A Letter from your Associate Priest


Dear friends


Bring in the new


Last month I promised an update from our visit to The Ageas Bowl in Southampton to watch Southern Brave in the new cricket competition The Hundred. Prior to our visit the weather forecast looked dreadful but armed with umbrellas and rain coats off we went undeterred. We were a little anxious about the amount of people now allowed into the ground, but masks were still an option by a lot of people when moving around, and we didn’t feel hemmed in when sat down. Luckily the forecast was not as advertised, only a couple of showers that shortened the women’s match. The atmosphere was great, the bigger crowd certainly helps in that respect, and it was lovely to see so many young families enjoying this new form of cricket. Music played out from the resident DJ’s stage every time there was a boundary and the pyrotechnics near us certainly added a bit of much need warmth from the flames every time a 4 or 6 was struck! Maybe we should try playing cricket in the late autumn/early winter instead it might be warmer than August!! It was a great afternoon and evening, both home teams won, always a bonus, and the women have already qualified for the final, we wait on another game for the men to see whether they progress further, but it’s certainly looking positive at the moment.

We’ve had another rather exciting new event in the family – the birth of our newest grandchild – Poppy Ava to Adam and Maria. Hopefully by the time you read this we will have been able to meet her, she’s only a few days old as I write and so under hospital covid restrictions. We have to be grateful that our wait won’t be as long as some grandparents had to wait during the lockdowns, but even so that first cuddle will be very special and is much longed for.

As you may remember, I was working in a school before I was ordained, and this time of year is always about new beginnings. At the end of the summer term, we said goodbye in school to the Year 6’s as they left their Primary years behind and went on to their respective Secondary Schools. I always wondered what the future would hold for them. Then there will be those younger children looking forward to starting ‘big’ school in September, we look back and think where did those years go? The changes our children make from baby to toddler to school uniforms happen in a flash.

Sometimes we would just like time to stand still because we don’t like change and new, especially when we are comfortable with life. But, as the Preacher in the Old Testament Book Ecclesiastes says, there is a time for everything and a season for every activity under heaven. People and circumstances change and we must accept that, it is from these things that we learn and grow. It’s good to know though, that through all the changes, be they good or bad, happy or sad, God is with us accompanying us on our journey. God has all the time in this world and beyond to spend with us and it’s just because he loves us. We are reminded of this every year when we think about the last week of Jesus’ life that led to the pain and suffering of crucifixion before he was raised to new life on Easter morning. Easter, of course, has come and gone, but we can use this time to carry on remembering that sacrifice. Time spent with God, thanking him for his love, seems such a small price to pay in comparison and will hopefully help us to embrace the challenges that come with the new.

With blessings,




Benefice and Parish news


Service pattern

As life begins to be a bit more ‘normal’ – whatever that means – we are going to begin to introduce more live services in church and cut down on streamed ones. We realise that 9am is very early for some people and so I’m pleased to say that there will be two 11am’s a month in both Affpuddle and Bere Regis, on alternate weeks. One of those 11am’s will be the Family Service at Bere Regis on the second Sunday of the month which was always popular. We are hoping that Junior Church will start again in October, but we will wait to see how everything is once the schools go back. We know that some people in the benefice and beyond really appreciated the online worship and so we are going to keep two a month, one of which will be run by some of our new Lay Worship Leaders.

Obviously, it is still early days, and our plans may have to change if there are restrictions again in the winter.


Messy Church

Some of the Messy Church families from around the benefice enjoyed a face-to-face picnic and games afternoon in the Bere Regis Vicarage garden, it was a bit damp some of the time, but that didn’t stop the fun and it was lovely to be together in the flesh.

Messy Church is going to resume online for September and October, see advert, and then we will, hopefully, have a face-to-face get together to celebrate Advent and Christmas at the beginning of December.



If you are interested in being confirmed and would like to explore what it means, we will be running some sessions in the autumn. Confirmation is open to adults or young people (from about Year 6 upwards, although this can vary), please speak to me if you are interested. 01929 792235 revsandrawestpurbeck@outlook.com


Affpuddle Gift Day with a Difference

Held on the very hot day of Saturday 17th July – gifts of ‘Cream Tea in a Bag’ were given out. Thank you to Liz Whatley for organising, Chips Babcock for the use of her lovely front garden and everyone from the PCC who helped, and others roped in. It was very well supported, there is a write up elsewhere in the newsletter.

I’m looking forward to the Jazz this weekend!


Welcome Back Breakfast

This was held on Saturday 31st July – thank you to Peter Wharf for organising this event and many thanks to Martin Debenham for helping Peter with the cooking and to Alison Bennett and team for serving the drinks, bacon butties and cake. It was a lovely atmosphere, lots of chatting, that lovely bacon smell and a small step back to ‘normal’. I look forward to the next one!




From the registers


Bere Regis



24th July

Congratulations to Jacky Miller and Chris Patching


Thanksgiving and Interment of Ashes

30th July

Mike and Bet Moss