Christmas at St Edward’s 2017

Our Christmas Cards with this year’s Christmas services are out from this Sunday.

This year, our Christingle is at the new time of 11am to connect with our new Quest (11am) service that started weekly in October. It will also be in the Church Hall (not the Church this year), to help you get a better feel of what our new Quest service is like. Christingle is a different and very tactile way to consider what Christmas is all about using oranges, candles and sweets (what’s not to like?!)

We are also offering two times for the popular Carols by Candlelight service at 5pm and 7pm. The 5pm featuring the St Matthew’s Community Choir and the 7pm Eggbuckland Community Choir. Both services will have our very own St Edward’s Church Choir, a selection of readings telling the story of God’s plan for the world, plenty of Carols and lots of candles!!! It’s a beautiful traditional service, and with an additional time more space to invite friends, family and neighbours. Do come along – you will be made most welcome.

Our Christmas Eve Nativity service, which has become very popular over the last few years now has an additional slot – so now 2, 3 and 4pm! We are also hoping the Donkey from Ivybridge will be able to join us (although the Donkey costume and the Vicar are on standby if not!!) While you are waiting for the previous service to finish you are encouraged to go to the church hall where you will find mince pies, mulled wine/apple juice and superb festive crafts – a great way for all the family to start Christmas Eve!

Our Midnight Communion service (sometimes called Midnight Mass) is a traditional way to start Christmas day – the first Holy Communion of the Christmas season. Even if you do not regularly take communion, you will find this service a reflective and meaningful way to begin Christmas. You are welcome to talk to the vicars/ministers Chris, Keith or Carl if you have any questions about Communion (01752 781 564).

Our Christmas Day  Service helps to put the festivities in a helpful context of worshipping ‘the new born King’. Children are encouraged to bring a present that they have opened, to show to everyone. We will sing carols together, reflect together on God’s Word, pray for our world and receive strength and encouragement as we share Communion together. This is a lovely service whether you a on your own over Christmas or with your extended family and friends.

But before all that we will be welcoming our local schools and nurseries, as they have their special services here too. This year Eggbuckland Vale, Honeyshute, Austin Farm Academy, St Edward’s School and St Matthew’s Academy are all having Christmas services in Church.

Whether you are coming to support the schools or attending one of our Christmas services you will be made very welcome this Christmas at St Edward’s Church. May you experience the joy of the peace and presence of God this Christmas and as you begin the new year.

John Hawken (1937-2017)

This afternoon we had a memorial service for John to celebrate his journey of faith and service over 60 years at St Edwards.  The following is the tribute delivered by Pat Whatty:

John Hawken (Memorial Service 16 June 2017 at St Edward’s)

At his funeral service in April, I related some personal memories of John and I make no apology for repeating some of these today in the belief that those of you who were present then will not object to hearing them again.

For me, John’s association with and service to this church is put into some perspective when I realise that my connection has been for more than 45 years and his was for considerably longer. Indeed, I would estimate that it was something like 60 years ago that John became aware of St Edward’s when passing by on a bus one day. From the mid 1950’s he had lived in a prefabricated bungalow at Michigan Way in Little America with his father and step-mother. It wasn’t until at least 20 years later that the prefabs were demolished, the site subsequently re-developed, and the present housing estate built.

Anyway, John decided to come and visit the church and the Vicar at the time, Rev Charles de Cerjat, learning of this, contacted him and eventually invited him to become a Server. It would seem that this was an inspired decision, for it gave John, a young man with a mild learning difficulty, a purpose in life and some responsibility to which he was able to respond and fulfil.

So it was that over the intervening years he assisted four of Eggbuckland’s incumbents with the preparation of the vessels used for the bread and wine of the Sacrament and tidying away afterwards. It would have been difficult to have found anyone more dedicated to the task and to St Edward’s. John could always be relied upon to undertake his duties when required, quietly and efficiently. He was an ever-present on Sundays and most other church occasions and became well loved by all who came to know him.

He remained resident in the parish, first at Austin Farm then, after the death of his father, at Silvermead where he already had some friends and quickly settled in for a happy 30 years.

John enjoyed company. He appeared at ease with everyone – those he had known for some time and those he had only just met – he liked nothing better than to share his travel experiences. These almost invariably included churches, pubs, tea rooms and pasties. It was if public transport had been laid on especially for him. He was familiar with all the local routes and had no second thoughts about hopping on buses beyond the city confines to all points north, east and west, exploring wherever it was he decided to visit on any particular occasion.

