The monthly magazine of St Andrew’s, Devizes; Marston Chapel;

and Trinity, Market Lavington

June 2018


Ruth McGregor



Presentation made to Ruth McGregor at the Church AGM on 19 May,

with very grateful thanks for all her work as Church Secretary over the last six years.


From the outgoing Church Secretary


As I write this, I am coming to the end of my time as Church Secretary.  In 2012, as I took up the position, I looked ahead to 2018 when my tenure finished and it seemed such a long time.  But suddenly it is here!

And what a lot has happened in that time!  Things too numerous to mention, but some stand out.  A change of Minister, a farewell to Chris and Barbara after 10 years with us and a welcome to Gary and Marie and all the new ideas and life they brought with them.  And we also welcomed Marcia into their family.  We have celebrated Christmas, sometimes with a Christmas Tree Festival  or an Angel Festival but always as a real time of celebration; Easter Festivals, when we have woken our neighbours as we have stood outside singing, 'Thine be the Glory'.  We have truly made use of our building in so many ways.  It has been good to welcome visitors into our Church and I hope they have taken away them something of the love that motivates us


I want to thank all those people who have helped this journey, the Elders, those who welcome people on Sundays and do all the little things that make worship flow and become meaningful.  Music makers, flower arrangers, cleaners, and the list goes on.  And I thank Neil who has put up with me 'always' being on Church business.  Thank you to you all.


During these years, there have been many friends who we have said 'Goodbye' to, either as they have moved away or as their earthly life has come to an end.  But  we have also welcomed many people who have chosen to live in, or near, Devizes, and have made their home at St Andrew's.  So our life here has, and will, continue.  Praise be to God.


It will be hard for me - I am an active, doing person.  And after StAR (St. Andrew's Refurbishment) when I was Project Manager and then Church Secretary, almost the whole time since I retired from school life has been  on Church business. I will need time to adjust. So if you see me doing something that should be someone else's task, feel free to tap my wrist - gently.  I look forward to all that St Andrew's will offer in the future and together we will continue to worship the God who motivates all we do.





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From the Pastoral Secretary


To be a Pilgrim - The possible spiritual and health benefits of Pilgrimage


Recently a television programme followed a group of celebrities as they walked part of the Camino de Santiago.  The following extract is from a Canterbury Pilgrimage website:


'Pilgrimage is a meaningful journey to a sacred place.  It provides the opportunity to step out of the non-stop busyness of our lives, to seek a time of quiet and reflection.  it gives us the chance to 'walk through' those issues that we have on our minds, whatever they might be.  it is a time of simply 'being' rather than always 'doing'.


Pilgrimage can also be a highly sociable activity, allowing us to enjoy the company of others we meet on the road.  it gives us the chance to re-energise mentally, physically and spiritually.  And it allows us to reconnect with our cultural heritage and the natural world - as well as to refresh our faith or seek spiritual direction.


People go on pilgrimage for as many reasons as there are pilgrims.  And you don't have to be religious to go on pilgrimage!


Often, people go on pilgrimage when they are at a crossroads in their lives, when undergoing a change in the life's direction or relationships.  Others may be in search of a deeper spirituality, healing and forgiveness.  Or it may be that pilgrimage marks a special birthday, retirement, or other occasion for giving thanks.  It is also a great adventure with the chance to meet new people and see new places.'

Here in the west we are ideally placed to experience the benefits of pilgrimage on a smaller scale.  We have many options for finding sacred places.  For example, there are three ancient churches in Bradford-on-Avon which could be part of a short, if hilly, pilgrimage.  The Small Pilgrim Places Network has suggestions for quiet places to visit in England and Wales.  Why not look out for them when you go on holiday:


Jennifer Brearley



St Arbucks Community Cafe



We have recently passed the 5th Anniversary of the opening of a continuing and successful 'St Arbucks' community project in the Market Lavingtons.  The 'not for profit' cafe is now a much used social meeting place and community hub for the Lavingtons and local villages; and has been able to make donations to several local organisations (e.g. Youth Club, Cubs, Scouts, Guides, Tuesday Club); in addition to providing an opportunity for voluntary work and employment.


We are organising a celebration of 5 years of St Arbucks in July.  The venue will be a local church and all are very welcome, whether regular church-goers or not.  Details to follow and all suggestions are welcome at the cafe.


Jeannie MacMeekin

The United Reformed Church and the Greenbelt Festival  Fri 24th to Mon 27th August 2018 - Boughton House, Kettering, Northamptonshire 

For the second year running the United Reformed Church has gone into partnership with the Greenbelt Festival.  This year they are asking for knitted, crocheted or sewn flowers to decorate the tent.


Last year they asked for fruit and after one bunch of knitted cherries, I gave up!!  So I am having another go, as this year's request seems much more approachable.


If anyone would like to join me in having a go, please get in touch.


Eileen Robinson



  Air Pollution

Research done at Queensland University has estimated that 8% of carbon emissions worldwide are due to tourism, blaming wealthy people jetting off on foreign holidays. Our own government figures for the UK's carbon footprint from pollution of greenhouse gases states that from 2014 to 2015 there was a 2% rise which could be attributed to increasing emissions from goods transported from abroad.

Worryingly this relates to a similar increase in the number of deaths from asthma. The UK death rate is 50% higher than the average on the Continent of Europe; maybe partly due to the fact that 40% of the cars on our roads are diesel fuelled. Other health problems partly caused by air pollution are heart disease, stroke, lung cancer, pneumonia and COPD.

Exeter University has done a study of air pollution in the UK and finds that two thirds of the British population live in areas where the WHO safety limit is breached. Although this is worse in large cities, even rural areas have high levels due to the wind carrying particulates from diesel exhaust, road dust, coal and wood burning and industry.

One piece of good news; in April the National Grid went for 55 hours without needing to use coal to generate electricity.  Maybe that record has been beaten since then.       

                                               Christine Madigan                                                               



There is now a good selection of jigsaws in the library.   They are mostly 500 and 1000 piece puzzles.   A variety of pictures and subjects are here.

Please contact me if you are interested in borrowing any, and I will be glad to hear from each you.

Hilary Burn. (01380 724063)




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