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CHURCH NEWS - July/August 2004

New minister - several members of the PCC, together with the Bishop, Rural Deal and Archdeacon met a candidate and spouse on 25th June - we very much hope that they will decide to come to Odell where they will be very welcome.

July 2004

On Monday March 8th over 2000 people crowded into St. Paul’s Cathedral to celebrate the bicentenary of the Bible Society. For 200 years the Society has been translating , publishing and distributing the Bible all over the world – a world in which over 6,500 languages are spoken – 414 have a complete Bible, 2,355 have some form of scripture.

Much remains to be done and the Society has over 600 translation projects running at a time. Funding translation consultants and funding resources, encouraging and supporting local translators, publishing and distributing finished scriptures are all involved in their vital work.

In many parts of the world there is a hunger for the Word of God and a longing to be able to read the Bible in peoples’ own language. Someone from the former country of Zaire explains why this is so important and so special: "Now we have the Bible in Ngbaka, God speaks closely and directly to our hearts! It is like Christ Himself has come to visit us."

Have you read your Bible recently?

The story of the Bible Society’s 200 years is told in "Good News for the World: 200 years of making the Bible heard" by Roger Steer, published by Monarch Books, priced £8.99. Copies can be ordered on 01235 465612

Douglas Smith

(Information from "Word in Action" Summer 04, published by the Bible Society).

The Prayer Chain

The Prayer Chain is there if you need prayer for yourself, for others or for members of your family. Please don’t ask for prayer outside your own family without people’s permission. To have a number of people pray just telephone Dennis (822992).

Church Opening

Many of you will know that because of the problems of vandalism and theft from Churches generally, the Parish Church is kept locked. Unless there is a specific reason for opening it earlier, it will be opened for Sunday and occasional services half an hour before the Service is due to start.

E-Round News from the Diocese of St. Albans

Transformation for St Andrew's, Bedford

The church and church hall of St Andrew's Bedford have undergone major redevelopment over the last year, and the new St Andrew’s Church Centre will provide a resource for the local community as well as for church activities. The new centre was officially opened on Saturday 26th June by the Lord Lieutenant of Bedfordshire, and dedicated by the Bishop of St Albans, the Rt Revd Christopher Herbert.

'Developing a Healing Ministry', a one day training course "for all those who want to learn how to minister healing in the power of the Holy Spirit or as a refresher for those who are already doing so", is being held at Christchurch, Bushmead, Luton on Saturday October 9th, in association with New Wine Ministries. More information from 01582 454081.

 Issued by:
The Communications Unit
Diocese of St. Albans,

Meeting Point


Wednesday 14th 10.30am at Eileen’s, Corner House, 38 Wymington Park, Rushden.

There will be no Meeting Point during August.

Odell Village Fete June 12th 2004

In spite of the threat of showers the afternoon of the fete remained dry and sunny and a steady stream of visitors ensured that the fete was again a successful and pleasant event. As ever, the dog show proved to be very popular, (results shown below), keeping the tea tent very busy providing refreshments for both dogs and their owners! It was good to have once again both the company and entertainment provided by the Boys’ Brigade and we are grateful to Gerald Robinson for kindly agreeing to open the fete. Throughout the afternoon The Wodehill One-Steppers Jazz Band kept spirits buoyant with their lively and cheerful playing. Thanks to all who helped to make the fete such a success and to all who contributed prizes. We are pleased to announce that the fete made a profit of approximately £2800.

Competition Results.

Guess the teddy bear’s birthday:

Poppy Sherborne came nearest the date with 13th June. The actual date of the teddy’s birthday is 20th June – which is the date of my eldest grandson’s birthday!

Mary Rogers

Dog Show Results - see village news

Welcome home to a Medieval Angel

The plywood has gone! After over eight years sunlight is once again streaming through all of the east and west windows of our church, and the first restored angel is back in place. The restorers from Canterbury have also installed all the protective external glazing and removed the last fragments of glass to be restored. The first panel of stained glass showing one of the five angels has been returned and is very special because it is all original glass and leading. Unfortunately there has been a problem obtaining all the necessary bronze framing material, so the rest of the stained glass won’t be back until the autumn.

In the meantime the work on the re-leading of the other windows has been completed. As this magazine goes to press we are looking forward to a meeting with the Diocesan and English Heritage advisers about the new heating system.

Alison Neil as Richmal Crompton, the ‘Just William Lady’.

The Spring Concert in the church, which was reported on in the June magazine, raised over £560, so the shortfall to reach our target of £50,000 is now down to under £5,200, with the proceeds of ‘The Just William Lady’ evening and the Sponsored Walk in September still to come. Let’s keep up the effort and finish the job!

Our Giving in July is to CMS (Central Funds).

Proclaiming the gospel involves more than you think!

Ask anyone what is the first thing they think of when they hear the words 'proclaiming the gospel', and they will probably imagine a person standing on a street corner preaching loudly with a Bible in hand. Depending on your point of view, it is either a compelling or an amusing image. But the truth is that proclaiming the gospel involves a lot more. 'Gospel' language in Paul's letters covers a whole range of activities. People need to hear the gospel to become Christians at first, but they also need to hold on firmly to the gospel to grow in their faith and be part of congregations which are ready for the return of Christ.

