Church News

Church News (as it comes in!) below:

Celia receives Maundy Money from Her Majesty the Queen at Windsor

The Maundy service is a tradition that dates back to King John in the 13th century, when the reigning monarch washed the feet of the poor. Since Edward IV the reigning monarch has given out money on Maundy Thursday to pensioners who have made a special contribution to the Church and the community although the practice of washing feet at the Royal Maundy service was discontinued in 1730. The word Maundy comes from the Latin ‘mandatum’ which means commandment. On the day before his Crucifixion, Jesus washed the feet of his disciples and commanded them to ‘Love one another’.

This year the Queen attended St. George’s Chapel at Windsor (where the Duke and Duchess of Sussex were married last year), together with the Princess Eugenie, to present 93 men and 93 women with two small leather purses of Maundy money each. The number of gifts is the same as the age of the Monarch at the time, so this year it was 93 as the Queen’s 93rd birthday this year is on Easter Sunday.

Our Reader, Celia Patterson, was one of those chosen. We should rightly be VERY PROUD of having a Reader held in such high esteem by our Bishops, the Archdeaconry, and the wider Church of England for her work with FEREDE, the Diocesan Synod and for her Godly Play activities (including with the Roman Catholic Church), which has taken her all over Europe.

With characteristic modesty she has kept news of this award a secret, but now it´s time for us all to celebrate with and for her! And we’ll all be looking forward to seeing the contents of those purses!

The red purse contains an allowance for clothing and provisions This year the red purse contains a £5 coin, commemorating the 200th anniversary of Queen Victoria’s birth, and a 50p coin portraying Sherlock Holmes. Both

coins were minted this year. Historically, this sum of £5.50 in the red purse is made up of £3 for clothing, £1.50 in lieu of provisions and £1 for the redemption of the Sovereign’s gown which, before Tudor times, used to be divided between the recipients.

The white purse contains specially minted silver Maundy coins – one, two, three and four penny pieces – to the value of 93 pence which, while legal tender, sees their real worth lying in the history of the occasion. Numismatists and those over a certain age in our congregation will recognise that the Queen’s head on the coins is the same as that used from the start of her reign in 1953 until decimalisation in 1970.

Many, many congratulations, Celia!

Below, Celia, just before she jetted off to see the Queen!

With Father John, Bishop David and Father John Weller from Mallorca.


Father John’s first message to the congregation of St. George’s

Dear Friends in Christ,

Thank you for the very warm welcome to St. George´s. You have been most hospitable and gracious and I very much look forward to my extended time here with you. To all who help on a regular basis, as well as those doing special things for Holy Week, and very especially the devoted ones who went above and beyond the call of duty to help with the Chrism Mass and lunch following on Monday, I extend my profound gratitude. Beginning during this busy time seems quite right; we are rapidly becoming acquainted, and worshipping God! Please assist me by reminding me of your names for the first several times we meet. And thank you again for making me feel so very welcome.

Blessings for a Holy Easter and Eastertide.

Father John

St. George’s hosts the Chrism Mass for the Diocese

In a very spiritual and moving ceremony, Bishop David blessed the oils to be used for chrism, anointing the sick and dying and those being baptised  during the coming year. Attending clergy, from many of the parishes in our Archdeaconry and some beyond, took away with them small phials of the precious oils. In addition, Reverend David Waller from Mallorca was collated as a Canon of the Diocese and the Clergy and the Lay Readers renewed their vows.

While fundamentally a Service for the Clergy and Readers, members of the congregation at St. George’s also attended. After the Ceremony the members of the Clergy were treated to a splendid repast prepared by volunteers from the congregation.

 The Comedor Social (Food Kitchen) is up and running again.

The Comedor Social which we have supported for some time now has new premises in Vallecas and so we will be once again be accepting non- perishable food stuff at Church on Sundays.

The organisers’ request is primarily for olive oil for cooking and for milk but all goods are gratefully accepted .

Don’t forget to slip that something extra into your pocket or bag when you next come to Church. This direct help means so much to those really in need. 

Another yum yum success for Liz and Carol!

Despite some grumbly weather which meant using the Church Hall instead of our lovely fig tree patio, two of our intrepid fundraisers organised a great Coffee with Hot Cross Buns Extravaganza. Not a calorie but many friends in sight!

New appointments to the Church Council at St. George’s

At the AGM on 7 April, 2019, the following parishioners were elected to join the Church Council:

Gillian Trotter-Park

Karen Mullins (also Treasurer)

Diana Grayland

Patricia de Juanes

The previously co-opted members, Iain Deuchar and Angela Irwin, were confirmed as full-time members of the Church Council.

