St Peter's Church, Great Berkhamsted

The Church of St Peter Great Berkhamsted

St Peter’s Parish News

St Peter's Berkhamsted Parish News

Ordination from the Seven Sacraments by Nicolas Poussin (1647)
National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh

St Peter's Berkhamsted Parish News


Volume 14 No. 32 Friday 5 July 2024

The Friday Thought

Fr Chris Rogers Fr Chris Rogers

With what can we compare the kingdom of God, or what parable will we use for it? It is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of all the seeds on earth; yet when it is sown it grows up and becomes the greatest of all shrubs, and puts forth large branches, so that the birds of the air can make nests in its shade.

So, God’s message might be very small but becomes a seed within us to grow, maybe not at speed but slowly and slowly becomes stronger and stronger.

As a young boy living in Yorkshire until mid-teens the church and God’s message seemed to be rooted within my parents Hilda and William.

My life revolved around school and my friends as we started to explore the Peak District, and then the Lakes, and finally Scotland. If I wasn’t at home, it meant no Sunday service, and if I could escape it by walking or climbing the mountains and moorland all the better. The beauty of the countryside wasn’t lost, and I had no problem in accepting that it needed more than mankind to create this.

University developed by accepting of something greater than mankind as I explored science and its connections to industry and communities, but I still wouldn’t admit to this, as it seemed foolish to say God created rather than nature and its development.

My occasional visits to my mother’s in the peak district was always connected, but not always with my agreement, with Sunday services in the local church. A church of great music tradition and churchmanship. Yes, I warmed to that music and liturgical glory, but it didn’t really connect it to my science.

I ultimately left uni and moved to London, working for the government in research, and therefore I visited many places in the world, always accepting wonderful countryside and the developing science which explored that knowledge — but somehow didn’t have a basic formula.

The mustard seed was showing the world but beyond my understanding. Music continued to play an important part, and one evening, in the Royal Albert Hall after we had heard Handel’s Messiah, a close friend said how can science explain what we have heard and God’s love.

I tried to explain but continue to fail time after time. My various academic qualifications couldn’t reveal a basic formula. We both sat on the banks of the Thames that evening and agreed, with the help of a good bottle of red, that I was missing something. I stayed at his flat that night and was dragged out of bed about 8am to get showered, dressed and off to a church.

His comment, as we entered the church, was forget how good the music is, the actions of the priest but allow yourself to be exposed to the unspoken inner truth. I became confused, as 1 plus 1 was always 2, and now I was being exposed to a truth beyond my science and maths. Thus started not the faith given by my parents but a development of a truth which was based on love.

The love of a man 2000 years ago where everyone was acceptable, even those rejected by society and the church. All I had to do was to open my mind and heart, which was extremely difficult as it somehow was beyond knowledge and science.

The mustard seed had grown up and the exposed me to more that I understood. A that faith exceeds human knowledge and understanding.

It was based on love without restrictions.

I am still working on that basic knowledge, and it encourages me to accept all, accept I don’t know it all, accept that somehow, it’s at the point of my earthly death that the truth will be revealed for that timeless beyond existence.

Church news & notices

Sunday 7 July at 1:00 pm
Sundays Together Lunch

Sundays Together lunch is laid on every 1st Sunday of every month in the Court House for our older friends in the parish who are on their own at a certain age. Guests receive a welcome drink when they arrive, followed by two-course meal, all for a handsome £6. This is a very popular event, bringing members of the church and the community together every month through the delights of food. It's a lovely way for people to socialise and helps to combat loneliness in our community. If you would like to take part, or if you know someone who might benefit from a social luncheon, please contact Carolynne.


Carolynne Charman    email:   


Sunday 14 July at 6:00 pm
Choral Evensong

We welcome everyone to worship God through the beauty of music at our next service of choral evensong. 


