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A date for diary - ST IPPOLYTS CHURCH QUIZ NIGHT 28th September

We sold out quickly last year so make sure you reserve a table from either Jane Veasey 01462 434254 or Mary Hooper This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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If you have anything you would like to share with our communities, please feel free to email it to me.  Thank you.

Material for the September issue of Pax should reach me  15th August 2024, please. Or given to Rosemary Stratton by 12th August. Thank you.

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COLIN FROSTICK MOLE (Grave 51, New Churchyard)


(Grave 51, New Churchyard) 

I have been assisting Michael Mac Cartney who is researching the 2nd World War.

Our Monumental Inscriptions booklet 1988 refers to Colin, husband of Gwendoline Mole, died 31 Aug. 1942, also wife Gwendoline died 30 Dec. 1969 aged 62.  

Our A Parish Remembers – Ippollitts book includes Mrs Margaret McMurtie created the Roll of Honour that hangs in the Tower, and it refers to Organist after C F Mole’s name and wonder whether he was organist at our church. Does anyone know?

They also had a daughter Sheila A Mole. Does anyone have any info about her? 

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Friends are holding their Community Coffee Morning on Wednesdays 3rd July and 7th August from 10.30am till noon. All are welcome to join us at St Ippolyts Parish Hall Committee Room. We are always pleased to see our local friends and if anyone would like a lift, please 'phone Joan Pinkstone on 01462 457660

Frances Williams, Carol Scott, Joan Pinkstone

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We were blessed with wonderful weather, a great variety of plants and lots of customers, many of whom stayed to enjoy a piece of cake and a cuppa.

We would like to say a big thank you to all the helpers and to everyone who donated plants or cakes and to everybody who turned up on the day to support and to help us raise a fantastic £800.

The leftover plants were not wasted, and the school were able to sell some and to plant some in the school gardens

Fund Raising Committee

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St Ippolyts

17th May    Mark Flint and Carly Flint

1st June      Robert Difiore and Sarah Popovich

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It's been a year since I was ordained Deacon, and what a year it has been! As I write now, I am preparing to be ordained priest signifying a huge change in the ministry I am able to give. I count my blessings daily that not only has God called me to ministry but he has done so in a place of kind, supportive, and loving people.

It has been a joy to see services led by the young people of St Ippolyts School. For them, it was a tough winter and spring because of a roofing crisis in the school building, but it was wonderful to see their nativity staged, narrated and performed so beautifully in church. I have spent time with the Cubs at the St Ippolyts Group and wondered at their knowledge, energy, and resilience. And I have spent time in Little Wymondley and Sloe Hill Care Homes with residents whose stories have held my attention for days after I had left them. 

When at the Churchyard, ceremonies have been both beautiful and sad, but not without their challenges. We've been plagued by flying ants, negotiated a disturbed bumble bee nest, I've been left to lead a service when tension broke out in Folly Lane because of belligerent parking and driving, I have been soggy, baked in a heavy cassock in the sunshine, struggled to stay standing in the wind, and tried to catch a falling funeral director. And I have spent hours in the churchyard, a place of rest and stillness, looking for a headstone for someone interred many years before, and praying for those loved and lost. I am thankful to those few volunteers who maintain the churchyard for everyone's benefit. 

At church we have thought about generosity of time, love, grace, and money. We are funded only by donations and our bills are high, so we welcome support from the community to keep our church buildings in a condition that can be handed on to future generations. Thank you to those of you who already support the churches through prayer and giving. We have thought about and planned how we can make a difference in the wider community - to serve God amongst his people. We have prayed for those places around the world suffering at the hands of warmongers or because of climate change, and we have resolved to do what we can to help. And we have prayed for you all, that you will feel the presence of God, his peace and his grace, with you always. 

Our community is so rich and diverse, we each have so much to offer one another, so I am looking forward to the next year in the parishes, praying that we grow closer to God in the way we live together and support one another. 

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On Tuesday 18th June, at St Mark’s Church in Hitchin, there was a wonderful service of thanksgiving and celebration for Churchwardens from around our deanery, which included the ‘swearing in’ of Churchwardens (old and new) into office for 2024.  

The service was taken by the Archdeacon of St Albans, The Venerable Charles Hudson, and was followed by refreshments.  Archdeacon Charles spoke gratefully of the service offered to our parishes by our Churchwardens, noting that much of what they do is unseen and therefore their vital role can go unthanked.  He said that he personally wanted to thank each and every Churchwarden for all they do to support the clergy and to help with the smooth and safe running of our churches.

I know without doubt that we are all very grateful for the work of our own Churchwardens and am delighted to say that not only have our 4 existing Churchwardens agreed to stand again for office, but that we also have a new Churchwarden at St Mary’s, Little Wymondley.  Melanie Whittick joins the team to work alongside our long-standing Churchwarden, Mike Allardyce, so do please offer her your support when you see her.

Our other lovely Churchwardens are, Clare Reid and Jane Veasey at St Ippolyts Church and Caroline McDonnell at St Mary the Virgin, Great Wymondley.

On behalf of the whole Benefice, I thank you for all you do to support me and for your care of our beautiful churches.

