All Saints Margaret Street

All Saints Parish Newsletter 5th January 2018

Friday 5th January 2018

Dear Friends, 

A priest sent me an email a couple of days ago asking if we could meet, “now that the festivities are over.”  Anyone looking at our timetable this weekend, with High Mass of the Epiphany on Saturday, for the Baptism of the Lord on Sunday morning and our Epiphany Carol Service on Sunday evening will realize that for us the festivities are not yet over.  

Of course the shops were taking down their Christmas decorations on Christmas Eve – to replace them with proclamations of the January sales which now come earlier every year.  Since Boxing Day, Oxford Street has been a seething mass of bargain-hunters.  Now the offices in and around Margaret Street, deserted since before Christmas Eve, are stirring to life again.  Their discarded Christmas trees lie on the pavements awaiting collection and recycling. Our own remains in place in the courtyard for the Twelve Days of Christmas; although this year it has taken something of a battering from Storm Eleanor.

Scholars debate different explanations of the origins of our Christmas and Epiphany celebrations.  The evidence is patchy and so leaves space for speculation.  It is clear that the Epiphany was being celebrated in the East before Christmas was in the West. It began in the third century as a celebration of the baptism of Christ, then expanded to include his birth, his manifestation to the Magi, and his first sign: at the wedding at Cana. 

Towards the end of the 4th century, what has been called an “exchange of feasts” took place, with East and West gradually adopting each other's celebrations. At the point when the East adopted 25th December, the Nativity and the Magi were assigned to it. In January it focused on the baptism and the miracle of Cana.  When Rome accepted the feast of 6th January, it celebrated only the coming of the Magi; which is why you will look in vain in the Book of Common Prayer for a feast of the Baptism of our Lord. 

Epiphany in the West seemed to have a more historical and in the East a more theological character.  The East emphasized the baptism of Jesus as the manifestation of God to the world in his Son. At the Jordan the Spirit descends upon Jesus and the Father testifies to his divinity.  Western imaginations were captured by the exotic figures from the East; who became not simply wise but also royal.  

Scholars debate whether these feasts were a deliberate attempt to Christianize pagan festivities, or whether an independent Christian agenda celebrating the life of Jesus was at work.  What seems clear now is that there has been a consumerist re-paganization of “Christmas”.  To recognize this need not mean adopting a Scrooge-like “Bah, Humbug” approach or a sternly Puritan abolition of Christmas. 

A church timetable suited to the rhythms of a rural society does not work so well in an urban one, with people no longer tied to the rhythms of the land. The old celebration of “Plough Monday” immediately after Epiphany might still mean something in rural England but not in London W1, with no ploughs to bless or follow, only computer screens to turn on and sit at. 

We have had to adapt our Christmas celebrations to the rhythms of city life. No longer can we be rigorous about never singing a carol in Advent. The majority of those who work around us will not be here for most of the Christmas season. The same is true of a considerable part of our regular congregation, for we are a community of immigrants to London, and many leave it to spend Christmas with their families.

On Christmas Eve, I went to St. Mark's, Hamilton Terrace, at the far end of our deanery, to conduct a Crib Service. It was attended by around 150 adults and children; more than they had at church on Christmas Day. Here at All Saints, our best-attended Christmas service was not Midnight Mass or High Mass on Christmas Day but the Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols when we had standing room only.  The missionary challenge for us is to move people from being annual carol singers to Sunday communicants.  This does not mean that we have to capitulate to contemporary culture. We need the riches of the Christian year to develop and sustain a Christian “counter-culture”; vital if we are to have anything worth sharing with the world in which we are set.  

With blessings for Epiphany. 

Yours in Christ, 

Father Alan Moses
Vicar, All Saints Margaret Street


Those who are sick or distressed and who have asked for prayers: Asia Bibi, Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe, Stewart Lion, Amy Eng, Patricia Yartey, Victoria Ankrah, Jacqui Birt, Ros Tagoe, Simon Edsor, Renée Olivier, Harry Bramma, Michael Adam, Maggie Durran, Juliet Lavender, Martin Hale, Gordon Dickson, Jayne Forrester, Yvonne Craig, Thomas Vucetic, Joy Wright, Barbara Schiefer, Gwyneth Hopkins, Fr Philip Warner, Joao & Ivone Cavalcante, Rose Smith, Fr Graham Francis, Ken Hales, Maria Magdalena Gedmanaite, Beverley Ward and Sian Evans. 

Those known to us recently departed: Jonathan Lopez, Edgars Lasmanovics, Julian Berry, Nancy Gardner, Evie Weir, Katherine Edgar, Sandie Burwell and Eileen Prior. 

Those whose year’s mind occurs this week: Fay Ireland, Jill Harley, Anthony Bullock, Kay Leahy, Sylvia Scott, Vera Freeth, Hermia Mills, Ann Ind, Jack Finnie, Katherine Humphries, Michael Fleming, Anthea Candlin, Richard Candlin, Frank Hawkins Pr, Eric Bailey, Sophia Wickenden, Beryl Peryer, Charles Backus, Dorothea Graham, Vivian Curson and George Currie. 


Saturday 6 January
Procession & High Mass, 12 noon 

Preacher: The Venerable John Perumbalath, Archdeacon of Barking
Mozart Missa Brevis in F, K 192   
Cornelius, arr Atkins – The Three Kings 

Sunday 7 January

High Mass, 11am
Preacher: The Vicar, Fr Alan Moses
Walton Missa Brevis  
Verbum caro factum est 

Lessons, hymns, anthems and organ music (Bach & Messiaen) by candlelight, to mark Epiphany. 

Monday 8 – Friday 12 January
7.30am Morning Prayer   8am Low Mass
12.30-1pm Confessions   1.10pm Low Mass
5.30pm Confessions   6pm Evening Prayer  
6.30pm Low Mass  

Saturday 13 January (Church opens at 11am)
11.30am Rosary and Walsingham Devotions 
12 noon Low Mass 

6pm Evening Prayer   6.30pm First Mass of Sunday  

Sunday 14 January
High Mass, 11am
Preacher: Fr Julian Browning
Victoria Missa O Magnum Mysterium   
Marenzio Tribus miraculis 

Preacher: The Vicar, Fr Alan Moses
Canticles: Mathias Jesus service   
Elgar Light of the world 

All Sunday services and weekday High Masses sung by the Choir of All Saints - full details at


We have received a letter of appreciation for our pre-Christmas donations – toiletries have gone into the emergency store for anyone unable to afford these. Clothing has gone to the Women’s Day Centre with its great need for warm clean clothes for the rough sleepers visiting the morning drop-in. Smart clothes have gone to the Women into Work project to provide suitable outfits for job interviews and small gifts for Christmas were much appreciated by those in the refuge. The MP team says ‘your donation will make a vital difference to the women we serve here, especially in terms of their self-esteem and confidence’. Thank you to everyone who contributed items and delivered them to the Project. 

2018 All Saints’ Club annual subscriptions are due for renewal and can now be purchased. The Annual Meeting agreed to an increase to £5.  

NEXT PCC MEETING – Monday 15 January, 7pm in the Parish Room (after Evening Mass).  

ORGAN RECITAL – Sunday 28 January at 7.15pm (after Benediction)
will play all five movements – Allegro, Adagio, Intermezzo, Cantabile and Final – of Widor’s 6me Symphonie op 42 no 2. This was the first piece which inspired him to want to learn the organ. 


Resources may be found at:  

Friday, 19 January, 6:30pm Mount Street Jesuit Centre, 114 Mount Street, London W1K 3AY after the 6pm Mass in the adjacent Jesuit Church of Our Lady Immaculate, Farm Street W1 -
FILM SCREENING: 'May they all be one' by the Society of St John Chrysostom.
For the Week of Prayer for Christian Unity, Alexia Veriter of KTOTV (French Catholic TV) has made a documentary about the Benedictine monastery of Chevetogne in Belgium, founded to promote Christian Unity, by mutual encounter, understanding, dialogue, prayer and worship. The Chevetogne community continues to be closely involved internationally in Catholic-Orthodox, Catholic-Anglican and Catholic-Reformed dialogue and friendship. Newly subtitled in English, the 52 minute film hears from the monks and their friends about their work in the monastery, their study and ecumenical engagement, and their spirituality and worship of the community in its two churches - Latin rite and Byzantine rite.
There will be a reception, a showing of the film, a well-known speaker to introduce the work of the Chevetogne Community, and a chance to ask questions, meet some of those featured in the documentary and purchase a copy. Admission is free but a donation is requested.
More details here:

Monday, 22 January, 6.30pm 'Creation Care' — Churches Together in Westminster AGM, Salvation Army Regent Hall, 275, Oxford Street, W1C 2DJ
This year's Annual General Meeting of Churches Together in Westminster will include speakers and displays on the theme of 'Creation Care'. These displays and talks will be led by organisations involved with conservation and environmental awareness, including Eco Church, Shrinking the Footprint, ASWA and Green Christian. Refreshments will be provided. All are very welcome.  

