July 2014

Dear Sir

How exciting that we have a new curate joining us after the Petertide ordinations!

“Joanna” seems a very strange name for a vicar – unless, of course, it was a nickname at public school? However I and Mrs Cobley-Anhall will be delighted to welcome Fr Joanna, and offer him all possible support.

Yours etc

Tom Cobley-Anhall, “Tweezers”, Grilsby-on-the-Hill


Dear Sir

While inspecting and polishing the altar candlesticks in Lt Tremlett church, I spent far too much time in the cupboard where we keep the polish, cleaning sprays and incense. As a result, I spent three weeks convinced I was a leather-bound edition of the 1928 Proposed Book of Common Prayer.

I am pleased to say the incense has now worn off. However I still have moments when I think I may be the Alternative Service Book.

If anyone needs me, I will be stacked in the undercroft cupboard.

Yours etc

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


Dear Sir

I was starting to think that my dedication to saving  money on the cost of the altar candles is, in fact, a forlorn one-man campaign. That the rest of the church has no interest in the issue is shocking, in these trying times.

However I am pleased to let you know that, after extensive work with LEDs and solar panels, I have come up with the perfect solution.

The new “enviro-acolytes” require no replacement, and if left in the sun for a full week between services, can provide light for up to 45 minutes. It is advisable, to be able to see the light provided, to turn off all the other lights in the church. But I think that, since this will save even more money, it is an advantage rather than a drawback.

Naturally I have run up some expenses during these important endeavours to save the church money in the long term. I therefore enclose an invoice for solar panels and LEDs of £74.22.

Yours etc

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


Dear  Sir

The vicarage is provided, in accordance with the regulations for clergy housing in this diocese, with a garage. I think this is very reasonable. Clergy have cars, and it is only right they should have somewhere safe and secure to store them.

However, as is well known, Revd Nathan leaves his car on the drive. The garage is only a third full, with a selection of rubbish and tools.

In fact, even as a surrogate shed, the garage is underused. While observing the vicar’s poor ratio of recycled to landfill over the last two months, I have been hiding in the garage. I have not been disturbed once.

The diocese should take the garage, make the vicar empty it, and give it to the poor. That an intruder such as myself should be able to occupy it in this way proves the vicar does not deserve it.

Yours etc

Sibelius Bunce, Cold Lane


Dear Sir

I am so looking forward to the visit of the bishop for next month’s Confirmation Service! And I do hope he preaches his famous “Confirmation Sermon” again!

I have found, over the years, that the bishop’s Confirmation Sermon has really become a part of the rhythm of my spiritual life. Every year, as surely as looking forward to Christmas, it is a joy to know the Confirmation Sermon is coming round again. Although I should apologise for my over-enthusiasm last year when, having learnt the entire talk off by heart over the last decade, I shouted out the punchline to the joke about St Francis and the taxi-driver before the bishop had quite completed his exquisitely-practised comedic pause.

Thankfully we should still have a few years with our bishop.  I am not looking forward, when the time comes for him to retire, to having to break in another bishop’s Confirmation Sermon. In fact, I may have to retire from going to sermons.

Yours etc

Maureen Maurice, “The Old Bakehouse”, Old Red Lion Court, Woodby 


Dear Sir

I am concerned about the “wild flower” scheme at Grilsby. When it was first broached, I presumed we were talking poppies, corncockles, sukebind, that kind of thing.

But the plants that Jes has been tending on the South side of the church appear to have large stinging flowers, and little sticks which they drum against their boles. I am worried what will happen come the next meteor storm.

Yours etc

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


Dear Sir

I don’t quite understand why there was such a furore over my response to Dr Scotland. It was one of those days. She wanted to discuss her granddaughter’s baptism, and insisted I come round to see her on Tuesday – which is my day off. This after she has previously invited me to tea and buns on a Tuesday, and to discuss the Athanasian Creed at the “Hanged Man”, on a Tuesday. The day when there is no Bridge Club down in town, so she has a bit of spare time.

It seems there’s a double-standard in play here. It’s perfectly all right for parishioners to insist I see them on at a time convenient to them. But when after multiple attempts to colonise my day off, I tell them to sod off, it’s my private time – somehow I’m “not a very good vicar” all of a sudden.

Well, I’m sorry for what I said. But if Dr Scotland tries to trespass on my day off again, don’t be surprised if her cat goes missing, that’s all I’m saying.

Yours etc

Revd Nathan, Gt Tremlett Vicarage


Dear Sir

How wonderful that we have Revd Joanne joining us as curate this month! What a blessing the recent ordinations have been to the church!

Having been blessed with meeting Revd Joanne and her family when they came to visit the benefice, I can already tell that she will be gracious and generous with her time, courteous to parishioners and a great servant to the parish. In this I am sure she will complement the vicar well.

Yours Etc

Dr Jasmine Scotland MD (retd), “Dunphlebbing”, Lt Tremlett