Saturday 20 July at 8:00 am
Prayer Breakfast

The next Berkhamsted Churches Prayer Breakfast will be Saturday 20th July at Kings Road Church. The latest prayer leaflet is available at the back of church. If you would like specific prayers added to the next prayer leaflet, please contact:


Peggy Sear    email:   


Sunday 21 July
Sunday School picnic


It's the last day of term for the Sunday School, and the children will be thinking about Jesus feeding the 5000 with fruit kebabs and "praying the rainbow" - and then families are all invited to a family picnic at the Rectory after the 9:30am service. Bring your own picnic (no nuts please!) - soft drinks will be provided.


Sunday 21 July at 1:00 pm
Parish Barbecue


While the Sunday School will be enjoying their picnic, there will also be a Parish Barbecue. Can't find a handy child to take to the Family Picnic? Come and join us at the annual Parish Barbecue at 1pm. Please bring a salad or pudding to share, and we will provide the sausages, ketchup etc for a modest £2.50 a head payable on the day (under 18s free). Glasses will be provided but bring your own drinks.

Please email Rachel if you would like to come and tell us what you are bringing, and any dietary requirements. Last day to sign up is Sunday 14th July.


Rachel Below    email:   


Saturday 14 September
Sponsored bike ride

Chris Clegg now has the forms for the Beds & Herts Historic Trust Bike 'n Hike event taking place on 14th September. Please contact him via the office for your copy.


CCC raises the roof!

ccc concert

Last Saturday, the Chiltern Chamber Choir performed to a packed church, singing joyful sacred anthems. The audience was treated to a veritable choral cornucopia of pieces by Monteverdi, Gabrielli, Fauré, Brahms, Parry and many more, and treated to a glass of wine too. We are immensely grateful to Calum Zuckert and the Chiltern Chamber Choir for their generosity in donating Saturday's concert proceeds to our roof fund. Thank you, all of you.

We don't have the £ total raised for the roof fund just yet, but this will be announced next week.

The CCC have been delighting Berkhamsted audiences with music since they were founded by Adrian Davis in 1976. They usually present three concerts a year. The choir is often looking for new singers (especially tenors) - if you're interested in auditioning for this celebrated concert choir, get in touch with the membership secretary via the CCC website:



Schools news

thomas coramSpiritual Ambassadors at Victoria School

The Spiritual Ambassadors had a wonderful visit to St Peter's on Monday where they had a tour of the church, finding out about the different areas and how they are used during services and special occasions. They were very brave as they all went up the tower to look out over Berkhamsted. I decided to supervise the group who were waiting to go up as it was too high for me! It has been lovely having our ambassadors who have been supporting our Collective Worship and RE and I am looking forward to seeing who will apply for the role once our Year 2s move on.

The Year 2 children did a brilliant performance for their Leavers' Assembly where they took a trip down memory lane using the format of This is Your Life. I could not believe how much they had changed and grown since starting at Victoria and we are incredibly proud of what they have achieved. They sang 'One more step along the world I go' which truly reflected their next step onto new schools in September, where they 'from the old, travel to the new'.


Castle Federation

The Castle Federation is the governing body responsible for our two Church of England schools in Berkhamsted
More about our schools:

Diocese of St AlbansDiocesan news

Wednesday 21 August
Queen By Candlelight at the Cathedral

Fans of the rock band Queen will enjoy this night of Queen anthems, performed at St Albans Cathedral by candlelight. Hits to include Bohemian Rhapsody, It’s a Kind of Magic and many more. Tickets £10-£60. Book your tickets in a Flash online:



Bishop’s Garden open days


Bishop Alan is opening up his garden at Abbey Gate House in St Albans once again this year. Come and explore a two-acre oasis of greenery in the heart of St Albans. Entry is £5 per adult, free for children, and all proceeds go to the Beds & Herts Historic Churches Trust, helping to preserve our local historic churches. The gardens are open 2pm-4pm every Sunday until 11 August.


