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St Giles’ Church, Oxford

Parish News

Nicholas Mynheer

April 2018 Free
Vicar: Canon Andrew Bunch, 01865 510460
The Vicarage, Church Walk, Oxford OX2 6LY
Associate Priest: Revd Tom Albinson 01865 515409 or 07426 948251
Lay Minister: David Longrigg, 9 Hawkswell Gardens, Oxford OX2 7EX (576638)
Benefice Manager: Meg Peacock
10 Woodstock Road, Oxford OX2 6HT
Maureen Chu 01865 726011
Joanne Russell 01865 760788
Acting Treasurer: Rod Nixon
Organist: Andrew Patterson
Choir Director: Nicholas Prozzillo
PCC Secretary: Sarah-Jane White
Captain of the Bells: John Pusey
Church Flowers: Mary Whitlock
Benefice Secretary: Anne Dutton
Twitter @StGilesOxford
Instagram stgileschurch
Sunday: 8:00 am Holy Communion (BCP)
10:30 am Holy Communion
6:30 pm Evensong (BCP)
Monday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Tuesday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Wednesday: 12:30 pm Eucharist
5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Thursday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Friday: 1:15 pm Taizé Worship
5:30 pm Evening Prayer
Saturday: 5:30 pm Evening Prayer

The newsletter is free, but if you wish to contribute towards production costs
this would be much appreciated. Please put your donation in the wall safe,
and mark your envelope Parish News. Items for inclusion in the May 2018
magazine should be sent to by 23rd April.

Contents – April 2018
Roof Appeal Update – Catherine Hilliard/Robin Harland Page 4
Mothering Sunday at St Giles’ Page 4
Bellringing News: Bernard Masterman – John Pusey Page 5
What’s all the Protesting been about – Gill Evans Page 6
30th Anniversary of The Gatehouse – Kat Horne Page 8
Jane Edwardes – an update Page 9
The Resurrection Disc – Philippine Sowerby Page 10
The Chorister Rose Garden – Maureen Chu Page 10
From Choir Stalls to Chalcedon – Steve Everett Page 11
Music at St Giles’ – from The Oxford Times Page 15
100 Years Ago and 50 Years Ago Page 16


T HANKS to the great contribution from the congregation and the
concerts and now to a good response from trusts, the end of the
roof campaign is in sight. It will take a month or two for cheques from
some of the successful applications to be received, and we hope that
the remaining applications will complete the appeal. This will take time
as some of the trusts only consider applications at long intervals. We
will let you know when we have firm figures.
Catherine Hilliard and Robin Harland

P RIEST and Pints is starting up again, meeting after St Giles’
Evensong on 8th April in The Royal Oak, Woodstock Road. Come
along for a pint or two and some conversation. Priest and Pints will
revert to the first Sunday of the month from May. Tom Albinson



A S many of you will have heard, Bernard Masterman, one of our
longest-serving bellringers, was seriously injured on Saturday 10th
March, when he seems to have walked into the path of a vehicle which
was reversing, in the grounds of Field House where he lives. He was
air-lifted from the Botley Road to the John Radcliffe Hospital, and put
on life support. He appeared to have suffered severe brain damage,
and remained largely or completely unconscious. He was taken off life
support on Tuesday 20th March, and was expected to decline, but this
has not happened, and there have unexpectedly been indications that
he can understand, and sometimes respond to hearing and to touch:
on Wednesday evening, after several promptings, he managed to say
‘Hello, Pam’ to his sister!
Bernard and his twin brother Roger, both blind from birth, were
taught to ring by Phil Walker and Dermot Roaf at St Giles in the early
1970s, when they were aged about 30, and Bernard used to attend
services at St Giles’ fairly regularly until about five years ago,
sometimes read a lesson from a Braille version of part of the bible, and
has continued to be listed as a St Giles’ ringer. When I first knew him,
in the 1980s, it was obvious that Bernard was remarkably capable both
in learning ringing ‘methods’ and in finding his way about in Oxford on
his own. We also used to hear reports of him going on long rides on
the back of a tandem bicycle, abseiling down from tall buildings, and
doing parachute jumps strapped onto an instructor. However,
bellringing has been his main interest, and he has had more time for it
since he retired from sheltered employment at the Cowley works. He
has rung 13 full peals, most of them at St Giles’, including one as
conductor, and several hundred quarter peals, including five earlier this
year. He was also the major contributor to the costs of retuning and
rehanging the St Giles’ bells in 2011.
Back in the Eighties and Nineties, I can remember often seeing
Bernard in the street as I cycled past, in all sorts of unexpected places
in the city, and after discussions with him, I concluded that it was the
same capacity for visualising and remembering two-dimensional maps
and patterns which enabled him both to get about on his own and also
to learn and remember ringing methods, which his mother used to