A big thank you to our Archdeacon, The Venerable Geoffrey Johnston, for all his hard work in preparing the Council for the selection process for the next Chaplain and for chairing our AGM!!

Church Council meets to prepare the profile for our next Chaplain

Members of the Church Council met with our Archdeacon, The Venerable Geoffrey Johnston, to discuss the processes required  for selecting our next Chaplain. The meeting and workshops were held in the Chaplain’s flat and took up all of the day. It was an excellent and informative day and we thank Father Geoff for all his hard work.

……..and the opportunity was not missed to celebrate Celia’s birthday with a cake and a hearty rendition of that popular tune!

Farewell message from Bishop Henry and Catherine

Dear All at St. George’s Church,

Bishop Henry and I want to thank you all for your loving welcome and the goodbye you gave us yesterday, Sunday, March 31st. The tile, cross and pen are wonderful gifts that we shall treasure, display and enjoy, thank you!! We have really enjoyed living among you here in Madrid and the sense of belonging to St. George’s after so many years away.

We leave with some sadness, but will remember always the loving hospitality, warmth and friendship that so many of you extended to us during these three months. We will be praying for you during your next interregnum and for Father John as he leads you on. May the Lord bless you and guide you during the search for a new chaplain.

Catherine and Bishop Henry

Support for the children in Mozambique

As most of you will know, the centre of Beira, Mozambique was devastated after tropical cyclone Idai hit southern Africa on 16 March. The children there have lost everything and are in great distress. You can help them by donating crayons, pencils, sharpeners, erasers and notebooks. All contributions please to Carol, any Council member or to the office as soon as you can.

Update from Carol: We took over 60 kilos of school material to the Convento Siervas de María for Mozambique. They were so happy with our donation, They praised the way it was organised: Ready to go in boxes, and especially didn’t require any sorting, which is what they are so busy doing now, with other things such as clothes. No one had given them school material. Which was truly appreciated. 

Spring Jumble Sale a great success

A very big thank you to all those who helped make the Spring Jumble Sale a success. Whatever the event, every volunteer helps to foster and build our sense of community at St. Georges!
Some photos of  the big Church Clean up ahead of Easter!

A big thank you to all those who volunteered to spruce the Church up ahead of Easter. A special mention must be made of the great contribution made by the 1st Madrid Scouts and members of St. John the Apostles Church congregation. Cleanliness is indeed next to Godliness!

Bishop Henry leads the February El Escorial Service

Come and join us for the next one!

(Spot the photographers!)

Bishop Robert´s Lent Appeal

Bishop Robert has launched his 2019 Lent Appeal, supporting mental health and livelihoods for the vulnerable in Greece. 

In July 2018, the resort village of Mati witnessed Greece’s worst ever forest fires. The death toll reached 100, over 200 people injured, and over 700 evacuated from their homes.  To these numbers, we should add the number suffering from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and other psychological after-effects.  

An Athens-based organisation called Hestia Hellas is providing a vulnerable community with sustainable tools and a skill set necessary to participate in daily life and thrive in times of difficulties. Greece is facing multiple challenges including an economic crisis, an influx of refugees and migrants and the devastating fires that have deprived many families from housing and jobs.  Hestia Hellas is dedicated to offering psycho-social support services, Child Friendly Space, jobs and life skills support, and food distribution to those in need.

Click on this link to read Bishop Robert’s Appeal letter

Book sale brings in the book worms!

Fortunately we don´t need to find an  annelidologist (rare and very expensive, no doubt) to sort this out!

Congratulations to Jenny and all those who donated and helped for this regular event. About €650 was raised, a vital sum now that we face further expenditure on the drains and also a call for a higher cash contribution from the Diocese in Europe.

Curry and Quiz night

Our stellar social events genius, Liz Mason, organised the Curry and Quiz night on Friday 25 January. As expected, it was a huge success given that all 50 places had been reserved almost as soon as it was announced! A big thank you too to all the individual chefs de cuisine who prepared and provided the quintessential Curry.

Not only was it a great fund raiser (over €700 for our Church) but more importantly it helped strengthen even further our community at St. George’s! 

If you missed it,  you will be delighted to know that Liz is already thinking of the next event. If you would like to join in with this, do send her an email on     

                                           There´s no stopping this lady!    

Great praise for Celia’s Godly Play work in Bishop David’s blog

Bishop David wrote:

Celia Paterson is a Reader who serves in St George’s Madrid. She is also one of Europe’s leaders in Godly Play, a creative and imaginative approach to Christian nurture for those in early, middle and late childhood. It is without doubt a significant movement supporting the exploration of faith by children and young people in today’s Church.

