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church letter

An Easter message from Rev’d Tim.

At the time of writing we are in the middle of Lent, preparing for Passiontide, that period of the year when we prepare to walk the path towards Jesus’ passion and death. But, by the time you read this we will be in Easter season. Sometimes people ask why we spend so much time and energy on Holy Week. Why don’t we just skip the uncomfortable bits and go straight from Palm Sunday to Easter Day? Well, Christianity doesn’t give us a free pass so that we can avoid the bits of life that are difficult, or we’d rather not face. For the disciples, Jesus’ resurrection would not have been so transforming if they had not first experienced the fear and anguish of the crucifixion. The same is true for us, and our liturgy through Holy Week seeks to draw us into the reality of those events.

I recall hearing a missionary talk of their time in South Africa. They spoke of what life was like serving one of the large shanty towns there. They made many friends among circumstances of harsh poverty and inequality. Yet, there was something amazing about everyone’s hope and positivity. Some of these people were living in the most appalling conditions and had been through so much heartache and pain. And yet it was rare to meet an individual who was sceptical about life. When asked where their positive outlook came from, they were simply puzzled. “What do you mean?” they said. “Jesus gives us our hope. His resurrection is our joy. He died so that we might live. It would be a dishonour to him not to rejoice, always!”

The resurrection transforms everything we see. But this does not mean that we get to avoid the dark or difficult bits of life. Rather, it gives us hope during these dark times and helps us to cope during hard times. We could each reflect on how the past 12 months have impacted upon us, our family and friends.

As Christians, the greatest gift we have to offer the world is hope and joy, which brings light to everything around us. I pray that our joy may overflow and be felt in our communities this Easter time. With every blessing for this Easter season …..

Rev’d Tim

Church Contacts

Associate Priest: The Revd. Tim Wood – Tel. 01488 669261; Mob: 07927352847; Email: revtimothywood@gmail.com.
Benefice Administrator: Alex King, part-time at the Benefice Office – Tel. 01635 226 064; Email: wbboffice@gmail.com. Churchwardens:
Inkpen: Gerald Atkinson (tel. 668375).
Combe: David Russell (tel. 668229), Katherine Astor (tel. 668284).

Inkpen graveyards on-line

For anyone wishing to view the details of Inkpen's graveyards, including burial details, grave stone inscriptions and the location of the graves, please click here.  Inkpen Burial, Marriage, Baptism and Birth records covering the period 1607 to 1837 can be found on the Inkpen history website, here.


Rather than continue with the history of our church to which I will return later, it seems an update on the present might be of greater interest.

Of course, Covid has borne heavily on us all. The only good thing it has shown is the immense reservoir of kindness and goodwill that there is in our village. For that, so many thanks yet again to so many. And for those who have the virus or are still suffering from its devastation, our thoughts and prayers are with you.

The spirit of welcome, worship and prayer that St. Michael’s offers has suffered too. We so much regret that our doors have been closed and we look forward immensely to the time when we can welcome all again. Finances have suffered somewhat but thanks to the continued generosity of so many we are able to weather the storm.

You have only to look at the pages of the press to get a pretty dim view of our Church nationally. Troubles over sex, race, decline, re-organization, finance – you name it! But here locally the picture is very different. Our ‘interim team’ led by Revd. Tim Wood is wonderful. A re-organization of the Benefice is under way which means that the parishes of Inkpen, Combe and West Woodhay will come closer together under the leadership of a ‘Non-Stipendiary Minister’ (currently Tim Wood) and Kintbury will have its own part time stipendiary priest. We all think it will work well – particularly because here in Inkpen we have a first class Parochial Church Council to oversee and co-ordinate things for us.

I hope this gives you the picture. To complete it, these are our Services in April for Inkpen and Combe.

Good Friday : 12 noon to 1pm. A ‘Service of Reflection’ on the Passion of our Lord led by Tim Wood in Inkpen Church.

Easter Day : The service for Inkpen is at 9.45am and will be led by Revd. Tim Wood. Unless the weather is awful the service will be outside as it was for Christmas. It will be in two parts, the first for families and the second, after a short break, for those wishing to take Communion. If the weather is really bad, we will have the service in Church. Combe will have its Easter Service, again led by Tim Wood, at 11.15.

Sunday 11th April : Parish Communion in Inkpen Church at 9.45am led by Tim Wood.

Sunday 25th April : Holy Communion using the 1662 Prayer Book Form of Service in Inkpen Church at 8.30am taken by Tim Wood.

As you will see from the Service pattern we are gradually returning as far as we can to ‘normal’ and this will continue as restrictions are progressively lifted. But at the moment on Wednesdays and Sundays (when there is not a service on that day) Inkpen Church is open from 10am to 4pm for private prayer. Apart from these times I’m afraid it is closed. For the Services in Church social distancing, masks etc. are still required.

Easter Greetings to all. Gerald Atkinson. Churchwarden.

church services

Services in the benefice:  Other than those given in News from St. Michael’s these can be found on the Walbury Beacon website which is www.walburybeaconbenefice.org.uk.

catholic services

Our Lady of Lourdes, Priory Road, Hungerford RG17 0AF Parish Priest - Fr Zbigniew Budyn 01635 40332.

Good Friday – Church open from 2.30pm – 4.30pm for private prayer
Easter Sunday Mass - 9.00am
Sunday Mass - every Sunday at 9.00am
Weekday Mass - every Wednesday at 10.00am

For further information contact Paul Burrough 01488 668882 Mobile 07836 292976 Email paul.burrough@talktalk.net

A victorian view - now and then

The images of St. Michael's past and present are shown here

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