Arborfield and Barkham Churches are hosting one of the top five shows at this year’s Edinburgh Fringe (at least according to The Guardian), at the Whitty Theatre at Luckley House School in Wokingham on Thursday 19 October. ‘A great deal of silliness makes for a hugely entertaining hour that revels in the absurdities of one of the biggest arguments in religious history’, says The Times.

The show is about Martin Luther. And it’s for people who aren’t quite sure which Luther we’re talking about. With a feeling of Horrible Histories and Monty Python, A Monk’s Tale helps the audience understand the unfamiliar medieval mind set, and exactly what Luther was trying to do with his 95 Theses, which sparked one of the most significant movements in history: the Reformation.

The show is light, accessible and funny, using sketches, and songs to explain the specifics of the story: the indulgences, purgatory, the sacraments and theological disputes of the period. As the play unfolds, the audience will be informed and challenged as well as entertained and amused.

Suitable for all ages and all faiths, as well as skeptics, the show written and directed by James Cary, an award-winning sitcom writer for BBC TV and Radio. He worked on the first two series of Miranda and co-wrote Miranda Hart’s Joke Shop for BBC Radio 2. He co-created Bluestone 42 for BBC3 which ran for three series and has also written episodes of My Family, My Hero and Citizen Khan. His radio credits include Another Case of Milton Jones, Hut 33, Recorded forTraining Purposes, Concrete Cow and Think the Unthinkable. His stage show, Infinite Number of Monkeys, was nominated forPerrier Best Newcomer at the Edinburgh Fringe.

8pm at The Whitty Theatre at Luckley House School on Thursday 19 October. Doors open from 7:30pm.  Tickets cost £8 in advance, or £10 on the door (if there are any still left by then).  If you’d like to come along, please book via the Arborfield and Barkham Churches’ website, at http://www.abch.org.uk.
For more information, contact the Church Office on 0118 976 0285. 


Metrical Psalms


Metrical Psalms in Modern English for Individuals, Choirs and Congregations

Come and sing some well-loved psalms, in a brand new translation by The Revd Dr Adam Carlill*

Saturday 11 November 2017,

9.30am – 4.30pm

at St Mary Magdalen Church Kentwood Hill,

Reading RG31 6DR

Please bring a packed lunch

Tea and coffee provided

For more details and to reserve a place please contact Adam on 07753411989, adamcarlill@me.com

*Adam has been singing psalms for over 40 years, and has served as an Anglican parish minister continuously for 27 years. He received his DPhil in Old Testament Theology from the University of Oxford in 2013, and is a member of the Society for Old Testament Study and the Hymn Society of Great Britain and Ireland

Café Théologique

Café Théologique
9 October, 7.30–9:00pm,
Zero Degrees Bar, 9 Bridge St, Reading

Luther at 500

What’s the Legacy of the Reformation?

On the 500th anniversary of Luther’s 95 theses,
Revd Dr David Cornick discusses the legacy of the Reformation. David is General Secretary of Churches Together in England, and a Fellow of Robinson College, Cambridge.

Advent Course

Advent Course

With a focus on being contemplative, compassionate and courageous
As part of the Bishop of Oxford’s invitation for everyone to explore the Beatitudes, the diocese is producing a three-session course in time for Advent.

It is suitable for small groups and will consist of a 32 page booklet written by Bishop Steven alongside audio and video resources. To register an interest in the materials (for further information/ordering), please email

NB. If you place an order by 9 October you will get an early bird discount on the cost of the course.

Deanery Prayer Cycle

Number 57                       September 2017
This month our special focus is on St Sebastians Church
Please pray for:

Vicar: The Rev’d Canon Andrew Marsden
Associate Minister: Rev’d Ian Seymour
LLM: Russell Shipton
LLM in training: David Hare
Employed Family and Youth Pastor: Vacancy from Sept 2017
Employed Children and Family Worker: Rachel Jeremiah (on maternity leave)
Church Warden: David Boulton
Church Warden: Mike Page
PCC Sec: Rod Sturdy
Treasurer: Janet Rogers
Administrator: Judith Boulton

  • For the recruitment process for a new full-time Family and Youth Pastor, with the advertisement out in late August and a closing date for applications of 22 September.
  • For us to find cover for our part-time Children and Family Worker, currently on maternity leave.
  • For our Youth and Children’s volunteers, having to take on extra responsibilities until the above posts are filled.
  • For many who want to explore the Christian faith to join our Alpha Course, beginning on 19 September.
  • For Martin Gater, who will be taking up the post of Head Teacher of St Sebastian’s School in September.  Pray for the good relationship between the church and school to continue and to develop as God wants.

In the Deanery Please pray for:

  • All children and young people as they prepare to go back to school and college
  • Those starting School for the first time and those moving up to secondary school
  • Those going to college and university for the first time and those returning to university
  • Those starting apprenticeships or other forms of tertiary education
  • Those starting new jobs or taking on new roles or responsibility
  • Those getting married
  • For God’s blessing on Julian McAllen settling in to Finchampstead and getting married in September, Kate Toogood moving to Sonning and at Blue Coat School, Hugh Barne and Steve Turville at Wargrave with Knowl Hill, newly ordained
  • Anna Harwood and Ben Thorndike as they prepare to move to new jobs
  • Jacquie Vanstone,becoming Acting Head of Finchampstead C of E Primary School
  • The Heritage Open Weekend, Saturday 9th and Sunday 10th September,St Michael’s Sandhurst programme ‘Exploring the Seventeenth Century’ and for all Churches in the Deanery opening their Churches for the weekend, for all who take part in the events who are not normally part of our congregations and for those running the tours and activities.

Give thanks for:

  • The way the Church, including our Deanery rallied in prayer for the many who were ill at St Paul’s Church in June and the encouragement which surrounded and upheld them.

Hazel Berry: sonningdeaneryprojects@googlemail.com