Revd Ginni

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A thought from Revertend Paul Lanham

Dear Friends,

I must confess publicly to an incurable addiction. I am and always have been something of an anorak, a steam train fanatic. Once you have become addicted to steam trains there is no cure. No therapy can heal it, you are hooked for life. So having recently scrounged a box of DVDs of them (I now have nearly 50, plus books galore) I can wallow in them

It began as a small boy watching trains at the end of my grandparents' road near New Malden; amid the local electric trains there would be the plume of distant smoke, then the anticipation, followed by the thunderous roar as the thing raced by on the embankment, heading for Waterloo. I was then at school near Bath. The film 'The Titfield Thunderbolt' had recently been filmed nearby. The lane leading to the (now destroyed) station was yards away from the school buildings, the scene by the cricket match was on the school playing field, and over 60 years later I can still memorise part of the cross country course, past the farm where the engine was refilled in one incident in the film. In the holidays in Gloucester there were two stations linked by an overhead passage; a penny platform ticket allowed me all day to go between the two and savour the smell, sight and sounds of the trains. There was the Chalford Stinker; this small tank engine with a maximum of two carriages would potter from Eastgate Station near my home up the Stroud Valley into Laurie Lee country, that magical part of the world. I cherish a teenage photo I took of the Stinker in the 1950s, using a Brownie box camera - one of my favourite shots.

Then university at Durham in the early 1960s, with the city's curving viaduct near the station. Some of my friends were also anoraks. We would sit above the station on summer evenings and see the streamlined engines coming over the viaduct, frustrated at the speed restriction and quivering as they accelerated towards Newcastle. At the time I devoured railway timetables; by using that and day return tickets a group made a great deal of money in Rag Week collecting from passengers on the expresses between Durham, Newcastle and Darlington – until the police found out and stopped us. Happy days....  

Of course they are now an historical relic. Instead of the thundering monsters beside Little Wymondley church there are faceless tubes on wheels – less romantic but faster, more efficient, quieter, less polluting. We have evolved, moved on. Perhaps that reflects a comparison between the two elements in the village. People say that religion has become an anachronism, that we live in a post-religion era. Like the steam trains, religion served its purpose, now it is an historical relic. By all means keep the existing churches with their ancient rituals and practices but see them as symbols of the past like the preserved steam lines – interesting, sentimental, part of our heritage, but nothing more than that.

They don't realise how important and how relevant Christianity is today. The Church today speaks of living outside the material and looks to the spiritual as equally (if not more) important. It looks to others as a priority rather than to the self. It looks up to a real God for real people, looking beyond themselves to an existence that transcends life on earth to a life beyond death. Its focal point is God as Man dying for others and living again to give value to life in the present and reassurance to the future. It is pure nonsense that we live in a post-Christian era. Who we are and what we stand for has never been more important and more relevant than it is at present. The world has never needed God more than it does in these confusing times. It may not know it but it does. If we as Christians speak of a post-Christian era, we are conniving with those who suggest it; we are also being utterly negative and defeatist. 

However, as a clerical fossil (almost 57 years with a reversed collar so far) I will watch my DVDs (when nobody is watching) and cherish them, albeit sentimentally. You might even see me occasionally at Arlesey Station if a steam train thunders by - white haired, open necked and with a camera around my neck, deeply inhaling that magical smell and hearing those magical sounds as the majestic beast passes by on an excursion. But that is nostalgia, the past. The present is here – God still alive, still relevant, still caring for His world. Steam trains may no longer pass Little Wymondley Church; but unlike those engines, what the nearby church stands for is eternal.

With my love and best wishes, 


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St Ippolyts Church Quiz Night - 28th September 2024

A date for your diary, 28th September our annual Quiz Night in St Ippolyts Parish Hall. Look out for ticket sales, last year we sold out!

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Coffee Morning Wednesday 5th June at St Ippolyts Parish hall 10:30 to 12:00

Coffee Morning Wednesday 5th June at St Ippolyts Parish hall 10:30 to 12:00, All Welcome


If you would like a lift to the Hall, please 'phone Joan Pinkstone on 01462 457660.

Frances Williams Carol Scott Joan Pinkstone


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Opening Hours

Monday – Friday 7.30am – 5.30pm

Weekends 8am – 2pm

Bank Holidays 8am – 4pm

Please support the store or lose it.

Copies of the magazine are available from the Stores and 

 the various churches.

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We are holding our coffee morning on Wednesday 8th May in St Ippolyts Parish Hall Committee Room from 10.30am until noon. All are welcome to join us where local friends come together sharing company and stories. We will also be celebrating our 'lovely crossing lady' Margaret Stokes who will be receiving a long service award at the end of April. This is for her loyalty to children and families helping us all cross the main road safely during the busy mornings and afternoons. If you would like a lift to the Hall, please 'phone Joan Pinkstone on 01462 457660.

