Category Archives: Pastoral Care

All Souls’ services remember those we have lost

Anyone who has been bereaved in recent years is invited to join one of the special All Souls’ services on Sunday, October 31, in the churches of St John’s, Hale, St Mark’s, Upper Hale, and St George’s, Badshot Lea. The service times will be 11am at St Mark’s, 3pm at St John’s, and 6pm at St George’s.

All Souls’ Day is on Tuesday, November 2, so the churches are holding their services on the nearest Sunday to enable more people to attend.  All Souls’ Day, also known as the Commemoration of All the Faithful Departed and the Day of the Dead, is a day of remembrance of people who have died, and the services are designed to honour them and bring comfort to the bereaved.

Anyone who would like to attend is welcome to do so and anyone who would like support following the death of a loved one is invited to contact Rev’d Lesley Crawley on 01252 820537 or revd.lesley@badshotleaandhale.org

Situations Vacant

Situations Vacant

There are lots of roles that you can help with at church – please do get involved. Email revd.lesley@badshotleaandhale.org to find out more:

Youth

Cook for messy church

Role description: Working out a menu, purchasing food, preparing the food for cooking including salad preparation and or vegetables, cooking and co-ordinating the serving of the meal.

Person description: Able to prepare and cook meals. Prepare of salad. Coordinate with your second cook and servers. Have a food safety certificate-online.

Hours:  4 hours monthly will be 3rd Thursday at St. Mark’s (not December or August)

Reports to: Michelle

Second cook

Role description: Assisting with the menu, assisting with purchasing food, preparing the food for cooking including salad preparation and or vegetables, cooking and assisting with the serving.

Person description: Able to assist the cook for messy church preparing and cooking meals. Preparation of salad. Assisting with the serving of the meals.

Hours: 3 hours monthly will be 3rd Thursday at St. Mark’s (not December or August)

Messy church activity leader x 6

Role description: To assist at an activity table

Person description:  Able to engage and assist the families whilst they engage in an activity based on the theme of the messy church session. To use your creative skills to prepare and run an activity on the theme of the session-but not essential.

Hours: 3 hours monthly will be 3rd Thursday at St. Mark’s (not December or August)

1 hour for sourcing and researching an activity-not essential.

Reports to: Michelle

Assistant for school experiences ( year group come to the church)

Role description: Assisting with scripting the experiences when schools wish to do them. Sourcing the items for the displays, setting the displays up on the day and engaging with the children during the day for their experience.

Person description: Able to engage with the children, computer skills.

Hours: Ad hoc and during school time for the experiences, time for sourcing materials for the displays.

Reports to: Michelle

Open the Book Member

Role description: Open the Book is part of the Bible Society and is groups of people from local churches visiting local schools and reading Bible stories – but it is so much more than that! We have had a team in this parish for the past seven years and we would like more people to join our team. There is a rolling programme of stories with comments and prayers all approved by the schools and Ofsted. This is a wonderful experience – for us as a team and the children we meet. They look forward to our visits, often take part in the stories and always enter into the spirit of the story. It is an honour to introduce the next generation to the wonderful stories of God and his love for us.

Person description: Enjoy being with children and telling them stories, and have about two hours during the school day, alternate weeks in term time.

Hours: We practise and prepare on alternate Monday mornings at 9:15.

Visit Folly Hill school on alternate Tuesday mornings 10:15 – 10:45.

Visit Badshot Lea school and Tootsies nursery on alternate Wednesday mornings 10:15 – 11:15.

Reports to: Margaret

School Mentors

Role description: We have recently taken on the running of a mentoring scheme for young people in Heath End School.  We listen and talk to a young person for an hour a week during term time and there is a termly meeting of mentors.  Commitment is for a term at a time, initial training involves safeguarding and training of mentoring – three courses of 4 hours.

Person description: A non-judgmental attitude and love for teenagers

Hours: 3 hours per week term time

Reports to: Simon

Parish Roles

PCC Secretary

Role description:

To circulate the agenda and relevant information before each meeting of the PCC in consultation with the incumbents. To take minutes and circulate them to members after the meetings

To liaise with members by email in between meetings such as taking votes on items which cannot wait. Keep a record of the results and post them on Office 365.

