Graham one of our Church Members has sent his impressions of Palm Sunday in Nairobi which are printed below. You may also like to look at his posts from his previous visit which can be found by following these links.
Grahams First Post
Graham second post
Grahams 3rd post
Grahams Final Post
Palm Sunday was a rather grand affair at Lavington; the Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church in Kenya was there for the entire morning [he took three services in a row] together with his predecessor and the resplendent Conference Secretary and an array of Supers and other fully robed clergy – I lost count at about 45 of them! They were a very jolly bunch and the 1130 service started a bit late as the assembled Bishops, clergy and the entire congregation processed behind a donkey around the church perimeter before turning full circle and entering the sanctuary [but not the donkey]. It took a while. The church was liberally decorated with palm fronds and we also each received one small frond.
The Superintendent welcomed his honoured guests and handed over to the new Bishop of Nairobi [his predecessor had finished his two 4-year terms and had retired] who then introduced himself and then introduce the Presiding Bishop who then introduced every one of his clergy assembled! This took some time. Each of the clergy turned to the congregation and there was general waving and joy to those with spouses in the congregation who were asked to stand up so we could see the many clergy-spouses there. It was interesting that several clergy who spoke had begun by saying that they ‘were saved in Christ’ or words to that effect [including Bishops] – an approach not often seen in the UK and rather refreshing. Al the hymns were modern-ish and could be found in our Singing the Faith and – sung by a huge noisy congregation – was very uplifting. You felt you were part of a large and very special event.
As often at Lavington, the choir led much of the service with much impassioned and lengthy extemporary prayers by the Choir Leader and lots of clapping during the service when anything celebratory was mentioned. As you could imagine, this all took time and it was followed by Communion where we filed to six located stations were Bishop and senior clergy were distributing the elements. I formed the impression that LUC is the largest congregation in Nairobi and probably in Kenya and it had a reputation for being an outgoing church and a generous C-church, supporting many issues in the country and beyond. They have a couple of mission in prospect at present, one in the local area and the other to Malawi! I am quite sure that, although not seen on Sundays, there must be a well-oiled business machinery running such large organisation and developing on so many fronts at the same time. The service ended at 1415!
My neighbour in church told me that the church sanctuary fund at about 31 million KSHs [around £225,000] was to enable LUC to build a new sanctuary across the entire plot, complete with an underground car park. The funds were built mainly on congregation pledges – I guess they pledged to give regularly or lump sums within a given period]. The funding barometer outside the church is growing as we speak! Every week the congregation is told how much is now in the Sanctuary Fund, how much in the current account and how much was taken in the last week, analysed by source –it is all put up on the screen and the Minister [or Super if he is there] describes progress, not only in monetary terms but also in people terms – how many were at Junior Church that day [about 250-2300 most weeks] and what the ladies were doing, the men’s groups and the many young people activities. From an early age, they want and expect young people to grow in the Church and take part in activities.
I hope you like the pictures of the ceremonies and the sanctuary. Remember, the overflow is such that always some have to sit outside underneath the sheets, projecting people from the hot sun.
We are pleased to welcome members of the Madding Crowd to Hedge End Methodist Church on Saturday 7th May at 7.30 p.m.
They will be Singing, Performing on Instruments of the Era, Narrating and Dancing to show us popular Music that was around at the time of the Author Thomas Hardy.
Hardys Father was part of the Music Group in Stinsford Church in Dorset. A Fragment of one of his poems describes the Music group thus:
She turned in the high pew until her sight
Swept the West Gallery, and caught its row
Of Music Men with Viol book and Bow.
For those of you not familiar with the works of Thomas Hardy the time we are talking of is approximately between 1800 and 1900.
More details about the Madding Crowd can be found at
The Cost of Admission will be £8 per person. Details of how to purchase tickets will be posted here nearer the time.
Our First Easter Event will be an Easter Themed Jammy Church which will take place on Saturday 12th March between 10.30 and 12.30 p.m. For more details about what Jammy Church is please see
or look at the Jammy Church Blog posts below.
There will be several events and services over the Easter Bank Holiday Weekend. i.e. between Maundy Thursday (24th March ) and Easter Sunday 27th March). These are detailed below.
Service of Light and Darkness also known as Tenebrae
This will take place at 7.30 on Maundy Thursday (24th March).The service includes communion. This service will be conducted by Rev. Geoffrey Scarlett
The Organisation “Churches together in Hedge End ” Hold a Walk of Witness at 11.p.m. starting in the Centre of Hedge End. Near the Co-operative store.
