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From the Vicar Oct 22

From The Vicar


I am writing this in the immediate aftermath of the sad news of the death of HM the Queen, knowing that by the time you read this her funeral will have taken place and King Charles III will have been proclaimed king. Thank you to our curate, Revd Sorrel Shamel-Wood, for sharing the following poem:


September the 8th, 2022

You were old, already, when I was born

And I took your gentle face for granted:

On every coin and every postage stamp,

Each Christmas message, poppy wreath laid.

Most famous of faces around the world,

I saw you, once or twice, felt I knew you

And many people cherish their stories

Of garden parties and medals received.


We feel the sands of time shift beneath us

As history is marked before our eyes.

We feel the cold wind blow, the night draw in

And pull our coats tightly around our chests;

We raise our heads, as you did, say a prayer;

We cling to the true rock, the true anchor

As you did. We live with faith, hope and love.


The Archbishop of Canterbury writes:-


“As we grieve together, we know that, in losing our beloved Queen, we have lost the person whose steadfast loyalty, service and humility has helped us make sense of who we are through decades of extraordinary change in our world, nation and society.

“As deep as our grief runs, even deeper is our gratitude for Her Late Majesty’s extraordinary dedication to the United Kingdom, her Realms and the Commonwealth. Through times of war and hardship, through seasons of upheaval and change, and through moments of joy and celebration, we have been sustained by Her Late Majesty’s faith in what and who we are called to be.

“In the darkest days of the Coronavirus pandemic, The Late Queen spoke powerfully of the light that no darkness can overcome. As she had done before, she reminded us of a deep truth about ourselves – we are a people of hope who care for one another. Even as The Late Queen mourned the loss of her beloved husband, Prince Philip, we saw once again evidence of her courage, resilience and instinct for putting the needs of others first – all signs of a deeply rooted Christian faith.


“In The Late Queen’s life, we saw what it means to receive the gift of life we have been given by God and – through patient, humble, selfless service – share it as a gift to others.”

We continue to pray for members of the Royal Family as the God who sustained Her Majesty throughout her life, guides them and brings them comfort. Above all, we pray also for our new King in the responsibilities that now rest upon him. And we seek to follow in the footsteps of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as we care for each other and the beautiful, fragile world we are grateful for this harvest season, and seek reconciliation in our families, communities and the wider world.


Rev Teresa





O Lord, support us all the day long of this troublous life,

until the shadows lengthen, and the evening comes,

and the busy world is hushed, and the fever of life is over,

and our work is done.


Then, Lord, in thy mercy, grant us a safe lodging,

a holy rest, and peace at the last.






Prayer of Cardinal John Henry Newman, from the Book of Common Prayer


This was the favourite prayer of Jack Greenaway,

(22 December 1921 – 9 July 2012), who was gardener at Baldon House from the age of 14 until his death at the age of 90.



The Revd Teresa Stewart-Sykes is Team vicar for The Baldons with Nuneham Courtenay, Berinsfield and Drayton St Leonard.

e-mail: RevTeresa@outlook.com      and tel: 07823 809112

The Revd Jennifer Morton is Associate Team Vicar and lives in Toot Baldon: jennifer@morton8.co.uk.

Our current curate is The Revd Sorrel Shamel-Wood who lives in Berinsfield.

Our safeguarding officer is Sara McDouall: saramcdouall@gmail.com

A clergy person can always be reached in a pastoral emergency by ringing the Dorchester Team Office 01865 340007