The Shepherd, July 2005

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IN our fundraising materials, we suggest that donors might like to sponsor a room which “could be designated in the name of a particular saint for a national community.” On the leavetaking of Pascha, 26th May / 8th June, we received an anonymous donation by CAF voucher of £40,000 (twice the figure we proposed for designating a room in this way). The donors ask that the room be designated in honour of St John of Shanghai and San Francisco, saying “his ministry was not strictly speaking national but spanned both the non-Orthodox East and West, his particular tribute to the veneration of the saints of pre-schism Europe could be emphasised, making it into a ‘national’ room for ‘Western’ Orthodox in general.” We would like, as there is no other way of doing it, to thank our anonymous benefactors for this generous gift, and to assure them that they and their loved ones will be remembered in our prayers. There is no other saint that we would have preferred this first of the four rooms to be dedicated to. May the prayers of St John and St Edward ever avail to bring them blessings. This gift, with some others which reached us after the blessing of the site by Metropolitan Lavr, has brought our total to £288.920.12, or approx. 45% of our target figure.

Another participant at the ceremony on 29th May has contacted us to offer sponsorship for the furnishing of the kitchen in the new house, which he hopes can be provided through his wife’s professional contacts. The mission parish in Birkenhead, dedicated to St Elizabeth of Russia, has also offered to sponsor the provision of the front entrance to the new house. We warmly welcome these initiatives and ask the Lord to bless you for what you are contributing to our cause. These sponsorship offers, interest payments and tax refunds will mean that we have now accounted for just over £300,000.

Mr John Clarke has kindly directed a donation that he received for giving a talk to the West Byfleet and Pyrford Conservative Women’s Club to the Building Fund.


SAINT BONIFACE’S DAY fell on a Saturday this year, and through the kindness of the Ven. Dr Trevor Reader, the Archdeacon of the Isle of Wight, and Mrs Theresa Westcott, the churchwarden of the Old Church at Bonchurch, we were permitted to celebrate the Divine Liturgy in the eleventh century church which stands on the site where St Boniface himself had preached. Not only did we enjoy this spiritual blessing, but also the fact that our eleventh century ancestors knew how to build, so that, even on one of the hottest days of the year, the church inside was beautifully cool. After the service, we picnicked on the cliff top overlooking Monk’s Bay.


ONE of our most faithful altar boys, Brigadier Laurence Bloom-Davis, who drives up from Croscombe in Somerset regularly to serve at Brookwood, recently celebrated his eightieth birthday. On the Sunday of All Saints, at the end of the Divine Liturgy, Fr Niphon presented him with a leathern bound book on Icons, embossed with his initials, as a token of our thanks for his faithfulness. (Although Laurence has such a long drive, he is usually here for the very beginning of Mattins and one of the very first people in church on a Sunday morning). The book was bound by Fr Thomas in our bindery at the Brotherhood.


On 18th June the Institute of Crematorium Managers, and on 26th June the Friends of Chertsey Museum, visited the church and were given talks by Fr Niphon, for which they gave donations to the Building Fund.

Archimandrite Daniel (Toyne) of Singapore (Œc. Pat.) visited the Brotherhood on HolySpirit Day and stayed over to the Tuesday. As a gift to our community he brought an icon of the Sweet-kissing Mother of God.


On Tuesday, 28th June, Fr Alexis gave an after Luncheon Talk on the Orthodox Church, St Edward and the Brotherhood to the Woking and District Probus Club at the borough’s Leisure Centre. About seventy members attended, and the club not only kindly took pains to make provision for the Church’s fasting regulations, but also gave a donation to the Monastery Building Fund in appreciation of the talk.



AT ALL TIMES in church one should stand as still and quietly as possible and vigorously train children to do the same, but there are times when there should be absolutely no moving about in church, and perhaps it would be helpful to remind people of some of these:- during the reading of the Six Psalms (at the beginning of Mattins or about a third of the way through a Vigil Service - when the psalm reader stands in the centre of the church), during any reading of the Gospel, during the reading of special prayers by the priest, in the Divine Liturgy during the Cherubic Hymn and again from the beginning of the Creed until the end of the consecration (i.e. until the priest blesses after the consecration with the words: “And the mercies of our great God….”), during any recitation of the Lord’s Prayer, at “Holy Things for the holy,” and at the blessing. If you come into church late, it is a good idea to stand for a moment and listen to ascertain whether it is appropriate to move around, venerate icons or offer candles at that point

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