Archive for April, 2013

FR Mark celebrates Holy Eucharist with 'the staff' before it departs

FR Mark celebrates Holy Eucharist with ‘the staff’ before it departs

Pilgrims gather around 'the staff'

Pilgrims gather around ‘the staff’

Pilgrims leave Abergavenny Parish

Pilgrims leave Abergavenny Parish

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The Diocesan Pilgrims staff is spending the night at St Mary’s Priory on route to St Asaph.  The staff and pilgrims will leave after the 9am Holy Eucharist tomorrow (Tuesday) Find out more.


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The Diocesan Pilgrims staff, enroute to St Asaph, has left the Cathedral Church of St Woolos, Newport it is due to arrive at Abergavenny at 5pm today (MONDAY)

578712_470961769641698_878022853_nThe staff will stay at the Priory Church overnight, and following a Mass at 9am on Tuesday morning will move off on its journey with the Bishop.


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We will host the Archbishop of Wales’ Award for Church Music Service and Awards at St Mary’s on Saturday afternoon, April 27th.

There are two levels of award: AWACAM and a Certificate of Merit.

The A.W.A.C.M. is a major award which is aimed very much at senior and professional level for those who are organists and choir-trainers. It was created in 1997 by the then Archbishop Most Revd Alwyn Rice Jones.

Archbishop & Vicar in Procession

Archbishop & Vicar in Procession

The preacher at the Service will be the Dean of Hereford,The Very Revd Michael Tavinor.

The Priory Church Choir will sing  Bruckner’s Locus Iste and Vaughan Williams Antiphons. The setting for the service will be Moore with the Canticles sung to Stanford in B flat.

Among those being awarded  an AWACAM are Tim Hill, Head of Music at Henry VIII School, Abergavenny  and the Organist at St Martin’s Church, Roath.

The Archbishop of Wales’ Award in Church Music will be presented to:

• Timothy Hill, Organist and Director of Music at St Martin’s Roath. He has been involved in church music for more than 25 years. He has established a high standard of music at this parish and has been instrumental in the establishment of the Music Foundation which will fund young music students via bursaries/scholarships. He has also established a Liturgical Choir and a Junior Section of this choir as well, encouraging boys and girls as young as seven. St Martin’s Choir sang at Westminster Cathedral in February 2013, performing a work which Mr Hill commissioned himself to celebrate his 25 years in Church music.

• Simon Pearce, Assistant Organist at St Davids Cathedral. He has been assistant organist since 1998 and during that time has played a pivotal role in the development of the choir. He has accompanied for BBC broadcasts on Radio 3,4  and the numerous cathedral choir CDs. He is the director of the Cathedral’s voluntary choir, the Cathedral Singers, who completed their first CD in 2004. He has also played an important role in the work of the St Davids Cathedral Festival, most notably in its outreach to local schools through the Festival Children’s Chorus. He also serves as Chairman of the RSCM in West Wales.

• Richard Moorhouse, Organist and Master of the Choristers at Llandaff Cathedral. He has served in this position for 12 years and has maintained the high standard of the Cathedral choir. He has developed good relations with the University and the Royal College. He has acted as the consultant for the new organ and worked tirelessly to ensure its installation. The Choir has made a CD in October 2012.

The Archbishop of Wales’ Certificate of Merit in Church Music will be presented to:

• Adrian Gillard, Organist at All Saints Newport for the past 40 years. Has also played the organ at Llanfrechfa for Evensong for the past 25 years.

• Alun Jones, Choirmaster at St Michael’s Maesteg since 1988. Recognising work in developing the talents of young musicians.

• Meurig Watts, Organist at St Mary’s Cardigan, founder of the St Mary’s Singers who have added to the liturgical worship of the parish.

• Mrs Isobel Scutt, Organist at Golden Grove Church, Carmarthen, for more than 50 years.

• Mrs Margaret Body, Chorister at St Martin’s Haverfordwest since 1979. Founder member of the St Davids Cathedral Singers, Chairman of the Dyfed Choir.

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..at Abergavenny Priory on April 29th. The Pilgrim staff will be laid in the Priory Church overnight.

