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Gironde

Condom

Forthcoming Services and Events in Condom

pentecost- Sunday 04 June - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Pentecost Day Holy Communion, Ven. Chris Sims

- Thursday 29 June - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Holy Communion, Rev'd Tony Lomas

- Sunday 09 July - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Morning Worship, Michael Torne

- Sunday 27 July - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Holy Communion, Rev'd Robin Nash

- Sunday 13 August - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Holy Communion, Rev'd Robin Nash

- Thursday 31 August - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Morning Worship, Michael Torne

- Thursday 28 September - Condom - Piétat Chapel, 11:00 Harvest Celebration and Holy Communion, Rev'd Tony Lomas

 

Joyous occasion as Michael is licensed as Licensed Lay Minister: March 11th

The sun shone brightly on Saturday 11th March, when many from throughout the Chaplaincy came together in Condom to witness the licensing of Michael Torne as a Licensed Lay Minister. This was an extra special day, joyful in so many ways, as so many friends, colleagues, clergy came together to uphold and support Michael.

The service was led by The Venerable Meurig Williams, the newly appointed Archdeacon of France, with hymns chosen to match the tone of the day, and Michael admits to having been particularly moved by the chorus of ‘I, the Lord of sea and sky’ – “Here I am Lord.” During his sermon the Archdeacon reminded not only Michael and all the other many clergy present, but the congregation as a whole that we are not alone having the support of one another. The service ended with "Guide me, O though Great Redeemer" and we pray that Michael will be guided through his spiritual journey.

After the service Michael offered his thanks to everyone as they left the chapel. From those unable to be in Condom on the day there had been many messages of support and goodwill. Sue and Michael’s children particularly had commitments elsewhere which could not be changed but they were able to speak to Michael before the service. The pleasures of the day were completed by a delicious buffet lunch which gave everyone a chance to meet, chat and mingle with friends before heading back home. Many thanks to all those who were involved in the organisational details (that often go unnoticed) to make this such a special day.

Many thanks to Hazel Markham, Paul Mazzotti, Pauline Prosser, and Richard Horsman for their contributions to this news article.

Michael writes, "The words of Dan Schutte’s hymn ‘I the Lord of sea and sky. ‘ sung by a full chapel at my Licensing as Reader or Licensed Lay Minister filled my emotions on Saturday 11th of March, the chorus ‘here I am Lord’ fuelling those emotions. The knowing that it was not just the offering of myself into lay ministry but that all those singing were also offering themselves to the service of God in the many ways that enliven our Church as the body of Christ. I offer my heartfelt thanks to all that came and to all the messages of support from those unable to be there. It was both a surprise and a pleasure to see so many from the Chaplaincy that had travelled so far to be with Sue and I and our community in Condom.

The Archdeacon talked of not being on our own but that we share the task of ministry, supporting each other. Yesterday was one of those occasions when we saw that in practice. I am sure our community will build and grow on this day."


 

How to find us

The chapel is located in the Gers (32): Chapel Notre Dame de Piétat, 54 Av. Aquitaine, Condom (leaving Condom follow signs for Nérac, the Chapel is opposite EDF). For detailed directions from your location, click on the Find a Church page.

 

Service Pattern

Church of England forms of worship are used for all services. Services are held at Condom on the last Thursday of the month (Holy Communion or Morning Worship), generally starting at 11:00am. Additional services may be held at other venues at various times throughout the year. For further details, please see the Contacts tab above.

 

Our Members

Our members are drawn from the northern and central Gers and southern Lot and Garonne.

 

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News

May 'Open Gardens in Lasbadies': a beautiful day!

A beautiful day, a beautiful garden: We have some very talented and creative gardeners in our Condom Church community. Not only talented, but generous with their time, to be part of the Open Gardens programme –www.opengardens.eu. It is a programme that includes many wonderful gardens throughout France, the money raised is used to support the charity 'A Chacun son Everest' a charity supporting children in remission from cancer.

Jennifer and Alan Story on 14th May opened their garden at Lasbadies. Like those who prepare for the Chelsea Flower Show there were many anxious moments. How would the weather be? Would the blossom on the Wisteria still be there. Although some of the Wisteria blossom had passed over there was much to see and admire as well as enjoy very English afternoon tea. Next month will be the turn of Jamie and Ann Jowitt.

