Tuesday, 13 February 2018

Roger and Mick in Cyprus

Yesterday saw the last event in Roger and Mick's preparation trip in Cyprus, getting ready for the Rock mission in November. They were in Paphos, leading a taster for potential choir members.

Over the course of the trip, Roger and Mick managed to: 
  • Have dinner with the Dean at Nicosia Cathedral
  • Preach at St Barnabas' Church, Limassol
  • Attend a community choir rehearsal
  • Lead a workshop at Diocesan Synod
  • Lead a music group rehearsal
  • Attend a fund-raising concert in Larnaca
  • Lead worship at Larnaca Community Church
  • Lead a seminar (taster) at Paphos Christian fellowship
  • Have many meetings/meals with great people
  • Make many new contacts and renew existing contacts 
Roger writes:

It has been a great trip and Mick and I feel it has been very blessed by the Lord. Please pray that the Holy Spirit will continue to move in power as folk prepare for the mission, and that Jesus will continue to build his church!


Tuesday, 6 February 2018

Month Five in the Life of an Intern - January 2018

Read Month One
Read Month Two
Read Month Three 
Read Month Four - Rachel's Christmas letter

Hello everyone, and Happy New Year (although we seem to be rather a long way into it now)! I didn't write a blog post for December due to adverse weather (and Christmas) cutting short the number of weeks I was at work, so I'll briefly include those weeks in this blog.

December began with a performance of Stargazers at the Hagley Road Retirement Village which appeared to be well received by those who attended. The next weekend saw some heavy snowfall, and the planned performance of Stargazers had to be cancelled. That week I also had my two days in the office off, and I would say I was disappointed, but I have to confess that I very much enjoyed spending time with friends sharing in their kids’ enthusiasm for snow days!

The last working week in December saw the office Christmas meal at the Harvester (other restaurants are also available!) which I very much enjoyed. When I wasn’t eating, I spent some time working on arranging Roger’s song At last we see before our eyes for SATB choir. Before this, the closest thing I’d done to arranging was harmonising a Bach chorale, and although many of the techniques can be transferred from one to the other, this type of arranging was still a new challenge. I gave it my best shot however, and when I finished it off in the new year, I was very pleasantly surprised by the fact that, after a few minor improvements, both Annie and Roger thought it was acceptable. I felt that I hadn’t really had much idea of what I was doing! I have since started work on arrangements of two more songs, and I am finding them tricky as I still don’t have much confidence, but hopefully they will turn out just as well as the first one did!

January saw the stocktake take place, and although it was a little tedious at times, it was quite satisfying to think that by the end I had counted all the vocal scores, CDs, books and DVDs in the various different storage places – hopefully I didn’t miss any!

Another task I had was to create a piano reduction of the string parts for the musical Wildfire. Even though I only have basic piano ability, so I’d not be able to play what I’d written, I tried my best to think about what would be physically possible to play, and the best way to voice the 4 parts over two hands. Although this job was very time-consuming, I felt a sense of achievement when it was done, and the job had also tested my reading of alto clef, which is even more ropey than my piano playing!

January saw two more performances of Stargazers with the CMM choir, one in Lickey and one in Marston Green, and both of these seemed to be well attended and appreciated by their respective audiences. I have to admit, as the weeks go by, I’ve been becoming less and less enthusiastic about performing a Christmas-themed musical, however I think I need to remind myself that the message of the musical does not become irrelevant just because secular society has stopped thinking about Christmas. Even now, as we are heading towards Lent, looking forward to the events of the Easter weekend, there are still things we can learn from the Wise Men and their search for the child Jesus. For example, the Wise Men set out on their journey, without knowing where it would lead. For those of us like myself who like to have things planned in advance, it can be hard to relinquish control and step into the unknown, but the Wise Men took that risk, and they ended up face to face with the Son of God. Within our own lives, a great prize awaits us, if only we are willing to entrust ourselves to Jesus and let him plan the path we should take.

I couldn't write a post about January without mentioning the untimely death of Barrie Renwick. Although I did not know him well, I had met him three times within the first few months of my internship - a testament to the amount of his time he gave to support the work of CMM. I know that he had a place in the hearts of many of the people who are connected to CMM, and, having recently experienced the loss of a very good friend of my own, I understand the grief they are feeling. Yet, Barrie had a strong faith, as did my friend, and as Paul wrote to the Thessalonian Christians, we '[should] not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope. For we believe that Jesus died and rose again, and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him.' (1 Thessalonians 4:13-14). We can find peace in the knowledge that Barrie, my friend, and all the other believers who have gone before us are now in a perfect place, spending eternity in the presence of our God.

