All Saints’ – Open for Christmas
We are delighted that this year we are able to bring you a different look at the Christmas story in a Covid secure manner. This event, which is in support of The Children’s Society, will be full of fun craft activities for all ages. Following a one way system round the church, we will display a number of stations representing aspects of the Nativity scene, provoking thought/prayer/discussion on their relevance for us today.
There will be a Christmas Prayer stand where you can write the name of someone that you will be missing over Christmas and hang your card on our Candle stand. The names will be blessed by George, our Vicar, on Christmas Day during our Family Service at 9.30 am.
There will be a display about the Christingle imagery and a station promoting the Children’s Society and the wide reach of their work. There will be a takeaway station with a family Christingle bag. If you would like to make a donation to the Children’s Society, you may do this at www.childrenssociety.org/uk/how-you-can-help/donate
In light of government guidance, our Christingle service will be streamed this year from 4 pm on Christmas Eve on the All Saints Facebook page – https://en-gb.facebook.com/AllSaintsOrpington/ . You do not need a Facebook account to watch this service. Details of the service and hyperlink will be included in the Christingle bag.
There is a one-way system around the exhibition, social distancing, sanitisers are available and masks must be worn.
We look forward to seeing you!
Community Carol Concert – December 2020
The programme for the concert can be found here
THis concert is available to watch on Facebook at
All Saints’ Advent Calendar
Young Saints Creation-tide Project
During September Young Saints have been busy with their Creationtide project. Each child created a scene depicting an aspect of creation that appealed to them – from life in the seas to dinosaurs to space – all creation was covered. Pictures of their brilliant results are shown below.
During August Young Saints met during the 9.30 am service in the St Nicholas garden for games.
While the church was closed Young Saints met online every Sunday morning. Do contact firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to join them.
Paul Hiscock can be heard singing the Exsultet on FaceBook.
The Right Reverend Paul Wright, Archdeacon of Bromley and Bexley has recorded a short homily for us which is available on the All Saints FaceBook page and here
Our organist and director of music has put together an Easter Hymn with a few singers who have recorded it in their homes. Listen to it here
Below are some pictures of Easter gardens sent in by Young Saints
There are 12 eggs to spot in each of the two photos below
Some music for Holy Week – Ubi Caritas – ‘where charity and love are, there God is’ can be found on the All Saints FaceBook page.
Bishop James was unable to preside at our Mothering Sunday service which had to be cancelled. Below is the letter sent by him –
THE BISHOP OF ROCHESTER
The Right Revd James Langstaff
To the people of All Saints’, Orpington
21st March, 2020
Dear Brothers and Sisters
As you may well be aware, I was looking forward to being with you tomorrow, Mothering Sunday, for both of your morning services. However, the national suspension of public worship means that this will now not take place. And, though I might have come to say prayers in your church, that could only have taken place privately with no more than one or two others. I am, therefore, writing to assure you of my prayers and to offer a few words of reflection.
The challenges facing us nationally and globally at this moment are of a kind not seen for many decades. We are confronted with something which we cannot see, do not fully understand and cannot control. In our society, we have grown used to being largely in control of our own destinies, and so the new circumstance is both confusing and frightening. Indeed, I don’t think most of us have begun to realise the immensity of this and the impact it might have on our patterns of life, including the long-term effects on the economy. Taking part in a debate in the House of Lords this week, I was struck by the level of anxiety and by the seriousness of response from those who know what they are talking about – academics, economists and medical people as well as the politicians.
The gospel reading for this Sunday is John 9.1-41. It is the passage about the man who was blind from birth and receives his sight from Jesus. In John’s hands, this episode becomes a kind of parable about understanding – about ‘seeing’ in that wider sense. I think that over coming months we may have to learn to ‘see’ in entirely new ways. To see the world as a whole differently – a world in which a disease can travel across most of the globe in the matter of a few days; and hopefully to change some of our ways of living accordingly. To see how we relate to each other differently, perhaps learning how we can care in new ways, how we can communicate and even how we can pray. When God’s people of old were sent into exile in Babylon, they came out of it with new ways of worshipping and meeting together for prayer – less focused on the temple and much more local. What might we discover, how might we ‘see’ differently, as a result of this time as we are ‘exiled’ from our normal ways of living.
Or, using the Mothering Sunday readings rather than Lent 4, we would have had a passage from St Paul (2 Corinthians 1.3-7). Here the apostle praised God as “the Father of mercies and the God of all consolation”. He talks about how consolation comes from God in times of affliction and, addressing the Corinthian church, he says: “Our hope for you is unshaken; for we know that as you share in our sufferings, so also you share in our consolation”.
In all kinds of ways, this is a time of testing, of uncertainty, of affliction. Significant numbers of people (and not just those actually infected) are already suffering, facing challenges of illness, hardship, isolation and worry. On this day we pray for them and for all of us that we may know the mother-like care of God bringing consolation and new clarity in our seeing.
With my prayers and all good wishes,
James, Bishop of Rochester
Mothering Sunday video and music recorded by our organist, Phoebe Tak Man Chow at All Saints’ can be watched and listened to from this link – https://1drv.ms/v/s!ArpmXXBVhRw8vQu-o1OIZ4jbch5Y?e=6LewIr (paste the link into your browser if the hyperlink doesn’t work)
New Vicar for All Saints’
The Bishop of Rochester, in consultation with the Patron and parish representatives, is pleased to announce that the Revd George Rogers is to be the next vicar of All Saints, Orpington.
Please hold George and Yun Lee in your prayers as they prepare for their move and for George’s new ministry at All Saints’ Church.