Archive for July, 2016

We will mark the Feast of St Benedict with a High Mass on Monday at 8.30am.

In keeping with Benedictine Communities across the world The Holywell Community which follows the spirit of The Rule of St Benedict. and is based at the Priory will lead the Mass.


St Mary’s Priory was founded in 1087 as a Benedictine Priory. The Holywell Community was founded in 2014.

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Our Patron HRH The Prince of Wales was in attendance when the Bishop of Monmouth Dedicated the new Jesse Window in Memory of Dean Jeremy Winston on July 7th.


The Bishop Dedicates the new Window

The Bishop praised Helen Whitaker for her design of the Window . He commented how Dean Jeremy was  great teller of stories and how fitting it was to have a window which also tells many stories.


The Vicar Canon Mark Soady opened the service with these words:

We have come together as the family of God in this ancient monastic house, to celebrate the dedication of this new window. In this service we hear and receive the word of God, and we offer to Him our thanksgiving for the life and witness of our departed brother Jeremy.

Later in the prayers Deacon Sarah Gillard-Faulkner would thank God for the gift of craftsman and for the Royal Family. In a prayer of thanks for Dean Jeremy’s life she said:

giving thanks especially for his compassion and hospitality, for the gifts of leadership and musicianship with which you blest him. May his example of faithfulness encourage us in our lives of discipleship,

The Choir sang a new piece of Music written by their Director of Music Tim Pratt O Radix.

The Lord Rowe-Beddoe, President of the Winston Memorial Trust read from the Prophecy of Isaiah.

After the Service His Royal Highness met the Appeal Committee, Major Donors and Contractors. He also spent time with the Holywell Community.


Br Michael listens in as HRH speaks to other members of the Holywell Community

Fr Mark expressing his thanks to His Royal Highness said, “Given the interest The Prince of Wales has taken in the design and installation of the Jesse Window we could not have dedicated it with out His Royal Highness being present.”


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As the day of the Dedication of the new window dawns images of the new window are released.

Virgin and Child

THE CENTRE PIECE:  The Blessed Virgin with Baby Jesus

St Teilo


The Bishop of Monmouth will Dedicate the Window at around 12.30pm today in the presence of HRH The Prince of Wales.

King David.jpg

King David – with his Welsh Harp

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St Mary’s Priory Church is pleased to be among the largest receipts of funds from the Listed Places of Worship Roof Repair Grant in Wales.


Welcoming the news Canon Mark Soady, Vicar said:

This grant will enable us to ensure that the roof of the Lewis Chapel is put back in sound order. This Chapel is a key part of the Priory Church housing as it does the new Jesse Window (to be dedicated on Thursday in the presence of HRH The Prince of Wales) and the tomb of Dr David Lewis, First Principal of Jesus College, Oxford.

This funding enables us to complete another phase in our ongoing restoration and development of this Chapel.

I am grateful to our Architects Arnold & Bartosch for their help in securing this funding, as well as to the home team headed up by our Treasurer Robin Smith.

This government-sponsored fund was set up to help make the UK’s listed places of worship weathertight, safe and open for use. It is administered by the National Heritage Memorial Fund on behalf of the Department for Culture, Media and Sport.

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As the Day of the Service of the Dedication of the  Jesse Window in memory Of Dean Jeremy Winston  draws closer  more details of the day are disclosed.

  • The pen HRH will use to sign the visitor’s book belonged to Fr Jeremy before his death.
  • The flowers in the Priory Centre include the Duchess of Cambridge Rose grown in the vicarage garden from a plant from Highgrove, The Prince’s Gloucestershire home.
  • around 300 guests will attend the Service.
  • In recognition of Fr Jeremy’s involvement with the Order of St John, the service will be attended by the Sub-Prelate, Bishop John Davies (wearing the Cope of St John -Wales) along with the Prior, Chief Executive and a member of the Gwent Council of St John. Tea is served to HRH by a St JohnBadger, 9yr old Hannah Suter.
  • Before the service and during the reception the Harpist Katherine Thomas will play.

Celebrations will continue in to the evening:

  • There will be a Holy Eucharist Service in front of the  window at 6pm
  • The Priory Bells will ring out in celebration at 7pm


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Speaking to the congregations of Abergavenny Anglican Churches on the Feast of St Thomas the Incumbent Canon Mark Soady challenged us:

Are you like the other disciples, who having heard the news of Jesus’ Resurrection stayed in a locked Upper Room or are you like the Apostle Thomas who exclaimed  ‘My Lord and my God’.

To often we Christians fulfil our faith in the ‘locked upper room’ of our Church buildings on a Sunday, and do not take that good news out in to the world.

The new initiative of the Abergavenny Anglican Churches Together entitled Church without walls calls us to be like Thomas. My challenge to you to day is to join us in this initiative and mark the step in faith that the once doubting Thomas made.

Week by week we meet on Saturday mornings in the Coffee Pot for Chit-chat when we can share our faith in an informal way.

Other initiatives have included; Ashing in the High Street, Shoe Shining on Maundy Thursday and an Open Air Ascension Day Eucharist.

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Writing in the July edition of the Parish Magazine, Canon Mark Soady pays tribute to our Patron HRH The prince of Wales and to the service of two former priests who served here: Frs Jeremy & Roy.

We are greatly honoured that our Patron HRH The Prince of Wales will grace us with his presence at the Dedication of the Jesse Window on July 7. This will be HRH’s third official visit in 16 years. He has been a good friend to us of over that time—it is very telling that despite his busy routine he takes a great deal of interest in the charities of which he is patron. Like his mother HM The Queen, whose 90th Birthday we celebrated in June in such style in Linda Vista Gardens, his is truly a live of service.

The Window is dedicated in memory of another man whose life was a life of service—my immediate predecessor Dean Jeremy Winston. Fr Jeremy appears to have been loved by all with whom he came in to contact. He had the rare gift of making every one he met feel special. The window will be a fitting tribute to his life of service, especially his 18 years of service here in Abergavenny.

Last month we marked the passing of another great servant whose life was one of service. Fr Roy West started his ministry as Curate here, and after serving in Tredegar, retired back here to live—and to continue his ministry among us. Many of you have told me of your fondness for Fr Roy and how he impacted on your life. We thank God for him. So we have many examples of service. Men and a woman who, like Jesus, came to ‘ Serve not to be served’. We are all called to be like Jesus to ‘give and not to count the cost”. Do we in His name to that?

Fr Jeremy will be leaving St Mary's, Abergavenny, to become Dean of Newport Cathedral

Fr Jeremy

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