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Enjoying the special celebration service in St Mary the Virgin Church, Thorpe Arnold.

Special thanks to Carol

St Mary the Virgin Pram Service 2000 - 2018

On Sunday, 4th November, we held a service to celebrate the Pram Services held at St Mary the Virgin Church, Thorpe Arnold, for the last eighteen years, writes Catherine Shenton.

Carol Ellis ran them for all this time and shared some of her memories with us:
Pram Service started in January 2000. It was a bit hit and miss for a while but was relaunched in September 2000 when more families came along. John Duckworth (our organist) thrilled the children by playing ‘Teddy Bears Picnic’ along with other favourites on the organ. He was not impressed by the homemade percussion instruments and gave Carol the funds to purchase instruments that would be ‘in tune’! These were very popular, with the triangle being the favourite.

Over the years it has been lovely to see new families coming along. One particular grandmother was there right at the start when her daughter had twin boys and later a baby girl. Eventually the time came for them all to go to school and they were missed. But, a few years later Carol met an excited Grandma in Tesco who announced, “I’ll be back in September.” Her second daughter had produced her first daughter to be followed with another daughter and then a son. Now the last of these has started school and so Grandma was there at the beginning and the ending of the service.

Hunt the chocolate coins, following the story of the lost coin, was fun as was the hunt for Easter eggs! The Christmas story called for dressing up: tea towels for shepherds, crowns for kings and tinsel for the angels. All looked lovely and enjoyed the retelling of this special story.

Blowing out candles at birthday time was exciting, with the right colour and number of candles, of course.

The final event of the school year was always a summer garden party at Carol’s home, with new toys to play with, the garden to explore and picnics to be enjoyed. All followed by strawberries and cream, scones and jam and a choice of ice creams and lollipops for the children.

It was lovely to hear Carol’s memories as she shared them with the congregation and the families that had returned for the service. Our thanks go to Carol for this important part of her ministry carried out in her gentle, caring way and for the wider pastoral support she gave to each of the families. Thank you Carol.

Pictures by David Sharp.

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Flying the flag during the service in St Mary the Virgin Church, Thorpe Arnold.
 
 

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