Friday, 2 February 2018

February news from Roger Jones

Hi Folks – just a quick February email before I fly out to Cyprus for a planning trip for our November 2018 ROCK mission.

Two exciting events coming up soon:
  • Sat 03 March – WORSHIP WORKS - Applethwaite Centre, St Mary's Church, Windermere, Cumbria
  • Fri 16 to Sun 18 – SPIRIT WORKS weekend – Scargill House, Kettlewell, North York

CMM Choir productions of STARGAZERS and other Epiphany items: (admission free – all welcome!)
  • 04 Feb  The Link Community Venue, Water Orton B46 1QU, 6pm
  • 10 Feb   St Thomas' Church Aldridge, WS9 8SL, 6.30pm
  • 18 Feb   Longbridge Retirement Village B45 8TD, 6pm

Then there’s our major 2018 event: (something to do with my birthday as well!)
  • ROCK (the story of Simon Peter) with large Choir & OrchestraSaturday 19 May at Coton Centre, Comberford Road, Tamworth B79 9AA
                Starts: 10:30       Performance: 17:00        Ends: 18:30
                Choir: open to all
                Orchestra: Grade 4+ (please bring your own music stand)
                Tickets: £5 per person including refreshments.  
                Please bring your own  packed lunch
                GROUP BOOKING
                INDIVIDUAL BOOKING

For February, our free SONG OF THE MONTH is “There is a green hill”, from MARY MAGDALENE and the ROGER JONES HYMN COLLECTION.   Folks tell me they love this setting and it is used in worship at all times of the year, not just Easter.  Please download it, use it and enjoy! 

Don’t forget, CMM publish many items suitable for the coming Easter season:
  • There are Easter/Lenten items in the HYMN COLLECTION, SONG COLLECTION and SEASONS AND REASONS
  • The CHORAL COLLECTION (arrangements for SA, SAB and SATB) has specific LENT AND EASTER section, where you can download for use with your choir, music group, etc.

Please see our latest NEWSLETTER for details of Music Holiday Weeks, SPIRIT WORKS and WORSHIP WORKS days, CMM Choir productions, and other events in our diary.

One final, but very important matter:  There are new Data Protection regulations coming into force in May.  We need to be sure you have given us permission to be on our email/phone database.  You are on our list because you opted to be so, either personally, via our website or at one of our events.  If this is not so, or you no longer wish to be on our mailings, please reply to this message by putting UNSUBSCRIBE in the subject area or by using another option that your system may provide, or reply to office@cmm.org.ukWe really do not want to lose contact with you, but we must abide by the new regulations. 

May Jesus bless you all! 
Roger Jones 
01527 576440
24 Spadesbourne Road, Lickey End, Bromsgrove B60 1JP

Friday, 19 January 2018


Saturday 19 May 2018
at Coton Green Church Centre, Comberford Road,Tamworth, Staffordshire B79 9AA.

Roger Jones will turn 70 in the month of May. ROCK - a musical in a day - is an opportunity to join in fellowship with Roger and team and mark the special occasion.

Starts: 10:30

Performance: 17:00
Ends: 18:30

Choir: open to all
Orchestra: Grade 4+ (please bring your own music stand)

Tickets: £5 per person including refreshments.

Please bring your own packed lunch

All activities will take place on the ground floor
Your ticket will be posted 2nd class, with a programme and travel information.

To Book:

  • Telephone (01527 576440). Please have your debit or credit card ready.
  • Go online from mid February (www.cmm.org.uk/sales)
  • Return a booking form with a cheque payable to "CMM Events" OR send us the booking form and make a bank transfer to "CMM Events", sort code 30-00-03, account No. 00413303 (Ref: 19May2018).

Friday, 12 January 2018

Barrie Renwick - our longest serving associate and dear friend

Friends - This isn’t the New Year newsletter that I expected or wanted to write!

It is with great sorrow and acute pain that I have to inform you of the untimely death of our dear friend Barrie Renwick.  After spending a joyous Christmas and New Year at his beloved Lee Abbey, Barrie returned home where it appears he passed away quite suddenly and unexpectedly.  

