1939-12 (December)




My Dear Parishioners,

The season of Advent, on which we have now entered, can be one of the most helpful in the whole year. It speaks to us of the coming of Christ. He comes not only to the world at large but to individuals. His coming transforms life. Advent is an opportunity for a new start, to play a worthy part in strengthening and in increasing spiritual power. I ask you to use this opportunity before it is too late.

Now that it has been announced that New Zealand soldiers are going overseas, we must see that they are supported to the utmost by our prayers. At every service we must remember them. Every service is a parade of the Christian Army. To be absent is to weaken all.

Before our men go they will have leave. I think that many of them will wish to join with their relatives and friends in Holy Communion before they go. If the leave period includes a Sunday that will be easy, but, in any case, I am prepared to hold a special celebration on any day, or any hour convenient to those concerned.

May the real joy of Christmas find a place in all your hearts and homes, and may the New Year be bright and happy for you all.

Your sincere friend and Vicar,




The annual Sunday School prize giving functions are held this month. That at Taueru is being held on Sunday, 3rd December. All the others will be held on Sunday, 17th December, at the following hours: Lansdowne, 9.30 a.m.; Kuripuni, 11 a.m.; St Matthew’s 2.30 p.m.; Upper Plain, 4 p.m.  Parents and friends of the children are invited to be present. We hope that all who can will attend and show their interest in the children of the Parish.



At the November meeting, Mr V. W. Joblin gave an instructive and interesting talk on “The Background of the Old Testament.” This gave rise to a good discussion on spiritual development and moral growth. Mr C. R. Mabson agreed to give the talk at the meeting on Monday, 4 December, at 7.30 p.m., taking as his subject the world today. This is a vital subject and all men are cordially invited to be present at the meeting, which will be the last one for this year.



The appeal for funds to help supply the spiritual needs of our N.Z. soldiers is meeting with a good response. Those who served in the last war know how the services of the Church can provide are appreciated. Our men are worthy of the best. There is evidence of how they realise that theirs is a campaign for the triumph of Christian ideals over Paganism. We must see to it that the Church can supply the spiritual power they want. The fund from this Parish already amounts to £28 4s 10d. Contributions may be sent to the Vicar or the Church Treasurer.



Parents and friends are invited to be present with the Scouts and Cubs in the Scout Den, on Friday, 8th December, at 7 p.m., when a photograph of the late Squadron-Leader Lennox Lamb will be unveiled. The Mayor, Mr T. Jordan, will be the speaker.

We are grateful to the small committee of the Ladies’ Guild, consisting of Mesdames Wood and Betteridge who organised a series of bridge evenings in the winter months. Proceeds were allocated thus: £7 10/-; Melanesian Mission, £2 3/6; Leper Mission, £1; Hall Donation, £3 5/-; total £21 8/6.

In preparation for Christmas, special music will be rendered by the Choir. At 11 a.m. on Sunday, 10th December, carols will be sung; at 7 p.m., on Sunday, 17th December, there will be a Christmas musical service; at 7 p.m. on Sunday, 24th December, Christmas carols will be sung.

The Bible Class Unions are holding their annual camps in Masterton from Wednesday, 27th December. They will join in Evensong on Sunday, 31st December, at St Matthew’s, when the preacher will be the Rt. Rev. G. V. Gerard, Bishop of Waiapu.

On Sunday, 7th January, a special service will be held at Bideford at 10.30 a.m. That is Centennial Sunday and it is fitting that a service should be held in the Church room which has stood for so long in that district.

Mr Justice Blair will be the speaker at the annual prize-giving function at St Matthew’s Collegiate School. The ceremony will take placed in the School Assembly Hall at 7.30 p.m. on Friday, 15th December.

National Centennial Services will be held throughout New Zealand on Sunday, 7th January, 1940. Special forms of service have been prepared by the Archbishop and will be used that day. It is hoped that all will join in these special services.

The Upper Plain Church room looks all the better for the painting of its roof and woodwork. We are grateful to those who gave their time and labour for this work.

During Advent many people help the cause of Missions. There are many calls on people, but let us just do our best. The mission work is vital and there are great opportunities.

The Rev. H. Squires, who is carrying on the great work done at the Wellington City Mission by the late Rev. T. Fielden Taylor, will preach at St. Matthew’s at 11 a.m. on Sunday, 31st December.



Immediately after Christmas three bands of campers come to Masterton. The Girl’s Bible Classes will be at St. Matthew’s Collegiate School, and the Boys’ Bible Classes at Wairarapa College. Then at Opaki Racecourse, the Wellington City Mission will hold its boy’s camp. Parishioners will be glad to have all these young people in the Parish. At Opaki, the City Missioner will be glad to welcome any visitors from 27th December to 5th January. Gifts for the larder will be appreciated, and for the City Mission camp may be left at Messrs Whiteman Bros., Queen Street, and for the Bible Classes at the camps.



The large attendance from all parts of the district at the funeral service of Mr O. H. Beetham[1] was a sincere tribute of affection and esteem for a great-hearted Christian gentleman. He bore long suffering bravely and cheerfully and displayed always those graces which sweeten life. He has left behind him a glorious memory.

