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CHURCH NEWS - December 2008/ January 2009

Saturday December 20th

Carol Singing around the village  

“Ding dong merrily on high …”

will the Handbells ring out again in Odell? 

Join us for traditional carol singing around the village in aid of the Children’s Society.  Pile on plenty of warm clothes and boots, bring a torch – or even better, a lantern.


Proposed route – timings are approximate!:

6.00pm Meet outside The Bell and sing to households in Mill Lane 

6.15 pm Tannery Lane and north end of village 

6.45pm To Little Odell (by car) sing to houses around The Mad Dog 

7.00pm High Street etc. and Horsefair Lane  

7.30pm Adjourn to The Bell 


                                                                                                            December 08


Dear Friends, 

In our morning service on Sunday December 7th we will be giving thanks for and celebrating our church bells.  The bells were re-hung on 20th December 1958, after being inactive for many years, and so it is fitting to celebrate the 50th anniversary of their re-dedication this month. 

It is 370 years since the oldest of our current bells were installed in the tower.  Four were made by James Keene of Woodstock and a fifth made by Hugh Watts.  The sixth modern bell, donated by Harold and Betty Tusting, was made by John Taylor & Co. of Loughborough partly from the metal of an older bell cast in Birmingham in 1873. Originally destined for Wymington Church, it was sold to Odell in 1956 and installed in 1958, when the older bells were also re-tuned and re-hung in a new steel frame.  This work was generously supported by friends from The First Parish Church in Concorde, Massachusetts, with whom we have a long established connection through Rev’d Peter Bulkley, a former Rector of Odell. 

We know that bells were cast in China 4,000 years ago, but it was not until 500AD that they were first used in Christian churches, when the Benedictine monks in the Campana region learned how to cast them. Their popularity spread throughout Europe, but it was not until the 16thC that the quintessential English practice of change-ringing developed, when church bells began to be fitted with a full wheel.  This gave the ringers control of their bell, allowing sets of bells to be rung in continuously changing patterns. Call changes and a few standard methods are common to most towers, making it easy for ringers to visit and ring with other bands.  The first recorded full peal involving 5,004 changes took place on the 9th of June 1798 in Winchester Cathedral, to celebrate the king’s birthday and took 3 hours and 12 minutes to complete! 

Bells are not only rung to summon people to worship, but at key moments in our lives such as weddings, baptisms and on other special occasions. Muffled bells are sometimes rung on Remembrance Sunday, before or after funerals, or at the close of the old year, before the muffles are removed to greet the new. 

And of course – the bells ring out merrily at Christmas to welcome the birth of the Saviour, Jesus Christ, and again at Easter to celebrate the wonder and joy of his resurrection victory over the last enemy, death. 

The bells are part of our culture and history, companions to us as we mark the significant moments in our lives, witnesses with us of the Christian hope through many centuries. Will they continue to ring out for our children and grandchildren?  Well that may depend on you.

 According to the Council of Church Bell Ringers, men, women and children from age 10 to 80 enjoy ringing bells – a great team activity that stimulates the brain, relieves mental stress and helps keep you fit.  So, providing you can count … how about it? 

With love and prayers,


 PS: Listen out on the afternoon of Saturday 13th December, when a team from Bedford, led by Martin Whiteley, will attempt a full peal at All Saints’ Church.

 Christine & David wish you all a very happy and blessed Christmas.As we celebrate with joybirth of the Christ-child, may each of us know more of his love in our hearts and lives, and grow in our trust and understanding of that love in the year ahead.

The Prayer Group

What is the Prayer Group?  It is made up of members of All Saints’ Church who undertake to pray regularly, on an individual basis, for people who ask us for prayer support. 

Who do we pray for?  Anyone whom we are asked to remember; these might be people from our church, from our local community or others known to us. 

