First Eucharists




Following their ordination to the priesthood on Saturday 4th July, we have been enjoying our new Assistant Curates as they preside at the Eucharist for the first time.

On Sunday 5th July, Revd Rachel Noël presided at Communion for the first time at St Mary’s Church Fordingbridge. As it was the patronal festival inside the church, the benefice service took place outside, in between the horses and the tractors.

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On Sunday 12th July, Reverend Nicky Davies presided at communion for the first time at St Mary’s Church, Hale. It was a wonderful celebration, accompanied by the Hales Angels choir.

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Puddleducklings Summer Picnic

On Thursday the Puddleducklings took advantage of the glorious summer weather and enjoyed a picnic in the Rectory gardens. Lots of fun was had on the bouncy castle, as well as face painting and scrummy picnics.


Mummy Puddleduck together with a happy bat 🙂


Breamore School Baptism

On July 7th, the whole of Breamore C of E School walked up to the Saxon Church at Breamore for the first ever School Baptism Service.

4 children from the school were baptised during the Service, and were supported by parents, godparents, other family members, members of the congregations of the three parishes of the Avon Valley Partnership, and their friends, who also took part in the Service.

After singing a song chosen by those who were to be baptised, and hearing a reading read by two of them, they made their promises, processed to the font, and were baptised with lots of water, signed with the Cross, and given a lighted candle, and a shell with their name and the date of the Baptism on it.

Everyone was sprinkled with the words ‘Remember, you are a child of God, and loved by him’, and those baptised were prayed for and blessed.

It was a wonderful, joyful occasion, led by the Priest-in-Charge, Canon Gary Philbrick, along with the Revd Rachel Noel and the Revd Ian Sykes, and the children had a great time.  The parents said how special and moving it was, the staff were really enthusiastic, and it was a wonderful opportunity for teaching, on the day and beforehand, about Baptism.

We hope to repeat the event another time.





Our newly ordained priests

On Saturday 4th July Reverend Nicky Davies and Reverend Rachel Noël were ordained priests at Winchester Cathedral Both will continue to serve as Assistant Curates across the Avon Valley Partnership. Congratulations Nicky and Rachel. We look forward to continuing to enjoy your ministries within the partnership.

Deacons on retreat, preparing to go to the cathedral for ordination


Rachel and Nicky with Bishop Dan from Kinkiizi, before the ceremony


Inside the cathedral, preparing for the ordination service to begin


The vergers asked Elizabeth to help with the service too… here she is assisting with the flagon before communion




And finally, both are able to wear the stoles like this!




Our two newest priests



Fordingbridge Patronal Festival – Home and Country

Another amazing festival this year, as St Mary’s Church Fordingbridge was transported back to Home and Country 1915. The church was transformed complete with livestock as pigs, sheep, chickens and goldfish took up residence for the weekend! There was also a railway to enjoy, a dairy, exhibitions from all the local WI’s in their centenary year, a sweetshop, a fair trade stall and an art exhibition, as well as many stunning floral arrangements and a floral carpet celebrating 100 years of the WI. Outside the church there was a fantastic array of tractors and other farm vehicles to enjoy, as well as the company of two beautiful horses. As usual, this was all complemented by a wonderful selection of refreshments available in the church hall. A fabulous weekend enjoyed by many visitors from both near and far.

There are a few pictures here. To see more of what happened over the weekend, check out these pictures on flickr.

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