mark out for him on plastic sheets so that he could ‘read’ them in the
same way that he read Braille.
Bernard has lived in Botley for most of his life, and used to
manage the journey to St Giles’ on his own, by bus to the city centre,
and from there on foot. But there were very few buses running early
enough on Sunday mornings to get him to St Giles’ in time to take part
in our ringing, and
for the last few
years he has also
found the walk
from where he
would get off the
bus increasingly
Consequently, he
has transferred
most of his ringing and church attendance to St Nicholas, Old Marston,
because he could often get lifts there with ringers from North Hinksey,
and so he hasn’t been seen so often at St Giles.
I am in touch with Bernard’s sister, who is his next of kin, and
should be able to provide further news about his condition if anyone
asks me. Please have Bernard in your thoughts and prayers, especially
while he is in hospital.
John Pusey


W HAT has been going on in and around the Sheldonian Theatre
lately? National newspaper headlines have had a great deal to
say about the ‘lecturer strikes’ in universities over the proposed
changes to the academic pension scheme which operates in the older
universities. Groups of Oxford University’s own lecturers have been
seen standing outside the Clarendon building in Broad Street with
banners, even singing defiantly. (Oxford Brookes lecturers have a
different scheme, the taxpayer-funded Teachers’ Pension Scheme, so
they have not been affected.) Students have joined the protest,
despite the threat to their examinations now looming largely.

The University Gazette of 15th March (which may be read online)
has a supplement, describing in the proper constitutional language
what had happened on the Tuesday of the previous week. There had
been an attempt at revolution. A group of members of Congregation,
the University’s academic sovereign body, made a bid to suspend the
normal requirement to give three weeks’ notice so that they could hold
a debate before the end of term. They hoped to vote at the end to
force the University to change its mind about its willingness to accept a
higher risk to maintain higher pension expectations. This bid failed.
The Proctors counted with scrupulous exactitude and the required
number objected.
That’s as far as you can read in the Gazette because after that
things descended into unconstitutional disorder. The rebels marched
outside and took the vote they had wanted to take, only of course it
was not a valid vote. It was as though MPs had marched crossly out
into the streets of Westminster and taken a vote there.
However, the action had its effect. The University’s Council held
an emergency meeting the next morning and decided to go with the
outcome of the vote, which had been well over 400 to 2. The Council
held its normal meeting on Monday 12th March and circulated an email
in which in effect it apologised to Congregation for the inept handling
of the matter.
It’s quite an intricate problem. The Universities Superannuation
Scheme has many employer participants, mainly the universities which
existed before the polytechnics became universities in 1992, and

including the Oxford and Cambridge colleges. They pay into the
scheme reciprocally with the academics and academic-related staff
who are eligible to belong to it. It has hitherto been an outstandingly
good scheme with a defined benefit ‘final salary pension’ awaiting
members when they retired. The benefits were diminished a few years
ago, when defined contribution was introduced alongside a limited
defined benefit plan. The proposal which has caused such fury would
make the benefits substantially worse.
But who has the right to decide? In Oxford the employer is
ultimately Congregation and the beneficiaries are the members of
Congregation. That small but powerful rebellion was in effect a way of
making it clear that in Oxford employer and employee relations are not
quite the same as they would be elsewhere.
It has troubled consciences. A few years ago academics were
very slow to strike because of the impact on students. One ineffective
protest may be remembered, when lecturers marched down Whitehall
waving banners which said, ‘Rectify the anomaly’. But there is more in
the wind at the moment. The staggering size of the debt with which an
English student now graduates, Government determination to treat
students as consumers and universities as businesses competing in a
market in which it is right that the weak should fail. Somehow it has all
come together into an untidy but troubling heap and each upset and
outrage is linked with another in a common cause of ‘saving higher
education’. Gill Evans

