Benefice Services & Events

This section of the web site describes the services and events which have been arranged for the whole Benefice.

New Year — New Choir

The new Roving Choir for the Benefice - come and join us!

A new Roving Choir is being formed for the churches of Charlton, the Donheads, East Knoyle, Sedgehill and Semley.

What is involved?

singing choir sWe will be singing at the main Sung Eucharist at 9.30 arn each Sunday with a short rehearsal at 9.00 am, and an early-evening practice on Wednesdays:

1st Sunday of the month: St Leonard’s Semley
2nd Sunday: Donhead St Mary (but will return to Donhead St Andrew when it reopens)
3rd Sunday: St Mary’s East Knoyle
4th Sunday: Donhead St Mary
5th Sunday: St Catherine’s Sedgehill
(Occasionally we may sing at St John’s Charlton instead)

There may be additional special services for major church Festivals, and possible invitations to sing at weddings.

Come and join us and make a real contribution to worship in all our churches! It’s open to adults and children from about 6 years old upwards - so long as you can read the words of straightforward hymns fairly well. If you can’t read music already, we’ll help you learn. Try it for a few weeks - we hope that you will enjoy it enough to want to stay.

Have fun making music with like-minded people, and learn musical skills that you can use throughout your life. Sing a variety of music from simple unison songs to full harmony in the rich heritage of church repertoire - from Tudor music to living composers; the music will be chosen to suit the available singers. There will be opportunities to take part in festivals and training courses with other church choirs; and also for social and fun events.

Don’t worry if you can’t commit to every week, or would prefer to sing mainly at your “own” church - we’d rather see you sometimes than not at all. (But it will help us to plan if you let us know in advance when you can come.)

All choir members still in full-time education will be paid £1 extra pocket money for each practice or service you attend (paid monthly), rising to £1.50 as you gain more experience!

First practices: Wednesdays 10th, 17th and 24th January 2018 at Donhead St Mary’s Church: Children 5.30-6.30pm; adults 6-7pm. First service: Sunday 28th January at Donhead St Mary. Thereafter, Wednesday practices will be in the same church as the following Sunday’s service -
new members can join the choir at any time.

Want to know more?
Contact Jill, Choir Director: telephone: 01747 830625. Alternatively, you can contact Jill by email from this website - click here, and when the new page opens, select the 'Contact Form' to send your message.

Lent Study Course - 2018

Are you interested in attending a Lent Study Course?

The course is called “The Teaching of Jesus”.

lent sIt does what it says on the tin! The only trouble is that sometimes it doesn’t come out quite as people expect. We often think we know what Jesus taught but, until we look at his actual words and the context in which he said them, we can get it wrong. The Teaching of Jesus looks in some detail at five major themes of Jesus’ teaching as found in the Gospels:

  • Forgiveness
  • The nature and purpose of God
  • Money
  • Heaven & hell
  • What it is to be human

And, as whenever we look into the text, we find some surprises.

The course will be held on Tuesdays afternoons beginning at 2.30 pm at Coopers Ground, East Knoyle (tel: 01747 830456) on the dates shown below:

  • 20th & 27th February 2018
  • 6th, 13th & 20th March 2018

If you would like to attend or require more information, please contact Jo in the Benefice Office - click here for her contact details.

Lent Lunches - 2018

lent sA Lent Lunch will be held every Tuesday during Lent on the following dates:

  • 20th February 2018 at Hart Hill Farm, Semley
  • 27th February 2018 at The Rectory, Semley
  • 6th March 2018 at Semley Grange
  • 13th March 2018 at Hart Hill Farm, Semley
  • 20th March 2018 at the Village Hall, Donhead St Mary

Each lunch will begin at 12.30 pm.

All welcome - please do come and join us.

Benedictine Meditation - Lent 2018


Lectio DivinaDuring Lent, there will be Benedictine Scripture Reading and Meditation in the form of Lectio Divina on Wednesday evenings in St Leonard's Church, Semley, at 7.30 pm on the following dates:

-  21st & 28th February 2018
-  7th, 14th & 21st March 2018

Click here to find out more about Lectio Divina.

Curious? Come along!

All welcome.

Palm Sunday & Holy Week 2018

Palm Sunday and Holy Week will be celebrated at services in the Churches throughout the Benefice as follows:

EasterSunday 25th March - Palm Sunday
9.30 am: Palm Sunday Service with procession behind a donkey - St John's Church, Charlton. Click here for more information.
11.00 am: Sung Eucharist - St Mary's Church, East Knoyle

Monday 26th March
10.00 am: Eucharist CW1 - St Catherine's Church, Sedgehill

Tuesday 27th March
10.00 am: Eucharist CW1 - St John's Church, Charlton

Wednesday 28th March
10.00 am: Eucharist - St Mary's Church, Donhead St Mary

Thursday 29th March - Maundy Thursday
7.30 pm: Holy Communion followed by Watch of Passion - St Leonard's Church, Semley. The evening will begin with Holy Communion, and following this will be a Vigil until Midnght, finishing with Compline.

Friday 30th March - Good Friday
2.00 pm: Good Friday Liturgy - St Mary's Church, East Knoyle

Saturday 31st March - Easter Eve
8.00 pm: Holy Saturday Vigil and first Eucharist of Easter - St Mary's Church, Donhead St Mary. The service starts soon after dark with the lighting of a bonfire. It is the most moving and beautiful of the Easter services. The Benefice Choir will lead the singing.

