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St Hilary's Memorial Day Service


I, the Reverend Gyes Ponsenby Smyth welcome you all to this our memorial service in particular memory of Hilary Doreen Davies who died on 26th November 2003.  Hilary was the mother of Sarah who, together with Andrew her husband, are my dear friends who were instrumental in my arriving in England and becoming vicar of St Hilary's.  

We hope that anyone who wishes to remember a dear one that they have lost will also find comfort and spiritual blessing by joining us here in our memorial service for Hilary.  Please feel able to sign our Book of Remembrance, including loved ones you would like us to remember too.

Hilary particularly loved to listen to Mozart's Requiem.  Indeed this was the very first piece of music she sang when she and Sarah (who was only 14 at the time!) joined the Coventry Philharmonic Choir.

We therefore begin with an opening piece of music by Mozart which you can download and listen to as you prepare to join our service.


Musical Interlude - Adagio in C for Glass Harmonica 
by Mozart

 This is being played by Phoebe (all by memory too!)  of the St Hilary's Sunday School on her beautiful spinet which has been brought into St Hilary's especially for this occasion.     

Opening Scripture

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope  through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade - kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 1Peter 1 v3-5


 The Prayers

We join together to say the following prayers:

The Lord's Prayer

Our Father
Who art in heaven
Hallowed be thy name
Thy kingdom come
Thy will be done
On earth
As it is in heaven.
Give us this day
Our daily bread
And forgive us 
Our trespasses
As we forgive those
Who trespass
Against us
And lead us not
Into temptation
But deliver us
From evil.
For thine is the kingdom
The power and the glory
For ever and ever

Megan is imagining she can see Hilary in the window......... Father in heaven,
we give you thanks for your servant Hilary.
We praise you as we recollect her life and cherish
      her memory.
We bless you that in bearing your image
she has brought light to our lives;
for we have seen
      in her friendship reflections of your compassion,
      in her integrity demonstrations of your goodness,
      in her faithfulness glimpses of your eternal love.
Grant to each of us, beloved and bereft,
the grace to follow her good example
so that we with her may come to your everlasting kingdom;
through Jesus Christ our Lord,
who died and rose again and opened the gate of glory,
to whom be praise for all eternity. AMEN


We now listen to some more music during which you are all invited to reflect on the memory of those loved ones that you have also lost and see no longer. 

 Batsford Arboretum enjoyed a glorious Autumnal glow in October 2003 (below), shortly before Hilary died.  We are sure she would have enjoyed our visit as much as we did:-)


Musical Interlude - Mozart Requiem -Kyrie 
Batsford Arboretum in October 2003, shortly before Hilary died.  We know she would have loved to have joined us on our visit:-)


The Reading

Do not let your hearts be troubled.  Trust in God; trust also in me.  In my father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, would I  have told you  I am going there to prepare a place for you.  And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am.   John 14 v1-3.



The Address



God has shown his love for us in many ways but none greater than by sending his Son Jesus to be our Saviour.

  He allowed Jesus to experience human suffering in its many forms,

Because he was human and loved those around him Jesus suffered in the same ways we suffer during our lifetime.  He really can relate to how we feel.  God, through Jesus, has suffered what we suffer.  So he comforts us when we need his healing, love and forgiveness. 

In Isaiah 57:18,19 we hear these words from God,

“I know what you are like!  But I will heal you, lead you, and give you comfort until those who are mourning start singing my praises.  No matter where you are, I, the Lord, will heal you and give you peace.” 

What wonderful words of comfort!  Here God is telling us that although we are mourning we have hope.  We have the sure hope that he will heal us, lead us and comfort us no matter where we are.  

“My friends, we want you to understand how it will be for those followers who have already died.  Then you won’t grieve over them and be like people who haven’t got any hope.  We believe that Jesus died and was raised to life.  We also believe that when God brings Jesus back again, he will bring with him all who had faith in Jesus before they died.” (1Thessalonians 4:13-14)  

We are called to suffer as Christians who are willing to stand up for what we believe. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 1, “the more I suffer the more I experience comfort through Christ”. The particular emphasis here is on the experience of comfort in the midst of suffering, not being comforted by being removed from suffering.  As Christians, we have learned to rely on Christ and not ourselves. 

This doesn’t mean we won’t grieve because we miss the person who has died.  But it does mean that we can be happy even in our grieving and give comfort to others who have recently suffered any loss.  We must also remember that we should not allow others to make us feel guilty about what we did or didn’t do while we shared our life with the ones we have lost.  God knows what we did and he is far kinder to us than we are to ourselves. 

Since God has shown us his love and comfort, he wants us to love and comfort others who grieve through the death of someone they loved, because of a lost job, when they are separated from friends and family by moving away or because of an argument, and also through the trauma of divorce.  People need encour­age­ment. People need the Lord. People need to know the comfort of God. 

Since God has comforted us, we can bring this comfort to others even while we still grieve.  

The result of all that God does is praise.  Praise for being ready to help in every situation.  Remember in your life that all praise goes to God, our Creator, Saviour and Comforter, for he has done everything for us! 

Copyright © 2004 Raelene Falland
November 15, 2004


Psalm 121.

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills:
From whence cometh my help.
My help cometh even from the Lord:
Who hath made heaven and earth.
He will not suffer thy foot to be moved:
And he that keepeth thee will not sleep
Behold, he that keepeth Israel:
Shall neither slumber nor sleep.
The Lord himself is thy keeper:
The Lord is thy defence upon thy right hand;
So that the sun shall not burn thee by day:
Neither the moon by night.
The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil:
Yea, it is even he that shall keep thy soul.
The Lord shall preserve thy going out, and thy coming in:
From this time forth for evermore.

  Concluding Musical Interlude.
Serenade - Eine Kleine Nachtmusik by Mozart



The Lord bless you and keep you
The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you
The Lord lift up the light of his countenance upon you
And give you peace
Now and for evermore.

Thank you for sharing this act of memorial and remembrance for Hilary.  We now invite you to Sign the Book of Remembrance (add the name/s of your loved one/s and anything else you wish to mention in the "comments" box) if you wish to remember a particular loved one you have lost.

The Sunday School children, Rita, Homer and even our resident wildlife wish you all well as you leave this act of remembrance.  Thank you for sharing it with us:-)





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This site is dedicated to Hilary Doreen Davies who departed this life 26 November 2003 aged 71 after 23 years of chronic illness with strokes, cancer and arthritis.  St Hilary's Church is our tribute to a brave lady who was mother to Sarah, Catherine, the late Rachel, the late John and wife to the late Owen Williams Davies.

Copyright © 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010 Sarah Jane and Andrew Price

 Updated: 20 November 2010