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Advent Sunday, 29th November 2020

Lockdown Response

Whilst we are still in lockdown we will continue to worship online, 10am on Sunday as usual, with a limited number of people in church to help lead the worship.

Click or tap on the link below to access our videos. You can watch YouTube videos on all computers, phones and devices, and even on your smart TV!

We will still be open for Private Prayer on Wednesdays as usual, 9am-midday.


Head to our YouTube Channel to join us Live at 10am on Sunday, and access other videos. You can do that by clicking or tapping on the link below:



Worship in church resumes next week

We are coming out of lockdown next Thursday, and this means that we will be able to return to public worship in church. Being in Tier 3 means that there should be no socialising outside of your household or bubble.

Online sign-up for our services will be as it was before the November lockdown. This helps us to plan numbers and contact tracing. Go to our Services & Worship page to sign up for upcoming services.

Good news and Goodbye

I am delighted to share some good news with you all in these difficult times. I am engaged to be married and we hope this will be at St Paul’s church sometime next Autumn. This seems very appropriate as it was where I grew up in the 70’s when my father was the vicar there.

Goodbye though, as Buster and I will be worshipping there too. I am ready for a change and for us it is a time of new beginnings. I won’t be far away though and will stay in touch and come back to see you every so often.

Thank you for your friendship, support and prayers over my years with you all.

Alison Stroud

A message of thanks

Dear Friends at St Mary’s, thank you so much for your cards, messages, love, sympathy and prayers that you have sent to me over the last week after Norman died. Thank you also for my prayer shawl, so soft and comforting. A special thank you to ‘Clare the Curate’ – she has been a tower of strength over the many months of Norman’s illness. Clare has spent time giving comfort and prayers and has been a true friend. St Mary’s Church may be closed but its heart is still beating.

Audrey Searle

Charities 2021 Shortlist (International)

Over the past few weeks have been voting for which charities to support next year. This week's options are for the International category. Click on a charity below to visit their website to find out more about them, then vote for the one you wish us all to support in 2021. This is the last week of voting. The results will be out soon!

  • Christian Aid are a partnership of people, churches and local organisations committed to ending poverty worldwide

  • Friends of the Earth are dedicated to protecting the natural world and the wellbeing of everyone in it.

  • MAF (Mission Aviation Fellowship) fly medical, relief and life-transforming help to vulnerable people in hard-to-reach places.

Please vote below



Christmas Cards

Please do not pop Christmas Cards into the pigeonholes in the church vestibule this year as you may have done in previous years. Due to the current virus situation this isn’t an option. If you are really struggling to deliver your cards this year then please do get in touch with the office or the staff team as we may be able to help you with this in some way.

Christingle Service

Our Christingle Service is a special service with our young people in mind, where we hear the Christmas story, and make Christingles. Each piece of the Christingle holds special symbolism to help children understand the importance of Jesus and the Gospel, and its relevance at Christmas time. You can read more about the history and meaning of the Christingle on the Children’s Society website.

If you are interested in coming, please sign up asap so we can plan for numbers.

Sending thanks

“We would like to sincerely thank everyone who gave us cards & gifts and sent their best wishes after Zoe’s arrival. We were both really touched. She is now a very happy two month old and we are settling well into family life”. Susana & James

100 Club November winners

£50 Olivia Pratt, £30 Bryan Young, £20 William Walker.


As we are unable to run the Traidcraft stall in church at present we would urge you to consider browsing the web site, particularly as Christmas approaches.

Much love, Anne and Rick

Light a Candle!

As in other years we will still be lighting candles on the church windowsills on Christmas Eve in memory of loved ones. The candles will burn continuously for 7 days. Each candle costs £5 and you can pay for a candle by Bank Transfer (BACS) as this would be the safest way during this time of pandemic.

Bank details are: HSBC - Sort code: 40 46 28 - Account no: 01444948

Please add a reference to the payment so we know that it's for the candles. You could also send payment by a cheque made payable to: St Mary’s Monkseaton, PCC and again, please put a note with the cheque to say that it's for the Christmas Memorial Candles. Do remember that the parish office isn't open at the moment so do not bring any cash or cheques into the church building.