The diocese is justifiably proud of Celia’s leadership in Godly Play internationally and ecumenically, a clear outworking of her Reader vocation to teach the faith and nurture disciples.  

Read more from Bishop David at his very entertaining blog site:

Father Paul licensed at Montreux

Father Paul was licensed in his new Church of St. John’s, Montreux, Switzerland on Sunday, 20th January. The above photo shows Father Paul with Jill and members of their family and friends. 

….and this one is of the Archdeacon for Switzerland, Reverend Canon Adele Kelham, together with Father Paul and Father Barry Dryden (who has been our own locum on several occasions).

We wish Father Paul all the very best for his new Ministry!

Church Hall Bathroom refurbishment just a little closer…..

Thank you to those who together donated €600 towards our pledge tree project to refurbish the hall bathroom. As you can imagine it won´t go that far so if you want to help towards this very important little corner of the church fabric,  which most of use at some time, please contact Liz in the office, or you can  contribute online by stating clearly what your donation is for. See the pew sheet for our bank account details. Our treasurer will then ensure that your donation goes to the right fund.

Curry and Quiz night – Friday 25 January

Sorry, but almost as soon as it was advertised, the curry and quiz night on Friday 25th January became a sell out.

What a pity if you missed this one BUT Liz Mason is already thinking of the next quiz night.

If you would like to join in with the next quiz, send her an email on          

           There´s no stopping this lady!                     

Father Paul and Jill say goodbye to some of the 08:30 service’s regulars…. over the usual post-service, and very convivial, desayuno, of course!
Full Chapel at the El Escorial “La Chimenea” Lessons and Carols Service 

Our Choir performs at its very best for St. George´s Madrid Christmas carols and lessons service

… and the Congregation was pretty good too!

Diana debuts in her new robes!

Congratulations to our very popular Diana who is now incorporated as a Fellow of The Society of Crematorium Organists.

Farewell to  Father Paul and Jill

Although our dear friends will not be leaving Madrid until the end of the month, parishioners gathered in the Church Hall on Sunday 16th to thank them for their tremendous contribution to the Church and pastoral life over the past five years and to wish them all the very best for their new life and work in Montreux.  

James (above, left) gave a well-received encomium.

Jill´s selfie with some of the parishioners
Father Paul with more parishioners and Liz Mason (3rd right)

Our Christmas  Pledge Tree

As we all know, this is the season for giving (even Scrooge finally worked this out!) and St. George’s Church building is nearing its centenary anniversary and consequently needs a lot of maintenance! So please try to make a donation by adding your name to one of the red tags decorating the tree in the porch. Target number one will be to refurbish the restroom in the Church Hall which we are sure you will agree deserves a bit of TLC!

Children’s Christmas Drawing Competition!

Please spread the word – St.George’s church is holding a Christmas drawing competition for all the children to have the opportunity to win 2 x pantomime tickets for this year’s production of The Wizard of Oz – A Sequel!

• All entries to and to be in by 12noon on Wednesday 12th December, judging will take place and parents will be informed on the same day.

• The pantomime runs from Friday 14th – Sunday 16th December 2018

• Child’s name and contact telephone number should be added to each entry.

Thank you… and Good Luck!! 

Barbees Concert at St George’s a great success

A packed church enjoyed a wonderful evening of music from the Barbees, Madrid’s only women’s barbershop chorus. The talented choristers covered everything from “Bohemian Rhapsody “ to “Feliz Navidad”.

Just in time for Christmas!

Congratulations to Jessica and Ignacio on the arrival of their first child, Nathaniel, on November 24. 

Keep the peques warm this winter!

Our Godly Play team has launched a great initiative to collect unwanted children’s coats for needy “peques”. Please help keep these kids keep warm over the winter!

The collection basket is in the Church and will close on Sunday 16th December.

18th November Bake sale

Our Bake Off Queen, June, has done it again by selling over €600 of her home made delicacies and Greetings Cards in aid of Church funds. Eat your heart out, Mr Kipling, June is now well out in front!

June and Clare ready to Rock (cakes)‘n (Swiss)Roll

Bishop Robert’s Christmas Message, 2018

(click below)

Bishop Robert’s Christmas Message 2018


Remembrance Day Service, 11 November 2018

Wedding of Tansy, from Ormskirk, near Liverpool, to Jorge, from Madrid, 8th September

The service was conducted by Father Paul in both English and Spanish 

Pan-African Sunday and Confirmation Service, 30th September

Bishop David meets one of the Madrid congregation

Our two confirmands, Ella and Miracle, at the same service:

For more photos and news of this special day do visit Bishop David’s exciting blog at: