicals
  • Catholic Radicals in Chasubles
  • Giles Fraser
  • Agnostics
  • Writers of acrostics
  • Funambulists
  • Acrobats
  • Clowns
  • Choir members who are allergic to cats
  • Gays
  • Greys
  • People who drink Thatcher’s “Haze”
  • People from Bakewell
  • Drivers who don’t brake well
  • Nicolaitans
  • Appalachians
  • People who dress up as Father Christmas at the slightest excuse
  • Environmentalists

Yours etc

Melissa Sparrow (Mrs), The Hollow, Grilsby-on-the-Hill


Dear Sir

When will Revd Nathan ever make it into social media or the television as a celebrity vicar?

How can we hope to develop a radical new mission strategy if Natahn’s face is unfamiliar to the typical chap on the Tremlett Circuit Bus (now defunct due to austerity measures at Banburyshire Council?)

He hasn’t even got onto the Gafcon list of Notorious Sinners. At the least, maybe he could shave his legs or wear a feather boa.

Yours etc

Gabrielle Fitch Thompson, the Old Market House, Little Tremlett


Dear Sir

 After the unfortunate double-booking of the Church Hall, I am afraid the Rabbit Breeders Club next few meetings will be cancelled. The Banburyshire Ferret Fanciers would like to apologise.

On the bright side, Flossy and Scut did survive the Bunny Apocalypse so we hope the Rabbit Breeders will be back to full strength next summer.

Yours etc,

Fennel Bailey, The Old Orchard House, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Last week’s service sheet referred to a “narthex” when we clearly have a “vestibule.” This would never have been allowed at St Martin in the Fields. I used to be in the Civil Service.

Yours etc

Chas “Charlie” Charkles, Hanged Man’s Close, Gt Tremlett.


Dear Sir

Players, put yo’ pinky rings up to the moon
Girls, what y’all trying to do?
Twenty four karat magic in the air
Head to toe soul player
Look out uh.

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

As Christmas approaches, once again I realise that I have totally failed to attend worship at St Mary’s since that lovely Nativity Play.

Still, not long now.  I always look forward to seeing how they’ve grown!

Yours etc

Jasmine Jones, “Chitterings”, Wheezy Lane, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

When I first left the army I got into the habit, every Christmas, of buying a bottle of white wine for every member of the last battery I commanded. A tradition I have continued ever since.

Of course, as time has gone by the number of my old colleagues has reduced until, these days, there are only 17 of them left. This leaves me a lot of wine to drink myself, but these old traditions have to be kept up.

With any luck I hope I shall be able to focus again by Candlemas.

Yours etc

Major J Dumpling, “Rodney’s Rest”, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

My nephew Wilbur kindly let me borrow his computer to look at the Church website. Once again, nothing to see.

Wilbur has suggested that this may be because I do not have broadband. But I do not want to rush into things.

Yours etc

Chesney Peterson, Walnut Grove, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

During the winter the heating bill rises steeply – causing a substantial increase in our running costs.

We could easily make savings if we cancel all services from December to April. Of course, we should still hold the Nativity Play. We can keep people warm by burning the chopped up old choir wardrobes.

In order to chop up the wardrobes I did have to buy  a  cheap but functional chainsaw. I therefore include an invoice to the value of £74.22.

I would like to apologise to the choir for the state of their robes.

Yours etc

Norbert Dranesqueezer, Chester St, Grilsby-on-the-Hill


Dear Sir

Our “Bring a Friend to Harvest” missional activity was both a massive success and total failure.

Everybody brought a friend. But they were all friends who already come to Church.

Next year’s missional drive will be called “Find Some More Friends Who Aren’t Christians Sunday.”

Yours etc

Chloe Joey, “El Nino Cottage”, Woodby Chapel End 


Dear Sir

I hear that Miss Joey is suggesting we should make friends with non-Christians. A terrible idea! As the Apostle said, “Do not be yoked with unbelievers.” We should pray for people to become Christians, and then become their friends and take them to Church.

Yours etc

Mary England,  Carstairs House, Woodby

Letters to the Church Magazine: November 2016

Dear Sir

I do not understand why we have so few young people attending church in Woodby nowadays.

We had decided to bring the worship up to date. We have a “music group” consisting of two women playing tambourine and a male accordionist. We regularly play only music that was written in the 1970s.

Why are the young people still not coming to church?

