Faith News (Including town flower arrangers set to bloom at St Albans festival)

Flower Festival at St Albans Cathedral
Flower Festival at St Albans Cathedral

The latest news from faith groups in your area.

Hemel Hempstead flower arrangers bloom at festival

Flower arrangers from churches in and around the Hemel Hempstead area are gearing up to get involved in a big flower festival taking place at St Albans Cathedral this month.

Members of the flower arranging teams at St Mary’s in the High Street, St John the Evangelist at Boxmoor and St John the Baptist at Great Gaddesden will be among more than 400 flower arrangers, who will be working on the displays in the run-up to the festival, which will see 10,000 blooms in total being used in the cathedral’s 85-metre-long nave.

The festival takes place from Thursday, September 25 to Sunday, September 28, with a gala preview evening on Wednesday, September 24.

The arrangements will be themed on musical titles of every genre including classical pieces from Vivaldi, Handel and Holst will take their place alongside modern classics including songs from Adele, Abba, Lionel Richie, The Kinks, JLS, Katy Perry, Pink Floyd, Spice Girls and Elton John. Some 132 well-known pieces of music and songs will feature in the Festival displays.

As well as viewing the displays, visitors to the festival will be able to take part in a number of events. These include flower-arranging classes in the comfort of the historic Victorian Deanery where visitors can create a vintage cupcake flower arrangement to take home from the Flower Festival.

The hour-long classes will be led by Anita Linderman, founder of the St Albans ‘Flower School’. No previous flower arrangement experience is required.

The gala preview evening h will include a glass of prosecco and canapés, while visitors listen to performances by the winners of the St Albans Young Musicians Competition 2014.

There will also be a Jazz picnic concert on the Saturday. Visitors can bring a picnic and explore the floral displays while enjoying performances from the Abbey Girls’ Choir and the St Albans Jazz Ensemble. Benjamin Britten’s War Requiem is at the forefront of a special area to commemorate the centenary of World War I.

Day tickets cost £10 per person and are available from www.stalbans
cathedral.org. Tickets for the flower-arranging classes cost £20, while tickets for the Jazz picnic concert cost £15 for adults and £5 for under 12s.

The festival is open on Thursday, Friday and Saturday frpm 10am to 5pm, and on Sunday from 1pm to 6pm. Last admission is one hour before closing.

Advanced booking is highly recommended. The Box Office is now open to reserve tickets which will go on sale later in the month. Call 01727 890290 or pop into the Box Office in the Cathedral Gift Shop. Tickets will also be available on the door.

Time to get messy again at All Saints Berkhamsted

Shortly after the Tour of Britain sweeps through Berkhamsted, All Saints Messy Church will resume after its summer break thinking about journeys. The group will enjoy crafts, songs and stories before sharing a simple meal together. Starting at 4pm today, it will conclude by 6pm. All are welcome.

Choir’s church singalong is making memories

Cheers and applause greeted the Dacorum Community Choir when they joined in a singalong with the elderly at Carey Baptist Church.

The special concert was put on for the Heather Club – which also provides social activities for those with the beginnings of memory loss.

Around 45 choir members – not quite half its full capacity – sang familiar tunes from their repertoire of world music, including ‘What shall we do with the drunken sailor?’ complete with actions for club members to join in.

One Heather Club member said: “Singing with the choir brought back so many memories of my youth. I would recommend singing to anyone with memory problems.”

Dacorum Community Choir meets on Tuesday mornings at the Astley Cooper School. New members are welcome, and the choir is especially calling for ‘shy men’ to step up and sing with them. Visit.dacorumcommunitychoir.org or call 01442 874988 for more.

Christian viewpoint

Jesus prayed to God, his Father. His followers saw and heard him doing so and asked him to teach them to pray. God wants us to speak with him at any time in any place. Do we think we have to be in a special place or adopt a special posture? As we live our lives do we say, ‘thank you God’? Ask His help with a quick prayer, spend a few minutes in quiet reflection, chat to God? It doesn’t matter how we feel or when we last went to church, we should talk to God – He wants to hear from us and be allowed to talk to us.

Robin Oakes, South Hill Church