T HE Gatehouse is a local charity that exists to provide a calm, safe
refuge for adults who are homeless or vulnerably housed in Oxford
City. It operates a volunteer-led café six evenings a week, where food,
warm drinks, privacy, companionship, clothing, support, signposting,
information and therapeutic workshops in art and literacy are
available. The Gatehouse can be openly accessed by anyone who is
aged 25 and over.
The Gatehouse has been part of a much wider, broader
community response to homelessness since 1988 and will be
celebrating its 30th anniversary in 2018. As part of this celebration we
would like to invite anyone who has in some way contributed to its

success, whether that be through donations of time, clothing, food or
funds, to our anniversary event on 10th October 2018 at The Kings
Centre, Osney Mead, Oxford, OX2 0ES. The celebration event, which
will be from 5-8pm, is largely an opportunity to thank everyone from
the Gatehouse community for their support over the years. We will be
presenting both the history of the Gatehouse and how we are currently
building a vision for the future together. There will be talks on
homelessness from local and national perspectives, together with
music, refreshments and nibbles to encourage the atmosphere of
celebration. There is no need to RSVP to this event: just come along
and celebrate with us. If parking is needed please contact Kat on in advance.
Kat Horne, Project Director, The Gatehouse

T HERE was a photo of Jane in the February Parish News, and we
have now received the following email:
Just to fill you in Jane’s spirit is alive and well, despite mobility
difficulties. We have a lovely team of carers who entertain and help her
during the day. None of us can believe her resilience: despite a few
hiccups and limited blood supply she keeps us all on our toes and has a
sense of humour not to mention drama!!
Hugo was here in January, as was Alexander, her French
grandson, his girlfriend, and Olive and Ruben. We have two ice cream
and coffee trucks at the beach in the summer here so Christmas does
slightly pass us by! All is much quieter now our chicks have flown! Jane
is happy, the climate is good, and she has made friends. She still talks
of her love of St Giles’ and what you all brought to her life in Oxford.
With love and thanks, Jane and Alice
Thursday 19th April
12:30 pm Iconic Gaze: The Divine Exchange - Beau Stevenson

Thursday 26thApril
12:30 pm The Empty Tomb - Nick Mynheer


R ESURRECTION is one of three discs, made together, as a reflection
for Lent and Easter. The disc, with its two very distinctive sides,
can be turned around depending on
the season. The dark side faces the
chancel during Lent, when we look
at our struggles, and offer them to
God; the light side is turned to face
the chancel at Easter when we
welcome our redemption.
The disc is made of elm. The
Lent side with a cross is scorched
black. The Easter side features
white gesso and gold leaf - a
technique used to write icons. The
hole at the centre represents God. The deep fissure, like Christ’s
wounds, can be seen in both sides. The two sides of the disc can be
seen as holding the opposites, as Jesus did on the cross. The disc holds
the paradox together. For us to live inside this space of creative
tension is, I believe, the very character of faith, hope and love.
The paradox of darkness and light, seeing and not seeing,
enables us to search for the truth in both sides and, with courage, live
our poverty with God mysterious and loving at the centre.
Philippine Sowerby

M ANY thanks to the parent of the
former Chorister who has designed
and planted up the rose bed in the South
Churchyard. His modesty prevents us
from thanking him by name - but he has
asked if the congregation could supply a
couple of bags of horse manure to help
the plants flourish. Please contact
Nicholas Prozzillo or a Churchwarden if
you can help. Maureen Chu


