All are welcome at St Nicholas – be they Christians of any denomination or none, followers of other faiths, or the simply curious. All Communicant Christians are welcomed to receive Holy Communion and others are invited, if they so wish, to come to the altar for blessing. We welcome all as they make their life’s pilgrimage.
St Nicholas is an inclusive community, celebrating the ministry of both men and women, while worshipping firmly in the tradition of Catholic revival in the Church of England that began in the 19th century. We aim to combine “treasures old and treasures new” in our church life.
We use the contemporary English services from Common Worship, except at Sunday Evening Prayer, when we use the 1662 Book of Common Prayer.
Malcolm Smith’s sermon from 5th December on All Saints Day is available here.
Our Vicar, Fr Simon Brandes, Associate Vicar, Rev’d Eileen McGregor, and Curate Fr Alan Trigle preside at most Eucharistic services. Lay involvement in leading worship is very important to us and so members of the congregation read the lessons, lead intercessions, assist at the Communion and so on; Evening Prayer on Sunday is often lay led. Above all, our worship is a collective act of the whole body of Christ.
If you would like to join other members of our community in worship at home you can download suggested daily readings here. Below is a description of our regular services.
8.00 am: Eucharist
A said service, with a sermon, using the contemporary liturgy from Common Worship.
10.30 am: Parish Mass
Our main act of worship is the 10.30 am Parish Mass service at which we all gather to praise the Lord in words and music, to receive his help in Word and Sacrament and to meet each other.
We use modern services and readings with traditional music and ceremonial. The laity play a full part and children, who are admitted to Holy Communion from about the age of seven, are most welcome.
Teaching for school-age children is given in “Children’s Church” held in the recently re-furbished St Denys Hall, adjacent to the church, after which the children rejoin the service in time for the Communion. For younger children there is a carpeted area with a selection of toys in the north aisle where children may play quietly during the service or a creche is provided most Sundays – follow the other young families when they leave the service following the first hymn.
Fairtrade coffee and tea are served after the Parish Mass.
6.00 pm: Conversational Evensongs (once a month)
Introduced by our former Curate, Fr Andrew Downes, Conversational Evensong has proved to be a very popular monthly service with both regular parishioners and visitors alike. Guests who are influential in Church and Public life, such as Archbishop Rowan Williams, Jonathan Aitken, Jeremy Vine, Baroness Cox, Sir Anthony Seldon and Frank Field MP, are invited to St Nicholas and asked to choose a piece of music, a reading and a favourite object and explain why they have chosen them. They also share with us something of their faith journey and where God is to be found in their lives and offer us a short reflection. After the service has finished, we socialise over drinks and light refreshments before concluding with further questions to our Guest from the congregation. Although “lighter” in tone than a conventional evensong service, Conversational Evensong provides an opportunity over ninety minutes or so to really get to know our guests and what makes them tick and we have been privileged to have had some profound and moving services.
For more information on our conversational evensongs click here.
Mass is said on Thursdays at 9.30 am
Morning Prayer is said at 9.00 am on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.