Diocese welcomes new priests and deacons

It was a busy weekend at St Albans Cathedral, where they celebrated the ordination of priests and deacons with Archdeacon Charles, Bishop Alan, Bishop Jane and Bishop Richard. On Saturday 29 June, 14 deacons from across the diocese were ordained as priests, and on Sunday 30 June, they welcomed seven new deacons. Please hold them all in your prayers. You'll find a full list and photo highlights of the events on the diocesan website:



diocesan map

The Parish of Great Berkhamsted is in the Church of England's Diocese of St Albans

St Albans Cathedral:

🖈 Church noticeboard

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Parish BBQ

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Sunday School picnic

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St Peter’s Sunday School

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The Bishop of St Albans Open Garden

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Hire the Court House

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Welcome for families


Berkhamsted community news & events

Tuesday 2 July - Thursday 11 July
Dacorum Music Festival

Dacorum Music School (part of Hertfordshire Music Service) invite you to a festival of music, including two events at Berkhamsted Castle: Crash the Castle, an all-age drumming event; and Rock the Ruins, featuring Hertfordshire's youth rock groups. The programme also offers a concert by candlelight in Hastoe, Ukulele workshops in Great Gaddesden and The Wizard of Oz in Hemel Hempstead. Book your spaces online:




Saturday 6 July
St Mary’s Northchurch Summer Fête

St Mary’s Northchurch invite you to their Church Summer Fête, 12 noon-3:30pm. There will be lots of stalls selling books, plants, cakes, and gifts, plus golf, football, a coconut shy, face painting, a bouncy castle, raffles and a toy tombola. There will also be a BBQ with Pimms and beer, and live music will be provided by the Hemel Hempstead Brass Band,  Madalina Tudoran and the Bridgewater School Choir. The event is raising money for charity - GO MAD (Go Make a Difference, raising funds for an orphanage for disabled children), DENS, the Dacorum homeless charity, and for a new flagpole on the church tower. A fabulous day out for all the family! 



Saturday 13 July
The Gondoliers open-air concert

Gilbert and Sullivan’s hit comic opera The Gondoliers will be performed by the award-winning Illyria Outdoor Theatre, presented by Berkhamsted Rotary. From merry gondolieri to regular royal queens, come and enjoy a summer's evening of musical delights in the Quad at Berkhamsted School. Bring a camping chair/rug, a cardie and a picnic. Tickets £25, under-15s £12



Sunday 21 July
Pitch Perfect

Pitch Perfect is back at Berkhamsted Cricket Club this summer! Enjoy an afternoon in the sun with local opera stars Kathryn Jenkin and Phillip Brown, Shane Lamont and his band, the Amersham Big Band and more. Bring a picnic + seats/blanket. Online tickets £15 + booking fee. 



Saturday 17 August
Quiet Day at St Mary’s Puttenham


There is to be another Quiet Day in Puttenham, near Tring. This is an opportunity to experience the daily rhythm of monastic prayer. The day’s reflection is centred around how we speak about God, punctuated with monastic offices including Mattins, Lauds, Eucharist and Compline. The afternoon guest speaker will be Rev Margaret Saunders. Everyone is invited to eat together for breakfast, lunch and dinner, and simple food will be provided. The day is flexible and you can come for all or part of the day. Book online via on the link below, or by phone, and please advise of any dietary requirements when you book. Suggested donation for the day is around £10 to cover food and other expenses. Transport is available within the Tring Team parish area.