FAITH MATTERS QUESTION TIME at Farm Street on Thursday 25 January, 6.45pm.  The latest in their series of popular panel discussions on matters of faith and life will address the topic of ‘Fake News: Faith in the Media’.    On the panel are:
Nancy Gifford (Global Media Director, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries)
Melanie McDonagh (Evening Standard)
Sarah de Nordwall (Poet, Bard School Director, and Catholic Voices)
Jo Siedlecka (Director, Independent Catholic News)
Brendan Walsh (Editor, The Tablet)   

All are welcome to an informative lively evening on how, as Christians, we might respond to the issues surrounding faith and the media.  Recommended donation: £10 on the door.  Online advance booking available:

THE COMMEMORATION OF THE MARTYRDOM OF KING CHARLES I, Tuesday 30 January - The Banqueting House, Whitehall - 11.40 am. Commemoration (outside the Banqueting House) and 

12 noon - HIGH MASS (upstairs in the Banqueting House beneath the Rubens ceiling).
Preacher: The Revd. Julian Browning. All welcome. 

The Guild Church of St Margaret Pattens - The Associate Vicar and the Churchwardens invite you to a special memorial service to be held at 1 pm on Wednesday, 31 January when we will remember the commander and crew of HM submarine K4 which sank on 31st January 1918 off the Isle of May, Fife. The service will be attended by relatives of those who perished, and conducted by Revd Andrew Keep MA STM. An address will be given bythe Venerable Stephen Robbins, Chaplain General of the Army (retired). The service will be followed by refreshments.RSVP to The Administrator, St Margaret Pattens Church, Rood Lane, Eastcheap, London EC3M 1HS. Email: Telephone: 020 7623 6630. Website: 

Our year-round fundraising efforts go to support three charities:

The Church Army hostels and programmes in Marylebone empowering homeless women into independent living through providing a safe refuge, training and employment opportunities.
The USPG-led UMOJA, HIV Project in Zimbabwe, enabling people living with HIV and Aids to have positive lives, and
The Soup Kitchen (American International Church, Tottenham Court Road) feeding up to 80 vulnerable people daily in central London.

Men’s clothing especially is needed by the Jesus Centre in Margaret Street, which provides a regular drop-in and range of services to homeless people. If you have women’s or men’s clothes to give away, please bring to Church and leave at the Parish Office so we can continue to help support our neighbours’ efforts. The Church Army also collects women’s clothes for their Homeless Hostel so all donations can be found a good new home! Thank you to those who have brought things in during the cold weather – those contributions of shirts, trousers, warm sweaters and blankets continue to be much appreciated.

Further Communications or Assistance from All Saints Margaret Street:- 
* If you would like to encourage others to take an interest in All Saints/keep up with what is happening here
, please forward this email on to them, or to people you would like to invite to services or tell them about our, which has a full colour 360 virtual tour for viewing the wonderfully restored interior of the Church – tour – before a visit or if unable to travel. 

If you know of others (near or far) who would like to receive this regular update on what’s happening at All Saints please encourage them to sign up for the email on the All Saints website – see the tab News & Events> Weekly Newsletter

* If you would like any pastoral assistance, please do not hesitate to contact: 

The Parish Church of All Saints Margaret Street, London W1 W 8JG
Vicar: The Revd Prebendary Alan Moses
T: 07973 878040 E: (Day off: Saturday)

Assistant Priest: The Revd Dr Michael Bowie
T: 07581 180963 E: (Day off: Wednesday)

A priest is available for confessions/counsel Monday – Friday from 12.30-1pm and at 5.30pm Monday - Saturday, or by appointment. (Special arrangements apply in Lent and for Holy Week.)

If you would like prayers offered, or amendments to the prayer list please contact:
Dee Prior, Parish Administrator (020 7636 1788).  E:

Or make use of the prayer request facility on the website at: 

Safeguarding Officers: Chris Self (Vulnerable Adults) and: Janet Drake (Children)

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