Hearing the Service

St John’s has an Induction Loop System so if you have a hearing aid, please switch it to the ’T’ setting.

Sunday, 16th December

Nativity Play

This morning is our annual nativity play which takes the place of the sermon.  At the end of the performance, we all join the children on the second chorus in singing “Away in a Manger”.  Parents are then invited to take their children through to the parish hall for refreshments before returning for Communion.  Afterwards, sherry and mince pies will be served at the back of church.

Charity Christmas Stall

During coffee our children will have a Christmas stall.  Christmas cards, bird feeders and Christmas ornaments are among the items available to buy.  Proceeds will go to the Sponsor a Buttress campaign.

Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols

Our traditional carol service takes place this evening at 6pm.  Our choir will be accompanied by a multitude of musicians and is sponsored in part by Kay and Co, the estate agents.  The service is set around music from The Silence and the Sound, by Heather Sorenson, with traditional readings and your favourite Christmas carols.  The service will be followed by a fizz and panettone reception.  This is perhaps one of the biggest musical treats of the year for all the family.  Invite your friends and neighbours to join us for this festive community celebration.


Carolling around the Parish

Come join our choristers and help raise money for our Sponsor a Buttress appeal by singing carols in pubs around the parish on Thursday, 20th December.  Meet in church at 6.30pm.

Christmas Eve

4.00pm - Crib Service

Mary and Joseph return to St John’s after their travels around the parish and all of the children attending will build the crib, placing a lamb alongside the Baby Jesus.

11.30pm – Midnight Mass

Enjoy the first mass of Christmas in a candlelit church, singing Christmas carols accompanied by strings and winds.  The setting will be Mozart’s Coronation Mass K317.

Christmas Day

10am – Family Festival Eucharist

Children are invited to come along dressed up in their fairy costumes and sparkly shoes or Christmas pyjamas and to bring their toys with them if they wish.  Sing Christmas carols with the choir, accompanied by orchestra.

Christmas Flowers

Remember a loved one by making a donation to this year’s Christmas flowers.  Complete the slip inside your order of service and leave it with Bryan Sollenberger.  A list of those in whose memory donations are given will be displayed in the porch.


The arrival of the Magi, after their long journey following a star seeking Jesus, is one of the oldest festivals of the Christian Church.  In the Eastern and Russian Orthodox Churches, this is the equivalent of Christmas.  St John’s will celebrate Epiphany with a festival Eucharist on Sunday, 6th January 2019.  There will be a procession of the Magi and Presentation of Gifts before the crib as part of the service.  Afterwards, there will be a reception of fizz and finger food.  Members of the congregation are asked to bring a plate of finger food with them and, in order to help with numbers, please sign up on the form in the porch, indicating that they will be able to attend and what food they will be bringing with them.

Epiphany Carols

13th January 2019, 6pm

After our fantastic Advent and Christmas carol services, what next?  Epiphany carols!   Robert, Nicky and the choir have prepared another special treat to conclude our seasonal celebrations marking the events of the Epiphany season.  The service will be followed by fizz and seasonal delicacies.  A great way to beat the post-Christmas blues!

Sponsor a Buttress

Goal: £50,000

Raised so far: £26,381

Last year we undertook some very essential repairs to the roof, gutters and parapets.  If you look up on the north or south sides of the church, you’ll notice the beautiful new stonework.  To fund the works, however, we had to borrow £200,000 from the Diocese of London and we are looking to raise £50,000 to pay this year’s commitment plus interest.

The ‘Sponsor a Buttress’ campaign is to raise funds to cover this year’s commitment.  There are 40 buttresses consisting of three stones each.  A stone costs £416, a buttress £1,250 (£333 and £1,000 respectively if Gift Aided).  To sponsor a stone or buttress or for more information about Gift Aid, speak to Bryan Sollenberger.

Culture Vultures

Venture to the Panto!!

A festive treat for all the family, Saturday 5th January 2pm.

‘Oh yes he did!’ ‘Oh no he didn’t!’  The young and the young at heart are sure to enjoy Dick Whittington at the Lyric Theatre Hammersmith (that’s the Lyric, main entrance on Lyric Square, not the Apollo by the big church) on Saturday January 5th at 2.00pm.  Ticket details to follow shortly.  Meet for a delicious lunch at 12.30pm at Byron’s,, opposite the Lyric and to the right as you exit Hammersmith & City line tube station.  Kid’s Menu £6.50, with both healthy and less healthy options, £6.50.  Please speak to Margaret or Sam Tear to register your interest.

Lent Retreat: Mirfield  29th - 31st March 2019

The Benedictine Community of the Resurrection regularly hold Retreats and Pilgrimage Weekends at their Monastery in Mirfield, West Yorkshire. These are guided by some of the brothers, who give three addresses, and there is plenty of time for quiet contemplation, walks in the beautiful grounds and the opportunity to attend the daily offices with the community and college in the lovely cathedral-like chapel.

The cost is £135, which includes all meals and accommodation in single rooms (£150 for an ensuite) + travel.  The Centre is only minutes away from Junction 25 of the M62 and there are direct trains from Kings Cross.  Mirfield is also a Theological College and it is Ordinand Benji Tyler, a member of our congregation, who knows just how learned, holy and friendly are the Mirfield community.  The Guestmaster has made a provisional reservation for us.

Please have a word with Margaret or Benji for more details, a copy of the timetable and to register your interest. 

Mid-week Services

St John’s isn’t just a church for Sunday!  There are services at 5.30pm Monday to Thursday.  Monday’s service is a eucharist and there is a said evensong Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  Services take place in the sanctuary and are open to all.


School Gate Gossip

Only one more week to go before the Christmas holidays.  Our children have been very busy and will more than deserve this break.  As contributors to our school community and in demonstration of one of our key values - Fellowship - the student membership of the Children’s Fundraising Committee have organised a film night on Friday to raise money for playground equipment for both campuses of St. James & St. John.  It was a great event with important funds raised and the first of this kind - hopefully to be repeated.  Last week, the children in our nursery class went on a visit to one of the local charity shops to see how it worked and to also practise our values of Fellowship, Perseverance and Joy by donating some toys and clothes to those in need.  The Music And Drama (MAD) Paddington group held their performance of Nigel Haynes’ and Barbara Höfling’s ‘Rudolph’ at the school on Thursday, along a  guest participation of Vitamin’s Streetdance Group.  It was great to experience the joy and wonder of their Christmas production.  Finally, and as is tradition with alternating services, the Christmas Service will take place this year at St. James’s Sussex Gardens on Friday the 21st of December.

Stay and Play

A community playgroup meets weekly in St John’s on Thursday mornings from10-11.30am.  Come and stay for a play, a sing-song and to share stories over a cup of coffee.  All children and babies are welcome (newborn to 5 years).  Suggested donation: £2.