Monday 29 April   Usk – Abergavenny 15 miles
passing Kemeys Commander, Bettws Newydd, Llanfair Kilgeddin, Trostrey, Llansantfraewd, Llanfihangel Gobion, The Bryn, Llanover, Llanellen, Llanfoist, Abergavenny

Tuesday 30 April   Abergavenny – Llanthony 12miles
passing Llanfiangel Crucorney, Cwmyoy, Llanthony

At the halfway point the Bishop of Monmouth will ceremonial hand over the pilgrim staff to the Bishop of St Asaph as the Year of Pilgrimage is passed from this Diocese to that.


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An exciting opportunity is developing in Abergavenny for an Associate Priest & Gap Year Students to join our group of four Churches in this beautiful market town, and to establish, and live among, a new monastic  Community based on the spirit of St Benedict. Based in the Trinity Vicarage, in a quadrangle of almshouses in the shadow of the Sugar Loaf Mountain, the new Priest and Students will join our varied, active and ambitious community.

We have a long Benedictine tradition and intend to create a modern interpretation, by building a community to live and work here. The Young Benedictines project will be led by the Associate Priest, and will invite young students and graduates to live in the community for a year on a rolling basis, doing outreach and Mission work, with schools, community groups and elsewhere, and encouraging a new generation of young people from the area to engage with our community. In addition the Young Benedictines will support the Churches by working for St Mary’s Priory House Company, which provides facilities, staff support and income to the Church. This will help provide their keep whilst offering them important employment experience and skills for the future.

If you are interested in these ground-breaking opportunity, please contact Fr Mark Soady, St Mary’s Priory Church, Monk Street, Abergavenny NP7 5ND or email  Vicar@stmarys-priory.org. Closing date: May 17th,2013

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THE Trustees (Parochial Church Council) of  the Parish of Abergavenny have published their report for the year ended December 31st 2012.

The trustees have pleasure in presenting their report and the financial statements of the charity

for the year ending 31 December 2012. The organisational structure, administration details and

governance of the charity are set out further in this report while the activities of the church form

the first part.


The Feast of Epiphany, January 6, saw the installation of the Reverend Mark Soady as Vicar of

Abergavenny. He serves St Mary’s Priory Church and its daughter church Christchurch as Vicar; St

Peter’s, Llanwenarth Citra, as Rector; and Holy Trinity Church, Abergavenny, as Priest-in-Charge.

The new Vicar of Abergavenny, Fr Mark Soady, and the Bishop of Monmouth at St Mary's Priory Church

The new Vicar of Abergavenny, Fr Mark Soady, and the Bishop of Monmouth at St Mary’s Priory Church

Schoolchildren from the local comprehensive came to St Mary’s for the second of these special

services, to commemorate Holocaust Day, when victims of the Holocaust and subsequent ethnic

cleansings were remembered. Links with local schools became a feature of the churches’ year. A

number of classes visited St Mary’s as part of their curriculum; Cantref Primary School squeezed all

its pupils in to Christchurch for its Harvest Thanksgiving; while four of the local schools celebrated

Christmas at St Mary’s through Christingle and carol services and concerts. Fr Soady also visited

the schools in his incumbency on a number of occasions.

Two further services saw a celebration of our journey through Advent to Candlemas, and a

thanksgiving and celebration of the 60th anniversary of the Queen’s accession to the throne. The

Queen’s Jubilee was further celebrated with a Big Jubilee Lunch in June when members of all four

churches packed St Mary’s Priory Centre to share a meal.

In July, members and veterans of the Armed Forces filled St Mary’s to commemorate the 30th

anniversary of the Falklands War, meeting on the date the surviving members of the Welch Guards

returned to this country in 1982.

Fr Mark ‘hit the ground running’, organising and officiating at four special

services in his first month. The first was the Memorial Service to his

predecessor as Vicar, the Very Reverend Jeremy Winston, attended by

800 people, from this country, the USA and Europe, and including four

bishops. An appeal was launched at this service for a permanent

memorial to Fr Jeremy, who had been Vicar of Abergavenny for 18 years.

Work is continuing on the project to create a stained glass window to

‘complete’ the Jesse Tree, of which the larger-than-lifesize wooden

sculpture of Jesse, one of the treasures of St Mary’s, may form the base.

We continued to try to enable ordinary people to live out their faith as part of our parish

community through:

• Worship and prayer, learning about the Gospel, and developing their knowledge and

trust in Jesus.

