Keeping in Touch

Click here for our Service for Sea Sunday (5th Sunday After Trinity) (12 July)

Farewell Service for Roderick & Claire (12 July)

You can watch previous services here 


A Farewell Message from Roderick

In the Bishop of Exeter’s most recent letter he rejoices, as we all do, that our churches are slowly beginning to re-open both to the public as well as for worship, he says, ‘I hope that the vast majority of benefices across the Diocese will soon be able to open at least one of their churches each week for worship.’ We are all feeling our way in this and discovering how to be Church post lockdown. I have no idea what the new normal will be any more than retailers know what the new normal will be for our High Streets.

So many things have changed but life always asks us to change, to adapt to new ways, new ideas, the new ‘normal’ which we often hear talked about now. I will not be there to see how the Team adapt and evolve in the future, but I know that it will be done prayerfully and with a good heart. Claire and I have enjoyed these last few years with all of you and wish you God’s blessing as we too plan a ‘new normal’. May God bless us all in the future that he leads us to.


Reopening of churches for public worship

Revd Jane and Revd Sue met for 3 hours last Monday and again on Thursday to discuss initial plans for reopening our churches. These are being discussed with the wider ministry team and the churchwardens in the coming days and this will be followed by PCC meetings. 

We are aware this is an unsettling time and also that rumours are already circulating! Information about the exact plans will be made available when decisions are agreed by all involved. There is a considerable amount of work that needs to be done to ensure our churches are safe so please bear with this process and pray for all those involved. We hope to begin a phased opening of our churches in August.

Further information is available from the Church of England and from the Bishop of Exeter.

Sunday Services

A link for our newest service is shown above. We have two online services on Sunday12 July:

From the morning: a short holy communion for Sea Sunday celebrated by Revd Sue from her boat! the Gospel will be will be Matthew 13.1-9,18-23

From 2pm onwards: a special Farewell Service for Roderick & Claire with David Gunn-Johnson, former Archdeacon of Barnstaple as guest preacher. The Gospel will be Luke 19:41-20:8.

Links for both services will be available on our website on Sunday. 

Opening of Churches for Personal Prayer

  • St Michael’s, Teignmouth is open 10am-2pm on Wednesdays and Saturdays 
  • St Mary’s, Ideford is 10am-4pm on Wednesdays and Sundays 
  • St John’s, Bishopsteignton is open 10am-12 noon on Wednesdays & 3-5pm on Sundays

Whichever church you normally go to, you are welcome to go in to any of these churches at the days and times shown.

You will be able to go in to the building to sit in the quiet and stillness of the church to pray and reflect as you wish. All we ask is that you observe social distancing, follow the safety guidance inside the church and clean your hands before and after entering. Toilets will not be open. If you are shielding or suffering any symptoms of Coronavirus please do not enter. Thank you.

Before lockdown, the churches in Ashcombe, Luton and St James in Teignmouth were not normally open and the PCCs there have decided that will continue to be the case. 

It also continues to be the case that there will be no public church services for the foreseeable future but we will be continuing online services for you to join – they are available here.

There is also a new Quiet Space (with resources to use) in the churchyard at St John’s in Bishopsteignton which is open all day, every day for anyone to use. 

Preparing to move on

Our Team Rector, Revd Roderick Withnell is retiring on Sunday 12th July and he and Claire will be pleased to see anyone who would like to say goodbye between 2-4pm outside St Michael’s Church in Teignmouth. 

There is an urgent need of someone to cut the grass at the Rectory. The gardeners that have been coming have suddenly given up due to lockdown and we do not have a lawn mower. We don’t want to leave the Rectory garden overgrown as the Diocese will be looking for tenants. Happy to pay going rate, please can anyone recommend or help. Many thanks contact Claire 01626 779177.

Keeping in Touch During the Week

Regrettably, due to lack of use, it has been decided to no longer provide the telephone ‘Thought for the Week’. It has also become increasingly apparent that Team 'Coffee & Chat' has run its course. So there will no longer be a Zoom gathering on Thursdays. 

Midweek Communion - Tuesdays at 9.30am

For some people, attending a communion service during the week is part of their regular practice. We are now able to offer this form of spiritual communion via the internet as one of our clergy celebrates the Eucharist. If you would like to receive the link to these mid-week Zoom services please contact Revd Sue Astbury for details.

Telephone Prayer - Wednesdays at 5pm

Whichever one of our churches you go to, all are welcome to phone 0330 606 0403 – and when prompted, enter the Access Code which is 516129 followed by #. Revd Jane will answer, and you will be able to speak to others who also phone in. Calls cost the same as a phoning a landline number. Why not give it a call? 

Compline (Night Prayer) is now available for your use any day. You may like to say Compline on particular days as part of your rhythm of prayer.

Praying at home      

Information and resources can be downloaded here. If you would like a printed copy, please reply to this email. If you have a specific prayer request please send details to Mervyn Niblett, Team Administrator by replying to this e-mail. He will pass it on in strict confidence to the clergy for their prayers. The clergy will also be happy to pray over the phone soo please do contact them.

We appreciate this is a time of concern and please be assured of our prayers and support.