I N 1973 a young lad living in the centre of Oxford (above a pub no
less) was ‘spotted’ by a supply teacher. The lad was at a ‘not such a
high achieving’ school (that no longer exists) in Oxford. The supply
teacher suggested to his mother that he should go to a better school.
She felt his talents were under-used. She suggested a public school in
Oxford that had selection exams to get in. In order to help that process,
the supply teacher suggested the lad join the choir that her son was in.
That choir was St Giles’ choir.
So the young lad joined. Every Friday night, Sunday mornings
and evenings for 12 or so years, he trudged up through Cornmarket,
along St Giles to sing and steadily (under the excellent Organist/
Choirmaster, Peter Ward Jones) develop some abilities in the choral
‘arts’. Most enjoyable.
Working through the RSCM medal system, to gain the red ribbon,
be deputy head, then head choirboy – voice breaking at a late date – to
the annoyance of the boys after him as their voices broke, he clung on
to ‘leadership’. Then onto the back line as an alto for several years.
Also there was a foray into the bell chamber to learn more and
more about the exercise of English change ringing – an activity that he
continues to this day
The education was beneficial and enjoyable – learning many
classical pieces and anthems that contained some of the Truth he was
to later discover in a surprising and Biblical way. Oh, by the way – he
did get into that public school: perhaps St Giles’ choir helped that.
Yet as a young adult, many serious questions plagued him.
Worse still, a ‘not so healthy’ lifestyle was becoming his. For his mid- to
late-teens, depression and questions of mortality assailed him – yet
sadly, this was a quiet, shy individual with few acquaintances, and
practically no friends. Even worse, afflicted by an anger for almost all
people, not a teenage angst, more a “Isn’t everyone around completely
and utterly stupid and hypocritical and have basically no reason for
living” – not a pretty picture.
From there he started and quickly developed an alcohol habit
that led into thievery as well (to finance such an addiction). By the time
of his seventeenth birthday – despite turning up to choir and
‘performing’ etc, he was a mess and it was spiralling out of control.

Depression, some violence, every day moderately drunk yet able to
conceal it from his peers quite well. Quite an ugly sight, indeed! Yet
this was not the start of the story, just the preparation for it.
The real start was in 1982, when at the public school, another
young man who had a special spark in him (let’s call it eternal life) –
began becoming a true friend, visiting and showing respect, with some
understanding for the situation, rather than shock and rejection. The
second young man had experienced the Truth of the Bible – and
encountered the Divine in a way that the first had never seen before.
He suggested that the choir young man should attend a series of
lectures, put on by OICCU, first in the Debating Society, and then, due
to the phenomenal turn out, having to move to St Aldate’s. A
theologian/church leader/evangelist called David Watson was asking all
the awkward questions at all the right times, alongside a high-quality,
amusing drama team, that got under the skin in ways that challenge
comfort whilst being comforting. This was the “Is Anyone There?”
project – which produced a best-selling book etc.
Well, several enthralling nights into the series – an amazing thing
happened to the young man. This probably will sound strange to some,
but he discovered the Bible was real (historically, literally,
archaeologically, and scientifically), and could be trusted. It was
accurate, reputable, one could trust it and it described the human heart
situation precisely. Furthermore, what was written was an accurate
eye-witness account of the most momentous events in human history –
especially the New Testament and the life of Jesus. This
Carpenter/Preacher/Prophet (and far more) from a tiny backwater in
Nazareth made sense – when one was willing to invest in the message
He brought, at face value and in its true context.
But the big shock was an encounter of the Holy Spirits
Supernatural. At the end of one seminar/evening, the large crowd was
invited to pray – or reflect – which resulted in something that can only
be described as a ‘vision’. Powerful and real enough to bring about true
conviction, repentance, and transformation, with an encounter with
The Lord Jesus Himself.
From this new beginning, a whole new horizon opened up. Back
at the public school a Christian Union for students was started (there
hadn’t been one for over 50 years) and still goes today, surprisingly

enough. Gaining interest in deeper teaching and discipleship, he
started a prayer life that was becoming increasingly global. Praying for
various countries around the world became more and more vital and
dynamic, including praying for the old Communist bloc countries –
courtesy of Open Doors and other groups - and for more and more
Muslim world countries. Discovering that there were large tracts of the
world where the Gospel is not known at all – in fact 30 per cent of the
planet or more - was a shock. This just could not sit well in a young
disciple’s heart – someone must lend a hand - and if no-one else would,
then he must get involved.
There were many people, groups and prunings along the way.
Meeting the right mentors and guides was crucial – those who had
gone before and had vision, that harmonised with The Lord Jesus’s
commands and love. Various trips to eastern Europe - Poland, Hungary,
Czechoslovakia, East Germany, Albania (to name a few) - were also
important to view what other parts of the world are like in terms of the
Gospel of Jesus. Finally it came round to realising that Jesus is serious
about what He means. His message is to be proclaimed throughout all
the earth as the answer to the human condition – see Acts 4:12/Mark
16:15/Matthew 24:14 etc, etc.
The connection with modern day Turkey was a long journey over
many years which includes several helpers/friends and agencies. This
more detailed story perhaps is another series of articles as it includes
many technical elements that are not so easily addressed in a few lines.
Around 20 years ago, this journey culminated with an invitation to join
an educational project (English teaching, mainly) based in Istanbul. This
is a holistic approach that includes blessing people’s physical and
educational needs while at the same time addressing the bigger issue
of one’s eternal destiny and life. - i.e. giving people an opportunity to
hear the Gospel clearly (normally for the first time) and without
historical interferences, that have not helped.
What we have discovered is that there is a larger hunger to hear
more about the message of Jesus Christ than there is to learn English –
perhaps more than Oxford, England etc. Many thousands are hearing
of New Life for the first time and responding by surrendering their lives
to the King of Kings. So we have settled in Istanbul (as a base) which
includes much time in old Chalcedon (pronounced Kalseedon) – the