• Provision of pastoral care for people living in the parish

• Missionary and outreach work.

This year also saw two members of the congregation taking a step further in living out their faith. Philip Godsell became an Ordinand at St Michael’sTheological College, Cardiff, continuing his journey to becoming a full-time Stipendiary Minister, while Robert Wade began studying at St Michael’s to become a Licensed Lay Minister.

Worship, prayer and pastoral care

The Churches continued to achieve its objectives (listed below) by carrying out acts of worship

every day of the year, and by continuing pastoral care, through, in particular, the visiting of, and

on occasions taking Communion to, parishioners who through sickness or age were unable to

come to church. The number attending the main Services at the churches on Sunday is just under 150 ( the same as last year) , and the number reported to be recorded on the Electoral Roll for both churches on 31 December 2012 was 258 (2011: 252).

In addition to our regular services, we enable our community to celebrate and thank God in the

milestones of the journey through life. Through baptism, we thank God for the gift of life, in

marriage public vows are exchanged with God’s blessing and through funeral services friends and

family express their grief and give thanks for the life which is now complete in this world and to

commit their loved one into God’s keeping. This year, we have celebrated 31 baptisms, 8

weddings, with over  50 funerals conducted by parish clergy.

Eucharistic services were held at care and nursing homes and retirement complexes throughout

the year, as well as harvest thanksgiving and carol services at the OAP hall in the town.

In October 13 young people and adults were Confirmed in their faith by the Bishop of Monmouth,

the Right Reverend Dominic Walker OSB at a service attended by 156 friends, family and

parishioners from all four churches.

Abergavenny Confirmation 2012.2

The Parish Fellowship held evenings of reflections for St David’s Day, Lent and Advent which saw

parishioners gather to share poetry, prose, prayer and memories.

Ecumenically, the parish shared services of Compline and Stations of the Cross with the Roman

Catholic Church of Our Lady and St Michael’s, Abergavenny, during Lent, as well as participating

fully in the Abergavenny Council of Churches.

The Civic Services for both the Chairman of Monmouthshire Country Council, Cllr Maureen Powell,

Fr Mark with the Mayor receiving the Olympic Torch

Fr Mark with the Mayor receiving the Olympic Torch

and the Mayor of Abergavenny, Cllr Samantha Dodd, both of whom worship at St Mary’s, were

held at the church, with Fr Soady being appointed Chaplain to both.

Mission and outreach work

The year saw church members looking even further outward in their mission and outreach,


• St Mary’s starting on the process to become an accredited centre for a national marriage

preparation course, the first of which being scheduled to take place in February 2013.

• Members of our Mothers Union volunteering at a contact centre for children suffering

family break-up, which opened this year in Abergavenny.

• The Mothers Union also giving donations to enable disadvantaged children in the UK to

have holidays; helping to buy goods for people being re-housed locally; and collecting baby

items and food for asylum seekers in Newport.

• Families who had suffered bereavement during the year being personally invited to the All

Souls Service, with many taking up that invitation.

• The hosting of a weekly Alcoholics Anonymous meeting.

• Members of the church becoming, or continuing to be, involved with the 7Corners project

in Abergavenny, which aims to provide a place for young people to meet. This was done

through helping at the project, providing funds and by Fr Soady becoming a Trustee of the


• Taking a bus load of youngsters and adults to see the pantomime in Bristol.

• The large number of motorcyclists who meet at Abergavenny bus station on Saturdays and

Sundays being invited to a Light up a Life service to commemorate those who had died in

road traffic accidents. While their attendance at the service was disappointing, it provided

an opportunity to chat about the work of the church. The service itself was attended by

others affected by RTAs.

• Members of the Mothers Union and other parishioners contributing to Velindre Cancer

Care by knitting chicks for Easter, which were then sold in aid of the charity.

• The Parish Fellowship also contributing nearly 30 Christmas parcels of items such as

toiletries, gloves, and small gifts for older teenagers in Abergavenny who, through no fault

of their own, are living by themselves.

• Contributing to the Bishop of Monmouth’s Lent Appeal.

The Bishop of Monmouth designated 2012 as the Year of Pilgrimage and members of the parish

went on pilgrimage to St David’s Cathedral in West Wales, praying at the newly-restored Shrine to

Wales’ national saint.

