Welcome to our events review page highlighting the special moments that we have enjoyed over the past months. Previous years events reports may be found using the link buttons at the end of this page.
As always a big thank you to everyone who supported these events. Please take note of our NEWS PAGE for current meetings that are in our diaries for the next few months that may interest you and where you will be most welcome. If we can help, advise or let you have more information about our events then let us know by contacting the appropriate person in the features below.
Rev Tom Mumford
June 29th 2019
Tom was ordained in the Cathedral at Bury St Edmunds on 28th June by the Bishop. On Sunday 30th June he joined St Gregory's family who hosted a welcome lunch for him. At this service Cheryl was also recognised for her 25 years as an ordained priest. What a wonderful weekend of celebrations.
Pictures by Graham Gilbert
A Celebration of 50 years as a Ordained Minister
June 2nd 2019
Fifty years ago to the day David was ordained a priest, and this marvellous event was celebrated in St Gregory's church by his family, friends, the congregation of St Gregory's and by people from the other parishes he has ministered in over the years.The Archdeacon ,The Venerable Dr David Jenkins,presented David with a long service certificate from the Bishop, Cheryl gave him a cheque from the congregation and Graham handed over the card that he had made. The choir sang an anthem in tribute before David led the service, giving us a brief history of his life serving Christ Jesus. He especially thanked his wife Felicity for the support she had given to him in his life as a priest. Afterwards there was lunch and the cutting of the cake.
Dad helps Finlay and Theo light their baptism candles as Joshua receives his candle
Exploring Ways to be the ‘Mother church’ of Sudbury
One of the ways in which I often hear St. Gregory’s church described is as the ‘mother church’ of Sudbury. As you know, there has been a church on this site since at least the eighth century, Civic and community services such as the Remembrance Day Service are traditionally held here, and many families in Sudbury have come to St. Greg’s for baptisms, wedding and funerals for generations. But of course, there is more to being a mother church than this, and recently we’ve been exploring in the Ministry team what else we can be doing to serve our town and show our neighbours the nurturing care we associate with mothers.
Hope into Action
As you’ll remember just over a year ago Antony Arbuthnot, Teresa Bishop and myself spent a night sleeping rough in the church porch to raise money for homelessness work. The response we received not just from the congregation but from many people in the town showed me how concerned people are to help those who become homeless, recognising that in today’s fragile world it can happen to anyone. I’ve become involved with the Community depot that Teresa runs, offering the Rectory garage as a storage space for furniture which is in the process of being recycled to those who most need it when they finally get somewhere to call home. Members of the ministry team and myself travelled to Ipswich to see work being done by churches there in running the Ipswich Night Shelter and a Hope into Action house. The Night Shelter is a time-consuming project, and fortunately there are not so many rough sleepers in Sudbury (though one is more than enough) to make it a pressing need. Hope into Action is a Christian charity which provides homes for those getting their lives together again after a period of homelessness, offering support and the building blocks for a new life.
I’m excited to say that we now have a group of investors who can provide enough capital to buy a house in Sudbury (it’s actually a very good investment with a 2% p.a return- see the Hope into Action website if you might be interested or speak to me). The charity then leases the house from the investors and takes care of repairs and maintenance, finding tenants and administering tenancies and provide specially trained support workers for the tenants. A local church partners with the project in prayer, in offering in friendship to the tenants and in recruiting a small team (3-4 people) to build deeper relationships with the tenants. At our most recent PCC we voted unanimously to partner with the house which will be purchased in Sudbury. On average tenants stay in Hope into Action houses for about 18 months while they get back on track, it will be a privilege to be part of their journey.
Please continue to pray as, along with other Christians, I see the need for some kind of accommodation for those who do not fit into the usual boxes but nevertheless deserve safe, secure and homely accommodation. We also dream of offering more drop-in’s, more meals and more opportunities to gain life skills.
Another national initiative that seemed worth exploring when we visited the launch of the Cinnamon Trust in Suffolk, was Parish Nursing. Parish nurses are experienced registered nurses who work in partnership with local GPs and other health services. They do not prescribe medications or administer treatments but they fill a gap in providing whole person healthcare. So, for instance they might undertake health education and advice, offer short-term transitional nursing for those recovering from illness or injury, assist and support self-management for those with lifelong illnesses and conditions and offer non-specialist palliative care as appropriate. A number of parishes in Suffolk already have them in places such as Felixstowe, Capel St. Mary and the Moreton Hall area of Bury. We plan to visit and learn more with the aim of setting up a scheme here, hopefully in partnership with St. Andrew’s, Great Cornard who also see the benefit that such nurses could offer in our community. Please pray about this. I regularly find myself trying to support congregation members who need nursing care, and although I am always happy to help as I can I recognise that I don’t have the specialist skills or contacts that could really make a difference.
Our role as mother church in the town was in our thoughts as we thought about where we should give our tithe of church income. Of course, there are so many worthy charities we could support, and we will always look to give a portion of this to brothers and sisters overseas, but we felt that the main portion could be used to ‘partner in the gospel’ with other local Christians who were undertaking work that we couldn’t do ourselves. So, for 2019 we shall be giving £1,000 each to Edens Youth Project in Gainsborough Street, to Future Vision who work in schools providing chaplaincy, support and Open the Book to children and staff, No.72 North Street which provides a Christian drop-in centre with support and advice available to all and the Storehouse Foodbank which is run by the Vineyard Church and needs nearly £20,000 per year to run as well as our donations of food. We will continue to send the Christingle service collection to the Children’s Society and to we still have some money available for responding to desperate needs in different parts of our world which will arise this year.