It is good to see Christian life being lived out bringing together fellowship and charity and reaching into both French and English communities. Thank you Jennifer and Alan!

 

easter candle

Easter in Condom

With the chapel dressed with flowers and a bough of birch strung with painted eggs our Easter service was blessed with glorious sunshine lifting all our heart’s in celebration of our Lord’s resurrection.

Our service started with the lighting of a new Paschal candle. The singing of those familiar hymns and the hearing of St Matthew’s wonderful account of that first Easter morning all bringing the 36 people gathered together as one.

Again baker Ron made a special treat of Shrewsbury biscuits to have with coffee, helped visitors and parishioner’s conversation flow, rounding off a wonderful service.

 

Mothering Sunday: sharing a recipe of love for my mum

Sue Torne writes, "Our Thursday service in March fell in the week of Mothering Sunday and during the service our intercessions focused on all aspects of a mother's role including that of the Mother Church. As a mother and now grandmother I found these prayers very powerful as I am sure the other mother's in the congregation did. After the service one mother shared with me a poem her grandaughter had written for her mother for Mothering Sunday. I thought it was such a beautiful poem that I sought their permission to share it with all the other mother's in the chaplaincy.

The poem was written by  ten year old Tanya at school in the UK. Her teacher had asked her pupils to make lists of all the verbs and nouns that regularly occur in a recipe. Once they had made their lists they were then asked to write a recipe/poem to their own mum, I have read it several times now and believe it says so much about being a mother and like all good recipes should be shared."

 

Joyous occasion as Michael is licensed as Licensed Lay Minister: March 11th

The sun shone brightly on Saturday 11th March, when many from throughout the Chaplaincy came together in Condom to witness the licensing of Michael Torne as a Licensed Lay Minister. This was an extra special day, joyful in so many ways, as so many friends, colleagues, clergy came together to uphold and support Michael.

The service was led by The Venerable Meurig Williams, the newly appointed Archdeacon of France, with hymns chosen to match the tone of the day, and Michael admits to having been particularly moved by the chorus of ‘I, the Lord of sea and sky’ – “Here I am Lord.” During his sermon the Archdeacon reminded not only Michael and all the other many clergy present, but the congregation as a whole that we are not alone having the support of one another. The service ended with "Guide me, O though Great Redeemer" and we pray that Michael will be guided through his spiritual journey.

After the service Michael offered his thanks to everyone as they left the chapel. From those unable to be in Condom on the day there had been many messages of support and goodwill. Sue and Michael’s children particularly had commitments elsewhere which could not be changed but they were able to speak to Michael before the service. The pleasures of the day were completed by a delicious buffet lunch which gave everyone a chance to meet, chat and mingle with friends before heading back home. Many thanks to all those who were involved in the organisational details (that often go unnoticed) to make this such a special day.

Many thanks to Hazel Markham, Paul Mazzotti, Pauline Prosser, and Richard Horsman for their contributions to this news article.

Michael writes, "The words of Dan Schutte’s hymn ‘I the Lord of sea and sky. ‘ sung by a full chapel at my Licensing as Reader or Licensed Lay Minister filled my emotions on Saturday 11th of March, the chorus ‘here I am Lord’ fuelling those emotions. The knowing that it was not just the offering of myself into lay ministry but that all those singing were also offering themselves to the service of God in the many ways that enliven our Church as the body of Christ. I offer my heartfelt thanks to all that came and to all the messages of support from those unable to be there. It was both a surprise and a pleasure to see so many from the Chaplaincy that had travelled so far to be with Sue and I and our community in Condom.

The Archdeacon talked of not being on our own but that we share the task of ministry, supporting each other. Yesterday was one of those occasions when we saw that in practice. I am sure our community will build and grow on this day."

 

March 1st: A Preparation for Easter through the songs of Paul Simon

ash wednesdayA group met at the home of Sue and Michael Torne for an Act of Worship on Ash Wednesday, March 1st. The short act of devotion followed the Iona Community style of worship and used Paul Simon’s songs Homeward Bound, Sound of Silence and Bridge over Troubled Water. All these songs express aspects of our own journey through life, as pilgrims. The group also sang together the hymn ‘He who would valiant be’.

