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Archive for November, 2013

Detailed work underway

Detailed work underway

The Priory Church is  a buzz with restorers, archaeologists and architects this week.

The Herbert Chapel tombs

The Herbert Chapel tombs

The Herbert Chapel Tombs which caused a Victorian travel writer to describe thePriory Church as the Westminster Abbey  of Wales are having their first clean in nearly 20 years. Michael Eastham and his team who restored the monuments in the late 1990’s are back on site for the cleaning operation, funded by the St Mary’s Monuments Fund.

Meanwhile in the Lewis Chapel  external East wall of the Chapel scaffolding will be erected later this week in order that our Church Architect, Michael Bartosch and his team can ascertain the soundness of the window prior to the installation of the new Winston Memorial Window. They will also do exploratory work to prevent water ingress through the east wall.

The Vicar, Fr Mark said, ” As stewards of this place we are called to renovate and renew it for future generations. We take our responsibility very seriously, and are grateful to those whose financial support enables us to do it”.

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Restorers mix mortar for repairs

Restorers mix mortar for repairs

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Over 70 arrangements designed by the Abergavenny Flower Arrangement Society and friends tells the story of our Lord Incarnation have been assembled in this ancient Priory Church.

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The Festival is Open to the public daily from Thursday, November 21st to Tuesday November 26th.

November 21st–23rd 10am – 4.30pm (Last entry)
November 24th 12noon – 5.30pm. 6pm Advent to Candlemas; A celebration in Words & Music
November 25th 12noon – 8.30pm (Last entry)
November 26th 10am – 4pm (Last entry)

Admission £6

A display under construction

A display under construction

Daily Services will continue as normal during the Festival.

SUNDAY

8am Holy Eucharist

11am Parish Eucharist, Preacher Succentor of Brecon Cathedral( Fr Michael is one of the floral arrangers)

6pm Advent to Candlemas: A celebration in Words & Music- will visit and reflect on some of the displays.

Depiction of the Christmas Massacre at Abergavenny castle.

Depiction of the Christmas Massacre at Abergavenny castle.

This event is supported by Abergavenny Town Council & Monmouthshire County Council

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A display under construction

A display under construction

Preparations are well under way for the  Festival of Flowers which runs November 21st – 26th  arranged by the Abergavenny Flower Arrangement Society and friends.

At the Festival of Flowers we are able to look at the four seasons which tell of our Lord’s Incarnation.

ADVENT is a time of waiting and anticipation for that much promised coming of the Messiah.

CHRISTMAS is the celebration of the Messiah’s birth, but in a very unusual setting in a stable.

EPIPHANY and CANDLEMAS are a showing of the Messiah to the world.

In this Festival we hope in a small way to show the ‘Word made flesh’ to this corner of the world. Light is the common thread that runs through these seasons, from lighting the Advent Wreath, through carols by candlelight, to blessing the candles on Candlemas, so candles will feature largely in our displays.

We have also attempted to show how these seasons and Feasts have been celebrated and marked here in Abergavenny, from the Christmas Day massacre at Abergavenny Castle to the present day.

Although the Festival of Flowers is  held in late November, I am sure that all who visit will receive a warm Benedictine welcome!

November 21st–23rd 10am – 4.30pm (Last entry)
November 24th 12noon – 5.30pm. 6pm Advent to Candlemas; A celebration in Words & Music
November 25th 12noon – 8.30pm (Last entry)
November 26th 10am – 4pm (Last entry)

Admission £6

This event is supported by Abergavenny Town Council & Monmouthshire County Council

Festival preparation is under way…and we are very excited

Advent wreath - a key component

Advent wreath – a key component

A depiction of our proposed Jesse Window, get set up

A depiction of our proposed Jesse Window, get set up

Where will we hang this? Where will it be decorated?

Where will we hang this? How will it be decorated?

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Road Peace Service

We will remember all victims of road traffic accidents at our annual service on November 17th at 3pm. Please do join us if you are yourself a victim, are in the emergency services  or if you would like to support victims.

The UK sees:

  • 2.75 fatalities per 100,000 each year               Unknown-1
  • 5.1 fatalities per 100,000 vehicles each year
  • 1,754 fatalitie sin 2012

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Remembrance Day Sermon

Preaching at the Remembrance Day Service at St Mary’s Priory Church, The Vicar, Fr Mark Soady said:

“Next year will see the start of commemorations of the the FIrst World War – a war which saw more deaths than any other, and since then there has only been one year when a British soldier has not

Uniform to work day 2012

Uniform to work day 2012

been killed in action.

BUT that is not the full story, with the advances of medicine more and more soldiers are surviving the wounds of war. These soldiers, male and female, have to go on to live their whole lives with these scars both mental and physical. We as a country and as  church have a duty to these people, a duty to support them for their rest of their lives. That is some responsibility! Locally the Welsh Warrior Richard Hunt Foundation  ( of which I am Chairman)  is doing just that , as are national charities. Last Summer I had the privilege to visit the Help for Heroes Funded  Tedworth House , which cares for recently injured soldiers.Based in the garrison town of Tidworth in Wiltshire, Tedworth House supports key parts of the recovery process by providing 360 degree holistic care to our wounded. Both residential and day visits are available at the centre. Such a welcoming, caring, peaceful environment is essential to recovery.”

He continued by referring  2 Thessalonians 2. 15, “The instruction in today’s Epistle to ‘stand from, and hold tight to the traditions which you were taught’ is an instruction to which all our serving soldiers, sailors and airmen could hold true.  Civilians will be more used to such instructions on the tube or on an airport bus – an instruction to plant both feet as solidly as one can. What  St Paul is saying is in times of  trouble one needs to have something strong to hold on to see you through it. Many of our serviceman and women have seen things that not human being should have had to have seen. We need to stand with them alongside their families and units and support them on the long road to recovery. That is the nest way we can show our appreciation of their service, so we may might have peace.

Fr Mark served in the Royal Army Chaplains Department from February 1998 to Remembrance Day last year.

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Remembrance Sunday

We will hold our Act of Remembrance at 10.50am on Sunday, November 10th followed by a Sung Eucharist.

Do please join us

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Archaeologist at work

Today our Archaeologist-in-residence and TV presenter, George Nash is doing an above ground survey in and around the Lewis Chapel.

Dr Nash(right) on site with his assistant, Tom

Dr Nash(right) on site with his assistant, Tom

Dr Nash’s work is prerequisite to the restoration work in the Lewis Chapel which we hope to start in 2014, and is essential for the on going conservation management of the site.

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