By Martin Gibson, contact email: mrtngibs@aol.com

Services Sunday 5th Sept: 9:30am Holy Communion with Rev Ann Lloyd and Rev David Bone. 6pm Common Worship with Rev David Moss

The investigation into the Rev Stephen Oram has been completed and a punishment exacted. As a result, Steve decided to resign and enter retirement. He brought a lot of hard work, faith and charisma to our church and will be greatly missed. The PCC will be sending him a letter of thanks.

Mark Hancock, the stonemason who’s workshops are carving the four pinnacles to atop the tower, will be giving a talk on all the work involved on Wednesday 22nd September in St Mary’s at 5:30pm. This should be a fascinating insight into the complexities of the job, especially since once the pinnacles are in place they will be almost out of sight.

The Church Fete will be taking place this Saturday 4th September on CHURCH HILL starting at 2pm. There will be a myriad of stalls, games and a dog show. It is hoped that the whole parish will turn out as this is almost the first post-Covid public event to take place.

And the Monday Movie club opens its doors on Monday next, 6th September having been shut down for 18 months. The showing will be A BEAUTIFUL DAY IN THE NEIGHBOUHOOD starring Tom Hanks. After this film the next one will be on Monday 20th. Doors open at 7pm.

One local grandmother is currently celebrating her granddaughter’s success in the Tokyo 2020 Paralympics. Congratulations to Sophie Haan (June Haan’s granddaughter) who equalled her world record in winning the T38 100metres race.

The last few tickets for the Bristol Sinfonietta event on Saturday 18th September are available. Once they’ve gone they’ve gone. Debbie has them.

One current issue facing the Parish Council is that of overgrown footpaths in 2 areas and involving the same farmer. Although it is technically not a parish council matter, they are the first to receive complaints. A payment of around £80 per acre farmed in return for allowing public access is paid every year to farmers. So if the farmer works on 250 acres he/she receives £20,000 – a very substantial sum. This can be withdrawn. The onus on maintaining foootpath access is that of the farmer but the local district council (South Glos in our case) can impose penalties and are currently involved.

I resigned as churchwarden at last night’s PCC meeting. A letter from me to the Bishop has been sent stating my reasons – basically the handling and punishment exacted in the Rev Steve Oram affair. I will continue to support St Mary’s in every way I can.

And finally:

There was an elderly couple who in their old age noticed that they were getting a lot more forgetful, so they decided to go to the doctor. The doctor told them that they should start writing things down so they don’t forget.

They went home and the old lady told her husband to get her a bowl of ice cream. “You might want to write it down,” she said. The husband said, “No, I can remember that you want a bowl of ice cream.” She then told her husband she wanted a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream. “Write it down,” she told him, and again he said, “No, no, I can remember: you want a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream.” Then the old lady said she wants a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream and a cherry on top. “Write it down,” she told her husband and again he said, “No, I got it. You want a bowl of ice cream with whipped cream and a cherry on top.”

So he goes to get the ice cream and spends an unusually long time in the kitchen, over 30 minutes. He comes out to his wife and hands her a plate of eggs and bacon. The old wife stares at the plate for a moment, then looks at her husband and asks, “Where’s the toast?”