What will you pray about?  Anything which you would like brought before God; maybe anxiety due to illness, stress or loneliness.  You can also tell us of a special day you wish to be remembered – perhaps for an interview or an exam.  Any information will be treated in strictest confidence. 

How can I let you know if I would like you to pray for me?  You can either telephone Christine (720234), or drop a note through the Rectory door, or complete a card (anonymously if you wish) and place it in a box kept near the church door.  Prayer requests will be collected from the box each Sunday morning after the 10.00am service. 

News from David Payne

Everyone who remembers David from when he was Rector of All Saints’ will be pleased to hear that he has sent an update on his family news: his daughter Alison and her husband Paul have a two year old son, Benjamin James, a real 'blondie' and the delight of his grandfather's life; and his son Richard, aged 37, announced his engagement to Jane Lawson on David's 77th birthday.  We send our congratulations and best wishes to all the family. 

Meeting Point


Wed 3rd            10.30am at Sarah’s, 9 Horsefair Lane, Odell.

Wed 17th          11.30am  - bring and share lunch at Jane’s, Newton House,    Avenue Rd., Newton Bromswold, Rushden.


7th                           10.30am at Jill’s, Rectory Farm, Odell.

21st                  10.30am at Eileen’s, 24 Church Hall Road, Rushden.


All Saints’ Amblers

Get some healthy exercise in after the Christmas excesses, and enjoy the company of others – join us on New Year’s Day for a walk in the country followed by a pub lunch. Meet outside The Bell at 9.45am – transport provided to start of walk if needed.  Everyone welcome, including children and dogs on leads! 

A special service to celebrate Advent 

Monday 8th December - 8.00pm at Harrold URC

‘Christ our Light’

a quiet reflective service

with seasonal readings & Taizé worship 

(arranged by Churches Together in Harrold & Carlton with Odell) 


Instead of sending a Christmas card to each other, how about changing a family’s future by sending a cow?  £120 will buy a local cow for a farmer and his family in one of nine African countries.  A dairy cow provides up to 35 pints of nutritious milk a day and fantastic fertiliser.  If we choose livestock as our gift, for example, the first female offspring will be passed on to another family in need, who will in turn pass on their first-born.  Every time help is given to one family living in poverty, another ten families end up benefiting too. 

“If you spend yourselves on behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.”  Isaiah 58:10.. 

There will be a box in Church for your donations, or alternatively give your donation to Christine or Jane. 

Found - white ceramic dish 8" square - left in the Village Hall, possibly after the Harvest Supper.Has identifying logo on the side Le Bistro de Pays - Frederic Vincent Rousseau.Is it yours?If so, please contact Christine on 720234 for return. 

Our Giving in December will be to the following Charities:

The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children

Christian Family Care and The Bedford Area Schools Christian Support Trust (SU)

In January our giving will be to Mission Aviation Fellowship. 

This is an airborne mission, which takes the Word and much-needed help to many remote and inaccessible places – a very worthy cause.



The hymn says:

 “There is a name so sweet to hear, it is the name of Jesus.”

Jesus is the sweetest name on earth..— Stop! -  Think!  -  Jesus: he is not a statue or an idol.  He is a real living spiritual body of life, love and power encompassing us and with us every moment of our lives. He knows our anxieties, our fears and the mess the world is in.  He is our ultimate goal in life and eternity.

We human beings do not like to think about eternity as it is linked to our own mortality.  But, if we think of Jesus, trusting Him, we have no fear of tomorrow. 

Some people think “this is not for me”; most think “I’m alright, it’s all the others!” Yet, Jesus loves us all, just as we are.  And remember that no-one else can answer for us; each one of us alone is answerable to Jesus for our actions.

Take comfort in that Jesus knows all our efforts and our toils.  He is always there for us and if we take Jesus into our lives it will change everything: we are a  happier and more friendly person.  Jesus will mend all the broken pieces in our lives. 