To prepare the Annual Report in consultation with the incumbent

To organise and minute the Annual Meetings

To handle correspondence on behalf of the Parish

To correspond with the Diocese informing them of names and contact details of officers in the Parish

To update the Charities Commission website with details of Officers and members of the PCC

To upload the Annual Report and Finance Report to the Charities Commission website in consultation with the incumbents

To correspond with the Charities Commission when necessary

Person description: Good organisational skills, ability to precis and pick out the essentials at meetings, patience, basic knowledge of Word/Excel

Hours: 1-2 hours per week

System Support

Role description: The parish currently runs on a variety of Google sheets, with associated Javascript macros. There is an opportunity to support these, or to help move them to Office 365 Power Automate

Person description: Good Computer skills with some experience of programming

Number of hours: Work expands to fill the time available!  If it is ongoing support there is perhaps an hour a week, but this can come in lumps as Google have a habit of changing things without telling us and they then need to be made to work in the new regime.

Reports to: Alan

GDPR Lead

Role description: Understand the requirements of Data Protection and ensure we are compliant

Person description: Good at understanding regulations and applying them

Number of hours: Very few, giving advice when needed

Reports to: Alan

Social Media Lead

Role description: Running our Instagram account and Twitter account

Person description: Understands social media and contemporary online culture.

Hours: 30 mins per day

Reports to: Stella

Social Media Team Member

Role description: Sharing, liking and commenting on our social media posts

Person description: Just needs to be on a social media platform

Hours: virtually nil

Reports to: Stella

Questioning Faith Mentors

Role description: When we run QF courses for people new to Christianity it would be good to have more established people from the congregation to support the new people.

Person description: Willingness to talk openly about their own faith

Number of hours: Courses tend to be about 6-8 weeks of 1½ hours, run on an ad hoc basis

Reports to: Lesley

Magazine editor

Role description: Putting together the parish magazine each month, asking for contributions, laying out the pages.

Person description: Computer literate with an eye for laying out the magazine and an understanding of what the readers will want in their magazine

Hours: 16 per month

Reports to: Stella

Magazine delivery coordination

Role description: Coordinating a team of people to deliver the magazines. Posting some of the magazines to those who live outside the parish

Person description: Good at organisation and spreadsheets, good at leading a team

Hours: 4 per month

Reports to: Stella

Notice Board Officer

Role description: Collect items to put on the boards and pin them up once a week

Person description: Able to collect the posters etc and get round the three churches, a good eye to ensure the boards look attractive

Hours: 2 hours per week

Reports to: Stella 

Pastoral Support

Role description: Calling people to check they are ok, visiting when that is allowed

Person description: Empathetic, non-judgemental, good at listening, loves people

Hours: Depends on agreement

Reports to: Lesley

Vergers for Occasional Offices

Role description: Available occasionally during the day and on Saturdays to help at Funerals and Weddings – able to work the CD player and put out the microphones and welcome people

Person description: Good with technology and welcoming

Hours: Ad hoc – you will be part of a team of people called upon occasionally

Reports to: Lesley

Church roles

Singers to sing in the Parish Choir

Role description: Attending choir practice and singing in the choir at St John’s and St George’s

Person description: A love of singing, and the ability to sing in tune.  It is not necessary to be able to read music.

Hours: Choir practice is at St George’s Church, Badshot Lea, every Monday during term time, from 6pm ’till 7 or 7.15pm. Services last one hour every Sunday morning at each of the churches.

Musician

Role Description: Musician to play occasionally at services at either St. George’s or St. John’s

Person description: A competent and confident keyboard player, preferably, but could be a guitar player, accordion player, or fiddle player! With imagination and enthusiasm for playing, and leading the choir and congregation in the singing.

Hours: – playing for a service one Sunday morning a month, practise in the hymns on the rota to be played.  Prepare suitable music to play at the beginning and end of each service, and during the service, as required.

