Christmas Fayre

What a splendid afternoon we had last Saturday! You came in great numbers. There was a happy buzz as the cash tills hummed, you picked up conversations too long squeezed out by busyness, sat and enjoyed the excellent band. Thank you for contributing so generously to stocking the stalls beforehand. Teddy bears and bottles were in abundance. I thank the great team of organisers for all the work you put in in the preceding days and weeks. It was a real family-meeting of the whole parish. We are not yet sure of exactly how much the Restoration Fund gained by all the effort, but it will be over £5000. Thank you.

Catholic newspaper

It is important that we all keep up with what is happening in our church, both at home and abroad. So we need to have access to the catholic press. Unfortunately the publishers will no longer give us a sale-or-return service. So from January 1st we must pay for all the copies they deliver to the parish. At present you see a large number remain each week unsold. I am reluctant to add any more administrative work to our overworked volunteers. What would you think to the suggestion that those who wish to receive a paper should pay each quarter in advance? We can then leave a named copy to be picked up from the porch. Other suggestions will be welcome.

Health and Safety

The defibrillator is now installed beside the first aid cupboard outside the parish office. Last Monday more than 20 came and received thorough training in how to use it. I thank the donor and all who cooperated in providing instruction and installation. Your office staff spent best part of a day receiving first-aid training. Let’s hope neither will be needed. But you are being well-cared for.

Chigwell Convent Advent Reflection

On the 9th, 10th & 11th December, the 9.30am Mass will be a little longer than usual as Fr. Michael Copps will give a short Advent Reflection during the homily.

Children Liturgy

On Sunday 22nd December after the 10am mass the Children liturgy Catechists are hosting a short Carol Service in the Becket Centre. Children will be singing carols, accompanied by a guitarists. polish cakes and Christmas biscuits and mince pies will be served. There will be an arts and crafts table for children to enjoy. Everyone is welcome we look forward to seeing you.

Camp wild

Is organising a Christmas party on the 23rd of December & Camp Wild activities on the 2nd and 3rd of January 2020 from 8.30am till 5.30pm in the Becket Centre Hall. Prices and availability can be checked on or call 07414274015 for more information.

Altar Servers

We have some longer Albs now available in the Parish Office Also for those who serve at St Thomas’ we wish to update our records so can you please fill in the sheet provided with your details.

Christmas Fayre—Raffle Prizes

We still have some raffle prizes to be collected. Please check the numbers below and collect from the Parish Office. Pink ticket numbers 200. White ticket numbers 54, 113.

Plant sale

There are some plants that were not sold last weekend at the Fayre. You will have a second chance to buy some this weekend after masses. All proceeds will be going to the restoration fund.

Thank you

The Sisters of the Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary (Chigwell) would like to thank those who save used stamps for their missions. Your help is really appreciated.


Christ is King – yes. But he needs the growing young generation to make his kingdom. Our 3-parish partnership is working on a proposal to employ a professional to assist our young people. In St Thomas’ you do very well for the junior end. You have excellent primary and secondary schools and preparation for the sacraments. We saw provision for rainbows, beavers, brownies, cubs, guides and scouts on parade at Mass a couple of Sundays ago. We are looking now to provide for those just beyond school age and into the 20s. To know how, from the springboard of their faith as expressed in our parish, we can help them address the real world with its opportunities and challenges. They are not to be sim

Advent Talks

Brother Chris OFM will be delivering three Advent talks with discussion. The first of these will take place on 28th November on St Irenaeus on growing up as a Christian. This will begin at 7.30pm in the Assisi Room, upstairs in the Becket Centre. All are most welcome. Two more talks will take place on 12th December and 19th December.

Ecumenical Advent Carol Service

The Woodford Fellowship of Christian Churches is holding an Advent Carol Service at St Thomas’s on 8 December at 4.30pm. There will be a retiring collection for the work of The Redbridge Cold Weather Centre and Mary’s Meals.

Twitter and Facebook

We have a growing Facebook community. If you would like to join us go to Facebook and look up @STOCWoodford. If you would like to join us go to Twitter and look up @STOCWoodford.

Day for the Poor

Pope Francis has asked us all to dedicate today November 17th as a special Day for the Poor. It happens as you know that we had arranged a retiring collection for the poor of our parish, through the care of the SVP society. They need your money. The Pope is nudging us to take care of them. But then it goes deeper than that for our personal development. We are not true Christians if we do not align ourselves with the poor. St Francis did this in a radical way and so met Jesus more profoundly than almost any other saint. Pray for those who are poor. Think how you can live more simply – in order simply to discover what we are and the place of all creatures. It all hangs together as the principa

Assisi Lunches

Each month, for almost 50 years, a banquet has been provided for senior members of our parish and others. For the past 20 of these years Dolly Anderson has been the over-seeing organiser. She now wishes to retire from the task. We are most grateful to you Dolly for all you have done. Each month you managed to gather a very proficient team to give royal treatment to our guests. Thank you. I am delighted that Clare Hobbs has offered to take over from Dolly, so the good tradition continues. The next such lunch is on 29th November.

Modern Art

Last Thursday Pia Zanelli set up a most interesting exhibition in the Becket Centre with generous refreshments. Through clusters of day-to-day artefacts she conjured associations with the Pieta, the crown of thorns, sheep and power – and left each of us to work out our own understandings and reactions. I found it inspiring. It was I think an innovation widening the range of interests for which the Centre makes provision. A large number came through the evening, from different quarters and including many of Pia’s students. Thank you Pia and do come again.

The Christmas Fayre

Is especially important this year as we try to raise money for the Friends of St Thomas – the fund to pay for the imminent restoration work. I hope everyone will come, not least for the social benefit of meeting many we rarely meet with time for chat. And of course the organisers need help with setting up on Friday evening and Saturday morning, and then clearing all away and leaving the school spotless in the afternoon. That is the hard bit! But working together is fun. Try it.

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Parish Office Tel: 020 8504 1686
The Friary  Tel: 020 8504 1688




St. Thomas of Canterbury Church

557/559 High Road
Woodford Green
Essex IG8 0RB

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