On Saturday 3rd July, it was a huge pleasure to meet, celebrate and catch up with 75 old friends and new at the Summer Service we were not able to hold last year. The weather, having been threatening all week, turned out kind for everyone and a host of gazebos in the end were more beneficial for shade than rain. The football had the good grace to start at 8PM, leaving plenty of time for being a part of both.
The service was in the Celtic style, reflecting the fundamentally simple spiritual nature of the churchyard, as relevant to those of all faiths and none, including ceremony to light candles to encourage peacefulness and reflection. Morning has Broken was chosen as a hymn for its themes of nature and hope.
I have included a brief speech below on behalf of TOCAG. I can summarise by saying that this time next year everything will have changed for the Old Church. Whether for the better or not is up to all of us collectively. If this is a matter of concern to you, as I hope it is, then now is the time to volunteer to become actively involved.
After the service many were able to round off a wonderful evening by sharing company and food up at Thundridge Hill House until the cold and dark encroached.
I hope as many of you as possible were able to speak to the Friends of the Rib and Quin who are doing so much to protect the ecology and natural beauty of the valley. Please join and support them. https://friendsoftherib.wordpress.com/
It is one of the pleasures of being involved in an event like this to thank everyone who came together to make it possible: Rev Amanda, without who it would simply not be possible; Ben for the sound equipment and musical accompaniment, Derek and Sara Matthews for organising the event tent at the church; Judy King – Headteacher of Thundridge CE Primary School for leading the prayers, and two brothers from the school for the reading and candle lighting, Christopher and Susie Melluish for hosting the picnic, Sally Newton for the ‘Old Church Taxi’ up and down the hill; Steev Beech for photography and Andy Clark the farmer for allowing us to flatten a swathe of his exuberant barley crop, and saving Christopher from making more than one equipment transport trip on his reliable but boneshaking ride on lawnmower