News & Photos
Highlights of parish life in Houghton Regis
Today we have begun the celebrations of Holy Week in Houghton Regis with the Parish Mass for Palm Sunday. This is the day in which Christians remember the Lord’s entrance in Jerusalem accompanied by his disciples and a cheering crowd; however, this is also the day in which we read one of the Passion narratives from the gospels – the story of Jesus’ suffering and death of Calvary for our salvation. For these reasons, Palm Sunday is now mostly associated with the colour red in the Western Christian tradition – the colour of royalty and the of blood.
The service started in Bedford Square with the Blessing of Palm Crosses and a procession of All Saints’ Church via the Memorial Path. The preacher, who delivered a cracking and genuinely inspiring sermon, was the Rev’d Tim Haines, Pioneer Minister in the Bidwell West.
Photos courtesy of Dr Matthew Hurley
On Sunday 6 February we marked the 70th anniversary of HM The Queen’s accession to the throne, and the beginning of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations. The Parish Mass on Accession Day at All Saints’ Houghton Regis was attended by the Town Mayor, Cllr Clare Copleston, by members of 1st/3rd Houghton Regis Scout Group, members of the Girlguiding Houghton Regis, and pupils from Thomas Whitehead Church of England Academy. After Mass 6 Jubilee trees were planted in the churchyard as part of the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative.
As part of our celebrations music with royal connections was played and sung before, during and after Mass.
'Nimrod' from Elgar's 'Enigma Variations' and Ronald Binge's 'Elizabethan Serenade' was played before the Service. The Introit Hymn 'Praise my soul, the King of heaven' is known to be a favourite of Her Majesty the Queen. During the distribution of Holy Communion movements from Handel's 'Water Music' was played, and the concluding Organ Music was John Stanley's Prelude and 'Bell' Allegro, an excerpt from his Concerto Op2 No3 arranged for organ, and played from a facsimile copy of a contemporary keyboard transcription.
In 1924 Elgar succeeded Walter Parratt as Master of the King's Musick, a post which he held until his death ten years later in 1934.
Ronald Binge's 'Elizabethan Serenade' was written in 1951, but was renamed in the early years of the Queen's reign. John Stanley, like Elgar, was appointed as Master of the King's Musick in 1779 until his death in 1786. Handel was never appointed master of the King's Musick, but his music was held in considerable regard by bothe King George I and King George II in the first half of the 18th Century.
Two Crataegus prunifolia (Hawthorn)
Two Liriodendron tulipifera Snow bird (Tulip Tree),
Two Sequoiadendron giganteum 'Glaucum' (Blue Giant Sequoia)