Friday, December 14, 2007

St John’s Flower Festival 2007

- Ailsa Tudhope -

I’ll Walk with God, from this time on…” sang Peter McEwan, at the Thanksgiving service for HRH Prince Albert in St John’s Church on the 28th October. The service is part of the annual Oktoberfest celebrations and every year the little Victorian Church is decked with flowers. This year the theme was A Walk with God.

A lovely aspect of the festival is that people from across the community give of their time and talents, and provide gifts from their gardens, to decorate the church, creating a visual feast for villagers and visitors alike.

Our special thanks go to Renee Finn who co-ordinated this year’s event with the help of Dawn Viljoen, Peggy Clow-Wilson, Ione Auerswald, Liz Erasmus, Lettie Breytenbach, Jeanette de Lange, Jeanette Mynhardt, Maeve Kay, Marlene and Laurie Knowles, Johanna van Rensburg, Kay Howes, Sandra Meyer, Lorna Verran, Sonia McKenna and her brother, Clive Heyne, Linda Jaquet, Emmie Willemse and the St John’s Catechism class. Pam Wessels, Johanna Luttig and Mari du Toit donated flowers and members of the congregation made donations to buy oasis and flowers.

Gentle music provided background to the flower displays, three in memory of parishioners who wander through another garden: Sheila Collins, Beryl Tilney and Denzil Reid. News of Denzil’s passing reached us as we arranged the flowers on Friday afternoon and our prayers flew to Shireen and their children. Other displays included personal expressions of experiences on the road through life; reflections on Christ’s earthly journey and the wonder of His resurrection; and our children’s preparation for their Confirmation, expressed in flowers, collages, scrapbooks and Biblical texts.

The Sunday school children coloured in bright labyrinth pictures as part of a display to illustrate the plans for a labyrinth in the church grounds and photos showed the development of the Think Global – Act Local trench garden and composting project.

This year we were delighted to have Kimberley Hoffmann, a student visitor from Germany, read the Gospel in German, which, with rousing German tunes for the hymns and Gudrun and Renee’s gentle prayers, reminded us of HRH Prince Albert’s origins. Peter’s voice and Zelia Mullins’ playing of the piano, each added their beauty to the service. Thank you, one and all. The Flower Festival appears to have become a St John’s tradition – long may it last!

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