Janet    email:  01442 824929



Berkhamsted Castle Deer Park

Berkhamsted Castle Trust have been running a public consultation about some interesting ideas for enhancing the visitor experience in the countryside surrounding the Castle. They are considering new interpretation boards and signage on existing public footpaths to highlight the area's history as an ancient deer park. The area was turned into farmland just before the Civil War, but for centuries before that, this was where medieval royalty hunted deer. You can read about this scheme on the Castle website:



National Trust Ashridge plans

The National Trust have some interesting plans for re-organising visitor access on the Ashridge Estate. With 1.7 million people visiting Ashridge each year and thousands of new houses being built in the local area, concerns have been raised that the ancient woodland will suffer from increased visitor numbers. Current plans are to move the car parking away from the Bridgewater Monument area and to create three new "visitor hubs" around the edge of the estate, including one at Hill Farm by Northchurch Common. They will also be introducing car parking charges, as at most other NT sites. There's a detailed web page about the proposals with maps and videos here:



Shared Carers wanted

Hertfordshire County Council are recruiting volunteers to help young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) in the county. Many disabled children enjoy trying new activities and socialising with caring people outside their immediate family. Shared Care is a scheme which provides short breaks for disabled children by recruiting volunteer carers. If you think you'd make a good Share Carer, they'd love to hear from you. For further information, contact:


Shared Care Team    email:    email:  0800 917 0925



Cartoon Church

This week's cartoon courtesy of CartoonChurch

Cartoon Church image

Copyright © 2024 Dave Walker

Sunday Eucharist at St Peter's

Worship with us


This Sunday: 7 July 2024
6th Sunday after Trinity

9:30am Sung Eucharist
You are invited to join us at our main Sunday service

Next Sunday: 14 July 2024
7th Sunday after Trinity

9:30am: Sung Eucharist
6:00pm Choral Evensong
View the worship calendar

Music this week

Hymns: 466, 239, 362
Anthem Lead me. Lord - Samuel Sebastian Wesley
Voluntary Concerto in G (1st mvt) BWV 592 – J.S. Bach
list View the latest St Peter's music list online


Ezekiel 2.1-5

He said to me: O mortal, stand up on your feet, and I will speak with you. And when he spoke to me, a spirit entered into me and set me on my feet; and I heard him speaking to me. He said to me, Mortal, I am sending you to the people of Israel, to a nation of rebels who have rebelled against me; they and their ancestors have transgressed against me to this very day. The descendants are impudent and stubborn. I am sending you to them, and you shall say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God.’ Whether they hear or refuse to hear (for they are a rebellious house), they shall know that there has been a prophet among them.


Psalm 48 (vv. 1-4, 9-13)

1 Great is the Lord and highly to be praised, in the city of our God. 2 His holy mountain is fair and lifted high, the joy of all the earth. 3 On Mount Zion, the divine dwelling place, stands the city of the great king. 4 In her palaces God has shown himself to be a sure refuge. Response 9 We have waited on your loving-kindness, O God, in the midst of your temple. 10 As with your name, O God, so your praise reaches to the ends of the earth; your right hand is full of justice. 11 Let Mount Zion rejoice and the daughters of Judah be glad, because of your judgements, O Lord. Response 12 Walk about Zion and go round about her; count all her towers; consider well her bulwarks; pass through her citadels, 13 That you may tell those who come after that such is our God for ever and ever. It is he that shall be our guide for evermore. Response


Gospel: Mark 6.1-13

He left that place and came to his home town, and his disciples followed him. On the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, ‘Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?’ And they took offence at him. Then Jesus said to them, ‘Prophets are not without honour, except in their home town, and among their own kin, and in their own house.’ And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them. And he was amazed at their unbelief. Then he went about among the villages teaching. He called the twelve and began to send them out two by two, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits. He ordered them to take nothing for their journey except a staff; no bread, no bag, no money in their belts; but to wear sandals and not to put on two tunics. He said to them, ‘Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave the place. If any place will not welcome you and they refuse to hear you, as you leave, shake off the dust that is on your feet as a testimony against them.’ So they went out and proclaimed that all should repent. They cast out many demons, and anointed with oil many who were sick and cured them.



Missed a service?

