Roots Down, Branches Out

Parish Weekend Away

12th – 14th July 2019

High Leigh, Hoddesdon, Herts

Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength, mind and your neighbour as yourself

We hear it said each week, but what does it really mean to: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, strength, mind and your neighbour as yourself’?

Over the course of this year’s Parish Weekend Away, led by Revd. Rachel Blanchflower, we shall spend time delving a little deeper into this ‘greatest’ of the commandments and discovering afresh the delight of being in love with the God who first fell in love with us.  As part of this time there will be plenty of space for sharing and reflecting together and exploring different ways of prayerfully keeping this commandment with our whole selves.

We’ll do this in four sessions:

1:  Loving God with all our heart and soul.

2:  Loving God with all our strength and mind.

3:  Loving our neighbours…

4:  ….as ourselves.

It will be a wonderful opportunity to spend time away from our everyday routines and meet other members of the Christ Church community, as well as deepen our relationship with God.

What happens on the church weekend away?

The weekend begins from 5pm on Friday, with supper at 7pm that evening and ends after lunch on Sunday at 2pm, following our all age communion service in the morning.

Whilst the main part of the weekend will be the discussions led by our guest speaker Rachel Blanchflower, there will also be time for relaxing, outdoor (and inside) activities and entertainments such as a quiz night and a talent show!  There’s a bar in the evenings, a quiet reading room and games room whilst refreshments are available between the communal meals.

Everyone at Christ Church is most welcome on the weekend, however long you’ve been coming to whichever service you attend and whatever your age.  Lack of funds must not stop anyone joining in and financial help through a bursary scheme is available to cover the cost if necessary.

Children are a key part of the Christ Church congregation and will be well catered for with a crèche and dedicated activities running alongside each adult session to allow parents to take part.

Everything is optional and you can join in as much or as little as you like.

Brochure information here: Page one and two

About our speaker

The Revd. Rachel Blanchflower is Priest-in-Charge of the Benefice of Great Gransden, Abbotsley, Little Gransden and Waresley, four rural village parishes just west of Cambridge.

Before this she served as Assistant Curate in a large urban parish in the North of Cambridge where she was especially involved in growing a ministry for 0-4 year olds and their parents/carers.  Having trained for the ministry whilst having her own two children (now 5 and 7 years old), she is passionate about how we live our Christian faith midst the messy juggle of everyday life, as well as during seasons of great intensity.  Rachel’s professional life before ordination was as a general manager within the NHS, where again she had a special interest in the importance of caring for the ‘wholeness’ of life, both in body and in spirit.  As a child she grew up in several different countries around the world leaving her with a deep delight at being joined together in prayer and praise with the great and diverse company of Christ’s body on earth and in heaven.  She is looking forward to exploring together what God’s love is calling into, and out of, His Church in Highbury.

About the venue

High Leigh is located near Hoddesdon, just north of London and the High Leigh Conference Centre, EN11 8SG offers a relaxed and peaceful environment within 40 acres of lawns, parkland and woodland. It can easily be reached by car or train (nearest station is Broxbourne).

How can I book a place?

To book your place on the weekend away download the booking form HERE and mail to with payment by 28th April 2019.


How much will it cost?

Prices are inclusive of two nights’ accommodation, evening meals on Friday and Saturday, breakfast and lunch on Saturday and Sunday, tea, coffee and cake/biscuits throughout the weekend. All rooms have en suite bathroom facilities.

Adults (aged 17+ years): £165 (£50 concessions)

Children (6-16 years): £60 (£25 concessions)

Babies and infants (0-5 years): free

Concessions are available for full time students, registered disabled, in receipt of income support or aged over 60 not in paid employment.

We want EVERYONE who would like to come to feel able to do so regardless of financial circumstances. Please book an assisted place if you would like to come but are unable to meet the costs. This information will be treated with strictest confidence and please speak to a member of the clergy about arranging it.

If you have any queries about anything to do with the weekend please e-mail HERE or contact a member of the organising team who are: Andy Chrich, Alison Dines, Olatunji Faleye, John Jarvis, Rebecca Scharf and Oonagh Shiel.