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December 2023

December17th 2023

The bells were ringing and the path to St. Leonards Church door was candle lit. A lovely welcome to the Annual Carol Service. On entering, it was a ‘WOW’ experience, - each window beautifully decorated and even the pillars

were festooned. Sherfield English residents certainly showed their talents when given the theme ‘What Christmas means to You’. Red and green being the predominant colours for the foliage, floral arrangements, and

pom poms, but snow was clearly in evidence. A sleigh with reindeer gliding

across the frozen landscape, a beautiful old globe on which sat a dove, depicted ‘Peace on Earth, Goodwill to all men’. Knitted choristers made their way to church, as the bells above glinted in the starlight. A glowing fireside invited one to sit and enjoy the warmth whilst children played with their

toys. The next window showed a mouth-watering feast…..all knitted, including the sprouts and Christmas pudding, and the table adorned with candelabra. Above the altar -:-‘The Angel of the Lord Shone round about

them’…...beautifully displayed. So the service began……… the choir sang the opening verse of ‘Once in Royal David’s City’ followed by the well

attended congregation. Lessons were read and more traditional carols were

sung, as written in our programmes. A very thoughtful poem was read and

‘Gabriel’s Message’ sung by the choir. In our prayers we were encouraged to think of the homeless, refugees and those suffering in child poverty, all

those less fortunate than ourselves. We also thought of the real meaning

of Christmas – Christ’s birth. After meaningful contemplation, a skit followed, - ‘While Shepherds Watched their Flocks by Night.’…..complete with washing bowl and socks, and the participants were ‘seated on the ground’. Hilarious. Still in light heartedness, the congregation was invited to

participate in the ‘Twelve Days of Christmas ‘with all the accessories, dancing shoes, pipes, gold rings and ,YES - A partridge in a Pear Tree! The

service closed with the Benediction read by Vicar James. A cup of wassail and a mince pie was offered to all. Another memorable Carol Service at St. Leonards in 2023.

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