Since I became Vicar of Holdenhurst and Iford in 1999, the links between the three churches of St John’s, St Barnabas and St Saviour’s have ebbed and flowed, a bit like the tides. In the early years, there was a lot of support from St Saviour’s with the development of Townsend Local Church (TLC) until the original Townsend school closed and we lost a venue in which to meet. We also shared the leadership of annual Holiday Clubs hosted by St Barnabas and we regularly enjoyed fellowship together at social activities and worship events. However, over the last few years, some of these opportunities for meeting together have come to a natural end and others have not yet developed.
Currently a team from St Saviour’s regularly lead the all-age services at St John’s and St Barnabas on the third Sunday of the month and the monthly Sunday service at the Retired Nurses National Home. Caroline supports St Barnabas children’s work at St Barnabas. Individuals from Holdenhurst Parish have attended Alpha courses hosted by St Saviour’s and others meet together at the monthly Men’s Breakfast, the Men’s Fellowship at St Barnabas, the weekly Bible Club in Holdenhurst Village, and a variety of social events throughout the year held at St Barnabas Hall, Holdenhurst Village Hall and Strouden Community Centre.
Following Daniela’s appointment to Holdenhurst Parish as a Lay Minister, new opportunities have presented themselves for working together across the Benefice. These have included the Happiness Course and the Bible Course hosted by St Barnabas. We are looking into the possibility of members of St Saviour’s supporting our morning service at St Barnabas on a regular basis and we look forward to more opportunities like these in the future.
One way that we can all come together this month is by supporting St Barnabas Jubilee. It’s 50 years in June since St Barnabas Church was opened and members of all our churches are invited to join to celebrate this milestone in the life of the church. In preparation for the Jubilee we are holding a United Benefice Prayer meeting on Monday 4 June at 7pm at St Barnabas.
Other events taking place include:
Sunday 10 June 6pm Jubilee Songs of Praise with Bishop of Southampton
Monday 11 June 7-9 pm Prophetic Art Exhibition by Rebecca Priestley
Saturday 16th June 11am-3pm Family Fun Day
Do support our wider church family at St Barnabas at these events.