Directing Music in Mere Green

September 8, 2017

I’m very grateful to the Rector and congregation of St James’ Chuch, Hill for allowing me to come into their church community and cover the vacant post of Director of Music for a while. We had a choir practice last night and I’m playing for my first Sunday service this weekend. There’s a wonderful pipe organ, a baby grand piano, choir and all sorts going on in what is a very busy parish. Read the rest of this entry »

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Carol Servicing

November 9, 2014

Like any good garage there are levels of service available from most churches this Christmas.

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Preach it, brother.

July 30, 2014

Today brings with it the funeral of a very dear man who was an inspiration to many. He passed away suddenly leaving a loving family and a great many friends in mourning. Read the rest of this entry »


Just a quick thought about leadership.

March 30, 2014

This morning I was treated to a Mr Hopley sermon. These are usually well thought out, structured for ease of understanding, and often include maps and spatial or timeline elements which help to explain and educate the congregation. Mr Hopley is a well respected teacher of Humanities. You can tell.

This morning’s message concerned the end of Moses, who led the Israelites through the desert to the Promised Land, but was not permitted to enter it himself. Only one thing stuck with me from the whole sermon, and it’s this:

Leaders are human.

I hate being in charge as much as I love it. The feeling that I can do something and make a difference is quickly balanced with the responsibility which weighs on the person at the top.

So we open our Bibles (being well brought up church types) and we find (among others):

  • Noah the drunkard
  • Abraham the wanderer
  • Jacob the thief
  • Joseph the braggart
  • Moses the murderer
  • David the adulterer
  • Gideon the coward

So no matter how bad we feel about our leadership, we’re hardly the worst example. As a bloke, it can be a bit daunting to realise most of the strong assured and dependable leaders in the Bible seem to be women. Or called Jesus.

I’m really not going to get into a slanging match about women priests (bishops, archbishops, popes, whatever) but it makes me think sometimes.


Christmas at the Parish church in Aldridge.

November 24, 2013

I’m a musician on the rota of band leaders at Aldridge Parish Church. This Christmas will be one of the more intense ones for me, because I’m playing at the carol services (two of them, back to back, December 22nd evening) and the morning of December 15th. Read the rest of this entry »


Harvest Songs – Where’s all the new material?

September 23, 2013

I’m playing at church on Sunday. My minister is talking to me about Harvest themed songs, and he hasn’t found much to enjoy from the “modern” worship canon.

Not that there is much really.

Harvest for most Christians is about thanking God for the abundance of creation. Even with all the skill in the world, farmers rely on nature to operate within normal tolerances and for us, that’s in the gift of Almighty God. We like a good knees-up. Anyone who thinks we don’t know how to party has never read about Jesus’ first recorded miracle – the whole water into wine thing. We are encouraged to celebrate, but apparently we must do it with a tragically dated soundtrack.
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Tooled up

September 8, 2013

I have too many tools. Not different tools, you understand, but too many of the same kind.

I have at least three blade screwdrivers of similar sizes and frankly I only need one. The same goes for pairs of pliers. I have drill bits I don’t use because I have another set that’s always to hand when I need it.

I reckon I’d be able to fill a decent size box with stuff I have but don’t need because I have redunancy across toolboxes, and honestly there are tools I’ll never use except in the event the one in the house breaks and one in my toolbox is missing. That assumes I’ll remember I have a third.

I’m not one for pet charitable endeavours, but I want to highlight these guys. Tools with a Mission accumulate unwanted or surplus tools and send them abroad. Yes, it’s a Christian organisation. We as a faith group have a history of charitable works (sometimes despite ourselves, sometimes regardless of the consequences) and I like to have a look first to see what they’re actually doing and where my money goes…

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