The Rector writes…

  1. May I remind you all of the Presentation Fund now open for one of our Assistant Curates, The Reverend Dr Richard Wyld, who has been appointed Chaplain to the Bishop of Portsmouth. You can make a gift to Richard’s presentation simply by sending it to or leaving it at the Parish Office. You can give cash or a cheque (the latter made payable to Sherborne Abbey, please). Please mark your envelope “Richard Wyld Presentation”.  Thank you.


Richard’s last Sunday with us will be 10 September. He will preside and preach at the Parish Eucharist, and will preach at Evensong, at which the presentation will be made. Following that there will be a party in the Church Hall, so I hope that those worshipping in the morning at all of our churches will come to the Abbey for Evensong at 6.30 pm.


Richard is likely to be licensed in the context of Evensong at Portsmouth Cathedral on Monday 18 September. He is still awaiting more details.


  1. We have a number of liturgical books in the Abbey vestry, the covers of which have become much worn through constant use. But the contents of the books are sound, and it seems a pity to throw them away if they could be rebound. I know that I could have the books rebound commercially, but that would be expensive. So I am wondering if anyone reading this counts bookbinding as a hobby – or knows someone who does. If so, I would be delighted to hear from you.


  1. Talking of books, Sandra and I visited Christchurch Priory on a day-off recently, and in the Priory Shop saw a book entitled England’s Historic Churches by Train by Murray Naylor, published as a companion volume to his England’s Cathedrals by Train, and priced at £25. I took the details and asked Philip Prout, manager of our own Abbey Shop, to order a few copies.



They have now arrived, and are on sale at the discounted price of £21.95.


This is very much a railway enthusiast’s book, with “railway notes” at the start of every chapter. Dorset has two chapters: “North” (Sherborne and Milton Abbeys) and “South” (Wimborne Minster and Christchurch Priory), and so two sets of “railway notes”.  Quite why Wimborne Minster gets five and a half pages and Sherborne Abbey only one and a half, I do not know. But railway buffs will find much here to enjoy. Phil will gladly order Mr Naylor’s other volume on request.


  1. Tickets are now available for next term’s Insight Lectures, which are on the theme of On being human – exploring what it means to be human in the early 21st century. All in the Church Hall at 7.30 pm. Full details are on the leaflet now being widely distributed, or visit the Insight website: The headlines are as follows:


Monday 18 September: God created humanism.

Dr Theo Hobson, University of Cambridge.


Monday 9 October: I think, therefore I am?

Jon Riding, Sherborne Abbey


Monday 6 November: Feeling Mortal.

The Reverend Andrew Edmeads, Children’s Hospice Chaplain


Monday 27 November: Made in the Image.

Dr Amy Orr-Ewing, Oxford Centre for Christian Aologetics


  1. November still feels a long way off, but I thought it advisable to give early warning of a rather special Remembrance weekend this year. First, at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month – which falls on a Saturday this year – we will observe the Two Minutes’ Silence in the Abbey at 11.00 am. But then, at 11.15 am, Lieutenant General Sir Robert Fry, KCB, CBE, will give a talk in the Abbey entitled Passchendaele and Posterity. Sir Robert, who was formerly Commandant General of the Royal Marines and Director of Operations at the Ministry of Defence, is now (amongst many other roles) a Visiting Professor at King’s College, London and a Trustee of Help for Heroes. He has told me that he would prefer the event to be billed as a talk rather than a lecture, and that he will speak for no more than half an hour. So with time for questions, we should be finished by 12 noon. There will be no tickets and no charge, but a retiring collection for Help for Heroes.


Then, the next day (Sunday 12 November) the preacher at the Abbey’s Service of Remembrance will be Major General Sir Robert Corbett, KCVO, CB. Sir Robert’s extraordinarily varied military career included commanding the Army’s Parachute Brigade and serving as British Commandant in Berlin at the time of the fall of the Wall. His final military appointment was as Commander of the Guards Division and of the Army in London. The service will be attended by the Lord-Lieutenant of Dorset.


We are very fortunate to have these two distinguished officers with us over Remembrance weekend, and I thought you would appreciate advanced notice.


The Reverend Guntars Reboks writes:


I have volunteered to help the Chernobyl Children’s Lifeline whose mission statement is: “To help the children and families of Ukraine and Belarus suffering from the after-effects of the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 and the ongoing adverse economic situation.”


The organisation relies on volunteers, and there is a need next month for drivers who can drive a minibus. Drivers must be under 70 and hold a clean D1 category licence. The children arrive on 10 September, but driving duties start from 12 September (until 29 September) and exclude weekends.  Most start times will be 8.45 am in Yeovil. Drivers would be free around 4.00 pm.  There are 6 boys and 6 girls aged 10 or 11 years old in the group and it will be their first experience abroad. An adult interpreter always travels with the children. The person to contact is Ann Horrocks on 07870826853. Please let me know if you have volunteered  – Thank you.