A member of the group read the Bible reading of the temptation of Christ (Matthew 3.13-4.11) and the group read as a round the Michel Quoist poem’ Lord can You Hear Me?’. Continuing the pilgrim theme one member of the group read a poem entitled ‘Set Out’. We don’t who or when this poem was written, it was found as a faded piece of paper pinned to a notice board in an isolated monastery in Majorca, but its message was relevant to all of us today.

The devotion concluded with a short reflection and some prayers specific to Ash Wednesday.

We then enjoyed some time of fellowship with a simple Lent lunch of soup (leek and potato-it was St David’s day!!) and the inevitable plum crumble.

 

Peaceful Reflection for Advent and Tea: Dec 4th

On Sunday the 4th of December, the second Sunday of Advent, a Reflection for Advent was led by Michael Torne. A Reflection expressed in poetry, music and prayer.

Thomas Merton told us that in silence God ceases to be an object and becomes an experience. As we sat in quiet reflection we prepared ourselves for Christmas when once again we celebrate God’s gift to us of Jesus Christ. We mentally prepared ourselves by confronting our ways, preparing for judgement, looking with hope on the promises God has made to us, comforted by His love and faithfulness.

The theme of the Reflection was waiting and watching. Sometimes just waiting for a cup of tea and watching longingly on the great spread of ‘goodies’ to be eaten. After the time of quiet there was much noise of talking and laughter. A happy time together. We thank Lavina Pearce for opening her home to us. Praise be!


Successful November Coffee Morning Fundraiser

On Wednesday November 30th the Condom church held its final fundraising event of the year. It was a Christmas Bring and Buy Coffee Morning at the home of Marrian Lestrange. This was the first time the Condom team had organised such an event and we were anxious that it would be a success but thanks to the support of both parishioners and non church members we raised over 400€ for our charity Educaid.

This was a team effort but I must mention the efforts of Ann Benner and daughter Claire. These two ladies have been working hard for many months, making the cushions for our Adopt a Cushion campaign and in the last few weeks making wonderful Christmas Puddings.

Richard Smith, raffle organiser extraordinare,  must also receive a mention. Richard put together four great raffle prizes and did a great job selling the raffle tickets. The winners were:1st prize-Pam Savage, 2nd prize-Neil Wright, 3rd prize-Ron Benner, 4th prize-Albert Yorke.We hope to do another coffee morning next year.

 

Remembrance Service

Our annual Remembrance Service was taken by our Reader-in-Training,  Michael Torne. This is always a memorable event, but this year was made more impressive by the fact that it was conducted beautifully and sensitively, and several of the congregation took part.

Our hymns were stimulating and patriotic, including 'Jerusalem ' and 'I vow, to Thee, my Country'. The reading of a poem by Owen Griffiths, 'Lest we forget', by Simon Lowman, an ex-army officer, and the final bidding by Richard Smith, our Deputy Warden, also an ex-army officer, of the 'Kohima Declaration' were all moving and really meaningful. All bringing back the enormity of what we all owe.

A wreath was laid at the altar, as we have no memorial in the church. As the daughter of a soldier, and the mother of a Naval officer, the service had a special resonance for me and touched all who attended. We finished with the National Anthem,and these words ringing in our ears:  'When you go home, tell them of us and say, for your tomorrow, they gave their today'. This was a Remembrance Service which will stay with me for a long time to come.   - Irene Birt

 

 Click here for the "Condom Previous News" page

 

 

 

 

Events

St Puy May Day Fair: Sunday May 28th

may day

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are planning our main fund raising event of the year on May 28th at the St Puy May Day celebrations. Our church will have a stall selling cakes, books, plants and re-gifted items.

It's a great annual event, come along and have some fun!

For more information, please contact Sue Torne: 05.62.08.17.78 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Open Gardens: June 11th in St Puy

open gardensThe next Open Gardens will be on June 11th at Taillefer 32310, St Puy. This is the home of James and Ann Jowitt, members of the Condom congregation. All are welcome, why not invite a friend?

Click here for more details and directions.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Poems, Prayers, Reflections

Reflection on Ascension Day

ascension dayMichael Torne writes:

Dear Friends,When I was a chorister one of the highlights of the year was the Top of the Tower service at 7.30am to celebrate the Feast of the Ascension. The final hymn Hail the day that sees him rise sung with much gusto bringing the service to its end with its wonderful words by Charles Wesley. Still today, it is good to know, this traditional service has carried on in many large churches and Cathedral’s.

