In keeping with this I seemed to have joined a choir for Christmas, and have recently spent two brilliant evenings meeting people and singing with them at St. Nicholas Church in Newbury. I can’t help thinking of the sense of continuity, and of course of continuation when singing in a church.
As we were singing there were people ordering the church for Christmas, putting up a tree and decorations, setting up displays. It reminded me powerfully of the activities of the people of Morebath as recorded in Sr Christopher Trychay’s parish journal and set out in The Voices of Morebath: Reformation and Rebellion in an English Village
Looking on Wikipedia this morning I see that my feelings weren’t a co-incidence. The present building was started in the year (1509) that Henry VIII came to the throne, and probably completed around the year (1533) that he was excommunicated by Pope Clement VII. It would be really interesting to find out how the swings of reformation, counter-reformation and Elizabethan settlement affected the church in the years after its completion. I wonder if there’s a book?
It seems there is! The Story of Newbury (Local History).