Yours etc

Anna Kee, Chafing Lane, Woodby, UK


Dear Sir

The rise of chutney stalls at the Christmas Fayre has, of late, been something to behold. I blame the ready availability, in these amoral days, of tomato plants and pickling vinegar. Can I propose a maximum of twenty jars of chutney per stall? Any more than that and the Major will have another of his “binges”.

Yours etc

Ranulf Bling, Station Road, Great Tremlett


Dear Sir

I dropped into last week’s jumble sale. I had no idea what jumbles are – some sort of relative of the Jumblies in the Edward Lear poem, I presumed. And I wondered whetther they had the green heads and blue hands of their cousins.

Instead when I got there all I saw was old women selling tatty jumpers and other such brocante. There was a sieve for sale, but no sign of any nautical activity. I was most disappointed.

Yours etc

Rt Hon Alicia Cholmondley-Cholmonley, Cholmondeley Manor, Woodby Chapel End.


Dear Sir

Surely innovations in the Church have gone too far. In which Synod of the Church was it decided that breastfeeding infants was acceptable?

The young lady concerned had the offending infant under a blanket throughout the entire operation, it is true. But it was still clearly happening. Put me right off the service. I yearn for the good old days before breastfeeding was invented.

Yours etc

Rob Runes, Church Lane, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Every Saturday, four or five people come to church to sweep the floor, polish the candles and other metal fittings, and generally get the place ready for Sunday. They are stalwarts of the church.

But what on earth do they think the clergy are for?

Yours etc

Felicity Broadstairs, Tremlett Road, Woodby


Dear Sir

What a masterpiece of negotiation and democracy! I refer, of course, to the new monthly “family service” at Little Tremlett.

Because the Vicar wanted a modern worship group, and the organist did not want to reduce his input into the service, a compromise was required. I am glad to say we found one.

Now, each First Sunday, we sing 7 modern choruses, plus 5 hymns. The service now lasts nearly two hours, and the only people who attend are musicians. But at least, through tolerance and love, we have modelled the kingdom!

Yours etc

Marais de Sandeman, The Old Brewhouse, Little Tremlett


Dear Sir
Ah, the mellow, nostalgic days of autumn! Walking back from church last week I smelt the aroma of the apples in the vicarage garden and it took me back to those times – long and merry ago, now – when I used to “scrump” from the old vicarage orchard in Father Tranwell’s time.

Of course these days, climbing over the vicarage wall is not as easy as it once was. So I called into the Hanged Man for some lubrication before attempting a recreation of my youthful exploits. After five hours, I felt sufficiently lubricated.

In the old days, “Buffy” and I would climb to the top of the trees to get the ripest apples. Of course, Fr Tranwell’s trees were old-fashioned standard trees, twenty or thirty feet high. These modern “bush” trees are not so high. Nor, it seems, so sturdy. When I woke, I realised I was in the midst of five or six flattened apple trees, sitting in the dusk in the vicarage garden.

The other game “Buffy” and I would play – when the vicar was out! – was to throw apples over the vicarage roof for the other to catch. Sadly Buffy is no longer with us after that incident with the Swedish navy and the paddling pool. So it was down to me to recreate the  good old days by heaving apples over the vicar’s roof.

By all accounts it was a Bramley that knocked Revd Nathan out as he left the church for Evensong. whereas the people getting off the Banbury bus were taken out by the volley of Ashmead’s Kernels.

I would like to apologise to the vicar, the evening congregation, and indeed  the entire village.

Yours etc

Major J Dumpling, “Rodney’s Rest”, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

What’s black and white and goes up and down?

The vicar with his foot caught in a bell rope!

Yours etc

Jeremy Stairswell, Crow Lane, Grilsby on the Hill


Dear Sir

It’s hard to believe that there’s nobody out there. It’s hard to believe that I’m all alone
At least I have her love, the city, she loves me. Lonely as I am, together we cry.

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

I am sorry to announce the disbanding of the Interfaith Group.

There’s only Mr Patel at the shop who’s a member of a non-Christian congregation. And he says he doesn’t really believe in any of it. I did tell him neither do we; but he didn’t care.

I am now starting a new Buddhism Group in the village hall. If this catches on, in a couple of years it might be worth starting the Inter Faith group again.

Yours etc

Romilly Randers, Cave Road, Little Tremlett


Dear Sir

The news story about Kumbuka the Gorilla gripped the nation last month. A 29 stone gorilla on the loose in Camden – how could he possibly last more than ten minutes? I had visions of him resorting to pushing canabbis on the Regents Canal towpath.

