Diocese of Oxford

Letter from Churchwarden – December 2021

Roger Barnes

Dear Fellow Members of St Bartholomew’s

So, almost the end of another year, and just as we thought things were getting better re Covid, along comes another mutation to knock us, and the Government, backwards. Our plan is to keep St Bartholomew’s as safe as possible, so that means masks, social distancing, hand sanitisation, and generally being thoughtful and considerate. I for one thought that Christmas would be a little more relaxed this year.

Talking of Christmas, we are sorry that there will be no midnight communion but without our own priest these things are difficult to arrange. We have managed to procure the assistant Archdeacon for 9.30 Christmas Day for a not too lengthy communion service. Please note the time. If you turn up at 10.30 the church may well be empty. No service on Sunday 26th December, but don’t forget the Carol Service on 19th December at 6pm. This is always a firm favourite even though we will be singing with masks on – except the singing group of course, and there is the Brize Singers concert on 14th December which will be quite Christmassy. Please support these events if you can.

The progress towards finding a new Rector continues. The Parish Profile is complete and has been submitted to the diocese. Gill and I, as representatives of the PCC, are meeting with the Archdeacon and others on 1st December to discuss such details as adverts, questions to be put to candidates, and the intricacies of the recruitment process. The timetable proposed is roughly: January = advertise, February = shortlist, March = interview and selection. The February and March actions are dependent on us receiving any applications for an unpaid house-for-duty post. There is no guarantee that we will, but let us pray that we do.

Gill and I wish you all a happy Christmas and thank you for the support you have shown us during the latter part of 2021. Let’s hope and pray that 2022 sees some return to normality, and that we have our own Rector once again, although I must say that Dave, Johan, Ian, Mary, and John are doing a brilliant job – thank you.


God bless and stay safe.