Parish Magazine for November 2021 published.

The Parish magazine for November has been published and can be found here. Any member of the congregation that would like to produce articles for the magazine would be most welcome to do so.


Many thanks to Fr David Woodhouse!

On behalf of everyone at Holy Nativity we would like to sincerely thank you for coming to our church to sing Mass for us this morning. Everyone we spoke to commented about the care you showed when singing the Mass and that your sermon was really well received.

We also would like to thank you for the kind offer of cover should anyone drop out, for whatever reason from the Rota.
The Churchwardens.

Fr Steve's final morning prayer.

Fr Steve begins his retirement on his birthday which is the 19th October. Thanks for your ministry among us and thanks for being there when we needed you. Have a long, heathy and happy retirement!!

Churchwarden Pete Daly's comments to Fr Steve before presenting him with his farewell present at his final Mass this morning.

The story at the end of Fr Steve’s sermon reminds me of that joke about the parish priest on his final Sunday taking his leave of the longest-serving parishioner, who tells him that his successor won’t be as good. “I’m sure that’s not true” he replies, and she snaps back, “Oh yes it is: I have been coming here for sixty years and every vicar has been worse than the last”. That is certainly not true here at Holy Nativity, where we are used to having great priests.

We know that Fr Steve is a music lover and a keen singer of old British songs. I think our feelings this morning can be best summed up by tweaking the title of a WW1 recruiting hit: ‘Oh we don’t want to lose you, but we know you have to go’.

It would be a bit unfair to suggest that Fr Steve has had more comebacks than Frank Sinatra, but we at Holy Nativity have huge reason to be grateful that you came out of (an admittedly early) retirement to minister to us here, a church that we know you love, from all that you have said and have done here.

We have been truly blessed by your being our parish priest: in celebrating Mass and administering the sacraments, in nurturing our devotional life, in your care and concern for us as individuals, in your preaching, and your sound teaching. And, in responding so pastorally to recent lockdowns, ensuring – along with Phil and Nick – that we had online access to the sacred liturgy and could join together as a Christian family when our church building had to be closed.

We will remember with great affection your highly-organised style, your anecdotes, always told so succinctly, and your regular updates on the fortunes of Bristol Rovers.

But the clock has ticked on and it is now sadly time for you to retire once again. We believe that you will remember us just as we remember you, and to aid you in that I present, on behalf of the whole parish, a small token of our love and esteem. In doing so we ask just three things of you: that you don’t lose touch with us completely; that you have a very happy 70th birthday this week; and that you enjoy a long, healthy and active retirement. From all of us at Holy Nativity, thank you so very much, and God bless.

Fr Steve Hawkins – Final Sunday – 17th October

As most of you know Fr Steve is retiring on the 19th October, his 70th Birthday. We will be hoping that a number of you will be able to say goodbye as he celebrates his final Mass at Holy Nativity where he has ministered for four years. We will be making a presentation of a farewell gift to him from the parish and intend to have drinks and nibbles after the service at the back of church.  We look forward to seeing you all on Sunday morning.

The Churchwardens.

Pete Daly is the new Churchwarden of Holy Nativity.

This afternoon Pete Daly was admitted as Churchwarden at Holy Nativity by the Archdeacon of Bristol, Fr Neil Warwick , in a short ceremony in St Stephens Chapel. The picture shows, right to left, Pete Daly, Fr Neil and Phil Goodfellow. 
As we approach Fr Steve's retirement date having a full team to work the vacancy process is very important.
Many congratulations Pete! 

Ebbsfleet arrangements - latest news.

