St Peters 21th Century

St. Peters Church Addingham

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In the incumbency of Revd. Andrew Tawn, we have finally seen the completion, after about 20 years, of the Church Hall Extension which was dedicated on 22nd January 2000 by the Bishop of Bradford, the Right Reverend David Smith.

St. Peter’s has been chosen to be part of a Diocesan pilot scheme to introduce young people to communion before confirmation, and the children’s voices, prayers and dedication are a joy and a challenge in our worship and in the life of the church.

In 2001, the Information Area at the back of church, with lending library, notice boards, prayer book and Book of Remembrance, has been completed and dedicated after many years of planning, and in 2002 the organ has been restored, in memory of the Rev. Michael Casterton, with funding by Friends of St. Peter’s Addingham (FOSPA) and parishioners.

2003 started with a visit, on January 1st., from our new Bishop, David James, calling in at St. Peter’s for prayers and tea on his walking pilgrimage on the way to his service of welcome at the Cathedral. In February there was an inaugural recital for the organ. A new floor has been built in the Ringing Chamber in the Tower, funded by FOSPA, which makes rope-handling easier for the bell ringers. Morning Prayer is now said at St. Peter’s on Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday.

In 2004 there were more confirmations, the Jigsaw group was started for teenagers (jointly with the Methodist Church), with a new group called Bats in the Belfry on alternate Sunday mornings. Our annual Discussion Day was entitled “Being part of a growing church”. “What’s the story” taught us a lot about characters in the Bible. In 2005, Bishop David led our discussion day, more people were confirmed, and two of our congregation were accepted to be trained for the ministry. Our children enjoyed the special thought-provoking sessions of “Godly Play” on Sundays. We were saddened by the untimely loss of our Reader and friend Gil, whose memory enriches our life at St. Peter’s.

2006 has seen the 25th anniversary of FOSPA teas (welcoming one and all each summer Sunday afternoon for a cup of tea, and a walk in our beautiful grounds), and Paul has become our assistant Priest.

In 2007, two members of our congregation were ordained : Louise is now serving in Skipton, and we are delighted that Barbara is our Curate at St. Peter’s working alongside Andrew and Paul. We continue to explore and celebrate the Christian heritage of Addingham through the project “Creating a Christian TimeLine in Addingham” – including services, workshops, a village church trail, dendro-dating of the church roof beams and an excavation of the Saxon Christian burial ground. Bishop Buchanan was here again for more confirmations, and the year ended with “What’s the Story… about Christmas”.

2008 saw Barbara’s priesting, and the continuation of the “Christian TimeLine in Addingham” with a raft of activities including a “historic music” cd, information leaflets and a wonderful “strolling play” about the history of the church from it earliest times to now. The memorial carvings, set into the wall of the extended hall, commemorating the burials of our Saxon ancestors and celebrating the beauty of the site and our Christian faith. were blessed by the Bishop. They are inscribed with a text adapted from the Venerable Bede : “we cannot be so wise that we have no need to consider what will be decided for our souls”. We have been saddened by bereavements and gladdened to worship with friends old and new. An accidental fire had destroyed the hall roof, but no-one was hurt and much was salvaged. Events during the rest of the year took place in the Church and in premises kindly shared by friends. The hall will be re-opened in Spring 2009. The Methodist Minister Revd Arnold Clay now shares in leading the Wednesday morning Holy Communion. Children now meet in┬áHands-On Church, Bats in the Belfry, Junior Church, LEAF (Learning Everything About Faith) and Junior Choir, and assist at Communion on the first Sunday each month.

Under Revd. Andrew Tawn we have a thriving, lively modern church, solidly built on its ancient traditions and we look forward with confidence to the next 1000 years.