A Blessing as we set off to St  David's

A Blessing as we set off to St David’s

• At Christmas, the congregations filling boxes with small

items as part of the Shoe Box Appeal, sending presents

out to Eastern European countries

• Parishioners contributing staple foodstuffs and toiletries

to the Abergavenny Food Bank, which opened its doors

in the town this year.

The Llanthony Valley also saw members of the congregations join fellow pilgrims from all over the

country for the annual Fr Ignatius Memorial Pilgrimage, also in August.

The church bells, described as the finest ring of 10 bells in Christendom, were rung each Sunday, at

funerals and weddings, and on special occasions, including the journey through the town of the

Olympic Flame. They were also rung by a number of visiting groups of ringers.

The Priory Centre Hall and Christchurch Hall continued to be resources for the community. As well

as hosting church fundraising events and after-service fellowship, Christchurch Hall was used by

the Tiny Tots playgroup and provided a place for refreshment after a choir of schoolchildren from

Sweden sang a Christmas concert in the church. The Priory Centre provided the venue for various

fundraising activities and celebrations, including St Mary’s Patronal Festival lunch and the parish’s

Christmas lunch.

St Mary’s itself hosted a number of concerts, including a series of organ and choral recitals in June,

the Gwent Bach Society concert in October and MA opera students from the Royal Welsh College

of Music and Drama in November.

Gwent Bach Choir

Gwent Bach Choir

Reference and administration details

St Mary’s Priory Church and its daughter church, Christchurch, is in the Parish of Abergavenny, in

the Deanery of Abergavenny and the Diocese of Monmouth in the Church of Wales.

Incumbent and ministers

The Incumbent is the Reverend Mark Soady. He was assisted by Associate Vicar, the Reverend Dr

Bernard Sixtus and two non-stipendiary ministers, the Reverend Dr Chris Walters and the

Reverend John Hughes. Dr Walters left to become NSM in charge of the Govilon group of parishes

St Mary’s Priory Choir took the Year of Pilgrimage to heart during

their Singing Week in August, with members of the choir walking

between St Mary’s, Patrishow Church, Llanthony Abbey and Dore

Abbey on the first three days, before singing Vespers at each

church, and then singing at services at Gloucester and Bristol

Cathedrals on following days.

The choir has also introduced choral scholars to its ranks, providing

training opportunities for young people of sixth form age, who

might otherwise not either be involved in choral singing or come to

church. The choirmaster is working with the music department of

our local comprehensive school to recruit potential scholars.

St Mary’s was visited by people from all over the world and

from nearer home, with many groups such as U3A, local

history organisations, Mothers Union and other church

groups booking tours to learn about the collection of

medieval monuments in the church – said to be one of the

finest in the country – and to sit quietly in a church which

has been a place of prayer for nearly 1,000 years.

in January, while in September Fr Hughes joined the Llantilio Pertholey group as NSM. The

parishes are also served by Licensed Lay Ministers Jeff Pearse, Gaynor Parfitt and David Meredith.

Objectives and activities

We review our aims, objectives and activities each year, looking at what we have achieved and the

outcomes of our work in the previous twelve months. The review looks at the success of each key

activity and benefits of activities in a wide variety of cultural areas. The review also helps us

ensure our aims, objectives and activities remained focussed on our stated objectives. We have

referred to the guidance contained in the Charities Commission’s general guidance on public

benefit when reviewing our aims and objectives and in planning our future activities.

When considering our activities for the year, the incumbent and the Parochial Church

Council (PCC) have considered the Charity Commission’s guidance on public benefit and, in

particular, the specific guidance on charities for the advancement of religion. In particular,

The objective of the Charity is promoting in the ecclesiastical parish the whole mission of the

Church. Encouraging and facilitating the practice of the Christian Faith by the Churches includes

the following:

• The provision and maintenance of the fabric of St Mary’s Priory Church, Abergavenny, and

of Christchurch, Abergavenny and their associated buildings;

• The maintenance of Christian burial places;

• Promoting the study of Christian teaching, practices and Scriptures;

• To provide means and encouragement to promote fellowship within the membership of

the Churches and the wider community;

In addition to the above, Christian devotional acts and outreach work is carried out, including:

• Visiting the sick;

• Conducting regular Christian worship in both Churches;

• The celebration of the Holy Eucharist, including on a daily

basis at St Mary’s Priory Church; marriages, funerals and


• Leaving St Mary’s open to the public to enter and benefit from

personal spiritual contemplation; and to be able to view the

medieval monuments and learn about the Benedictine

foundation of the Church and its place in the history of

Christianity and of Abergavenny;

• Administering the Sacraments to those unable to attend regular acts of Worship, to the

sick and dying;

• Supporting pastoral work;

Carols at an Old People's Home

Carols at an Old People’s Home

• Fostering ecumenical links between differing Christian denominations;

• Supporting the work of other charities through, among others, the Mothers Union and

Mission and Outreach Committee.