Reports to: Margaret

Cleaning at each of the churches

Role description: Clean the church and other rooms

Person description: Good at cleaning

Hours: 1.5 hours per week per church and 2 hours per week at St George’s

Reports to: Warden

On Call Key Holders for St John’s and for St George’s

Role description: Holds keys to the church and is able to open up the church at short notice

Person description: Able to be contacted at short notice during the day or evening

Hours: very infrequent occurrence

Reports to: Warden 

Eco-Church representative at each of the churches

Role description: Four churches are Eco-churches, a national initiative that uses an online questionnaire to assess churches. This person needs to fill in the online data, recommend policies to the PCC and promote eco work in congregation

Person description: Knowledgeable and passionate about environmental issues and computer literate

Hours: Depends on agreement

Reports to: Lesley

St John’s Church

Intercessors

Role description: Prepare prayers for the Sunday Service and pray them during the service

Person description: Able to lead prayers

Hours: 1 per month

Reports to: Warden

Servers

Role description: Prepare everything for communion and assist the priest during the service

Person description: Willing to help during the service

Hours: 1 per month

Reports to: Warden

Opening and closing the church

Role description: Opens and closes the church on a rota

Person description: Able to get to the church and open or close it

Hours: depends on how often they are on the rota

Reports to: Warden

Coffee lead

Role description: Make sure there are people to serve coffee each week and that we have the right supplies

Person description: Friendly and welcoming and able to fill in an online spreadsheet

Hours: Very few – the rota should run without too much intervention

Reports to: Warden

Grounds officer at St John’s

Role description: Able to organise teams to help occasionally. At each of the churches we do have great people who are already doing gardening, but there are sometimes additional maintenance works that needs a team

Person description: Enjoys gardening and grounds maintenance

Hours: Depends on agreement

Reports to: Warden

St George’s Church

St Georges Risk Assessment Co-ordinator

Role description: The parish have a small group who create Generic Risk Assessments and assist in the creation of non Generic Risk Assessments.  The aim is to have one from each Church so that local knowledge is represented on the group. 

Person description: Prior experience of creating Risk Assessments would be ideal.

Hours: The time is difficult to specify as it will depend on the need for new Risk Assessments.  However, there is an initial period of catch up reviewing the risks that we currently have and rationalising them into Generic Risk Assessments which can be used by multiple Activities.  During this initial stage about 6 hours/month should be required.

Reports to: Alan

Welcomers

Role description: Put out chairs and welcome people as they arrive.

Person description: Fit and able to move chairs, friendly and welcoming

Hours: 2 per month

Reports to: Warden

Mowers

Role description: Mow the lawn at St George’s from the spring

Person description: Able to use the electric mower

Hours: 3 per month

Reports to: Bill

Servers

Role description: Prepare everything for communion and assist the priest during the service

Person description: Willing to help during the service

Hours: 1 per month

Reports to: Warden

St Mark’s Church

Maintenance officer at St Mark’s

Role description: Repair things that can be repaired and call in contractors when necessary. Check fabric monthly.

Person description: Good at DIY. Ideally it would be good to have electrician, construction or plumbing experience

Hours: 2 hours per week

Reports to: Warden

Gardener at St Mark’s

Role description:

We need a person prepared to tend the hedges either side of the main driveway down the side of St Marks. The object is to ensure they remain neat and to prevent significant incursion onto the driveway itself. We have people for grass mowing and major hedge trimming at the moment, so this should not be necessary.

Hours:

It is estimated this may take up to 2 hours per month.

Reports to:

Warden

In Praise of Home Groups

What the heck is a ‘Home Group’?

Turn the clock back a good few years and my only idea was it was it definitely wasn’t something for me. Surely a ‘Home Group’ (aka, Bible Study, small group, study group, cell church – even Lent Group) was full of very holy, serious people, who actually knew where things were in the Bible and had been going to Church for ever, prayed regularly and knew all the answers and who would tell me I just had to ‘Have Faith’. Without doubt they would find out I was a fraud and only went to church because it was a good place to take my kids on wet Sunday mornings. There was no way I was going join any ‘small group’.

So what changed? I now enthuse about small groups any chance I have. I even lead one.

