Welcome to the website for All Saints Church, Hemblington. We do not know who built our church or when. What we worship in each week is a beautiful and simple building. The clear glass windows allow the light to flood the building. We gaze out at the rolling fields that surround the churchyard. This delightful building is very much part of the environment as the environment is part of the church.

This is a church that takes the visitor far away from the rush of a busy world. The round tower reminds us of the long history of Christian worship on this site. Within it one of the country's largest wall paintings of St Christopher greets the visitor. The uncluttered interior, medieval bench ends and magnificent font all tell stories of faith and worship throughout the centuries.

Here are details of the Christmas services in our benefice:

30th November
5.00 pm Advent Carols Blofield
13th December
3.00 pm Messy Church Blofield
14th December
5.00 pm Carols and Readings Blofield
21st December
4.00 pm Carols by Candleligh Hemblington
21st December
6.30 pm Carol Service North Burlingham
24th December
4.00 pm Christingle Blofield
10.00 pm Midnight at Bethlehem Hemblington
11.30 pm Midnight Service Blofield
25th December
10.30 am Benefice Family Service Blofield

Our benefice is currently looking for a new priest. Details of the post can be found on the Norwich Diocesan webiste at

http://www.dioceseofnorwich.org/article?id=1952

Those who have been involved in rural communities have known for years that churches have more than a religious utility in terms of community assets. The Countryside Alliance recognized that earlier this year when they made an impassioned plea that churches be put at the heart of rural communities to save them from becoming modern day irrelevancies and warning that many are in danger of fading away unless they become the thriving hubs they once were.

Hemblington Church undoubtedly falls under the description of ‘rural’, as does the community that it continues to serve. Whether it was ever a ‘thriving hub’ in the past is probably open to question. The important thing is that it has survived and in the past decade has grown, both in terms of the numbers of regular worshippers and the events and activities which take place there. In that context, the phrase ‘thriving’ has arguably never been more accurate than it is today.

The exciting news that the contract for the construction of the toilet extension (also incorporating level access to the church) has been awarded means that, together with the planned new kitchen, much more use can be made of the church as a focal point for community activities.

However, in developing this role for the church, we remain mindful of its primary role as a place of worship.

Our website rightly describes Hemblington as a church that takes the visitor far away from the rush of a busy world. Our hope must be that all those who come to Hemblington Church, for whatever event or activity, will experience the peace and tranquillity of this place. Even for the non-religious, churches can be moving havens of peace, encapsulating architecture, art and history in a moment’s contemplation. And who knows, in those moments of peace and contemplation, how God might choose to make himself known to those who might just be, perhaps without knowing it, looking for Him.

Simon Mutten, Hemblington Churchwarden

Our next Make and Mardle session will be at Gables Farmhouse, Hemblington Hall Road, Hemblington on Thursday 13th November from 10 am to 12 noon. There will be craft activities, knitting and chat with tea/coffee and cake. Please join us to share your craft experiences or just for a good mardle. Everyone is welcome.

You are invited to a Festival of Light at Hemblington Church on Saturday 8th November starting at 4 pm. We are throwing a party to celebrate “Light”. It seems a pity that the darkness of Halloween should be made so much of and the beauty and meaning light ignored, so for the second year running Hemblington is celebrating “Light” .

The many activities will include lantern making, traditional games such as apple ducking and bobbing, a lantern procession, sparklers and of course a BBQ. In fact something for everyone regardless of age. So do come and join us, it’s all free of charge.

As most of you are aware, we are currently busy fundraising for a project at Hemblington Church to add a toilet, to provide level access into the building and to provide new kitchen and storage facilities at the back of the church. We have had some minor setbacks which have slightly delayed the project and increased the costs. For example, we have discovered that some of the church electric wiring needs replacing. But we now have all the quotations in and the final costs are just under £80,000.

We have already raised over half of these funds from individual donations and fund raising events. We are currently in the process of applying for grants, many of which we could not approach until we had the costs finalised or who require the applicant to have raised over half of the funds themselves. We are confident that we will soon raise the required funds and envisage starting the building work early next year. By the middle of next year we will have a toilet available for adults and children who visit our church for services and events.

There is more detail about this project available on a display board at the back of the church. If you require further information or wish to make a donation to the fund then please contact Catherine on 270360 or Sue on 211629.

During the period that our benefice seeks to appoint a new priest (the interregnum) you are invited to use this prayer seeking God’s guidance:

God Our Father
You have welcomed each one of us in Jesus Christ and called us to be his body at Hemblington and in this benefice.

Send us your Holy Spirit, at this time of uncertainty and change, to fill us with vision, energy and faithfulness in prayer that we may be true to our calling to bring new life to our community.

Guide with your heavenly wisdom those who are to choose a new priest for this benefice, that the one whom we receive may be a wise and gentle shepherd of your people, ready to serve us with joy, to build us up in faith, and to lead us by example in living obedience to your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.

Amen

Prayer is the underlying need during this period when we are without a Rector. It is unlikely that we will have a new rector in place until the New Year. We all need the wisdom of God’s Holy Spirit to help us through this period. We have therefore made available various times of prayer during the week.

Tuesdays 9 am Morning Prayer at Blofield
Thursdays 9 am Morning Prayer at Hemblington
Fridays 5 pm Prayer with short Bible refection at Blofield

These are designed to make it possible for as many people as possible to attend one or more of these times every week. We hope everyone linked with Blofield, Hemblington and North Burlingham will respond. It began last month and will continue until further notice – probably until we know we have a new Rector. Prayer is where God enters our hearts and draws us close to him and each other as we seek his will. There will be no pressure to pray in a particular way – we all pray differently.

This is video shows our beautiful church on a lovely summers day in June. Music by the Octagon Singers of Norwich.

Friends of Hemblington Church now has a Facebook page where it is planned to display lots of pictures and details of events taking place at the church.
http://www.facebook.com/FriendsofHemblingtonChurch