Writes of the Church – the Paperback

Looking for a Christmas present for the Christian churchgoer in your life? Or are you in need of a humorous book to make you laugh at and think about the church? Well you probably need “Writes of the Church – Gripes and Grumbles of People in the Pews” – a perfect stocking filler. From Amazon, The Bible Reading Fellowship, Church House Bookshop, Salisbury College Bookshop, Southwark Cathedral… and other good Christian bookshops.cropped-writes-cover-square.jpg

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“Writes of the Church” Notices w/c 15 October

Sunday 15, 9.30 am – Sheep Dog trials, St Mary’s, Tremlet – watch Maisie’s latest attempt to get the choir vested and in place on time, using Mollie the Collie.

Monday – Recreation of the Battle of Trim Valley. Or, as it is more formally known, the Trim Valley Benefice Synod. Please bring proof of life insurance.

Tuesday – Christmas Carol Service planning meeting, Grilsby Church. This is it, there’s no way out now. It’s Jingle all the way.

Wednesday – Benefice coach trip to visit Major Dumpling in hospital. Once again he has been lured by promotional pricing into buying too many mince pies too early. Once again, reading the best before date, he’s tried to eat them all before November. He is suffering from no movement. Sorry, no movements.

Thursday – Woodby Film Society watch “The Wicker Man.” Not the original, or the rotten version with Nicholas Cage. This is their own recording of when last year’s Harvest Festival went wrong.

Friday – Trim Valley Men’s Meeting annual booze-up, The Hanged Man. Meet people you’ve not seen in Church all year, and reflect what that tells us.

Saturday – Giant Combined Bric a Brac and Bacon stall, Little Tremlett Church Hall. All the stuff we’ve failed to sell across the benefice for years, but now all in one place! 

Notices w/c 8 October

Sunday

This afternoon’s Pet Service to include Imposition of Huskies

Monday

Cake sale 2pm at Grilsby. Please no more cakes made with brandy. Major Dumpling’s cake still exploded last week.

Tuesday

“Trim Valley Trotters” walk from the car park to the bar of the Hanged Man. Sure, it’s lacking in ambition. But we find this is the most popular route at this time of year.

Wednesday

Tremlett Camera Club’s evening of nude photography cancelled. They think being nude to take photos is a bit odd.

Thursday

“Friends of Woodby Chapel” meeting cancelled. Turns out it hasn’t got any.

Friday

Table Top Sale, 2pm Grilsby-on-the-Hill Church Hall. Do you need a new table top? This is just the place!

Saturday

7pm – In aid of St Mary’s, Great Tremlett – a Cheese and Whine Evening. Why not loosen your inhibitions and moan about the Vicar?

Letters to the Church Magazine : October 2017

Dear Sir

As we say goodbye to Revd Joanna, I would like to reflect on the many things we have learnt from her time with us as curate.

Her sermons were very good, considering she is a woman. Likewise when leading communion, it was almost like she was a real priest. I am sure that the Lambslaughter Benefice will benefit nearly as much from her vision and leadership as if she was a man.

Yours for equal opportunities,

Germaine Johnson, Garage Lane, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

I am afraid we have had to cancel the second “Trim Valley Trotters” meeting of the autumn. Jethro’s threatened to shoot on sight any one crossing his land, even using the public footpaths. We tested his resolve last week, and they reckon it will be six weeks before Mr Paget can sit down again.

Yours etc

Romilly Randers, Cave Road, Little Tremlett


Dear Sir

A reminder that this letters page is now available in book form. An ideal Christmas present for the Church goers in your life who have a sense of humour. Available from BRF, Amazon, Southwark Cathedral and all good Christian bookshops.

Yours etc

Eileen Fitzroy-Russell, The Great House, Husborne Crawley


Dear Sir

I would like to thank the people at St Mary’s for the warm welcome they gave me and my family when we came along to the Parish Communion last week.

I don’t suppose we will be back, but it was an interesting experience.

Yours etc

Kiki Grinton, Shandling Street, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

We had a new person attend worship at Woodby Chapel last week. I don’t want to declare it a revival, but these are steps forward!

I’m pleased to say that, within 15 minutes of entering the church, Margot had agreed to go on the tea rota, sing in the choir (making two people), host the Lady’s Bright Hour and be Churchwarden.

Yours etc

Mildred Peabody, Chapel Lane, Woodby Chapel End


Dear Everybody

1st October is the day that Revd Joanna leaves for her new role as incumbent of the Lambslaughter Benefice. We will miss her deeply. Especially when Canon Westcliffe is into the 40-minute mark of a sermon he has been preaching in the Trim Valley every three years since the lectionary changed.

Yours etc

Revd Nathan


Dear Sir

Thinking my experience at Grilsby Church, where I was greeted at the door, might have been an aberration, last week I went to Woodby Church.

They totally ignored me before, throughout and after the service, leaving me in complete peace. What an improvement! Who says Brexit is a failure?

Yours etc

Archie Tulip, Borough Lane, Grilsby-on-the-Hill


Dear Sir

With Christmas coming, already the Chocolate Oranges are on offer.

Unwisely I ate six in succession last week, and it did seem to have a strange effect.

I would like to apologise to the people at St Jude’s. It was inappropriate to ask the congregation if they wanted to “tap and unwrap me.”

Yours etc

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


Dear Sir

I remember the good old days of Great Tremlett! When Father Fyre-Eataugh was the vicar, he ruled with a rod of iron.

I remember that when he died – still in office after 71 years’ service – he left an envelope that was only to be opened if the PCC was unable to come to a conclusion on an important vote.

