St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich
Welcome to our Website St John's is a friendly, welcoming Christian church offering worship for all and facilities for the local community. St John’s serves the area of East Ipswich but many members of our congregation come from outside this immediate area.
Our vision  is for a friendly, caring church, serving the  local community and the wider world,  embracing all age groups and strengthening people  in their faith in Jesus Christ  and their love for other people.

Our Minister Rev David Rees (left), is joined by the

Rev Ernie Bossé (right) and Adam Woodhouse -

Minister in Training- (Centre) for the next nine

months to look after 4 other Churches: Castle Hill,

Felixstowe, Saxmundham and also Leiston LEP who

join Ipswich and East Pastorate in September 2020 .

These churches and another 17 churches and

chapels are part of the

South Suffolk Area Partnership

September Advance This is the regular publication containing news of events and our church life. You could help by sending content to Also if you have both a printer and nearby members that a print a copy that would be their only means of reading it. Ensuring you avoid any possible contamination in doing so by using disposable gloves for all stages including posting it through the door. Here are 2 versions: 1 Full Colour & light download 2 Coloured Pictures & Cover for printing
Covid-19 latest news: St John’s URC Ipswich is holding times of Individual Quiet Prayer from 10:30 and beginning on Sunday 13th September will also include the Online Service Projected on Screen starting at 10:45. The church will close at 11:30 More Here
Community Sharing on Sundays of Virtual Service Options during Covid-19 restrictions Options Available Sunday Worship Rev David Rees and Rev Ernie Bossé Rev Elaine Colechin West Suffolk Churches
Direct from the URC
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich

Covid-19 precautions: 31/07/2020

Letter from William Glasse Dear all, This is not official in any way but a personal invitation to as many as are interested to join me via phone (including landline) smartphone or computer, in my study at home for a few thoughts, Bible Readings and prayers each Sunday evening at 7:00 pm during the period of our forced absence from Church. There are many online resources available from the URC and Methodist Churches and elsewhere and all will be excellent. What I am offering is something for those who want to hear a familiar voice and (where technology permits) see a familiar face. Please pass this to as many people as you think may like it within our churches. If you like to listen, please Join the meeting just before 7 – I will open it from 6:55 but say nothing until my clock strikes at 7:00 – it will end at about 7:30 or before. In order to access this there are three ways: 1) Find me on Facebook and follow the event link there that I will set up shortly – I am William Glasse – happy accept new friends 2) Click the following link which will open your internet browser – you can continue to join the meeting there (you do not have to download the Teams app unless you want to) Join Microsoft Teams Meeting 3) Dial the following number on a phone: 020 3443 6294 - When asked for the conference ID use your keypad to type 878 173 346 # You will be asked to record your name – but no need unless you want to – and then type # again I hope you find this helpful if you decide to join. Join the meeting just before 7:00 – I will open it from 6:55 but say nothing until my clock strikes at 7:00 – it will end at about 7:30 or before. Wishing you every blessing, William.
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich

Covid-19 precautions: 31/07/2020

Opening for Individual Prayer and Online Service We hope to open the church starting on Sunday 13th September at 10:30 and the online service will run from 10:45 and finish before we close the church again for the necessary cleaning required at 11:30. The idea is to avoid too many people arriving at once. You must stay outside St John’s until called forward and stay two metres apart from others waiting to enter. You must not enter the building if you have any of the symptoms of Covid 19 or feel unwell. You will need to have a face-covering on at all times, from just before entering the church, until you are outside again. There will be a one way system to ensure social distancing of two metres is possible. This will be marked by arrows. You will enter the left hand doors and turn left to enter the sanctuary (there will be hand sanitiser available). As required by Government for church premises, we will ask you to sign a form to say you agree to our keeping your details; once signed, we will keep that whilst we are operating the church in this way. We will then take your details: See example of the Form below which says we will only keep a note of the date and time of any visit for 21 days. This is to provide the necessary details for NHS Track and Trace, and whilst not compulsory, the elders would urge you to provide this information. A steward will direct you to a seat which will be socially distanced from others. There will be no singing possible and you are requested not to engage in conversation with others until you have left and are outside the building. You will leave the sanctuary via Room 1 as guided by a steward. Despite all the above, we would really love to see you if you can visit safely. If you wish to know more about a Risk Assessment please email the Church Secretary From the Elders of St John’s Consent form for places of worship To support the NHS Test and Trace programme, we are taking contact details (name and telephone number) for all visitors, as well as recording times entering and leaving St John’s URC Ipswich. In line with guidance issued by the Department for Health and Social Care, we will keep your details safely and in compliance with GDPR legislation. We will keep your visit details for 21 days before securely disposing of or deleting them. We will only share your details with NHS Test and Trace, if asked, if it is needed to help stop the spread of Coronavirus. We will not use your details for any other purposes or pass them on to anyone else. Thank you for your understanding. If you agree to providing your information for this reason, please complete the following form: Name Tel. No Signature Date
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich

St John’s URC Ipswich Diary

Regular Events

Sunday      10.45am Worship for All.  Communion first Sunday of each month included with the online service.   Monday Tuesday    6.15pm 23rd Ipswich Brownies    7.00pm Improvisations Craft Group (1st Tues each month)    8.00pm Ipswich Folk Dance Club (1st, 3rd and 5th Tues) Wednesday 12.30pm Monthly Church Lunch Club, except July and August.    7.30pm Local AA Group Meeting     Thursday    5.00pm 2nd Hamilton Rainbows    6.15pm 40th Ipswich Brownies    7.30pm Elders Meeting (usually 2nd Thurs)    7.30pm Church Meeting (5 meetings per year) Friday   Saturday   10.30am Community Coffee for All (2nd Sat in the month)    1.00pm Ramble Group (last Sat each month) Click here to view the Ramblers Page
All Suspended for now
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich

All Services Cancelled but we hope

to open for Individual Prayer

In normal times

10.45 am on Sundays Worship for All

at which you will find a warm welcome

Services last about an hour followed by coffee/tea and a chat. Our Worship Leaders include Ministers, such as our own Ipswich and East Minister Rev David Rees, and some excellent lay preachers, including our own two lay preachers, Sara Pells and Peter Dawson.  Whenever possible we use a screen to project elements of the service including the hymns. There is also a printed Order of Service.

Minister’s Letters

Specification of the Organ

















































moveable console.














and a few ranks were added.

The Pedal reed pipes (which had been prepared for) were installed in 1993.

Our Communion Service  is held on the first Sunday in the Month   All age ‘Celebration Services’ are held with inputs from  Rainbows, Brownies and Pre-School.
Hello everyone, my name is Adam and I’m a minister in training from Westminster College and I’ll be spending nine months working with Rev. David Rees in the Ipswich and East churches as my final year placement. I thought you might like to know a bit about me. From the age of four years old I attended Christ Church URC in Hatfield, Herts, prior to this I attended a Church of England Church in Plymouth. Other than the first few years of my childhood I have always been part of the URC. It was at Christ Church I came to faith at 11 years old and became a member a few years later. I was ordained as an Elder at the age of 21. At this church I was Elder for Youth and volunteered as a Youth Leader for a Youth Club for unchurched young people, this included planning an outreach event which attracted over 100 young people when we were expecting only about 30. I attended Boys’ Brigade most of my childhood and served as the Captain of 1st Hatfield Boys’ Brigade and as a national training officer. In 2007 I moved to Bradford and in 2009 I was employed as Senior Youth Worker at The Edge Project, which is part of the work at Holme URC Church, and as a Youth worker at Westfield URC Church in Wyke. I was a serving Elder and also a member of the preaching team at Holme. As part of my role in Wyke, I co-led a Messy Church group in a local primary school and served as a school Governor. I have been an active member of Street Pastor's type organisations, working in the night-time economy for the past 5 years. I have worked as the Senior Pastor leading a group of volunteers ensuring a safe and enjoyable night out for the hundreds of customers of local pubs, clubs and restaurants. A highlight of my time at Westminster was having the privilege of serving as a Police Chaplain for Cambridge Constabulary. I spent time building friendships with police officers and staff, sometimes accompanying them on patrols and being available as a listening ear and to provide pastoral support as needed. I am looking forward to meeting you all, hopefully in person even if it may be via zoom to start with. God Bless, Adam
This story is about the angels that we encounter in our walk through life. A few years ago Robyn and I hired a narrowboat, from the Sawley Marine Center just outside Nottingham and began our big narrowboat adventure. We had never steered a narrowboat, navigated a canal or operated a lock in our lives. Now I can understand the response of most people when we told them our plans, and of our lack of experience. They wished us well, saying that we would have a wonderful time. They were positive and encouraging, but we could detect a note of doubt in their voice, coupled with a knowing look amongst those more experienced in boating! A week before we departed, some dear friends took us on a trip to St Ives, to a manual lock and taught us how it worked. Armed with this knowledge, we left for Nottingham to pick up our boat. After receiving some training by the kind and patient staff of Canal Time, we set off with one of the trainers who helped us through the first double lock, which we shared with a couple called Tim and Julie. We didn’t realise at this time that they were angels in disguise! Then we were on our own, and it was clear that I didn’t have much control of the steering for shortly after setting off, I had the boat heading for the opposite bank. Panic! Going into reverse, I hit the bank behind me. Then our angel Tim appeared again. He had seen that we were in trouble, moored his boat and walked back to us. He came on board and demonstrated how to steer the boat. After dropping him off, he set off ahead of us, telling us to stay close behind and he would see us through the next five double locks. Without our angels, we would never have enjoyed our adventure as much and had such a relaxing, enjoyable experience. As Tim said, ‘this is the most fun you can have at four miles an hour’. The secret to steering a narrowboat is to change direction, you must push the tiller hard over, and then make gentle alterations to keep on course. The mistake that I had been
Minister’s Letters contd.
making was to try and steer in the same way as driving a car, where small movements of the steering are sufficient to change direction. We have enjoyed the relaxed manner of the trip taking in all the sights and sounds of the canal and enjoying God’s beautiful creation close up. Travelling at four miles per hour allowed us to marvel at the swans and their chicks, and the intricacy of their nests built with such attention to detail. The ducks amused us with their antics fighting amongst each other for any morsel of food. These and many other sights and sounds of the canal reminded us of the beauty of God’s creation which we so often take for granted, much as we sometimes take our relationship with Him for granted. We allow the hectic pace of our lives to rob us of time to spend in God’s presence. It was good to be able to slow down, to stop, and spend some time in His presence, to: ‘be still and know that I am God’ Psalm 46.10. ‘but they who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles’. Isaiah 40. 31 Ernie
A similar barge at Sawley lock to  Robyn & Ernie’s  holiday one  - editor
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich
Welcome to St John’s URC Cowper Street Ipswich
Welcome and Notices Due the current covid-19 crisis and following the recommended approach from Government St John’s URC Ipswich is from 13th September holding church services including online individual prayer click here for more information Rev David Rees and Rev Ernie Bossé are currently providing a weekly Online Service Which is also available by phone at any time knowing the local number available from the With Blessings from the Minister and Elders of St John’s Brian and Angie Latest
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich


