Serving the people of Taunton town centre and beyond through our tradition of catholic sacramental worship.
The Friday Lunchtime Concerts are back in an "online" format.
See the Events page for details
Our Ministry during Covid-19
Information and reflections for worship
"We too have a constant friend and companion in the risen Christ on whom we can rely as we journey on through these weeks and months of uncertainty."
so we are alone, but together
We are now able to come together in fellowship in Church
to celebrate the Eucharist on Sunday mornings at 10am.
For your re-assurance we ensure safe distancing.
For those of you unable to be there, the Eucharist is offered on your behalf,
so you may partake in spirit.
The Gospel reflection for each Sunday, from the Rev Jane Eastell is below.
On Wednesday at 12noon, Rev Jane offers a Eucharist at her home,
as well as the Daily Office and prayers for our community.
The Church will now also be open for private prayer on
Thursdays 12.00noon to 2.00pm
Please drop in for a quiet, prayerful space, where you can sit and be with God.
Sadly, we cannot provide any books or leaflets because of the risk of contamination.
We will be restarting Evensong on the first Sunday of the month,
beginning at 4pm, 4 October, which is our Dedication Sunday.
Due to current restrictions this will be simpler form of Evensong
and there will be no refreshments.
" As the challenge of the coronavirus grips the world, and as the Government asks
every individual and every organisation to rethink its life, we are now asking the Church of England in all its parishes, chaplaincies and ministries to serve all people in a new
Justin, Archbishop of Canterbury and John, Archbishop of York
"This is a time for us as the Church to focus on our calling as the body of Christ to seek in prayerful and practical ways what it truly means to love our neighbour"
"At this time, we look to God, whose love is more than we can ever ask for or imagine. May you be sustained and
renewed by Him daily throughout this difficult time"
Peter, Bishop of Bath + Wells and Ruth, Bishop of Taunton
Bishop Peter is asking for prayers to be said during the outbreak of the new Coronavirus, for those affected by it in any way. He said: “This is a time of great anxiety for many. We hope and pray that people’s fears won’t be realised. In prayer, we give our anxieties and our hopes to God, as we think of those affected by the virus and those treating them.”
Lord God, carer of all people, creator, sustainer and healer;
We pray for all who have contracted Covid-19. Be with them and their loved ones and bring healing to their bodies.
We pray for all medical staff and emergency services as they look after the physical health, worries and concerns of their patients, especially the vulnerable and particularly those who have reduced contact with the outside world. Let us be good neighbours, looking out and after each other.
We remember the work of scientists, discovering and testing vaccines for this disease, and we pray for all of us, caught up in our everyday lives with the effects of these outbreaks.
Bless your world Lord, and help us to be blessings to one another, in Jesus name. Amen
The Sunday Reflection and Readings
Feast of St Matthew
Who are we celebrating when we keep the feast of St. Matthew, apostle and evangelist? Is it one person or two? Evidently, it’s two; the apostle and the evangelist are two quite separate characters. The name of Matthew the apostle came to be attached to the gospel written by an anonymous author. The ancient world did not have our scruples about copyright and plagiarism. But let's look on the bright side: it's like going to the supermarket and getting two for the price of one. We have 2 saints to follow,2 saints to enlighten us in our following of Jesus, and 2 to pray for us. One is the tax collector turned apostle. Passing by the tax booth, Jesus sees Matthew and calls him to follow and Matthew does just that. Much has been written about Jesus' word having such authority that people become disciples without prior contact. Jesus somehow enabled Matthew to abandon his life as a tax collector and travel by a new, unknown way. There is no suggestion that Matthew had been pondering a mid-life career change. But I’d like to consider the call of Matthew the tax collector from Jesus’ point of view. What did Jesus see in this tax collector? Tax collectors were not ‘nice’ people; they were collaborators, traitors, part of a system of oppression. So, what did Jesus see in him? Perhaps he glimpsed the ‘God’ bit in him, Matthew’s ‘soul’ if you like that was longing to be set free. It was the ‘soul’ bit that could say Yes and respond to the call of Jesus. But what about Matthew, the gospel writer? What did this Matthew see in Jesus? For this Matthew, Jesus is ‘Emmanuel, God-with-us.’ We read all about that at the beginning of the Gospel, but yet, by the end of the gospel this Emmanuel has become a cosmic figure: the Lord who will be with us always and to the end of the age at its close. Cosmic stuff here. So two saints, two stories: yet Jesus is the same – was the same then for the two Matthews and the same for us today. Jesus sees into the heart of our true desires – and somehow, with the call of Jesus we can glimpse our true selves and respond. It may mean turning from aspects of our past in some way – but let us like Matthew the tax collector trust the call of Christ, because through all the ups and downs of life God leads us to our true home in Him: a place where can glimpse more fully (at times) the stature of the cosmic Christ. Both Matthews followed Jesus and had their outlooks changed by God. I like to think that they were open, open to God. Our part too is to be open to what God is doing in us and make space for the working of God within us throughout our lives. This in the end is the beginning and the end of our spiritual lives – being open. ‘Living a spiritual life, as Alexander Ryrie writes, ‘is not a matter of making ourselves more godly or more spiritual; it is not a matter of doing God’s will, but of allowing and encouraging God’s process within us.’
Let us say ‘Amen’ to that.
Rev Jane Eastell
A message from the Rev Tobie Osmond
We are looking forward to welcoming Louise Bale as our new curate to the benefice as she is ordained deacon at the end of September. She will be writing an introduction to herself for the September Together magazine, so look out for this. She is self supporting so her time is very limited, but that being said we are hoping that she will be able to see something of how both our churches do things. Please pray for her as she prepares for her ordination at the end of September at the moment we don’t know the exact date as things continue to change under the situation we find ourselves in.
God bless you all, Tobie
The congregation of this church works together and with others to:
We also subscribe to the aims of Inclusive Church
Christ, when he was lifted up did not say
"I draw some people to myself"
"I draw all, all, ALL"
Archbishop Desmond Tutu
During 2019, through our concert season, we have supported:
- Love Musgrove (Local Hospital)
- The Music Therapy Charity
- Taunton Festival of the Arts
- St. Margaret's Hospice
- Happy Landings Animal Rehabilitation Centre
- Compass Disability Services
- Reminiscence Learning Dementia Charity
and we continue to support:
- Christian Aid
- Taunton Foodbank
St John the Evangelist Church
serves Taunton in a Benefice with St Mary Magdalene
The Rev Tobie Osmond is the Vicar of the Benefice
of St Mary Magdalene, Taunton and St John the Evangelist, Taunton.
Rev Jane Eastell is Associate Vicar with responsibility for St John's
See the Contacts page of this website
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Website updated on 22nd September 2020
St. John the Evangelist Church, Park Street, Taunton, TA1 4DG