First, let me dismiss all of that absolute rubbish about the perception of what a ‘Home Group’ consists of. I have never been to one which was full of ‘serious’ people. Honestly, we spend a lot of time laughing. Not everyone prays regularly, not everyone believes everything, or even the same things. There are people in groups who are very new to church and some who have been going to church all of their lives but still have questions. Even in the early days no-one accused me of being a fraud and never did they dismiss my questions.

I’ve now been to lots of groups over the years. Weirdly they are all different – probably because they have consisted of different people and had different themes. I’ve loved some, felt challenged by others, but every time I have met and become closer to the people in that group. The only similarity is that they all consisted of people who are trying to get closer to God.

When I started to go to church I didn’t really get to know people. I didn’t know everyone’s name, I didn’t know where people lived or much about their lives. It was a long time until I felt that I wasn’t a visitor. I think it was belonging to groups that changed that.

I had been on the PCC for a while before I ever ventured into a ‘Home Group’. I was a busy mum with a full-time job and time was very precious. Then the PCC had a visiting speaker and an initiative called ‘Forward with God’ was launched. PCC members were ‘encouraged’ to go to one of the groups which were set up to follow the course.

I found I enjoyed it and got to know the people involved and was sad when the course ended. I think that there were about six groups and at the end of the course only one continued – not the one to which I had been going. I found I really missed it so I took a deep breath and joined the one that was continuing – and I can honestly say it was one of the best things I ever did.

To me being in a small group is church. Groups are inclusive, welcoming and eager to grow. Somehow, belonging makes you want to do more for God and become closer to the person you are intended to be. The people in the group form relationships because we share our thoughts and learn together. Over the years, my faith has grown and my relationship with God has deepened.

Through home groups, I have made real friends – people I can rely on, people I trust absolutely, people who help out, people I can cry with and have lots of laughs with; they are my ‘go to people’ and yet they are always so welcoming to anyone new.

At the moment, groups are continuing on Zoom. I really look forward to when we can gather again in person. We’ll advertise when that is happening. Why not give it a try?

Maxine Everitt

The May magazine is here

Our May magazine is out now, a bumper edition this month with information about the elections for Surrey County Council members and the Surrey Police and Crime Commissioner. Please read their statements and please vote; if we don’t bother to have a say we can hardly complain about the people who are elected.

There is information too about events going on this month including our Farnham Flower Festival (online again, of course) which is being sponsored by our favourite florist Florescence, and plans for the fete in July. Please get involved in both. There is news about new rooms to hire, an article on grief, information about taking part in Christian Aid Week and much more, plus, of course, lots of great adverts with services, offers and classes.

Download it here:

Yellow ribbons and prayer for National Day of Reflection

A National Day of Reflection is taking place on March 23, the anniversary of the start of the first lockdown. The parish is marking the day by offering special services on the Sunday before – March 21.

At the services there will be a chance to reflect on the year and in particular to remember those who have died during the past 12 months. There will be prayers and yellow ribbons for people to tie in the churchyards in memory of those who have died. Many who have lost a friend or family member will not have been able to attend the funeral service, making the process of grieving more difficult.

Lesley Crawley said: “On March 23 it will be a year since the start of the first lockdown. We had no idea then how tough it would be or that a year on we would be in our third national lockdown.

“It has been a time of great anxiety and for many great grief as they have lost family and friends and may not even have been able to attend their funerals. The church is there to offer support and one way is through our services which we hold both in person in the churches – we have Covid regulations in place – and online. You don’t have to believe in God to come in and seek peace and comfort – the church is for everyone.”

The church services on March 21 will be at St John’s, Hale, at 9.30am, St George’s, Badshot Lea, at 10am and St Mark’s, Upper Hale, at 11am. There will also be a service on the website from 9am.

Space2Breathe

If you and your family need a bit of a breathing space in lockdown, we may be able to help.

St George’s Church has joined up with Hale Community Centre and Space2Grow in central Farnham and all three are opening our doors to families who need to get out of the home and into a different space.

From Monday, February 8, families will be able to book a session in any of the three and allow their children to play or do schoolwork there with support from a volunteer who can also be a listening ear for parents. They can do so by emailing space2breathefarnham@gmail.com

The scheme has been developed in response to the growing mental health pressures that families are facing during lockdown. Many parents are struggling with working from home while trying to home-school several children, look after pre-schoolers, and run their households.

