ASSISTING the celebrant priest in distributing communion is a
considered a real privilege in church, so it was special for
nine-year-old Bess Hutchings, and 11-year-old Jack Snow, to be
given the task during their school's regular monthly eucharist in
St Mary's, Brighstone, on the Isle of Wight.
Both are pupils at Brighstone C of E Primary School, and they
were commissioned for the task by the Bishop of
Portsmouth, the Rt Revd Christopher Foster. "My
guess", the Priest-in-Charge of Brighstone, the Revd Helen
O'Sullivan, says, "is that they are among the first children to be
commissioned in this way.
"This regular service is important for both the church and the
school, as it helps to cement the links between the two. I'm
grateful that the importance of the children's participation has
been recognised by giving Bess and Jack these significant
The children are shown here with the Ms O'Sullivan and Kim Hall,
the head teacher.