We are so grateful to all those who contribute their time and energy to making our parish what it is. Parish life is only possible because of the numerous voluntary roles that around 100 people take on, big and small. If you are thinking of giving more of your time to the parish, we hope that some of the opportunities below might be of interest. If there is something else you have in mind, please contact Canon Peter Seal.

St Paul’s 9.30 am coffee team

We are always keen to welcome volunteers to our coffee rota, which enables people to meet and enjoy a cup of tea or coffee after our Sunday service. The rota includes six teams of three, who take it in turns to serve soft drinks for the children and hot drinks for adults. Please contact Sue Walker to find out more.

St Paul’s 9.30 am welcome team

There’s always room for more volunteers for this important role. The rota includes six teams of four welcomers, who take it in turns to greet people as they arrive at church and hand out orders of service. Welcomers keep a careful eye out for newcomers, particularly making sure that they have someone to talk to after the service. Finally, they help to tidy up at the end, making the church ready and welcoming for the next act of worship. Please contact Sue Walker to find out more.

St Paul’s 9.30 am sound team

At St Paul’s we have a good sound system that is regularly upgraded and enables people to hear clearly; this includes a hearing loop. We have the facility for a whole range of microphones to be used, to play CDs and to record services and other events. We are grateful to the volunteers who currently staff the sound desk and would welcome more members to join the team.

Flower team

We are fortunate to have a small but talented team of flower arrangers at St Paul’s. New members are always gladly welcomed to help with weekly and special-event flowers. We are happy to train people who aren’t experienced arrangers but feel they can be creative. Please contact Sarah Eadie for further information.

Weekly flowers: each week, with the exception of Advent and Lent, we have three arrangements on display – one in front of the altar, one in the Lady Chapel and one in the porch. At major festivals such as Christmas and Easter we make additional pedestal and windowsill arrangements.

Special events: we are happy to prepare special displays and arrangements for weddings. We are also able to offer specific arrangements for funerals, but as these are often midweek and can be at relatively short notice, it is dependent upon the availability of arrangers.

Easter lilies: Easter 2018 saw the fourth Easter-lily display beneath the east window at St Paul’s. Each of the stems was given in memory of someone, and the names of those remembered were displayed among the lilies. As well as looking beautiful, the arrangement is a poignant reminder of the powerful Easter message: that the death and resurrection of Jesus offers each person the gift of eternal life.

A lily can be requested and a donation made (minimum £3.50) at any time during the year, and the name will be included in the following Easter display. Please give your donation to Katy Palacio in the parish office; cheques should be made payable to ‘St Matthew’s PCC’. Do use a gift-aid envelope if you can. Any surplus gifts are allocated to the Building for Life fund.