St Peter's services are videostreamed live on our Facebook page. If you've missed a service, you can watch past services on the parish website:


In our prayers this week

Anglican Cycle of Prayer:

The Church of the Province of the Indian Ocean


Diocese ✚✚Justin, Archbishop of Canterbury, ✚Alan, Bishop of St Albans, ✚ Jane, Bishop of Hertford, and Charles, Archdeacon of St Albans
In our
continuing prayers
Christina Billington, Margaret Douglas, Judith Hill, Douglas Hill, John Malcolm, Clare Wallington, Denis Beard, Mary Beard, Patricia Cody, Ghullam Mutaheri, Nola Frost, Betty Beggs, Audrey Higginbotham, Teddy Higginbotham, Jo Neale, Barbara McKenna, Barbara Conway, Yvonne Hart
In our
immediate prayers
Frozan Mutaheri, Leah Holdroyd, Len Bennett, Peter Kirk, Hannah Beauchamp, Brian Davies, Doug Billiington, Elinor Mumford, John Palmer
(next four weeks)
Wedding banns
called this Sunday
Rebekah Ingram & Ian Peters
Thomas Meager & Lois Goddard
(next four weeks)
RIP Sarah Garrett, Gordon McNutt, Rusty Weston
Memorial (year's mind) Jean East, Florence Conway, Patricia Hunt,

☩ Funeral notices

Tuesday 9 July 2024

3:00 pm Funeral - Gordon McNutt

weekday Mass in the Lady Chapel

Worship during the week

Church is not just for Sundays! You are warmly invited to join us at services throughout the week at St Peter's, including Morning and Evening Prayer and celebation of the Eucharist. The weekly list of services is displayed on the parish website and on the church noticeboard.

Please note that weekday service times may change on the day, but it's easy to get daily updates online:
Facebook page


View the worship calendar


churchyard fete

Parish dates for your diary

parish website on a laptop

Visit the St Peter's website to see what's coming up in St Peter' Church and the Court House in the coming week and further ahead.

View the parish calendar



You can also check future rota dates on the parish website at

This Sunday
07/07/2024 Trinity 6  
8.00am Eucharist
Clergy President Stuart
Reader Sarah Hyde
9.30am Sung Eucharist
Clergy President Chris (David) ((Stuart))
  Preacher Stuart
Sidespeople Liz Bellamy Hilary Elliot
MC Will Gore  
Acolytes Chris Clegg Kiril Sotnykov
Thurifer Mark Grego  
Cruficer Stephen Lally  
Reader Adrian Davis  
Intercessions Sarah Elder  
Eucharistic Ministers Paul Jullien Uli Grego
Sunday School Vicky  
Sound Jeremy Davies  
Next Sunday
14/07/2024 Trinity 7  
8.00am Eucharist
Clergy President Stuart
  Preacher Stuart
Reader Marco Pierleoni
9.30am Sung Eucharist
Clergy President Stuart (Chris) ((Margaret))
  Preacher Margaret
Sidespeople Bev Jullien Susan Holmes
MC Richard Currie  
Acolytes Chris Clegg Kiril Sotnykov
Thurifer 0  
Cruficer Libby Grundy  
Reader David Northcott  
Intercessions James Owen  
Eucharistic Ministers Nicky Evans Hilary Elliot
Sunday School Jo  
Sound Christopher  

hassocks in pews

Support St Peter's

St Peter's Church has been at the heart of Berkhamsted life for 800 years. We rely on donations to keep running as a place for worship and community events.

Join our Planned Giving scheme to make a monthly donation:

calendar Find out about Planned Giving

Make a one-off donation online or with your mobile:

mobile donation Donate online

Parish contacts

photo of Fr Stuart Owen Fr Stuart Owen
Rector & Rural Dean
email:  01442 879739
photo of Fr John Russell Fr John Russell
Team Vicar (Nettleden, Little Gaddesden, Great Gaddesden)
email:  01442 214898
calendar Who's Who in the Parish

St Peter's Berkhamsted St Peter's Great Berkhamsted
Parish Office Church Lane
United Kingdom HP4 2AX

email:  01442 878227
Berkhamsted Team Worship Diocese of St Albans The Church of England


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Parish Office

 01442 878227