Sunday 1st April - Easter Day
9.30 am: Easter Service - St Catherine's Church, Sedgehill
9.30 am: Easter Eucharist - St Leonard's Church , Semley
11.00 am: Easter Eucharist - St Mary's Church, East Knoyle
11.00 am: Easter Eucharist - St Mary's Church, Donhead St Mary

Please do come and join us - all are most welcome.

Prayer Cycle and Prayer of the Month - March 2018

The Prayer Cycle continues to pray for anyone in need - pleas let us have your prayer requests: Contact us: Julia (tel: 01747 829166), The Rev’d June (tel: 01747 828427) or The Rev’d Richard (tel: 01747 830174).

Everyone of us can pray to God so here is a little special prayer and exercise anyone of you can try:

Prayer of the Month: Just now the world is even more turbulent than ever and so this prayer by John Johansen-Berg is a Prayer for peace. It involves lighting a candle and setting aside a little time to think. Sometimes we need to do this to create some peace in our own lives. If there is more than one of you when you do this just change all the pronouns and make it ’we’ instead of ‘I’. it will be even more effective.

I light this candle for peace, Lord.
May its light scatter the darkness;
may its flame be a symbol of hope;
may its burning be a sign of faith
joining many other lights for peace.
I light this candle for peace.
May my life be an expression of peacemaking ,'
may I seek to be a light in a dark world,
pointing to you, Jesus, the Prince of Peace,
and following the way of peace.
Let the candle burn as a sign for peace,
Offered to you. Amen

During Lent, the Sunday that we call Mothering Sunday occurs. Why not come along and join us on that day. it does not matter if you are a Mother or not - everyone of us had a Mother so we all qualify.

The Collect or Special Prayer For Mothering Sunday

God of compassion, whose son Jesus Christ, the child of Mary,
shared the life of a home in Nazareth,
and on the cross drew the whole human family to himself;
strengthen us in our daily living
that in joy and in sorrow
we may know the power of your presence
to bind us together and to heal;
through Jesus Christ your Son, our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen

Benefice Pastoral Visiting Team

We have a trained team of visitors, both ordained and lay, who are available to visit anyone who would like a visit, a chat or some company

For more details, please telephone Sandra, the Pastoral Visitng Team Co-ordinator, on 01747 830471, or the Beneifce Office on 01747 830174.

Midweek Services in the Benefice


The following services are normally held on weekdays in the Benefice:

a.  Morning Prayer at 8.45 am:

  • In St Mary's Church, East Knoyle, on Monday mornings.
  • In Semley Rectory, on Tuesday mornings.
  • In St Mary's Church, Donhead St Mary, on Wednesday mornings.
  • In St Andrew's Church, Donhead St Andrew, on Thursday mornings. Note - midweek morning prayer will NOT be taking place at St Andrew's Church until the church re-opens after the building wok has been completed.

b.  Midweek Eucharist at 10.00 am on Wednesdays in Semley Rectory.

Please do come and join us at these services - all are most welcome.

Benefice Choir

singing choir sThe Benefice Choir is based at St Andrew's Church, Donhead St Andrew, but membership is drawn from across the Benefice. The Choir sings for six services a year and rehearses on the four Fridays before each service. Since its inception, it has grown to around eighteen adult singers. The repertoire is wide-ranging from early music to living composers.


Prayer Circle

Praying HandsThe Prayer Circle meets about every six weeks for one to one-and-a-half hours hours. Our meeting starts with a Prayer, a Bible Reading and some thoughts on the text. Then we review the Prayer List and bring it up to date. We end with a short Prayer and the Grace. We have tea and coffee so that we are sharing in every way. Our commitment is that we all pray regularly for the people on our list. One of us takes the annotated Prayer List home and updates it for the coming period of time.

Each month, we ask for information of need in the Parish Magazine. We also furnish The Prayer of the Month item for the Parish Magazine with a note of why the particular prayer was chosen. On occasions, we publish an extra article in the magazine and, with the person's permission, we tell of answers to prayer.

If you are interested in finding out more about the Prayer Circle, wish to join the group, or would like to submit a prayer request to the Circle, please contact Rev'd June, telephone 01747 828427. Alternatively, you can send Rev'd June an email from this website - to send the email, click here and when the new page opens, select the 'Contact Form' tab, and then complete the form.

Benefice Monthly Magazine - 'Parish News'

parish news sNews and events from around the Benefice of St Bartholomew are published in the monthly magazine 'Parish News'. If you wish to write a piece for the magazine or submit an advert for the publication, please contact the Editor, Suzanne, telephone 01747 830456. If you prefer, you can send an email via this web site to the Editor - click here to open the contact form to send the email.


Articles must be with the Editor by 23rd of each month to ensure publication in the following month's edition.

Partnership between Chalke Deanery and Diocese of Cueibet, South Sudan

Partnerership Logo
The Benefice of St Bartholomew is part of the Chalke Deanery. In 2012, the Deanery established a partnership with the Diocese of Cueibet, one of the Dioceses in the Episcopal Church of South Sudan. Click here to learn more about this Partnership, and find out about the visit to Cueibet made in November 2014 by a team of five people from the Deanery, including our former Curate, Rev'd Alice Goodall.