CIVIC SERVICE: A large congregation gathered in St Mary’s Church last Sunday morning for the service to mark Councillor Jonathan Johnson’s inauguration as Chairman of Rother District Council. During an impressive service, speaking from the pulpit Fr Martin drew on passages from the Old and New Testament readings for the day to remind us that ours is not the first generation to experience environmental, military and political turmoil and upheavals. As in the past so now, apparently insoluble crises can be overcome, and even put to good account, only by a resolute determination to uphold the basic religious principles that underpin our society. There was some lusty singing of familiar hymns, and even of the later verses of less familiar ones, thanks to the strong lead provided by Cathy Bingham at the organ and Lesley Curtis on the guitar. Afterwards many of us adjourned to the Hall, to enjoy the refreshments provided by Jonathan, and to wish him a happy and successful year in office.