Further achievements in the year

Monies were raised by freewill offertory, fund raising activities and specific appeals. These were

used to support the work and administration of the churches and wider mission. Volunteers, who

helped at each act of worship to support the clergy, have donated their time. The churches expect

to continue with their acts of worship and pastoral care during 2013 and will continue to actively

try to increase its Electoral Roll, through its mission work in the community.

The activities of the committees and groups within the churches continued during the year. The

monies raised contributed to the general income of the churches. These activities are expected to

continue during 2013. All those involved in group activities and who assist with the main functions

of the churches are volunteers.

In order to continue to foster increasing unity between the different Churches and congregations

within Fr Soady’s Incumbency, regular meetings of the Wardens from all four Churches were held.

In addition, two meetings were convened to which all PCC members from the three Parishes were

invited. Arising from these gatherings, an informal grouping, Abergavenny Anglican Churches

Together (“AACT”) was formed in order to facilitate a co-ordinated response to issues, particularly

opportunities for wider mission.

The Trustees

The trustees who served the Charity throughout

2012 until the end of the year were as follows:

The Reverend Mark Soady Chairman

Mr Anthony Aurelius

Mr John Auty representative on the Diocesan Conference

Mrs Sheila Davies representative on the Deanery Conference

Mrs Margaret Dodd

Mrs Glenyss Holland representative on the Diocesan Conference

Mr Clive Jones

Mr Steven Lamerton

Mr Vernon Lewis

Mr David Marsh

Mrs Eunice Marsh

Ms Louise McLeod

Mrs Anne Parr

Mr Jeff Pearse Licensed Lay Minister

Mr Robert Phillips

Mr Andrew Powell

Mr Tim Pratt

Mr Robin Smith

Mrs Sheila Woodhouse

Ms Caroline Woollard representative on the Diocesan Conference and member of the

Governing Body of the Church in Wales

Mr David Williams

In addition(from January 2012 to the Vestry meeting in April 2012):

Mrs Sheila Bevan

Miss Elizabeth Boyce representative on the Deanery Conference

Mr Gareth Davies

Mrs Pansy Davies, resigned Ju e 2012

Mrs Amanda Dore

Mr Philip Godsell

Mr Stephan Grabner

Ms Beverley Jones

Dr Mark Mitchelmore

Sir Trefor Morris

Mrs Sian Philllips

Mrs Julie Wybron

Structure, governance and management

The Parish of Abergavenny is part of the Diocese of Monmouth within the Church in Wales. The

Church in Wales is a Province within the Anglican Communion and, as such, exists to advance the

Christian Religion through world-wide mission. The object of the Parochial Church Council is to

ensure that the life and work of the Church within the Parish helps to fulfil that mission, both

locally and more widely.

The Representative Body of the Church in Wales holds the land and property of the Church in

Wales, including St Mary’s Priory Church, Christchurch and other church buildings, and including

the Garden of Rest at St Mary’s, and their contents. The Representative Body is an exempt Charity

and was set up under Section 13(2) of the Welsh Churches Act 1914. It acts on behalf of the

Province in paying the stipends of the full time clergy, and administers the Church in Wales

scheme of covenanted and gift aid giving recovering tax on behalf of the parishes.

The Parochial Church Council (PCC) is not a body corporate, its composition, procedure and

powers being regulated by the Constitution of the Church in Wales as amended from time to time

by its Governing Body set up under Section 13(1) of the Welsh Church Act 1914. Elections are held

at an Annual Vestry Meeting which must take place on or before 30th April each year. All persons

whose names are entered on the Electoral Roll are entitled to vote and stand for election. Before

assuming office, every member of the PCC publicly makes a declaration that he or she will be

bound by the Constitution. The Members and Officers of the PCC, including the Incumbent, on

appointment become Trustees of the “Parish of Abergavenny Parochial Church Council Charity”.