On a Sunday morning here in church, his face would light up with glee when asked where he had been the day before. Not that he needed the invitation to relate his latest gallivanting – he was just as likely to say, “Guess where I went yesterday?” And then he would relive the experience in the telling and always let you know the quality of any refreshments, especially if they had included a pasty.

There was so much more to John than anyone meeting him for the first time could imagine. His interests in steam trains, photography and following the daily happenings at Ambridge were important to him and gave him much pleasure. The care and stability provided by the staff of Silvermead was a major factor in John’s quality of life.

However, undoubtedly the catalyst for his confidence in coping with life and developing into the man he became, was his membership of and the friendships he enjoyed here at St Edward’s where he grew in faith through the knowledge he gained from his most cherished Bible.

Sunday mornings are not the same without you, John.

Pat Whatty

Thy Kingdom Come

The Archbishop of Canterbury is calling Christians to join a wave of prayer across the UK and around the world – praying that people you know might know Jesus

It’s happening between Ascension and Pentecost from 25th May – 4th June 2017

Across the Forder Valley Mission Community we will be hosting a number of events during the week, to which anyone is invited to come along.

Ministry Team
Date Morning Afternooon Evening
Thursday 25 May Ascension Day 7.00pm TKC Ascension Day Eucharist at St Edward’s
Friday 26 May 10.00-11.00am TKC "Upper Room" Prayer at St Edward’s (Upper Vestry) 7.00-8.00pm TKC “Upper Room” Prayer at St Edward’s
Saturday 27 May 2.00-4.00pm TKC Prayer Walk at Christ Church Estover
Sunday 28 May 2.00-4.00pm TKC Prayer Walk at St Edward’s 6.30pm TKC Evening Prayer at St Edward’s
Monday 29 May 8.30am TKC Morning Prayer at St Edward’s
Tuesday 30 May
Wednesday 31 May 7.00-8.00pm TKC "Upper Room" Prayer at Christ Church Estover
Thursday 1 June
Friday 2 June 10.00-11.00am TKC "Upper Room" Prayer at St Edward’s (Upper Vestry)
Saturday 3 June 2.00-4.00pm TKC Prayer Walk St Matthew’s CofE Primary & Nursery Academy (Seaton) 6.00-7.30pm TKC "Upper Room" Prayer at St Edward’s (Church Hall
Sunday 4 June Pentecost 6.30pm TKC Beacon Event at Exeter Cathedral

More Information about The Kingdom Come

Yew Tree Planting at St Edwards

On Saturday 8th April, a yew tree sapling was planted by our vicar Chris Routledge and our associate minister, Keith Murphy.

The sapling was grown from a cutting taken from a certified 2000 year old tree in the churchyard of St. Margaret the Queen’s Church, Buxted, East Sussex.  Hundreds of cuttings were taken during the year 2000, to celebrate the millennium, blessed by Bishop Eric and distributed to churches across the country.

Our ground steward, Jon Lake, was on hand to make sure all went well and the short, informal ceremony was followed by coffee and home made cake.

EddyBears Easter Egg Hunt

This week was the last meeting of EddyBears before the Easter Holidays, so as has become a tradition an Easter Egg Hunt took place.  It was a lovely morning out in the church garden, and I am sure the children will look forward to restarting on 24th April.

Earth Hour at St Edwards

On 25th March we switched off all the lights inside and the floodlights outside of St Edward’s as we observed Earth Hour ( We joined with others in 178 countries around the world to show government’s, business leaders & politicians of the world that we want action on climate change.

During the hour we prayed for our planet, with readings and meditations. To add some atmospherics we listened to birdsong being played throughout.

Iconic landmarks such as the Eiffel tower, Sydney Opera House,  Big Ben, Buckingham Palace, Empire State Building, all took part.

Upcoming Events – Plymouth Area Police Choir

Have you got your tickets yet to the first of our 2017 concerts?

On Friday 27th January (7.30pm) we will be hosting an evening of fantastic Male Voice singing by the popular Plymouth Area Police Choir in the initmate and beautiful setting of St Edward’s Church, Eggbuckland.


Operation Christmas Child – Samaritan’s Purse

logoOn 6th November we will be collecting our shoeboxes together at St Edward’s ready for delivery to the central co-ordinator in Plymouth.  It is not too late to put a shoebox together – if you would like more information take a look at the Samaritan’s Purse website.

