Harvest Festival in the Benefice - 2017

HarvestHarvest will be celebrated at churches throughout the Benefice at the following services and events:

Donhead St Mary & Donhead St Andrew

A combined Donheads, Charlton, Ludwell and the Cooombes Harvest Family Service will be held at St John’s Church, Charlton, on Sunday 17th September 2017 at 11.00 am. The Harvest Supper will be held on the previous evening, 16th September, at Ludwell Primary School. For more details, click here.

St Catherine’s Church, Sedgehill

The Harvest Service will be held on Sunday 24th September 2017 at 6.00 pm.
The Harvest Supper will take place in Sedgehill Village Hall on Saturday 23rd September.  Click here for more information.

St Mary’s Church, East Knoyle

Harvest Evensong will be held on Sunday 1st October 2017 at 6.00 pm. The service will be followed by Harvest Supper in East Knoyle Village Hall. For more details, click here.

St Leonard’s Church, Semley

Harvest Festival Eucharist will be held on Sunday 8th October 2017 at 9.30 pm. The Harvest Supper will take place on Saturday 7th October at the Barn, Grove House, Semley. Click here for more information.

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

Prayer Cycle and Prayer of the Month - September 2017

Do keep your prayer requests coming. We do not always know what is going on but we are always ready to pray for you if you just let us know: The Rev’d June (telephone 01747 828427, Julia (telephone 01747 829166) and the Rev’d Richard or the Benefice Office (both telephone 01747 830174).

This Prayer about our journey through life is by Canon Frank Topping:

Lord, you spent your earthly days travelling on foot.
Your greatest journey was on a donkey,
But you left behind a trail of hope, and love and peace.
At least I know that it is not the distance travelled that matters,
but the quality of the journey.
In all my travels,
Christ be before me,
Christ be behind me,
Christ be beside me,
Christ be at mine end and at my departing.

Ride+Stride - 9th September 2017

ride stride

The Wiltshire Historic Churches Trust (WHCT), which helps to preserve churches across the county, has an annual fundraising event. ‘Ride and Stride’ is a sponsored ‘tour’ of selected churches, coordinated at the parish level across Wiltshire. The purpose is to raise funds for the Trust, and also to promote enjoyment of our historic churches and the countryside in which we find them. As the name suggests the event can be undertaken mounted (bicycle, horse or whatever) or dismounted, at walking pace or faster for the more energetic.

This year, on Saturday 9th September 2017, walkers from Semley will be visiting our Benefice churches at Sedgehill, East Knoyle, Donhead St Andrew, Donhead St Mary and Semley (with the more energetic possibly also taking in Ludwell). The planned route will cover 15 miles, but there are options to shorten it along the way.

Anyone from Semley or other parishes in our Benefice would be welcome to join the walk, which will start from St Leonard's, Semley at 10am. Alternatively, you may wish to plan your own route around churches of your choice to raise money for this worthy cause. WHCT returns half of any amount raised to each participant's own church. Anyone who would like to contribute but cannot take part on the day would be very welcome to sponsor those that can!

Further details, including sponsorship forms and a map of the route are available from Andrew (tel: 01747 853 747). To contact Andrew by email, click here, and when the new window opens, click on the ‘Contact Form’ tab, and then complete the form.

Please come and join us on 9th September 2017 or sponsor us to support our beautiful churches!

To read more about the Wiltshire Historic Churches Trust, click here.

Prayer Cycle and Prayer of the Month - August 2017

Do keep the prayer requests coming - we are always ready to receive requests. Please contact The Rev’d June (telephone 01747 828427, Julia (telephone 01747 829166) or The Rev’d Richard (telephone 01747 830174).

This Prayer is from ”The Prayer Tree” by Michael Leunig

This is one I find challenges me and it is good sometimes to have to think about whether we really can mean the words of a written Prayer.

God bless our contradiction, those
parts of us which seem out of character.
Let us be boldly and gladly out of
character. Let us be creatures of paradox
and variety: creatures of contrast; of
light and shade: creatures of faith, God
be our constant. Let us step out of
character into the unknown, to struggle
and love and do what we will.  Amen.