CMS is committed to proclaiming the gospel through a wide range of ministries. Its fundamental motivation for proclaiming the gospel

is to bring glory to God. It is the divine intention that on the final day 'at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow…and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father'.

Our Giving in August is to the Tiger Kloof School

The Tiger Kloof School provides a Christian education and plays an important role in the much needed process of social integration in South Africa.

Amongst Ourselves

Marion Smith 1904 - 2004

Kind words about Marion as read by The Rev. Barry Middleton taking Marion's Service of Praise and Thanksgiving on Friday 28th May.

I suppose that as a very small boy growing up in Harrold I very swiftly realised that Mrs Smith was to be seen everywhere - not only in Harrold School as a supply teacher, but cycling to LiLelley's Stores, in the library, Post Office at Odell and in Odell Church. But then, in those days I did not realise just how much Marion was an integral part of Harrold and Odell.

When she was very young her parents took over the running of Odell Post Office. Marion was very much part of this village family with her brothers Henry, Jim and Jack. She attended the village school and became the first pupil to pass the Scholarship to the Girls Modern School (Dame Alice Harpur School, Bedford - where she was also to become the oldest 'Old Girl') travelling by train from Sharnbrook Station. Later she trained as a teacher.

She was concerned with education in one way or another all the days of her life: cycling weekly to travel by train to teach at Baldock; she was a 'supply teacher' at Harrold and also on the staff at John Gibbard School at Sharnbrook. Her last teaching day was at Odell School when she was 75yrs old – full circle indeed!

It speaks volumes for her ability in the classroom to note that many old pupils became life-long friends. My own memory is of a friendly, calm presence in the classroom - it was going to be a 'good and happy' lesson. Her commitment to teaching in the widest sense included being a 'Governor' of Odell School, and teaching in Sunday School. Commitment was something that Marion understood quite well - for she supported all manner of groups in the area: Odell WI, teaching Country Dancing to its members; a member of the Mothers’ Union and acting as Secretary to the Baby Clinic which was held at Harrold Chapel, and was also still helping with Meals on Wheels in her 80s.

Marion Smith was a very good caring type of person who quietly and unobtrusively would become involved in people’s crises and problems of life. She was a listener, but on occasions she was not afraid to arrive with essential support - a glass of sherry!

As a Parish Priest I was regularly bombarded with pamphlets, leaflets, courses and guidelines on how to give support to people: Marion got on her bike and got on with it. Of course she was well known to the Incumbents of Odell Church; she was a PCC member, a fund- raiser and organised a craft stall every year, encouraging others to make the items.

She taught Tony to pray, as she herself was a woman of prayer, inviting people to attend Church with her. She was a woman of faith who took her faith out in to the world around her. She simply loved people.

But it wasn't all serious commitment, not all work and no play, for there was her music, her love of family parties, her needlework and she loved pottering about in her garden. She was a country woman - God and creation. At the end she had a view of a garden. Then there was her home. She and Reg were married for 59 years and it was a good and happy marriage. She raised Tony, their son with her loving care, and was joyful when Tony and Diana married and settled down. She felt great pride and satisfaction in her grandchildren, Nicola and Germaine, a pride which increased as she watched them grow up and get married and in due course produce her great-grandchildren.

A happy, quiet, serene, hard-working, loving, caring, and even daring woman; who made good and full use of the gift of life. Much to remember, much to treasure - and not least her 'perfect end'.

We send our love to Tony, Diana, Nicola, Germaine and families. And weekly we admire the collection bag that Faith Colman made with a little help of course from Marion.

We Thank God for a wonderful day for the fete. We Praise Him for all the people who worked so hard, and for those that came to help swell the funds for our Church. It really was a magnificent weekend. The Service in the Marquee is always extra special, followed by a Barbecue for helpers and villagers. A family weekend, in a beautiful setting. We truly could not ask for more. We are so blessed, we really are. Thank You Lord. Amen. Anne Turner

Church Flowers for July and August.


4th Jill Cheadle

11th Nikki Freeman

18th Sue Robinson

25th Margaret Jones


1st Georgina Harrison

8th Rachel Halton

15th Mandy Sharpe

22nd Liz Lewis

29th Eileen Shakespeare

Birthday Greetings To:

Jonathan Sykes who will be 14 on August 15th and to Miles in Horse Fair Lane and to anyone else who has a birthday in July or August.



7th 7.00 pm Parish walk, starting from The Bell.

                                        13th 7.00pm W.I. visit to Thurleigh Museum.

                                                            14th 10.30am Meeting Point at Eileen’s, Corner House, 38

                                                            Wymington Park, Rushden.


                                                            10th 7.00pm W.I. Barbecue, Mandy Sharpe’s.

Magazine Deadline

Please send all entries for the September 2004 magazine to Tricia Hudson (, Anne Turner or Catherine Corkery by August 12th 2004 at the latest. May we remind you that the editorial team exercises the right to edit, shorten or alter any items that are submitted. Also, the opinions expressed in the articles are those of the contributors and are not the responsibility of the editorial team.


electronic mail address is <jh at>

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Last revised: July 10, 2004.