Sandwiched between the great festivals of Easter and Pentecost the Feast of the Ascension often seems the poor relation. For all its memorable imagery it still strikes many as a rather curious episode. Edmund Banyard’s poem starts with these words ‘Lost to sight.. ..taking off, jet propelled like a human rocket’, a thought that is hardly an aid to Christian devotion.

The Ascension is crucial to the whole of our Christian faith a lynchpin between the events of Easter and Pentecost. The Resurrection is the beginning of Christ’s heavenly journey and Pentecost the echo on earth of heaven’s jubilation at his coronation. Jesus, as Banyard says, takes into the Godhead all that it means to be human, and in the words of Wesley’s hymn ‘still for us he intercedes…near himself prepares our place’ we are reassured. I hope you will worship with us on this important festival.

Enjoy this poem by Edmund Banyard – from The Turn of the Stone

Lost to sight in the clouds!Taking off,

jet propelled like a human rocket

to return to –where?

Is this how it was,the Ascension?

Caught up into all the glory of God

and so here –and everywhere,

no longer imprisoned by physical limitations:

unseen - but not - unexperienced.

One with the Father,

Jesus takesinto the Godhead

all that it meansto be human.

And so I know,that I am known,

by the Almighty;known,andunderstood.

 

To the Pilgrim

 Set out! You were born for the road.

Set out! You have a meeting to keep. Where? With whom?

You don't know. Perhaps with yourself?

Set out! Your steps will be your words, the road will be your song, the weariness your prayer.

And at the end your silence will speak to you.

Set out! Alone, or with others; but get out of yourself.

You have created rivals - you will find companions. You envisaged enemies - you will find brothers and sisters.

 Set out! Your head does not know where your feet are leading your heart.

Set out! You were born for the road, the pilgrims road.

Someone is coming to meet you, is seeking you, so that you can find Him:

In the shrine at the end of the road, in the shrine at the depths of your heart, He is your peace, He is your joy.

Go! God already walks with you.

- Anonymous, apparently written orginally for pilgrims embarking on The St James Way, The Camino. (Sue writes, "We came across it as a very tatty, faded piece of paper on a noticeboard at the Santuari de Santa Honorat, a small hermitage on the Puig de Randa in Majorca. It moved us both as we read it so we photographed it and brought it back to the Gers.")

 

The Chapel

A Brief History of the Chapel of Our Lady of Piétat

painting in chapelIn 1520 a local man, Raymond Berenjon, was caught in a thunder storm. His horse was killed by a lightning strike but Raymond survived and vowed to build a chapel on the spot, a short distance from the town of Condom.

The chapel was built, but suffered serious damage in the French Wars of Religion 1562-98 (nearby Nérac was a protestant stronghold). The chapel was restored after the civil war and gradually during the 17th and 18th centuries additional buildings were added to the chapel and a hospital established. With the Revolution of 1789 the chapel suffered serious looting and damage. In 1820 the government decided to sell the building complex to a Condomoise family who turned the buildings into a school under the authority of the Daughters of Mary and Sisters of St Joseph of Rodez. More buildings were added in the following centuries and in 1977 the sisters left and the school and chapel were entrusted to the laity. The school continues to this day as the Ecole Notre Dame de Piétat and the chapel is used for regular mother and children services.

The Anglican community held their first service in the chapel in 2008 as an outreach project from the Chaplaincy of Pau. On January 1st 2014 the Anglican Church in Condom joined the bigger Chaplaincy of Aquitaine.

 

 

Contacts


Priest with the Responsibility for the Sector of Condom:
Rev'd Tony Lomas - 06 72 31 72 87 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Reader in Training:

Michael Torne - 05.62.08.17.78 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Treasurer:

Carolyn Humpherson - 0044 121 323 2376, mobile: 0044 7837 30 44 57 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Team members:

Local Warden, Sue Torne - 05.62.08.17.78 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Deputy Local Warden, Richard Smith - 05.62.29.49.21 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Neil Wright - 05 62 29 12 28 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Carolyn Humpherson - 05.62.08.45.56 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Sylvia Hames 05 62 29 19 24 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Lavinia Pearce 05 62 29 44 06 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Irene Birt 05 62 28 80 97 - This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

Please contact any of us with questions or suggestions, we would be happy to hear from you.