Last year we sent 100 boxes that had been filled by families and friends at St Edwards, chuildren from the local schools, and various others. It was great effort, and this year we hope to send even more.  There are empty boxes at the back of church, and full instructions on how to fill them.

How to pack a ShoeBox

Once you have filled your box, do not sealit but do remember to identify if it is for a boy or girl –  there are labels available for this.

Finally, please remember to put the postage cost in the box – If you make your shipping donation online at Follow Your Box you can discover the destination of your shoebox gift  by adding the barcode we send you to your shoebox. Simply donate £3 for each shoebox you pack to cover transportation costs. Or you can enclose cash or cheque (to Samaritan’s Purse) and place it in an envelope inside your shoebox on top of the contents.





Looking for an Associate Minister

Associate Minister

For Church Planting, Evangelism and Discipleship

The Forder Valley Mission Community has recently emerged out of two large neighbouring parishes in the City of Plymouth (Estover and Eggbuckland) that have a significant new housing development currently being built within them. Though at an early stage, we aspire to be a vibrant Christ-centred, locally-relevant and growing Christian community. Alongside developing a brand new church plant in this new housing estate, we would also like the successful candidate to help enrich and develop a greater  Evangelistic and Discipleship culture  across the mission community working with the Vicar and existing team.  We therefore seek to appoint an Associate Minister for Church Planting, Evangelism and Discipleship to be part of a growing, committed and dynamic team to work with us, encourage us and enable us in this next phase.

We are looking for someone who will be:

  • A gifted evangelist, passionate about sharing the good news with a wide range of people, bringing them to faith and integrating them in a church family where they can grow as disciples.
  • Keen to equip and encourage Christians to be more confident and effective in sharing their faith in their community and context
  • a passion to enable a culture of ‘disciple-making disciples’.
  • Able to build, motivate and inspire a team to sustain a church plant.
  • An ordained priest in the Church of England or Church Army Evangelist.

Could this be you?

For a copy of the Parish Profile, extract of the Plymouth Plan and any other details, please contact:
Rev’d Chris Routledge   Tel:  01752 781564

Closing date for applications: 12 noon Tuesday 8th November 2016

Interviews: Tuesday 22nd November 2016


Forder Valley Mission Community – Monthly Magazine

Now that St Edwards, Eggbuckland and Christchurch, Estover are working together as ‘Forder Valley Mission Community’, it is only right that we update the monthly magazine to reflect this new dynamic. Why not take a look at all the myriad things going in North East Plymouth.  You can download a copy here: Magazine

Parish MapIf you want a rough idea of the area covered by Forder Valley Mission Community, the following map should give an approximate idea of the catchment: From the east side of Crownhill, south along the Parkway, over towards Plymbridge, and north as far as Estover.

According to the 2011 Census*, the population of Plymouth is 256,000.  Our mission community scope is encompassed in these neighbourhood areas:

  • Eggbuckland = 6750
  • Estover, Glenholt and Derriford East = 8000
  • Leigham and Mainstone = 5000

So in 2011 it was heading towards 20,000 in total, however with all the new houses being built/planned at Derriford, we might safely assume that these numbers are only going one way.

I am not sure of the total perimeter, but a rough estimate on Google maps came in at about 8-10 miles: I think Beating the Bounds would take a while!

Source: Plymouth Population 2011, Plymouth City Council

Ivanovo Rock Church

The church in Ivanovo, near Rousse Bulgaria, was carved into 100 metres up a cliff face in the limestone rock in the 13th century, and painted with frescoes depicting the passion. Today it is a UNESCO world heritage site.

Church of The Resurrection, Bucharest

img_0643.jpgSat outside in the shadow of the small Angilcan church eating freshly cooked bacon and eggs, with good coffee….what better way to start a Sunday morning?

Church of The Resurrection is quite a small building, but the community dates back to the nineteenth century so it is well established here in Romania.

Today there were 20 worshippers to a service of Morning Prayer led by Alison Mutler, one of the church wardens.

EddyBears Sports

EddybearsAnother year of Eddybears comes to an end with its usual mini-sports activities involving hula-hoops and bean-bags in the garden at St Edwards Church.  Rather confusingly the sun shone and it was a very hot day, so Factor 50 was in as good supply as snacks and medals for the children.

Some of the children will also be off to school in the autumn, and they are all sent of with our prayers as they take up the next chapter of their life.

The children also said goodbye to Helen after three years under her leadership since the group was started.  Helen is off to university in September, but no doubt she will continue to hear all about what the children are doing.

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