The Society's Council of Bishops is grateful to the Archbishop of Canterbury for acting swiftly to put arrangements in place for the See of Ebbsfleet for episcopal cover during the period in which a permanent appointment will be made.
Cover will come from serving Society bishops in the southern province and also from the Chairman of the Council. It is envisaged that, in general terms, the Bishop of Lewes and the Bishop of Chichester will cover the South West area of the See of Ebbsfleet, the Bishop of Richborough and the Bishop of Fulham will cover the South Midlands area of the See and the Bishop of Wakefield will cover the West Midlands.
The Society bishops are grateful to Catherine Williamson for agreeing to act as a first point of contact for Ebbsfleet parishes when a need for episcopal cover arises. Catherine can be contacted via
We suggest that Society priests celebrating Mass in the See of Ebbsfleet should pray for "Bishop Tony and the Council of Bishops" during the Canon of the Mass, should it be their custom to include such prayers. This will reflect the nature of the episcopal cover being provided by a number of Society bishops. 

New Heating System has been finished.

The new heating system has been finished and fully tested and is ready to be handed over.

Please see the New Heating System page for more information. Click here.


When Revd Henry Thomas Ellacombe took up his post as curate at St Mary’s Church in Bitton in 1817, he decided he needed an alternative to the local bell ringers due to their wayward behaviour. In 1821 he created the ‘Ellacombe Chimes’ which meant that, for the first time, the bells could be operated by only one trusted person using a set of pulleys in the church porch.

His invention was subsequently adopted by churches around the world including here at Holy Nativity. There are known to be over 400 Ellacombe chimes in working order in the UK and at least 40 in the other parts of the world.  Thanks to our Tower Captain Trevor King the chimes have come into their own particularly in the past year due to Covid-19 restrictions.


This will involve bells chiming at noon local time in each of the world’s major time zones, beginning with Timaru in New Zealand (11pm BST on 25th June).  Over the next 17 hours, the bells will work their way across the world, arriving at their birthplace at Holy Nativity and St Mary’s, Bitton, at noon BST on 26th June. The event will then cross the Atlantic and be heard across the Americas, finishing in Vancouver, British Columbia.  We are proud to say that, thanks to Trevor, we will be playing our part in this  historic event.
Click here to see the proof which will appear in the booklet.

Holy Nativity Boiler Installation.

The installation starts on the 14th June and we are trying to organise a working party for 8th June to move the rubbish that is in the way of the contractors. The TCCW staff will be able to assist and I was hoping that Holy Nativity people could come along and help. We are planning to start at 09:00 on the 8th and we will be finished before 15:30. Tuesday 8th June at 09:00. Please let me know if you can assist or 07733 111 800.
The Church Wardens.

Scout Hut Site new houses close to completion.

The site of the old Scout Hut at the back of the church was sold off about 6 years ago for the development of housing. The town houses are nearing completion and are looking very special indeed.  Local councillor and one time Scout Leader, Chris Davis has got permission for a small plaque stating that the ground was where Fr Atchley, in the 1930's had paid for the erection of a Scout Hut for the Holy Nativity Scouts.


Kathy Gibbs - 36 years as Holy Nativity's Director of Music.

Congratulations to Kathy for completing 36 years today as Organist and Choirmaster at Holy Nativity Church, Knowle, Bristol. Sadly with Covid we are all missing the organ. 

Holy Communion (BCP) Sheet available.

This booklet has been produced for people who attend the  Live streamed Wednesday Mass which is in traditional language and uses the Book of Common Prayer (BCP).
Holy Communion BCP Sheet.

Morning and Evening Prayer booklets available.

Two new booklets are available to download to assist in saying Morning Prayer and Evening Prayer. They are in PDF format and can be printed out as a guide to saying these important services. They are below:-
Morning Prayer
Evening Prayer

New Heating System for Holy Nativity

After 60+ years the PCC has agreed to change the out-dated and expensive heating system to a modern gas powered arrangement. The PCC have engaged UES, a local company to do the work and are hoping to start the contract in May 2021. Tim Clarke, the contracts manager with UES said, "This project is a challenge but we are confident that significant savings will result." Churchwardens Trevor King and Phil Goodfellow are acting as project managers for the church. Two high performance boilers will be installed and will be thermostatically controlled as well as remotely configurable via the internet, This will reduce our outgoing on Gas Oil, of over £9,000 per year quite considerably.

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