The Next Ten Years (TNTY) This positive exercise is to create a plan for the future. We recognise that we need to think about how we manage all the day-day things amongt us so that we can still be a vibrant church; and continue to help those around us. This is just the first step - illuminating what is done - but leaves open the ‘who’ - including the ‘who’ outside of St John’s currently - whoever that might be. The video below is to help us start thinking what part we could contribute to in what has to done week by week. It reminds us of all the many things that have to happen.

Help further: here is a PDF of the activities described

in the video so that you can think about them quietly.

Just click here to download it.

Even being able to do part of some of them, or just

do them once in a while will be of help.

St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich


This is under

construction, so mainly

interest pictures for a

week or two. Just enjoy


St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich

Ramble Group

Introduction The St John's Rambling Group was formed in 1996 as an activity of the church.  They walk on the last Saturday every month. The group welcomes friends from other churches and those simply interested in walking in enjoyable company. Walk Programme 2020/2021 is shown below. Ramblers meet in the church car park, ready to leave at 1.00pm unless indicated differently in the programme. For further information about the St John's United Reformed Church Ramblers, e-mail the leaders at Ramble Leaders

Walk Programme 2020/21

Monthly Walks Meet at the church at Cowper St. on last Saturday of the month so we are ready to leave the church at 1.00 p.m. The mileages given above are approximate and might change once the walk has been tried out. Usually, it will be possible for a shorter walk to be taken. 
Approx. Mileage
29 February
Capel St. Mary/Wenhams 
5.5 miles
28 March
  6 miles
25 April
Colchester/West Bergholt  
7.5 miles
30 May
6 miles
27 June
5.5 miles
25 July
6.2 miles
29 August
5 miles
26 September
5 miles
31 October
Combs Ford/Badley 
5.5 miles
28 November
4.25 miles
2 January 2021
5 miles
30 January 
4.75 miles
St John’s  United Reformed Church Ipswich

Contact Details

St John’s URC Ipswich

Our Postal Address is: St John’s United Reformed Church 1 Cowper Street Ipswich Suffolk IP4 5JD United Kingdom Office Telephone (Answer Machine) 01473 724961 Minister: Rev David Rees (Ipswich and East) email: Church Secretary:Mr Adrian Cubitt email: Webmaster Website which is https for security

You can use the form below for any enquiry