I am not saying that this will be easy, as anything that is worth achieving  always takes a lot of effort and trust, but it is worth it in the end.  His grace is like a river flowing endlessly: who would not want to be eternally enfolded in the peace He alone can give?

                                                                                                            Sarah Bennett


Christmas Hamper Coffee


In support of Christian Family Care

Friday 5th December

Hobbs Green Farm

Church Lane, Odell

From 10.00am to noon.

Admission Free

People willing to supply lifts to and from surgeries.

Below is a list of the people currently willing to give lifts, to and from surgeries, to people who can’t otherwise get there:

Kim Beardow 721246, Jill Cheadle 720261, Jonathan Harrison 721115,

Steve Robinson 720113, Marion Senn 721176, Linda Tringham 720120. 

If anyone else is willing to be a volunteer please contact Jill on 720261.


Whiting Society of Ringers

On Saturday 15th November a team of bell ringers from Bradford in Yorkshire visited All Saints’ and tried out the bells.  It was very cheering to hear the bells ring out on such a dark and gloomy evening. 

Robert Appleby, bell ringer, has written to say:

“We certainly enjoyed our short spell of ringing at All Saints’. I note that my Ringer's Guide dated 1956 lists Odell as having only five bells in derelict condition, so congratulations on the excellent augmentation to six and restoration to ringability. 

“The Whiting Society of Ringers has its origins at Marple, Cheshire, where Arthur Whiting was a ringer. He encouraged young ringers to widen their experience by ringing at other churches, and provided transport in those days {1950s and 60s} when car ownership was not so widespread. The ringers formed the Society in 1968 and named it in his honour. Arthur died in 1975, but the Society has flourished. Ringers join by introduction, and the Society prioritises the development of more advanced ringing, so new members do need to be reasonably proficient. It maintains the tradition of ringing at as many different towers throughout the UK, holding several outings per year. Its members live at various locations - mainly in the Midlands, but also elsewhere. Our meetings are also lively social occasions. 

“Thanks again for the opportunity to ring at Odell.” 

Robert Appleby, Bradford, West Yorkshire.  (Alas the picture provided was of poor quality so we were unable to show it) 


Happy birthday to:

Charlotte Lloyd who will be 7 on the 24th January

And to anyone else with a birthday in December or January! 

Odell Church Flower Rota


7th          S Robinson

13h       Church decorating for Christmas

20th      C Scott check and water flowers

28th      All help to clear




3rd        10.30am           Meeting point at Sarah’s, 9 Horsefair Lane.

3rd        7.30pm            WodeHill One Steppers Jazz Band at The Bell.

5th        10.00am           Christmas Hamper Coffee Morning, Hobbs Green Farm.

8th        8.00pm            Advent Service Harrold URC.

9th        7.30pm            W.I. celebration meal at Jane Eshelby’s.

10th      12.30               Senior Citizens’ Christmas lunch, Village Hall.

13th      10.00am           Church decorating and bellringing (full peal attempt in the afternoon)

15th      10.00am           HOCP Conservation tasks.

17th      11.30am           Meeting Point at Jane’s, Newton House, Avenue Rd.,   Rushden.

20th      6.00pm            Carol singing round village; meet at The Bell.

21st      6.00pm            Candlelit service of Nine lessons and carols, All  Saints’.

25th      10.00am           Christmas service at All Saints’ Church.



1st        9.45am All Saints’ Amblers meet at The Bell.

7th        10.30am           Meeting Point at Jill’s, Rectory Farm, Odell.

7th        7.30pm            WodeHill One Steppers Jazz Band at The Bell.

13th      7.30pm            W.I. at Village Hall.

19th      7.30pm            Parish Council Meeting, Odell Village Hall.

21st      10.30am           Meeting Point at Eileen’s. 

Magazine Deadline

Please send all entries for the February 2009 magazine to Tricia Hudson (mag1 at or Catherine Corkery by January 12th 2008 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.

Last revised: December 06, 2008.