When opened, the message inside simply said “Change Nothing.” A wise man.

Yours etc

Grimly Ingleton, Furnace End, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Of course we wish Revd Joanna well as she completes her curacy training and leaves to take up the reins in her own parish.

Every Monday at 2pm at “Dunphlebbin” we will now be praying for God to send a replacement curate. Who will be a man. As God intended.

Yours aware of women’s weaknesses (and the vicar’s),

Dr Sandra Ireland, “Dunphlebbin”, Gt Tremlett


Dear Sir

Jeb is a superb handyman, but recently I have had to question why every grave he digs costs us £74.22. It is an odd sum of money, as I am sure you will agree.

Therefore I have obtained alternate quotes from various people around the Trim Valley to see if we can get this vital task carried out any more cheaply. It turns out, no we can’t. And now Jeb has found out what I was doing, he has raised his rates to £174.22.

This is not my finest hour.

Yours etc

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


Dear Sir

We have had a Sydney Carter-written hymn at Woodby Church three weeks running.

I have reported the organist to the UN’s Human Rights Commission. I expect him to be on trial within 6 years.

Yours etc

Bing Bingley, Maypole Green, Woodby


Dear Sir

Psycho Killer
Qu’est-ce que c’est
Fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-fa-far better
Run run run run run run run away

Yours etc

Samantha Giblings, Church Lane, Woodby


Dear Sir

I have just discovered the concept of “tithing.” You’re having a laugh, aren’t you?

Yours etc

Shankly Gates, Hill Meadow, Lt Tremlett


Dear Sir

As Revd Joanna leaves us for pastures new, I have been moved to poetry.

Vale

And so her waiting time is o’er
Joanna won’t be a curate any more
But instead can step abroad a proper incumbent
A priest-in-charge, so she could still be made redundant.

But we shall miss her thoughtful words
As distant, her new flock she herds.
And miss her movements full of grace
And we all thought her cakes were ace.

But know, as to your post you move,
The sands of time are running smooth
And though you hear the future beckoning,
It will all end with a divine reckoning.

Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death
Death death death death

Wishing Joanna a joyful and fulfilling future, while she still has health and time to enjoy it.

Yours etc

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

Trim Valley Notices : w/c 1 October

Sunday 1 October

Join us in saying goodbye to Revd Joanna as she presides at her last service in the benefice as curate. 10am at St Mary’s Tremlett. Anyone boycotting because she is a woman warmly welcomed at the same time at Woodby, where Canon Vyvyan Westcliffe will be preaching on “I do not allow a woman to speak in church.”

Monday

Mothers’ Union annual debate about where the inverted comma should be. Grilsby Hall, 8pm till late.

Tuesday

Beer and Hymns at the Hanged Man Inn. Wine available for people who don’t like beer. Ear plugs available for people who don’t like hymns. TV at home available for people who don’t like either.

Wednesday

Grilsby PCC 7.30 till midnight. A packed agenda including what colour pen should we use for filling in the accident book, and what would the last vicar but three have thought about hymns in E minor?

Thursday

Are you a gay Christian? Would you like to explore what that means and meet in a group to discuss how a gay lifestyle might be reflected in 21st Century church? Then please can you go and do it somewhere else? We’re a bit worried it might be controversial. We’re a very conservative benefice.

Friday

8pm, Woodby Chapel : Joint service with the Methodists. Unfortunately they’re all either dead or have joined the Church of England congregations. But it’s been a tradition for 50 years so we can’t really stop it now.

Satuday

Trim Valley Yoghurteers – 10 am in Gt Tremlett Church Hall. This month’s experimental flavours include lamb and mint, cheese and onion, and sandals.

 

Trim Valley Church Notices w/c 24 September

Sunday 24

The service at Woody will be approximately an hour late in starting while we dig the church out. We don’t know who thought a lorry load of pumpkins was an appropriate Harvest gift. But dumping them outside the church door wasn’t the brightest idea.

Monday

Major James Dumpling invites you to his “Home Made Wine Tasting.” We agreed to advertise it but don’t really recommend you to go. Drop into “Rodney’s Rest” any time between 8am and midnight. The Parsnip and Peapod is hideous.

Tuesday

We’re pleased to say that Melissa has been released due to lack of evidence. Her poetry reading for Autumn, “Sex, Death and Fallen Leaves” will now be today at 8pm, in Grilsby Hall. Parental Advisory 16+ only.

Wednesday

Autumn Tidy-Up at Woodby. The wolves have reproduced rapidly due to the mild Spring. So please wear gloves.

Thursday

Well-dressing at Gt Tremlett, 12 noon. Please bring a pointy stick to ward off Protestants.

Friday

Frida’s Fish Supper at 4 Pagan Place, Woody Chapel. Proceeds to the Trim Valley Inter-Faith Group : encouraging dialogue between Wodenists and Christians since that awful incident with King Peafa of Mercia.

Saturday

Would you like to spend two hours in peaceful reflective silence? We need volunteers to run the Little Tremlett Book Stall.

Writes of the Church : Now on Sale

The paperbook book of this blog, “Writes of the Church” is released today! Available through The Bible Reading Fellowship, Amazon, and presumably many good Christian bookshops.

Join the congregation as they make their way onto proper printed paper, with some great cartoons drawn by Dave Walker.  How many times can Norbert resign as treasurer? Why is Romilly constantly cancelling the social events? And why would a tea towel cause a boycott of the church hall? And Melissa gets in with a couple of her uplifting poems.

And all just in time for Christmas….