The PCC also appoints the Priory Trustees, a body set up under a 1925 Deed of Trust to administer

certain lands and properties held by the Representative Body as Custodial Trustees on behalf of

and for the benefit of, the Parish. The Trustees report to the PCC and their accounts are kept

separate but consolidated with those of St Mary’s and Christchurch within the Charity Accounts

presented with this report.

Property administered by the Priory Trustees includes the Priory Centre, the Tithe Barn and the

Curates House. The latter two have been purchased in recent years and their freehold values are

shown in the Accounts of this Charity.

Commercial operations undertaken in the Priory Centre and the Tithe Barn are administered by

The St Mary’s Priory House Company Limited, a Service Company registered with Companies

House and in which the Priory Trustees, on behalf of the PCC and the “Parish of Abergavenny

Parochial Church Council Charity” hold 51% of the shares.

Risk Review

The PCC has conducted it own review of the major risks to which the Charity is exposed and

systems have been established to mitigate those risks. The risks facing the Charity include the

state of repair of the Churches and the financial requirements to meet its stated activities,

including payment of its Annual Parish Share, bearing in mind the fall in the numbers of regular

worshippers and the reduction in regular giving. The structure of the Churches is continually

monitored by the Fabric committee and the Church architect, and the finances are controlled by

careful budgeting and encouragement and appeals to the worshippers and visitors.

Organisational Structure

The PCC is responsible inter-alia for promoting the mission of the Church, the parochial budget

and all expenditure there under, the care and maintenance of the fabric of the Churches and of

the Garden of Remembrance, and for action on any other matter referred to it in accordance with

the constitution. The PCC is also the normal channel of communication between the parishioners

and the Bishop of the diocese. All members of the PCC are volunteers.

In addition to the election of members, the Officers, i.e. The People’s Warden, the Deputy People’s

Warden (St Mary’s) and People’s Sub-Warden (Christchurch) are elected at the annual Easter

Vestry; the Vicar appoints the Vicar’s Warden, Vicar’s Deputy Warden (St Mary’s) and Vicar’s Sub-

Warden (Christchurch) at the same meeting. New representatives are told of their responsibilities

and of the issues facing the Churches by existing representatives, and receive such additional

training as required. Other Officers, including the Secretary, Treasurer and Child Protection Officer

are appointed at the first meeting of the PCC after the Vestry Meeting.

As indicated, members of the PCC also serve as representatives on the Deanery and Diocesan

Conferences and the Governing Body of the Church in Wales. St Mary’s and Christchurch are active

members of Abergavenny Council of Churches and volunteers help run the Christian Aid Fortnight

activities in the town, organise Lenten study groups, and stage a town centre carol service.

The Churches are run entirely by volunteers as the clergy are remunerated by another charity

from the Share payments made by all the Churches in the Diocese. Without the work of these

volunteers, who, for example, enable St Mary’s to be kept open every day for members of the

public to visit and to pray, the Churches would not function.

Committee structure

The PCC met eight times in 2012 but between these meetings, a number of committees meet to

support the work of the Churches:

• The Mission and Outreach Committee

• The Finance Committee

• The Fabric Committee

• The Fundraising Committee


Regular inspections and maintenance of both Churches, plus the other buildings and the grounds,

were carried out during the year as required. The year also saw the completion of the work on repointing

the tower at St Mary’s.




The level of direct voluntary contributions at each act of worship, excluding tax reclaimed through

Gift Aid, amounted to £72,372 (2011: £73,841). This is a decrease of £1,469, or about 2%.

Other income included fundraising amounted to £156,870 (2011: £145,736). This included the

final part of the restricted grant from CADW of £41,658 (2011: £17,743) towards the cost of the

extensive repairs to the tower of St Mary’s and the initial fund raising towards the cost of erecting

a new window in St Mary’s in memory of our previous incumbent, the Very Reverend Jeremy

Winston. A total of £21,347 was raised in the year towards the estimated £140,000 needed for the

completed scheme.

The net assets of the Charity at 31 December 2012 amounted to £271,495 (2011: £307,107),

including freehold properties valued at £362,641 (2011: the same). The principal liability remains

the mortgage on the Curates House of £195,000. The decline in net assets during 2011 is again due

almost entirely to payments for the repair work to the tower of St Mary’s, mainly using restricted

funds from a legacy as well as the CADW grant.

