Although due to the pandemic we have not been able to hold weekly in-person services at Oat Street Unitarian Chapel. Rev Mark has developed a number on online weekly events on both Zoom and the Evesham Unitarian Facebook page to help members of our congregations to keep in touch with one another. Everyone, whether a congregation member or not, is welcome to any of these, as always.
This news item is a summary of everything taking place and we will aim to keep it updated as circumstances change.
For Zoom events, please use this link with the meeting ID: 942 2364 8779 and the passcode: 3c9Pb1 . You can also take part by phone via +44 203 901 7895, entering meeting ID: 942 2364 8779 and passcode: 240050 when prompted.
For Facebook, visit our Facebook page at the relevant time and look for the Live event; or if you already follow or Like our page, we’ll be in Recent Live Videos under the Live option on your Facebook home page. You can also tweak your Facebook settings to be notified every time we go live. Once the event is over you’ll be able to watch a recording of it on our Videos page.
Thursdays 7pm Touching The Sprit (Zoom) – also on held on some Fridays at 5pm
Thursdays 9pm Facebook Live (Facebook)
Fridays 7pm Stillness at Seven (Zoom)
Saturdays 11am Heart and Soul (Zoom)
Sundays 7.30pm Heart and Soul (Zoom)
Heart and Soul is a contemplative spiritual gathering in which you can take time to reflect on life in the company of others. Each session follows a regular pattern, including readings and music from an eclectic range of sources, time for guided prayers of gratitude, compassion for others, self-reflection, and silent meditation
Touching The Spirit is made up of the following:
Listening : there are chosen words and phrases and we listen to others as they express how those words relate to or affect them today.
Readings : poetry , reflection or narrative the host reads to the spirit of the gathering.
Discussion : a short period reflecting our experience of the gathering and beyond.
Silent meditation : we finish together in silence.
The gathering will last about an hour and no longer than 75 minutes.
Stillness at Seven is fifteen minute period of shared stillness with periods to be in community gathered in prayer and reflection.
Building upon the tremendous success of the Transformers Malvern children’s group, Transformers Evesham held the first of its monthly sessions for all children of school-age up to end of year 5 from 1045-1200 on Sunday 12 January at Oat Street Unitarian Chapel. The theme for the session was “Less Plastic Is Fantastic.”
The second session was on Sunday 9 February.
Rev Mark illustrates the aim of the group with the following story:
“One day a man was walking along the beach when he noticed a boy picking something up and gently throwing it into the ocean. Approaching the boy, he asked, “What are you doing?” The youth re plied, “Throwing starfish back into the ocean. The surf is up and the tide is going out. If I don’t throw them back, they’ll die.”
“Son,” the man said, “don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and hundreds of starfish? You can’t make a difference!”
After listening politely, the boy bent down, picked up another starfish,
and threw it back into the surf. Then, smiling at the man, he said…” I
made a difference for that one.”
(Adapted from The Star Thrower, Loren Eiseley, 1969)
Transformers is about making a difference in a small, or big, way.
Searching for truth and meaning. Recognising the inherent worth and dignity of every person.
Striving for justice, equity and compassion in human relations. Accepting others and providing encouragement to spiritual growth.
Transforming the World
Working for peace. Caring for our world. Respecting the interdependent web of all existence.
Live folk returns to Oat Street on 18 April as we host the latest in the popular series of “Folk Treble” concerts to be held here. This time, the three acts appearing are our old friend Mike Weaver plus folk pop band Every Thread and folk/acoustic blues group Under The Wychwood. Doors open 7.30pm and the fun starts at eight. Tickets are £9 in advance or £10 on the door. We don’t have a bar but feel free to bring your own drinks. If our previous events in the series are anything to go by, a fine time is guaranteed for all!
Oat St Unitarian Chapel’s fortnightly “Oat Street Saturdays” sessions that launched in December are growing in popularity and everyone is very welcome to join in the events with us. The next ones are on 14 and 28 September 2019.
On each date our Minister Rev Mark Hutchinson will be at the chapel available for a chat from 1000-1130 and then from 1130-1230 he will lead the Meditation Group. This will feature a shared reading and a guided meditation before concluding with chants from various traditions.
No previous meditation or chanting is required and everyone is very welcome regardless of whether you are a Chapel regular or have never visited us before. See you there?
Our Christmas charity concert with local madrigals/early music group Musyck Anon is always one of the highlights of our year and we’re sure that this year’s will be no exception. It’s at 7.30pm on Friday 21 December with free admission, the ever-popular free mince pies and a retiring collection in support of the Mayor of Evesham’s charities for this year. All very welcome.
As we leave the summer behind, the season of “mellow fruitfulness” is behind us which means it is time to think of our harvest festival gifts.
At Oat Street we have agreed that we should lend our support, as we have done for some time, to Caring Hands in the Vale. This is Evesham’s local Food Bank which we have supported at both Harvest and Easter. Of late, the demand on their capacity has been very heavy, and so to coincide with our Harvest service we would welcome donations to help boost their stocks.
Caring Hands say they would particularly appreciate supplies of the following; all in tins/packets/jars please, no fresh foods.
- Meat balls
- Irish stew
- Beans and sausages in tins
- Chicken in white sauce
- Dried or powdered mashed potato
- Pasta sauce jars (but not pasta, they have plenty!)
- Flavoured pasta meals in packets
- Jacobs (or own brand) crackers
- Savoury biscuits
If you can help with any of the above, please bring your donations along to our Harvest Service at 11am on 7th October and they will be most welcome. Thank you!
We are pleased to announce that the Reverend Mark Hutchinson has accepted the offer to be the Minister to the Cotswold Group of Unitarian Churches. He will be joining us on 1 October. Mark is a newly qualified Minister and we look forward to welcoming him at the beginning of his Unitarian ministry.
Mark writes: “Many faiths talk of pilgrimage, usually embraced as a journey to a place of special significance. It is of course a spiritual journey. My pilgrimage into Ministry began in response to a request to attend church by my son, then eight, and attendance at Dean Row. Training via several years at Chorlton is now guiding my pilgrimage to the Cotswolds.
I view pilgrimage not as a place, but more to a future that I am lucky to now have. Like all pilgrimages, this is outside my comfort zone, bringing new insights and inviting growth and change, perhaps never before considered. So with the guidance is acceptance, a little apprehension and the honour of being invited to serve a community. A group of communities close to the heart of the start of the Unitarian movement, with a range of beliefs that show the power and the mystery of that same movement, and a desire to harness that power and spirit for the good of others.
I look forward to continuing the pilgrimage and serving whoever appears along the way.
May you remain open to the beloved of your heart.”
As usual our Grade II* listed Chapel will be open to all visitors on Saturday 8th and Sunday 9th September as part of the popular national Heritage Open Days scheme. Take a leisurely look at our unique interior, gorgeous peaceful garden-cum-burial yard and the Gatehouse with its hidden Victorian period scullery. We’re open from 10am to 4.30pm on Saturda and from noon to 4.30pm on Sunday, following our usual 11am Sunday service which all are also welcome to attend. Tea and coffee will be available in our Vestry.
This year, in recognition of the centenary of the Universal Suffrage Act, the theme of Heritage Open Days will be ‘Extraordinary Women’. Oat Street Chapel has its own Extraordinary Woman in the person of former Chapel Member Amy Nightingale, the first Lady Mayor of Evesham (1944 – 45). Her photograph is to be found in the Chapel’s vestry.
All are very welcome at Oat Street Chapel on 16th August for the latest in our well established series of live music events at our well appointed venue with nearby free parking (in the evening) and great acoustics! Everything you need to know is on the poster below…..