The churches and schools in Henley came together for Town Carols on Wednesday evening last week at Henley Town Hall.
Sam Brewster from Trinity at Four opened the service with a welcome before Ava Reineke sang beautifully the first verse of Once in Royal David City. The audience and school choirs then joined in the second and third verses. Ava is currently studying her A Levels at Piggott School and attends Junior Royal Academy of Music where voice is her first study, violin second.
The school choirs from Badgemore Primary, Sacred Heart, Trinity Primary and Valley Road schools sang, When Santa got Stuck up the Chimney and the Zither Carol. They were coordinated and conducted by Henley Music School, Principal, Laura Reineke and were accompanied by Alison Wilkins. The choirs have all been rehearsing separately for about half a term and they had short run-through all together before the event started.
Laura said, “The kids were fantastic – they were a total joy, all of them! This sort of occasion just goes to prove how important music is. The children absolutely love performing, it gives them a big sense of achievement. Huge thanks to all the teachers and head teachers in some cases who gave their time and encouragement. It is so important for children to sing in assembly, and as part of their day, it makes music part of life, and music makes everything more fun and happy children learn – full stop!”
Ed Drew from Faith in Kids gave a great talk with the help of Jeremy and Joanna Bray from Henley Baptist Church and Xanthe from Valley Road School acting out a funny scene of how busy we are all at Christmas and overcoming the obstacles of the Nativity Play, Christmas Dinner and The Relatives!
Revered Jeremy Tayler from St Mary’s Church read the reading Matthew 1:18-25, Glyn Millington from the Christ Church led the Lord’s prayer and Jeremy Bray from Henley Baptist Church led the final prayer and blessing. The congregation sang the final carol of Oh Come, All Ye Faithful altogether.
Sam Brewster said, afterwards, “It was a brilliant evening. The sound of over 80 primary school children from 4 primary schools singing together was wonderful (huge credit to Laura Reineke of Henley Music School) and the Christmas good news was presented in a fresh and family-friendly way, which was appreciated by all. As churches across the town, it’s our desire to serve and bless Henley as we hold out the good news of Jesus. We think bringing people together for an event like this is a wonderful way to do that.”
The retiring collection was for Nomad Youth & Community Project.