For more details about Churches together see
During the Service at 10.30 a.m. on Easter Sunday we will be creating a Floral Easter Cross. This will be similar to one we made in a previous year which is depicted above. If you would like to contribute to this please feel free to bring a few flowers with you to the service. This Service will be conducted by Rev. Geoffrey Scarlett. We will be thinking about Mary and Peter looking for Jesus.
The Church Rambling group will be celebrating 25 years of existence this year. It has decided to rename itself the “Walk and Talk ” group as nowadays they no longer ramble but walk along avoiding steep slopes and Stiles.
The Proposed dates for the walks in 2016 have now been published. Most Walks include a Lunch as well. If it rains hard the Walkers just enjoy the Lunch.
The Proposed Dates for the Walks are below.
Monday 28th March
Saturday 28th May
Thursday 16th June Evening
Tuesday 5th July all day
Thursday 21st July Evening
Thursday 4th August Evening
Thursday 18th August Evening
Monday 29th August
Saturday 17th September
Saturday 22nd October
Monday 2nd January 2017
You are welcome to join us.Please look in the Paper Church Notices nearer the time for details of meeting places and who to contact.
We have got Questions
Do you know the Answers ???
Come and enjoy a Quiz evening on Friday 22nd April, 6.45 for 7.00 p.m. prompt start in the social hall (side entrance). Either make up a team of up to 6 or come as an individual and join a team on the night. The evening will include a Fish and Chip Supper. So we can get the correct amount of Fish and Chips it will be necessary to purchase a ticket at a cost of £10 per person. For tickets please speak to the person named on the Posters in the Church or leave a message on 07773498214 Please order by the Sunday before so we can make plans or you may not get any supper. Please come and show us what you know.
This Service is run by Churches together in Hedge End and Botley as part of the Womans World day of prayer. The idea of Womans World day of prayer is that identical services take place in the same 24 hour period throughout the world. This year the service has been arranged by the Women of Cuba. In recent years the Women of the Bahamas and Egypt have arranged the service. The Womans World Day of Prayer was started by a group of Methodists and Presbyterians in America in 1887, the first service in England was held in 1932.
More details of the National Movement can be found on there website at
This years service will take place at 7.30 p.m. on Friday 4th March at the “Our Lady of the Assumption”the Roman Catholic Church in Freegrounds road Hedge End. The Church will be open from 6.15 p.m. with a welcome cafe. All are invited to attend including Men. The Theme for the service is” Receive Children. Receive Me.
The Speaker is Mrs Alison Judd who is an area officer for Methodist Woman in Brtain.
On Sunday 31st January as part of the Sunday Service we will be visited by Mr Eric Stevens who will be talking about one of our church charities, the Bible Society.
Also, Eric will be bringing publicity material as well as greeting cards from his “Art for Bibles Gallery” – all proceeds of which will go to the Bible Society. These will be left in the hall for people to peruse after the service.
The Bible Society basic aims are to make the Bible available to anyone who wishes to read it throughout the World. They achieve this by giving out Bibles, and Translating the Bible into the Languages used in each individual country. They also use the Bible as a resource to teach people to read.
The above is a very brief resume of their aims For More details about the Bible Society Please see there website
On Saturday 13th February between 10.30 a.m. and 12.30 p.m. we will be holding our next Jammy Church. During the morning we will be exploring Psalm 23 which starts with the lines
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.
He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.
Jammy Church is our once monthly activity session for children, their families and the young at heart. There will be various activities and crafts to take part in and some food to eat. You do not need to attend all the session; you could just pop in to see what we are up to.
More information can be found on the Jammy Church Facebook page.
The Picture above is from the January Jammy which was on creation.
Our Thanks to everyone who works so hard to make Jammy possible every Month, including the lovely lady who takes the pictures.
On Saturday 9th January we will be holding our next Jammy Church. This event will take place between 10.30 and 12.30 p.m.
We shall be thinking about ” The Creation”. Whilst doing so we in turn will be creating by taking part in the various crafting and other Activities. Food will also be being created which many people will get a chance to eat.
Jammy Church is our once monthly activity session for children, their families and the young at heart. . You do not need to attend all the session; you could just pop in to see what we are up to.
More information can be found on the Jammy Church Facebook page.
The Picture above was taken at a previous Jammy Church.