“The pressure on families is immense and we know that it is having a serious effect on mental health across the ages,” said Norma Corkish, chair of trustees for Hale Community Centre.

“Parents are getting to the end of what they can manage to juggle and many children are feeling frustrated and are struggling to do all the school work which schools are legally obliged to set. As one parent said ‘I am going a bit stir crazy being at home on my own’.

“Offering safe spaces where parents can bring their children is a practical step towards helping the families. Children can have some freedom to run round and play, engage with another adult, go for a walk, get some support with home schooling or whatever will help give a period of brief respite from the stresses of the current restrictions. And the parents can have another adult to talk to.” 

The spaces will have some teaching aids such as flip charts but families will need to bring their own toys and school resources.

The scheme is offering morning and afternoon sessions and the organisers hope to be able to increase the number of them if there are enough volunteers. Volunteers are needed to spend an hour either in the morning or afternoon with a family in the spaces and be willing to go for walks with the families. The organisers would also like to hear from any students who could spare some time to be an extra pair of hands. Anyone who can help should contact Cathy Burroughs at the Hale Community Centre on 07471 180958 or halecommunitycentre@gmail.com

Children’s Mental Health Week

This week is Children’s Mental Health Week and it can’t come soon enough. All around us young people are struggling – lockdown, home-schooling, missing friends and family, anxiety, exam pressure, no space of their own. Some have added pressures – they may have parents or siblings working on the frontline, they may have lost someone during the pandemic, be ill or have a friend or family member who is ill. Some are living in homes where they do not feel safe.

There are lots of resources to help, particularly on the website www.childrensmentalhealthweek.org.uk/ This year the theme is Express Yourself. Finding creative ways of expression can be a huge boost to mental health. Art, craft, music, poetry, photography and drama are great ways of expressing our feelings and can make us feel better. There are ideas on the mental health week website, and some  free virtual sessions led by experts and familiar faces across acting, art, content creation, dance and writing. 

We are running a lockdown poetry festival so why not have a go at expressing your feelings in poetry – and encourage your children to do too.

If you need further help there are people out there to offer it. Don’t struggle on your own. Childline can be a great source of support for young people – 0800 1111 – and we have a list of numbers in the poster below.

Please do feel free to contact the clergy – revd.alan@badshotleaandhale.org
revd.lesley@badshotleaandhale.org
01252 820537.

And in an emergency, call 999.

Help us say thank you with flowers

UPDATE: Enough people have volunteered for Wednesday. Just need some car drivers for Thursday morning. Book via this link: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4AAAAA2BA2F4C16-abunch1

Is anyone in Farnham free tomorrow morning (Wed 3rd) or Thursday morning (4th)? Help is needed with bunching and then distributing daffodils to all the surgeries, pharmacies, care homes and the hospital with thanks from the Farnham community for all their ongoing hard work.

On Wednesday (3rd) we need people to go to the foyer at Farnham Maltings between 9.30am and 12.30pm to attach small cards to each bunch of flowers saying who they are from and helping to organise them, ready for distributing on Thursday. There are 500 bunches to get through.

Everyone will be seated at their own workstation in the foyer, two metres apart. Please wear a mask when you are in the building and make use of the hand sanitiser provided. Please also wear warm layers -as the space will be well ventilated. If you have fingerless gloves bring them along too. Bring a flask with a warm drink and any snacks you might want.

Sign up to help here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4AAAAA2BA2F4C16-abunch

On Thursday (4th) people are needed to distribute the flowers for a short period between 9.30 and 11.30am. You will need to come to Farnham Maltings on Thursday morning (you will be assigned a slot when you sign up) and pick up your flowers, a high-vis jacket and lanyard so when you drop them off they know you are a volunteer.

When you deliver the flowers, please take a moment to explain why the community is doing this, and pass on an enormous thank-you to those you are delivering to.

Sign up to help here: https://www.signupgenius.com/go/10C0D4AAAAA2BA2F4C16-abunch1

Support a neighbour

Have you got a few hours to spare? Could you help someone who needs company or assistance with practical tasks?