Finally, when we talk about nurturing I can’t forget our Lay Elders who visit individuals and many of the Care Homes in Sudbury, taking Home Communion and offering friendship and care. We will shortly commission many of our Elders for another three years of ministry, but I wanted to publicly thank two Elders who won’t be continuing with this ministry at the moment. Irene Harding Payne, who has done so much in friendship and practical care for so many, and helps me keep abreast of who is sick or in need, is now hanging up her Lay Elder badge and taking a well-deserved rest. We send her our love and prayers as she continues to deal with her own health issues. Sam Hobson has found that her own demanding professional role nursing at WSH and support needed by other family members with issues means that she must lay aside this role for a while. We hope and pray that she will be able to pick it up at a later date.
Walking for Unlock
Saturday April 27th 2019
A report from Mandy Turner
Margaret and I met up this morning and started our sponsored walk. We have covered 11000,steps so far and visited four of the churches. Very windy but pleasant otherwise. Now stopped at one for lunch before doing the second half. A man on a bike stopped us to ask what we were doing. When we told him and explained it was bringing God's word to those in inner cities without access to bibles or the knowledge of Jesus Christ. He offered to sponsor us and gave us £10 ! Bless him! There are around 2000 of us with our maps following round the route.
Easter Day April 21st 2019
On a lovely day we celebrated the resurection of Jesus. Following an 8 o' clock service, several members of the congregation enjoyed a light breakfast before the Service of Light at 10.00am. The choir sang two anthems and those present placed daffodils on the Cross.
Mothering Sunday Service
31st March 2019
A large, all age congregation joined together to celebrate Mothering Sunday. A "Songs of Praise" service was held with hymns chosen by the some of the congregation in memory of their mother. During the service bunches of flowers were distributed and people lit candles to in remembrance of their mothers.
Sunday 24th March 2019
The singles group enjoyed a lovely meal at their monthly lunch club. This month they were at the Cock and Bell, Long Melford.
During the Christmas period there were many services and activities at St Gregory's.
The Christingle and crib service was well attended and there was even a real live baby as Jesus!
The candles were all lit for Christmas Day and on New Year's Eve many of the congregation who didn't want to be out late at night, attended an early party with games, quizzes and lovely food.
The New Year was welcomed in at 6pm, but as someone said it was NewYear somewhere in the world!
Tom, Helena and Elizabeth receiving warm applause after their concert.
Giovanni Battista Pergolesi
On Saturday September 29th over 80 people attended a concert in St Gregory's Church to rise funds for Love Light Romania. "Stabat Mater" was performed by Helena Moore and Elizabeth Rossi with Tom Cogan on the piano. All the money donated at this concert was given to the charity to help those children and young people with HIV or Aids or who are from the Romany community.
Elizabeth Rossi, Helena Moore and Tom Cogan
Tom and May with some harvest songs
Sunday 16th September
"The Harvest Hatters High Tea"
Fun, food and fellowship
About fifty people came to the tea in church to celebrate harvest. After a delicious tea provided by members of the congregation there were songs, readings and poems to entertain us, followed by the singing of harvest hymns.
An enthralled audience
Cheryl with poems by Pam Ayers
Graham signing in for the Ride and Stride event held on 8th September.
The church tower was also open on this day . The view over the watermeadows
Across to All Saints Church in Ballingdon.
Birthday cakes for Una
The congregation wished Una a very Happy 90th birthday on Sunday 2nd September. The cakes were lovely!
There was a day of prayer in St Gregory's Church on 19th May. Prayer stations were set up around the church for quiet prayer and reflection.
The Family tree
Within our Church family we have God (our father) and Jesus his son whom we can call on in prayer
Reflecting on the meaning of Pentecost and what the Holy Trinity means for us today.
A Day of Prayer
Saturday 19th May 2018
A time to pray whilst listening to the singing of the Psalms set to music through the ages in cathedrals and parish churches.
There was time to think about the good news of the Kingdom and to bring our prayers to God.
Many people came in response to Archbishops Justin and John's call for this time of prayer, including 60 year 3 pupils from St Gregory's School
The "wailing wall" was erected over the alter where there was an opportunity to express our needs to God and pray for ourselves, our church , our town and our world.
The labyrinth represents a journey to the deepest self where we can meet God and on our journey back gain a new understanding of God and ourselves.
On our way to Hampshire on the M25
St Peter's Church, Petersfield , Hampshire
Meeting old friends
Helen affirming her allegiance to the Queen
of Revd. Helen Mitchell
as Associate Priest of Petersfield and Buriton
22nd April 2018
Sue, Cheryl, Jackie and Barbara outside the church
Happy to see you!
There was time to have a good look around the church
A Blessing from the Archdeacon who presided over the licensing
Cheryl and Sam in good spirits
The oldest part of the church
Graham gave Helen a card he had made for her and the good wishes from the congregation of St Gregory's
A very happy Helen!
A look inside the organ
8th January 2018
The restoration of the organ has begun and work will continue for the next two weeks.
This has been made possible by the donations given at the Summer concerts arranged by Tom Cogan our organist and choir master.