An Advent Retreat with Poetry and Music

The Church Times are hosting an Advent retreat online on 28th November 2020 between 10am and 1pm, with a number of contributors including poet Malcom Guite. The retreat costs £10 or £5 if you subscribe to the Church Times.



Private Prayer

Church is open for Private Prayer from 9am on Wednesdays in church until midday for those who wish to visit during these times and all are welcome to attend. Face coverings must be worn.

The Parish Office

Dot and Carol continue to work from home. Phone messages or emails will be checked regularly and correspondence can be popped through the letterbox in the north door and will be responded to as soon as possible.

A Call to Prayer for the nation

During the lockdown, the Church of England has called on us all to unite as a nation in prayer every day at 6pm using the following prayer topics:

  • Sunday - family, friends, and loved ones.

  • Monday - Schools, colleges, kids and young people.

  • Tuesday - The elderly, the isolated, and vulnerable.

  • Wednesday - Businesses, workplaces, and the economic well being of all

  • Thursday - NHS and other key workers.

  • Friday - national and local government.

  • Saturday - the grieving, suffering and unwell.

Find out more from the Church of England website here.

The Bay Foodbank

Please continue to donate non-perishable items at Sainsbury’s & Morrison’s.

Plants Sale for Church Funds

Dave Haddock who has been selling his plants to us over the summer has now put all of his new stock on his new website, including an easy order form.

Or you can contact Dave on 0191 2524985 or 07976 687973. 30% of sales will be donated to St Mary’s, so be sure to mention St Mary’s when you order! So far £260 has been raised through this scheme. So spread the word!

Derek's Book

Derek’s book ‘A Light To My Path’ is available to order from Waterstone’s in Newcastle and from The new version has a foreword by Tony Garland along with a dedication and has some reviews at the back.



Your Prayers are requested for

Martin Cooper

Rona Lawrie

Emma Campbell

Olya Bouchard


Chris Taylor

Tina Tompkins

Rest in Peace

Michael Hampson

Norman Searle

Don’t forget, you can add someone to the prayer list by emailing or phoning as usual, but you need to get their permission before adding them to the sick list. You can also use the form on the website here to submit a prayer request online.




Come, thou Redeemer of the earth, And manifest thy virgin-birth: Let every age adoring fall, Such birth befits the God of all.

Begotten of no human will, But of the Spirit, thou art still The Word of God, in flesh arrayed, The Saviour, now to man displayed. O equal to thy Father, thou! Gird on thy fleshly mantle now, The weakness of our mortal state With deathless might invigorate. Thy cradle here shall glitter bright, And darkness glow with new-born light, No more shall night extinguish day, Where love's bright beams their power display. O Jesu, Virgin-born, to thee Eternal praise and glory be, Whom with the Father we adore And Holy Spirit, evermore. Amen.

St Ambrose (trans. J M Neale)

Performed by the Choir of Norwich Cathedral

© 2009 Priory Records courtesy of BFM Digital


Almighty God,

give us grace to cast away the works of darkness

and to put on the armour of light,

now in the time of this mortal life,

in which your Son Jesus Christ came to us in great humility;

that on the last day,

when he shall come again in his glorious majesty

to judge the living and the dead,

we may rise to the life immortal;

through him who is alive and reigns with you,

in the unity of the Holy Spirit,

one God, now and for ever. Amen.

A reading from the prophecy of Isaiah

O that you would tear open the heavens and come down,

so that the mountains would quake at your presence—

as when fire kindles brushwood

and the fire causes water to boil—

to make your name known to your adversaries,

so that the nations might tremble at your presence!

When you did awesome deeds that we did not expect,

you came down, the mountains quaked at your presence.

From ages past no one has heard,

no ear has perceived,

no eye has seen any God besides you,

who works for those who wait for him.

You meet those who gladly do right,

those who remember you in your ways.