I attribute his survival entirely to the intercession of his patron saint, the martyred Harambe the Gorilla. Surely more proof that the Vatican should act now to progress his canonisation.

Yours etc

Barbara E Ape, “Tiggywinkles”, Meadow Leys.

Letters to the Church Magazine: October 2016

Dear Sir

In retrospect, I over-reacted last Saturday when the Scouts were doing their charity fancy dress car-wash outside Spar.

When driving out of the car park of a shop in a small town, one does not expect to see a scoutmaster and somebody dressed as Iggle Piggle looming up and pointing at one’s windscreen. And I panicked.

In my defence, I only drove as far as Banbury before the scoutmaster fell off the bonnet. However “Iggle Piggle” trapped his arm in the windscreen wiper. It was only when his head fell off in Stow that I realised it was Revd Nathan.  I hope the vicar had a pleasant walk home from Bourton on the Water. I believe “Birdland” is quite nice. But after that shock, there was no way I would offer him a lift back.

Yours etc

Constanza Nearby, “Donebloggin'”, Woodby


Dear Sir

The vicar hung his jacket on a different hook in the vestry last week.

Surely this needed a faculty?

Yours etc

Chas “Charlie” Charkles, Hanged Man’s Close, Gt Tremlett.


Dear Sir

There’s sex all over the place these days. On the TV, in the papers, in the Bible, on the Internet, in “Bare-bum Spinney” – all over. And yet the Church continues to conduct weddings. Surely this is just encouraging them.

Yours etc

Solomon Snodgrass, Station Road, Gt Tremlett.


Dear Sir

Maybe I should not have attended the Pet Service. Mrs Dumpling, after all, has always advised me that one should never work with vicars or animals.

I was in a slightly mystical state, having eaten 4 jars of chilli jam that I won at the Harvest Auction of Produce the previous day. And in the event watching Mrs Bramley’s goldfish swimming in circles left me in a kind of trance. Halfway through “If I were a Butterfly” I became convinced I was, in fact, the relevant animal in each line.

I admit that, in a service attended by many small mammals, hopping around the church in the manner of a kangaroo was a mistake.

The joke I made to lighten the mood may not have helped. Asking Jerome whether he was from “HamsterJam” was tactless.

I have offered to buy Jerome a new hamster. But he just tells me “Hammy was special”.

Yours etc

Major J Dumpling, “Rodney’s Rest”, Lt Tremlett

 

Dear Sir

I would like to apologise for my typo in last month’s magazine where we were intending to advertise a “Mothers’ Union” meeting. The results of an unfortunate autocorrect, I expect.

In the event, it was a surprise and yet in an odd way quite touching to see all the onions that the mothers brought along to the church.

Quite brought a tear to my eye.

Yours etc

Revd Nathan, the Rectory, Gt Tremlett

 

Dear Sir

Late September and once again we had a Harvest Festival. Did we not do this last year? These trendy special events are ruining the Church I grew up in.

If this kind of thing continues, Luther will have won.

Yours etc

Solomon Snodgrass, Station Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

An early advert for our special event at the end of the month.

The coven will meet on the long barrow on Tremlett Tump at 10.30 as usual. Then process to Hangman’s Copse where we will dance naked. Weather permitting. In case of frost or rain we will use the Village Hall. The old arthritics don’t cope with the bad weather these days.

Yours etc

Mildred Flossett (Mothers’ Union Branch Secretary), Jasmine Road, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Some girls are bigger than others.

Some girls are bigger than others.

Some girls’ mothers are bigger than other girls’ mothers.

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

Time for another of my famous “vicar” jokes.

Q – What do you call a female vicar who’s accidentally fallen into an open grave at a funeral?

A – Anything you like like. She’s going to have other things on her mind.

Yours etc

Tom Chancellor, Primrose Path, Woodby


Dear Sir

As the autumn draws in, I felt moved to poetry.

“The Falling Leaves”

The conkers lying on the ground

So shiny, brown, and nearly round

The squirrels search them swiftly out

To hide them in some hole, no doubt

But then when winter’s time has come

The stupid beasts can’t even find one

So, tumbling from the homely tree

They die, exhausted, on the ley.

And, as the wind the branches weaves,

They’re buried ‘neath the falling leaves.

Death death death

death death death

death death death.

The falling leaves.

Death.

Yours etc

Mellissa Sparrow (Mrs), The Hollow, Grilsby-on-the-Hill