Churches to partially re-open (update 7th June 2020)

You are probably aware that the government has given permission for places of worship to reopen for private prayer from Monday 15th June. This is great news for all of us,

It is now up to individual PCCs and clergy to decide when and how it is safe to do that in each church. Some churches will feel that they cannot meet the necessary requirements to keep people safe, and will continue to remain shut. Others will open, but with limitations on how or when the churches can be used in this way.

Next Sunday, I will post an update with the decisions of each PCC, and (if the decision is to open the church) some general guidelines on how we can use the buildings safely.

Please bear with us as we try to find a balance between opening up your buildings for you to use, and not wanting to put anyone at unnecessary risk.

With blessings

Pentecost service

The service for Pentecost is now live via Youtube or the Online Services section of the website.

There is a version to download, but for copyright reasons I cannot include all the songs. You will find the video here on Saturday evening.



Ascension Day service – updated 21st May


Apologies to anyone who tried to watch this live. My computer claimed it was streaming, but I have since discovered that nothing was uploaded. I recorded the service, so will make an unedited version of it available as soon as possible.


This Thursday (21st May) is Ascension Day. Traditionally in Oldbury Benefice we have a service in St Mary’s, Calstone at 7.30am, followed by breakfast. Obviously that is not possible this year, so instead I will (attempt to) live-stream a short service from St Mary’s churchyard at that time. If you want to follow, you will need to go to YouTube and look for “Oldbury Benefice”. You should find an Ascension Day service set to go live on Thursday at 7.30am. Do watch if you can. If you want to click on a direct link, I think it might be here.

This is the countryside, so it is possible that the internet fails us – in which case I apologise in advance! Also, I haven’t got the means of showing you the words on the screen, just what the camera sees, so you might want to download this to join in.

I regret that public gatherings (and therefore public services) are still not permitted, so this is not an invitation to you to come and join me in person, just virtually.



Update on church closures (15th May 2020)

On Thursday last week (7th May), clergy were allowed back into their churches for prayer and to record services. As yet, this applies only to clergy, and I cannot yet make the churches available for private prayer—let alone services—but the opening has begun. I will let you know as soon as we are allowed to open them up for more people.

I am trying to get into each church at least once a week to pray, so you may see me around, or hear the bell rung (this is not possible in all the churches because some of the bells were left “up” and need to be checked by a proper bell-ringer before they are used).

We do not need churches to pray or meet with God, but I hope you are encouraged that the buildings are once again at least partially being used for the purpose for which they were built.



17th May Services

The services for this Sunday should be online shortly. This week I have recorded a slightly informal communion service, and a said matins (traditional language service). The sermon is the same in each.

You can download them directly from the links below, as well as paper copies of the texts if you want them (all the world you need will be on the screen).

Matins: video, service sheet

Communion: video, service sheet

Readings and sermon

They are also available on youtube again. Just look for Oldbury Benefice, and hopefully they will appear shortly.



10th May online services

Dear all

This week’s online services are available. This time from three places.

You can go to the “Online Services” section of this website, click on the link for 10th May and then on the text under the small video picture. Then click on the larger picture of the video to watch.

You can download the usual quality versions from this website (right click, and choose “Download as…” or “Save as…” :
Family Service

Or you can view the videos in Youtube at:
Communion –
Family service –
Youtube allows me to post larger quality versions which you can watch on more devices like Apple TV, but there are sometimes problems because of the songs (I do have the licences to show them, but Youtube doesn’t know that).

They are all the same, so just choose one option!

Villages Magazine

As you know, we have had to pause production of the Villages magazine for the next few months. However, there is still news we wish to share around the villages, so we will be producing an A4 newsletter every few weeks. The first one is available via the “Villages Magazine” link above. Do feel free to download, print and share as you wish; we are trying to make sure that those without internet or social media access are also informed about what is going on.

Matt, Paul and Adrian

3rd May 2020 service

The Sunday service will shortly be online to watch.

A couple of comments. First, it is just one service this week, and I wasn’t able to get too much child-friendly material for the topic that I could use (for copyright reasons). So I have also posted a link to a child-friendly version of the Gospel story if you want it.

Secondly, at the end of the service, there is a brief pause, and then another 8 minutes or so of sermon. Please feel free to stop before this if you wish, it is just some extra material that felt too long for the service, but which some might want to watch as well.



26th April services online

The services for this Sunday are now online to watch online in the “Online Services” section. If you want to download them to watch offline (or because your internet is slow), then right click (or press and hold your finger down for a couple of seconds if you have a tablet like an iPad) on the links below and choose to download the files. You can also left click on the links below, but the videos might be a little small.

Normal communion service.

More modern/informal service.