The death, on active service, of Squadron-Leader Lennox Lamb[2] brought the war very near to us all. An old boy of St. Matthew’s, an old and keen Scout, he followed the path of duty to the end. The special memorial service was largely attended and will long be remembered.

During her severe illness, Mrs Hessey[3] gave a wonderful example of patience and cheerfulness. No suffering could cloud the glory of her faith. All who visited her were helped by her serene confidence and endurance. Her thoughts and prayers were constantly with us at St Matthew’s. So she helped and shared in all our work.

Mrs Bourke[4] was a faithful member of our church. She belonged to the pioneers and it was a privilege to visit her. Right to the end of her long life she revealed the great Christian virtues. The world is a better place for her life and work.

We thank God for the work of these faithful ones. They are at peace. To the relatives the sympathy of us all goes out.



Parishioners hardly need to be reminded that all Communicants should make their Communion on this great day. The birthday of our Lord makes its own appeal. The Holy Communion will be celebrated at 6 a.m., 7 a.m., 8 a.m., and 11 a.m., at St. Matthew’s. There will be a special service for children at 10 a.m. There will be celebrations at Kuripuni at 9 a.m., at Upper Plain at 9.15 a.m., at Taueru at 10.30 a.m.

Any unable on account of sickness to make their Communion at Church are asked to notify the Vicar so that arrangements may be made for them to receive the Sacrament privately.

On Sunday, 31st December, Christmas celebrations of the Holy Communion will be held at Rangitumau at 9.30 a.m. and at Kopuaranga at 10.30 a.m.



Splendidly organised, the opening ceremony of the new Home was a most happy and successful function. There was a large attendance. The Governor-General, in a happy speech, spoke of the good work done.  Mr H. B. Gordon, chairman of the Boys’ Homes Society, presided, and short speeches appropriate to the occasion were given by the Vicar, Mr T. Jordan (Mayor), Mr J. Robertson, M.P., and the Rev. D McNeur. The Dedication Service was conducted by Archdeacon Bullock. The thanks of all present are accorded the ladies in charge of the tea arrangements for their wonderful work.



A crowded hall greeted the children for their annual Sunday School concert. An excellent programme was presented.

Splendid work was done by the men on two recent Saturdays in improving the grounds.

Parents and friends are invited to the Sunday School Prizegiving, at 11 a.m. on Sunday, 17th December.



Miss Baird, 10/-; Mesdames S. McLauchlan, R. Clarke, Mr R. E. Maunsell, 5/- each; Mrs Andrew, 3/-; Mesdames Marchbank, D. Catt, Smith, 2/6 each; Mrs J. Gray, 2/-; Anon, 1/6; Anon, 1/-.



St Andrew’s Day was a great occasion for us this year. On that day, in the presence of a large congregation and many visiting clergy, the Bishop of Aotearoa ordained deacons Messrs V. W. Joblin, H. Taepa, G. Cook and R. M. Gourdie. The service was most impressive and an inspiring sermon was preached by Canon Watson.

We welcome the Revs. V. W. Joblin and H. Taepa to the staff of the parish and wish them every blessing in their work for God.


Note:  a full schedule of services continued right through January. Here is the December 1939/January 1940 calendar:


January service schedule


January service schedule



Clergy--The Rev. E. J. Rich (Vicar), Church Street, Telephone 1096

        The Rev. T. V. Pearson, 18 Wrigley Street.  Telephone 1502

        Student-Assistant, Mr V. W. Joblin, 31 Worksop Road. Telephone 2231

Churchwardens--Messrs R. E. Maunsell and J. Ninnes

Vestrymen--Messrs E. J. Coleman, E. Hale, W. L. Hunter, G. Hyde, A. O. Jones, C. R. Mabson, T. C. H. Miller, P. G. Ramsay, R. G. Russell and W. E. Vowell.

Lay Readers--Messrs F. H. Dunderdale, V. W. Joblin and J. F. Jaine

Organist--Mr A. Miller Hope

Choirmaster--Mr Wm. C. Mann

Synodsmen--Messrs A. O. Jones and P. G. Ramsay

Hon. Secretary--Mr A. O. Jones

Sec. of Envelope System of Giving--Mr V. H. Heath, 183 Dixon Street

Sec. Magazine--Miss R. Robinson, 66 Essex Street

Verger--Mr G. F. Knapp, 79 Pine St.

St. Matthew’s School for Girls--Principal, Mrs Max Cleghorn, B.A.

Hon. Treasurer--Mr H. A. R. Dunderdale, Perry Street


There were no births, deaths or marriages in this edition of the Parish Magazine, probably because of space constraints.  These are shown in the February 1940 edition.


Original scanned image - 120918--024


St Matthew’s Anglican Church, Masterton, Parish Magazine--1939-12 (December) -

[1] Orengard Horsley Beetham, 1886-1939

[2] Son of William George and Ann May Lamb, of Masterton. He served in the Royal Air Force 9 Squadron and was killed in 1939, at the age of 29. Auckland Museum Cenotaph record

[3] Constance Emily Hessey

[4] Annie Bourke, died 22 November 1939, aged 81. She is buried in the Archer Street Cemetery. (Source: Masterton District Council cemetery records.)