At the centre is our belief in Jesus Christ, who lived on earth, died and rose again, in order to bring us into a new and wonderful relationship with God his Father, encouraged and enlivened by the gift of his Holy Spirit, and supported by the Word of God revealed in the Bible. This new life is the basis for our daily lives, directing the way in which we relate to the people and the world around us. You will find here pointers to how this works out in practice in our Parish activities.
We hope and pray that through these web pages you will learn more about us, and want to come and find out more about what we believe, how we express our belief, and the many ways in which we enjoy the company of each other in our Churches. You will also find here links to a wealth of information about the Church of England and our place in the Diocese of Oxford and the Deanery of Sonning.
Please explore these pages using the menu at the top, though access to some of the detail is restricted to those who register and login as church members. Help to do this can be found on the page of Site Guidance.Hover over the menu items at the top to see the list of topics in each group, and you can also visit the Site Map for a quick overview.
The three buttons on the right of the page give quick access to topics of immediate interest - Notices (including the current church Pew Sheets), upcoming Events listed in the Parish Calendar (and click on the Calendar button for the full listing), and Listen for recent sermons at St. Mary's or the full listing of past recorded sermons. (In order to add items to the list of events, please see the instructions on the News and Notices page).
A joyful service to mark the end of the 2015 Festival. The guest speaker was Jonathan Fletcher, a renowned preacher who has led the growth of several Anglican Churches. His recent book "Dear Friends" has been highly acclaimed by the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan WIlliams, and the vicar of Holy Trinity Brompton, Nicky Gumbel.
He spoke on the theme of "An irresistable Invitation", based on the Bible passage in Isaiah 55. A recording of this talk can be heard here...
Earlier in the service, Jon Drake interviewed Peter Teague on the changes in his life following his decision to commit his life to Christ. A recording of this interview can be heard here..
Well known hymns were led by Peter Dart, a number of musicians and members of St. Mary's Music Group.
This was followed by the Festival Family BBQ with games and entertainments for children or all ages which was hastily but most successfully relocated to the Marquee when rain interfered.
We were delighted to welcome Zimbabwean Henry Olonga as our speaker at the start of the Festival this year. A full Church heard him speak about cricket and his faith. It was an informal "café-style" service, with coffee served from 10 am, the first time we had tried this format. It was also our first use of the newly installed Audio Visual system, and while the sound worked well, the camera, projectors and screens were not quite ready for use. Unfortunately it did not prove possible to record his talk and songs.
The first black Zimbabwean cricketer, Henry achieved international recognition in 2003 by wearing a black armband in a Cricket World Cup to protest against the policies of Zimbabwe's government. He then had to flee the country due to impending threats.
Author of "Blood, Sweat and Treason", Henry is also an acclaimed tenor and he will intersperse the morning with song!
You can read biographical notes by his wife Tara here.