Farnham Neighbours’ Network, a new buddying initiative, aims to build sustainable friendship in Farnham, fostering neighbourliness, providing practical support and combating loneliness.

This local network is looking for volunteers: people with good listening skills and an hour or so to spare each week who are interested in getting to know someone new . In the current lockdown, the focus is on supporting people and combatting loneliness through social phone calls, which means you can safely volunteer from home.

In the longer term, volunteers will be needed to support others with learning how to use a new piece of technology; to do some light DIY and gardening; to go for walks and more, in line with the ambition to have a network which supports the needs and wishes of the town’s residents.

If you are interested in becoming a volunteer or simply finding our more. click on the link here or email the coordinator Erin Beesley: erin.beesley@farnhammaltings.com

The FNN coordinator links volunteers up with a neighbour based on proximity, interests and the support they are happy to give. All volunteers receive a DBS check and will be given full support to ensure they feel confident and safe in volunteering.

Farnham Neighbours Network is run by Farnham Maltings in partnership with Farnham Town Council.

Picture by  Ave Calvar on Unsplash.

Additional grief in lockdown

There is an interesting article about the additional problems of dealing with grief in lockdown on the BBC News website, and tonight (Tuesday, May 10), Rio Ferdinand talks about how he and his children have coped with the grief of losing his wife, their mother, from cancer. You can see Rio Ferdinand: Being Mum and Dad at 11.45pm on BBC1.

The increased effects of grief at this time is something that Wendy Edwards, Licensed Lay Minister in the parish, has been considering and she shares her thoughts below:

What I think may be happening for some people, maybe quite a few people, who are grieving the death of a loved one, is that extended periods spent in your own home, often with reminders of your loved one all around you and an inability to have the normal tactile comfort of cuddling or kissing your other family members due to lockdown, are increasing your sense of loss and sadness.

This makes perfect sense in psychological terms but is difficult to experience. You may like to know about this if you wonder why you are struggling more with grief, if you are  – and you may not be, we are all different.

Grief is felt not just when a loved one dies. It is also felt in all sorts of other circumstances. These are all causes for grieving in older adults just now: –

  • Loss of mobility or worsening senses of hearing, eyesight, taste etc or worsening health generally – you grieve for your mobile self or your healthy, hearing, seeing self;
  • Pain- you have lost your pain-free self and you grieve for pain-free days which you did not realise you needed to appreciate as pain -free!
  • Loss of a job or role in life, homemaker, breadwinner, carer of your loved one all cause grief, if you do not have these roles any more;
  • Separation from family members for other reasons, maybe due to distance or disputes or arguments – you have lost the happy close connection you once had with them and there is real grief to work through;
  • Ageing – none of us can stop the passage of time and we can all grieve for our seemingly lost younger selves (I think we contain all the ages we have ever been);
  • Inability in lockdown to see your friends and family, to hold or kiss them;
  • Inability to escape the confinement of your home or the confinement of your grief.

The list could go on, but I hope you see my point. If you are getting on with things and keeping busy, as many of you are, that’s great. Your grief may be held at bay for a while, but it will likely surface at unexpected moments.

Grief can be held down but, like a jack-in-the-box whose lid has been held down, it can spring up when you least expect it. It takes energy to hold grief down and when it is released (hopefully in tears but not all of us can cry) there is healing in tears.  We may feel anger or frustration, remorse, or guilt in grief too, or any human feeling really.

At these times, if you are suffering, please do not despair. We all have increased grief in the lockdown and those who have lost a loved one will be feeling it worse. It will pass in time. It can take three to five years to heal from the worst of grief over the death of a close family member and sometimes longer. Some losses are more painful for different reasons. It is no cause for shame or concern if your grief is taking longer or feels worse now.

Reach out as much as you feel comfortable to trusted friends or family and your support network. Or indeed reach out to your GP also, if you feel you need to. They are available for consultation regarding emotional, mental, or physical health matters, over the telephone or online. Or contact Alan or Lesley Crawley, join rectors of the parish, on 01252 820537 or revd.alan@badshotleaandhale.org or
revd.lesley@badshotleaandhale.org

With all good wishes, Wendy Edwards LLM