Barrie was our longest serving associate.  He first encountered CMM at our Hull production of GREATER THAN GOLD (1983-84), and since then has been a regular at most of our holiday weeks, UK tours (where he was the Hull organiser) overseas tours, and as a soloist, helper and driver at many of our days and weekends.  To say that CMM will not be the same again is a gross understatement.  He was our dear friend and part of the family!

But, in the midst of our grief and tears we know that there is another reality – that Barrie is now with Jesus in a place more perfect than we can ever imagine or describe.  I quote from Helen’s Facebook post of yesterday:
Friend. Where you are now there is no more sadness. You will never ever be alone again. Pain is no more. The weather will always be just right for the perfect photo. All is beautiful, peaceful, joyful and glorious. And the cricket will be so, so good.
This is not “pie in the sky” wishful thinking.  Those of us who know and follow Jesus have a certain future and a secure hope.  This does not take the pain away but helps us to live through it and see beyond it.  “For I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.” (2 Tim 1:12)

It is appropriate to mention our free Epiphany  SONG OF THE MONTH “As with gladness”, from STARGAZERS.  The last verse says it for Barrie and us all:
In the heavenly country bright need they no created light
Thou its light, its joy, its crown Thou its sun which goes not down
There for ever may we sing: Alleluias to our King!

May Jesus bless you all!

Roger Jones

Friday, 5 January 2018

Annual Retreat to support CMM leadership

Roger listening to a participant during his presentation
of a Worship Works event in November 2017
This weekend (6-7 January 2018) the annual retreat for the EBRG Support Group and CMM Trustees takes place.

These two groups of people support the work of Christian Music Ministries throughout the year. They have been instrumental in the setting up and continuation of CMM and Roger and Mary's work as well as the work of Annie Routley and Helen Pollard.

They meet this weekend for the annual retreat which focuses on the work of the CMM team and discerning God's pathway for the future of CMM. Please keep the Support Group and Trustees in your minds and prayers as they meet each other in the presence of the Holy Spirit. Pray for guidance, insight and renewal.

Thank you!

Read more about the EBRG Support Group

Read more about the CMM Trust and Trustees 

Friday, 15 December 2017

Christmas news from all the CMM Staff team members

We have published CMM team members' Christmas newsletters and the CMM News and Events leaflet. Take a look to get to know us all better!

Read CMM's News and Events leaflet at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-cmmnews-2.pdf

Read Poppy's News (Roger and Mary's Lurcher...) at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-pp.pdf

Read Annie's news at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-ar.pdf

Read Lindsay's news at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-lp.pdf

Read Nicky's news at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-nh.pdf

Read Helen's news at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-hp.pdf

Read Rachel's news at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-rh.pdf

Read Roger's December enews bulletin at http://cmm.org.uk/downloads/newsletters/12-17-cmmnews.pdf

Tuesday, 5 December 2017

December e-news from Roger Jones

Dear friends

I’m so encouraged!  Over the last two weekends I know of at least four of my Christmas musicals being performed.  I was in Ilkley, Yorkshire, doing SIMEON, and I really enjoyed myself - I’d forgotten what it was like!  I’ve also heard of performances of WHILE SHEPHERDS WATCHED and THE INN CROWD.  Has anyone done AWAY IN A MANGER?  And what about individual items from our collections.

The CMM Choir have been doing a series of STARGAZERS presentations, and there is still one to go this side of Christmas: Sun 10 Dec at Church of the Redeemer Baptist, Edgbaston B16 8UZ at 1830 hrs.  Do come if you can!

Looking for Christmas presents?  We have musicals, songs, carols, choral pieces, books, house group courses, etc, so please do have a look at the CMM SITE. There are lots of new items, and of course, all our recordings can be bought on CD or downloaded from iTunes, Spotify, Amazon, etc.  Please don’t forget our latest seasonal release: SONGS OF CHRISTMAS.

Did you know that you can raise funds for CMM whilst purchasing from your usual suppliers, yet it won’t cost you a penny extra? Please have a look at EASY FUNDRAISING and consider supporting CMM in this way.

Our free SONG OF THE MONTH is “Come see the beauty of the King”, from WHILE SHEPHERDS WATCHED and the ROGER JONES CHRISTMAS COLLECTION.   This is one of my most popular songs, and is used in worship at all times of the year, not just Christmas!

Watch this space!  Later this month we’ll be sending the Christmas Newsletters from all of us.  Poppy is just finishing hers but has writer’s cramp in her paw!

Thank you all for your support and encouragement. 

Roger Jones

01527 576440
24 Spadesbourne Road, Lickey End, Bromsgrove B60 1JP