Frances Williams Carol Scott Joan Pinkstone

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We would like to thank all those who helped to decorate St Ippolyts Church and celebrate Easter with beautiful fresh arrangements. All these together with the lily arrangements at the altar and pulpit were most welcome after many weeks of Lent when there were no flowers in the church at all. The garden arrangements made by children of St Ippolyts School and placed in the Church porch were wonderful and, reminded us of the empty tomb announcing that Christ has risen.
Thank you to all who helped to spring clean St Ippolyts Church. The high up cleaning was manned by those who were happy to climb ladders and the following day others came to clean lower down.

Frances Williams Carol Scott Joan Pinkstone

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Clare’s family gathered on Sunday 14th April 2024 to lay her ashes in their final resting place at St Ippolyts Cemetery. Among those gathered was her sister Mary, who had flown over from America to be there and her brother, the Revd Canon Richard Leslie, who led prayers.

“God called you home to be with Him but you shall always be in our hearts”    

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PLANT SALE: 19th MAY 2-4 pm

PLANT SALE: 19th MAY  2-4 pm

At St Ippolyts Church

There will be a selection of house plants, garden plants, fruit and veg plants. 

Stay for a piece of cake and a cup of tea or coffee. 

Look forward to seeing you there.

Mary Hooper

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9th June, Advance Notice of Visit to the Benefice of Bishop Alan

On Sunday 9th June, there will only be one service in the Benefice, at St Mary’s Church, Great Wymondley at 11.00am.  This is so we can welcome Bishop Alan, who will be presiding and preaching, and worship together in unity.  Refreshments will be served after the service

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A thought from Revd Paul

Dear Friends,

A hypothetical question. If Our Lord were to return in a physical form, what might the new composition of the Twelve Apostles be like? I'm not going to produce my suggestion (I wouldn't dare!), but you may like to attempt it yourself. The one thing that I can guarantee is that there would be no resemblance to the Twelve who walked with Christ two thousand years ago. The more I think of what those Twelve were like, the more amazing a collection of misfits they seem to have been.

Who really were they? Peter and Andrew, with James and John, ordinary fishermen in the most ordinary part of a very ordinary area. James and John were also the local hard men, known as the Sons of Thunder – men with fists and with tempers. Thomas the searcher, full of doubts but as brave as a lion. Nathaniel, possibly gifted but fiercely parochial, probably born and bred in the area. Then the real contradictions. Matthew the quisling, who made his living by collaborating with the hated Roman occupying forces. As total opposites the terrorists, Simon the Zealot and Judas from the Sicarii, the People of the Dagger. Why, oh why, did Jesus chose such a group of non-Establishment men as His disciples? Surely He should have chosen more conservative, more politically and religiously acceptable men with whom to share His earthly ministry? If I am fascinated by Jesus' human nature (parallel with His divine nature) then part of it lies in why He chose them when He must have known what they were like. I simply don't know the answer.

Perhaps apart from being young and very idealistic they represent a cross section of the man in the Galilean street in those days. They were all very different people except in these two respects, but from what we can deduce they were ordinary. Their humanness is for me what makes them so attracting; they could be like you or anyone you live and associate with. They are real people, with failings rather than being perfect.

It is in the light of this that we may get closer to the great festival this month that is Whitsunday, or if you prefer it, Pentecost. We need to see it in a symbolic way because it simply could not have happened physically in that way without structural damage and the deaths of many people. Two aspects stand out above everything. One is that the disciples were empowered with tremendous zeal and energy to continue Christ's work. The other is that the message they proclaimed was to people who represented the entire world. It was a reaching out to absolutely everyone; that is the real meaning of that list of nations that so many readers fear to read in public at this time of the year. The new faith was to all people, regardless of their race, creed, and colour. And it was too important for the disciples to keep to themselves. 

That is why Christianity has been the greatest civilizing force that the world has ever known. It is why in its very ordinary roots it has crossed all barriers and become a fundamental part of humanity as a whole. Pentecost reaches out to all people at all time and offers to anyone who will listen and accept its message. God is for all; His call is universal. Through His Spirit, God reaches out in love to everyone; that is what we proclaim, that lies near the heart of what we believe.

With my love and best wishes,


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Jubilate Choir presents The Easter Road

.240407 Jubilate Choir The Easter Road

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Holy Week Services

Service times vary and may be in any of our three churches so please check the time and venue carefully.

Sunday 24th March – Palm Sunday

9.15am – Holy Communion – St Ippolyts Church

11.00am – Parish Praise - St Mary’s Church, Great Wymondley

Monday 25th March

7.00pm – Compline (Night Prayer) – St Mary’s Church, Great Wymondley

Tuesday 26th March

7.00pm – Compline (Night Prayer) – St Mary’s Church, Great Wymondley

Wednesday 27th March

7.00pm – Compline (Night Prayer) – St Mary’s Church, Great Wymondley

Maundy Thursday 28th March

11.00am – Chrism Eucharist – St Albans Cathedral

7.00pm – Holy Communion with Washing of Feet – St Ippolyts Church

Good Friday 29th March

2.00pm – The Way of the Cross – St Ippolyts Church

Easter Eve – Saturday 30th March

9.30am-10.30am – Children’s Easter Workshop – St Ippolyts Church

7.00pm – Little Wymondley Churchyard – Easter Vigil

Sunday 31st March – Easter Day

9.15am – Benefice Holy Communion – St Ippolyts Church

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