But you were angry, and we sinned;

because you hid yourself we transgressed.

We have all become like one who is unclean,

and all our righteous deeds are like a filthy cloth.

We all fade like a leaf,

and our iniquities, like the wind, take us away.

There is no one who calls on your name,

or attempts to take hold of you;

for you have hidden your face from us,

and have delivered us into the hand of our iniquity.

Yet, O Lord, you are our Father;

we are the clay, and you are our potter;

we are all the work of your hand.

Do not be exceedingly angry, O Lord,

and do not remember iniquity forever.

Now consider, we are all your people.

Isaiah 64.1-9

A reading from the first letter of Paul to the Corinthians

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.I give thanks to my God always for you because of the grace of God that has been given you in Christ Jesus, for in every way you have been enriched in him, in speech and knowledge of every kind— just as the testimony of Christ has been strengthened among you— so that you are not lacking in any spiritual gift as you wait for the revealing of our Lord Jesus Christ. He will also strengthen you to the end, so that you may be blameless on the day of our Lord Jesus Christ. God is faithful; by him you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

1 Corinthians 1.3-9

The Gospel according to Mark

“But in those days, after that suffering,

the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light, and the stars will be falling from heaven, and the powers in the heavens will be shaken.

Then they will see ‘the Son of Man coming in clouds’ with great power and glory. Then he will send out the angels, and gather his elect from the four winds, from the ends of the earth to the ends of heaven.

“From the fig tree learn its lesson: as soon as its branch becomes tender and puts forth its leaves, you know that summer is near. So also, when you see these things taking place, you know that he is near, at the very gates. Truly I tell you, this generation will not pass away until all these things have taken place. Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will not pass away.

“But about that day or hour no one knows, neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. Beware, keep alert; for you do not know when the time will come. It is like a man going on a journey, when he leaves home and puts his slaves in charge, each with his work, and commands the doorkeeper to be on the watch. Therefore, keep awake—for you do not know when the master of the house will come, in the evening, or at midnight, or at cockcrow, or at dawn, or else he may find you asleep when he comes suddenly. And what I say to you I say to all: Keep awake.”

Mark 13.24-37

Offertory Hymn

O come, O come, Emmanuel,

and ransom captive Israel,

that mourns in lonely exile here,

until the Son of God appear:

Rejoice! Rejoice!

Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, thou Rod of Jesse, free

thine own from Satan's tyranny;

from depths of hell thy people save,

and give them victory o'er the grave: [Refrain]

O come, O come, thou Lord of Might,

who to thy tribes, on Sinai's height,

in ancient times didst give the law

in cloud and majesty and awe: [Refrain]

Latin, c. 12th century, (trans. J M Neale)

Communion Anthem

Creator of the stars of night, thy people's everlasting light, O Jesu, saviour of us all, regard thy servants when they call.

Thou, grieving at the bitter cry of all creation doomed to die, didst come to save our ruined race with healing gifts of heavenly grace.

When earth was near its evening hour, thou didst, in love's redeeming power, like bridegroom from his chamber, come forth from a virgin-mother's womb.

Thou camest the Bridegroom of the bride,

As drew the world to eveningtide,

proceeding from a virgin shrine,

the Son of Man yet Lord divine.

At thy great name, majestic now, all knees must bend, all hearts must bow; all things in heaven and earth shall own that thou art Lord and king alone.

To thee, O Holy One, we pray, our judge in that tremendous day, preserve us while we dwell below, from every onslaught of the foe.

All praise eternal Son to thee

whose advent sets thy people free

whom with the Father we adore

and Spirit blessed for evermore. Amen.

Traditional 9th Century (trans. J M Neale; arr. John Scott)

Performed by the Choir of St John's College Cambridge

© 2016 Signum Records

Post Communion

O Lord our God,

make us watchful and keep us faithful

as we await the coming of your Son our Lord;

that, when he shall appear,

he may not find us sleeping in sin

but active in his service

and joyful in his praise;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.


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