At St. James we have a Worship Group that predominantly supports 11am Sunday services and occasionally helps with various other events on the church or the Churches Together Devizes calendar. We are blessed with people keen to use their talent, whether that's singing or playing, and we're always on the lookout for new members of any age wanting to join and share in our experience.
Being a part of the group is to be a leader in helping us all draw closer to God as we worship together. We are all on our own journeys of faith and together we seek to encourage one another as we learn and sing songs new and and not so new to the glory of God. Whether it's through practicing on a Wednesday night, playing as part of the service on Sunday, or at our occasional informal worship evenings when we spend time together as a group, we seek to grow together as a body of passionate worshippers.
If you have a gift to sing or play, and a desire to bring that into the church setting, we'd love to talk to you further and help to turn that desire into reality. In the first instance, please speak with one of the Worship Leaders or Keith, our Vicar.
If you were told of a wonderful health regime which could significantly improve your physical, mental and social health; that anyone can do, regardless of age; that helps breathing and posture; improves your cardio-vascular and respiratory health without risk of strain or injury; creates a sense of well-being; is sociable, alleviating depression, stress and loneliness; promotes teamwork; makes you confident, calmer, and more focused; and is good for the soul; would you be interested? If in addition you were told that it’s eco-friendly, community-focused and free, would you be very interested? If so, singing in St James’s choir is for you!
St James’s Choir enjoys singing in worship! We sing for the 9am service each Sunday, leading the hymns and the musical parts of the communion liturgy, and providing an anthem, usually during the distribution of communion. We wear robes, process to and from our places, and maintain the tradition of singing from the west gallery of the church. The music we sing is mainly in 4-part harmony, and we are trained and accompanied on the organ by Martin Alford, our Director of Music. There are occasional opportunities for other singing, at weddings, memorial services and Deanery services at St James’s.
We practise for an hour on Fridays at 4.30pm, learning music that may date from Tudor times, from the present century, or anywhere in between. We are sixteen in number at present, and with Martin’s encouragement, we strive to maintain a good musical standard.
Some members can’t make every week because of other commitments, and like most of the rest of the church family, the choir is not getting any younger: there is therefore always a welcome for new members. Anyone who enjoys singing in church should consider it. Reading music helps but is not essential if you can learn by listening. There are no auditions! A good opportunity to ‘try it out’ is to join the augmented choir that sings at the Carol Service before Christmas (there are several choir members who came along ‘just for Christmas’ and stayed on afterwards) but new members can join at any time: come and join us for a couple of choir practices and see how you get on.
Would you consider joining the choir as part of your contribution to the life of the church? Martin or any choir member would be delighted to talk to you.
Lay Pastoral Assistants
Lay Pastoral Assistants (LPA's) are trained and authorised to engage in pastoral ministry.
All LPAs focus on pastoral care, but an individual’s ministry varies according to their gifts and skills, and the local situation.
In all cases the ministry calls for a loving and compassionate heart, and a willingness to listen and support those in need.
LPAs may be involved in:
Welcoming newcomers to both our churches and our communities
Visiting families before and after baptism
Visiting people in their homes [not just the elderly and housebound]
Supporting the bereaved
Prayer and healing
Training and nurture, including confirmation preparation & home groups