area of early church history where, among other things the ratification
of the Nicene Creed and other important doctrines on the nature of
Christ were clarified. It is a great honour to live and serve in such a
place of deep history, while at the same time making new history to the
Glory of The Lord.
From the choir stalls to Chalcedon – quite an eventful journey –
one would never have believed it was possible. Looking back – one
could almost say there was a divine hand guiding it all (which there
was! Wink, wink!)
Steve Everett (with thanks to John Pusey, for encouragements)
An exhibition of paintings by
Nick Mynheer and
Robert Wright
14th April to 20th May
at St Giles’ Church
Weekdays: 12 Noon-2:00 pm
Saturdays: 2:00-5:00 pm
(except 12th and 19th May)
Sundays: 12 Noon-4:00 pm
There is also a series of
Reflections and Talks
at 12:30 pm on Thursdays
throughout the exhibition.
Adrian Boorman, Countertenor/Malcolm Pearce, Harpsichord
Tricia Warhurst, Viola da Gamba, Baroque Guitar
Saturday 28th April, 7:30 pm at St Giles’ Church
The critically-acclaimed Oxfordshire Early Music Trio make a welcome
return, serving up an eclectic menu of musical delicacies in a programme
with works by John Dowland, Orlando Gibbons, etc. (Wine and
entertainment provided!)
Tickets: £12/£10 concessions/£8 students/£5 children under 10)

From Oxford Times, 15th March 2018
100 Years Ago – Parish Magazine, April 1918
A Welcome Gift: Miss Lamb has kindly given to the Parish a bath-chair
which belonged to her mother. This and the old bath-chair, which is
nearly worn out, are kept at the Parish Room for the use of sick people
in the Parish.
The Diocesan Fund: The sum of £24 18s 3d was given to the collection
for the Diocesan Fund in Church, and a further sum of £8 6s 6d has
been given in annual subscriptions or donations. The balance required
in order to make up our Parochial contribution of £46 is therefore £13
15s 3d. Miss Palmer, 16 Banbury Road, is kindly acting as Treasurer.

50 Years Ago – April 1968
The Annual General Meeting (extract): The Vicar [Revd Stanley
Birtwell] told the meeting that he had been asked by the Bishop to be
the Rural Dean of Oxford and had accepted. He remembered St
Michael at the North Gate’s Vicar being Rural Dean, also the Vicars of
St Philip and St James, and St Mary the Virgin. It was now alas St Giles’s
turn to suffer in this way, but it seemed to be necessary. The Vicar had
accepted only with the encouragement of the Bishop for his plan to try
to appoint a full time assistant priest to be paid and housed out of the
glebe income. (“Try” he finds already, is the operative word. The
shortage of clergy becomes a fact of life when one needs the help of a
young and zealous rod of Aaron). I know I can count on your readiness
to help the Deanery in this way. I shall do my best to contrive that
good will come to St Giles’, not ill, through this.
10:30 am Holy Communion
Introit Wood: This Joyful Eastertide
Anthem Stanford: Ye Choirs of New Jerusalem
Communion Anthem Gibbons: If Ye be Risen Again with Christ
Organ Voluntary Widor: Toccata from Symphony V
6:30 pm Choral Evensong
Magnificat Byrd: Short Service
Anthem Batten: O Sing Joyfully
Responses Smith
Organ Voluntary J S Bach: Prelude in C Major