Lammas Service, East Knoyle - 13th August 2017

Lammas LoafThe Benefice will be holding a special service on Sunday 13th August 2017 to celebrate Lammas, the beginning of the harvest. Details of the service are as follows:

  • Where: The Barn at Moors Farm, East Knoyle, Shaftesbury, SP3 6BU (by kind permission of the Reading family)
  • When: 10.30 am on Sunday 13th August 2017

Come and thank God for our Daily bread.

Click here to see a map showing the location of Moors Farm.

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

Ascension Sunday Service - 28th May 2017

pentecost sWe shall gather as a Benefice to celebrate the Ascension of our Lord at a special Eucharist to be held on Win Green (911 feet above sea level - the highest point in Wiltshire) on Sunday 28th May 2017. The service will begin at 11.00 am.  Please bring a picnic for after the service.

The Guest President and Preacher will be The Rev'd Canon Chris Savage.

If you are not familiar with the location of Win Green, click here to see a map showing how to find it.

Should it be very wet, the service will be held at St John's Church, Charlton.

Please do come and join us at the service - all will be most welcome.

Christian Aid Week - 14th to 21st May 2017

Christian Aid WeekJust a reminder about the Christian Aid Week taking place over the period 14 to 21 May 2017, and to say that a special carrier bag is hanging near the tills in Wrens Shop, East Knoyle, to receive any filled red envelopes you may kindly wish to donate to this cause. I will collect them up after that week and send the donations off to the Christian Aid office. I hope to put a similar carrier bag in St Leonard’s Church, Semley.

Thank you in advance

Suzanne Sandford

Rogation Sunday - 14th May 2017

Beat the Bounds

and Bring Your Hounds!

HoundRogation days are days of prayerful supplication before God. In years gone by, it was common for the Church to gather on Rogation Days to ask God to bless the crops being sown, to send rain and to give a good harvest later in the year. Often prayers would be said as the church processed around the boundary lines of the parish.

We will be celebrating Rogation Day on Sunday 14th May 2017 by beating the bounds - the traditional walking of the parish boundary - consisting of a three mile walk around Sedgehill. Dogs are very welcome - the more the merrier (and louder!).

We will meet at Lower House Farm, Sedgehill, SP7 9JF, at 9.00 am and at 9.15 am, we will set off. The walk will be 'buggy friendly' and 'dog friendly' so that all may manage it.

The walk will be followed by the Rogation Eucharist at 10.30 am, in the barn at Lower House Farm. Refreshments will be served after the service.

Click here to see the location of Lower House Farm.

All are most welcome.

Bereavement Service - 30th April 2017

candles2There will be a service at St Leonard’s Church, Semley on 30th April 2017 at 3.00 pm to remember those we have loved. The service will consist of a quiet time of reflection with music and candles, followed by refreshments at the Rectory.


Any offer of scones or cakes will be gratefully received.

Visit by Mr R Lees from Goa Anglican Centre - 30th April 2017

Last year, we were visited by Mr Richard Lees, founder of the Goa Anglican Centre. We had great feedback from his talks. He will be with us again on April 30th; he will speak at the 9.30 am Sung Eucharist at St Catherine’s Church, Sedgehill, and the 11.00 am Family Service at St John’s Church, Charlton.

All are most welcome.

To find out more about the Goa Anglican Centre, click here.

goa anglican centre

Palm Sunday & Holy Week 2017

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

EasterSunday 9th April - 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 10th April
10.00 am: Eucharist CW1 - St Catherine's Church, Sedgehill

Tuesday 11th April
10.00 am: Eucharist CW1 - St John's Church, Charlton

Wednesday 12th April
10.00 am: Eucharist - St Mary's Church, Donhead St Mary

Thursday 13th April - 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 14th April - Good Friday
2.00 pm: Good Friday Liturgy - St Mary's Church, East Knoyle

Saturday 15th April - Easter Eve
8.00 pm: Holy Saturday Vigil and first Eucharist of Easter - St Andrew's Church, Donhead St Andrew. 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 16th April - Easter Day
9.30 am: Easter Service - St Catherine's Church, Sedgehill
9.30 am: Sung Eucharist - St Leonard's Church , Semley
11.00 am: Sung Eucharist - St Mary's Church, East Knoyle
11.00 am: Sung Eucharist - St Mary's Church, Donhead St Mary

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