The level of expenditure amounted to £264,854 (2011: £291,152) with £96,772 being mainly exceptional

expenditure on the repairs to St Mary’s Tower, completed during the year (2011: £90,479). Other

expenditure included £20,000 to purchase a new organ, but elsewhere expenditure was below the

figures for 2011. The Parish Share paid to the Diocese during the year was £90,812 (2011 :


Reserves Policy

The reserves policy of Parochial Church Council (PCC) recognises the need to hold reserves to

ensure funds are available to provide continuing mission should the income levels fall. Reserves

are also required to meet the future maintenance programme for the Churches and Church


A minimum level of reserves needs to be retained to ensure the PCC can meet its legal

commitments should the Charity be unable to continue due to a lack of a sustainable income

stream. The Officers of the PCC have established a policy whereby the unrestricted funds not

designated for specific use by the PCC or invested in tangible fixed assets, i.e. free reserves, held

by the Charity should be between three and six months of the resources expended in general


The Charity is dependent on donations, grants and investment income. The current economic

climate continues to be uncertain and may have a negative impact on future income streams.

Investment policy

The Parochial Church Council (PCC), through its finance committee, has considered the most

appropriate policy for investing funds and agreed to achieve the best available rate from our

Bankers, e.g. through the use of three-month Bonds, within the constraint of maintaining rapid

access to funds in the event of a call on them.


Lloyds Bank, 54 Cross Street, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire NP7 5HB, and, HSBC Bank plc, 2

Frogmore Street, Abergavenny, NP7 5AF.

Independent Examiner

Dorrell Oliver Limited, Linden House, Monk Street, Abergavenny, Monmouthshire NP7 5NF.

Trust Architect

Michael Bartosch, of Bartosch & Stokes, 1 Bath Parade, Cheltenham, Gloucestershire GL53 7HL

Approved by the Trustees

and signed on their behalf

by The Reverend Mark Soady, Chairman

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One of the Feast Days of our Patron the Blessed Virgin Mary has this year been BVMmoved from March 25th to April 8th, because of Holy Week & Easter.

We will mark the day with the following:

8am Holy Eucharist

1pm Meditation on artwork being exhibited from the Methodist Christian Art Collection led by Dean of Monmouth.  The Very Revd Lister Tonge, a world renowned leader of Retreats and Quiet Days, will help us to meditate on this Christian art which depicts Our Lord’s Resurrection.

 The Exhibition is open Monday-Saturday from 10am -4pm until April 19th

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This exhibition of important paintings from the Methodist Church collection of contemporary 545899_10151337951996333_135303864_nartists will open at other venues at the end of March and at St Mary’s Priory Church on April 3rd (and close on April 19th).

Other Venues.

Among the works is one by local artist Clive Hicks-Jenkins, who was born in Newport in 1951. We will display his painting Christ writes in the Dust: The Woman taken in adultery 

This work was commissioned in autumn 2009 and accepted into the Collection in early 2011. It owes its origin to the wish of two benefactors to sponsor a work that demonstrates the readiness of Jesus to take a non-judgmental stance. Here he questions the assertion that the woman should be stoned by questioning the right or even the worthiness of any one in the crowd to cast the first stone. They are all themselves sinners and by implication, if the woman deserves to die, they are worthy of death themselves.  But Jesus came to save sinners not to condemn them. He does not condemn the woman. So, she is told to go away and sin no more. It is when people know that they are not condemned, that they are accepted as they are, that they often find the resources to change their way of living.

Other paintings to be displayed include:

Euryl Stephens, The arising of Lazarus

John Reilly’s Feeding the Five Thousand

Francis Holland’s Crucifixion Polyptych

Ghislain Howard’s The Washing of the Feet

The Exhibition will be open Monday to Saturday from 10am – 4pm .The Dean of Monmouth will lead a Meditation on the Art work on April 8th at 1pm.

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The Gwent Bach Choir are in Concert at St Mary’s Priory on April 20th at 7.30pm

Programme to include: Mozart Missa in C, Schutz 3 Psalms of David, Hummel Te Deum

Tickets £10 available on the door or from Abergavenny Music

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