Christmas Services 2018

We hope to see you at some of our Christmas Services and wish you a Happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year.
Sunday 16th December

3.30pm: Messy Christmas – Mess! Fun! Food! FREE Kids crafts, activities, games, stories, & songs! Children must be accompanied by an adult. This event is free, no booking necessary, but – if you can – please email to let us know you’re coming:

Sunday 23rd December

6.30pm: Festival of Nine Lessons and Carols – a service of traditional carols and readings.

Monday 24th December – Christmas Eve

2.30pm: Crib Service – especially for small children. (Children are invited to come dressed as shepherds or angels)
4.30pm*: The Service of Light – a candlelight carol service for all ages. The 4.30pm service is sometimes very busy with standing room only. We are hoping to have additional seating in our side room where the service will be shown on a large TV screen.
6.30pm*: The Service of Light – a candlelight carol service for all ages.
*These two services are identical.
11.15pm: Midnight Mass with the Blessing of the Crib

Tuesday 25th December – Christmas Day

8.00am: Holy Communion (Book of Common Prayer)
9.45am: Christmas Eucharist
6.30pm: No Evening Service

Wednesday 26th December – Thursday 27th December

There are no midweek services.

Sunday 30th December

8.00am: No Service
9.45am: Parish Eucharist (Common Worship).
6.30pm: No Service

Printable summary of our 2018 Christmas Card with details of all Services

A summary of our Christmas Services 2018 (pdf format) can be downloaded here.

Map, Church location, Parking, Bus Routes and Accessibility

Map and Church Location
Find us on the map. Our postal address is St Leonard’s Church, Lexden Road, Colchester, CO3 4BL. This is a map of where the church is located.
View Larger Map

There is no specific car park at the church but parking is allowed in certain parts of Church lane and Lexden Road. Please be aware that these roads can be busy at times and spaces might be limited.

Lexden Rd view

Lexden Rd view

Church Lane view

Church Lane view

Bus routes
There is a bus stop in Lexden Road outside the church and on the opposite side. All buses going along Lexden Road into and from town will stop there.


Bus Stops on both sides

There are a small number of steps with a handrail at the Church Lane entrance. The front of the church in Lexden Road has a wide pathway with no steps.


Entrance from Lexden Rd


Entrance from Church Lane

Christmas Services at other churches

A Church near you gives details of Christmas Services at other churches which can be searched using your postcode.

What we do: welcoming in, and reaching out

Church at St Leonard’s is about living as part of a group of ordinary, loving, generous people who seek to share the light of God’s love with those around us. We’re a welcoming community that is inclusive and relaxed, with a variety of worship ranging from the fun and creativity of Messy Church, via the calm and beauty of our Book of Common Prayer and choral services, to the joy and breadth of our sung Parish Eucharist. We welcome those with babies or children of any age, have an all-age service on the first Sunday of the month, a Junior Church all other Sundays, and a youth group.

Most importantly, we seek to share light with our community throughout the whole of our lives. A handful of the ways we try to do this include our work with those who are ill, lonely, or bereaved, with debt counselling services, the Colchester Soup Run, as well as popular activities like our toddler group, friendship lunches for those who’d like an opportunity for good company, our choir, and much more. You can find out more at

Can we help? We LOVE to help with baptisms, weddings and funerals!

We get lots of enquiries about baptisms, weddings, and funerals, and are often asked, ‘Can we have the service, even though we are not members of the church?’ The answer is usually, ‘Yes!’. If you live in our parish (and if you have had this delivered to your door – you do!) you can be baptised, married or have your funeral here. And even if you don’t live in the parish, please get in touch – often we are able to say ‘yes’ or to advise how we could say ‘yes’.

Share in the light of peace, joy and love

In times of darkness and uncertainty, the power of Christmas to remind us of the light of peace, joy and love is especially precious. Some early Christians described the baby Jesus’s arrival at the first Christmas as the coming of a beautiful light. A light so bright that it would overwhelm all darkness and uncertainty. A light that would illuminate a truth that seems so easily forgotten: that peace, joy and love are what every human life is for!

You are very warmly invited to join us at St Leonard’s this Christmas as we seek to share that light of peace, joy and love with our whole community.

  • It doesn’t matter what your background is.
  • It doesn’t matter what you do or don’t believe.
  • You don’t need to be a church member.
  • And you certainly don’t need to have lived a perfect life!
  • Whoever you are, you are welcome here at St Leonard’s.

And if you’ve not been to St Leonard’s for Christmas before – you’ll be in good company: this is my first Christmas at St Leonard’s too! So, please join us to celebrate Christmas with the beauty of candlelight, music, poetry, wondrous stories and inspiring worship. We look forward to welcoming you. With best wishes for Christmas, On behalf of everyone at St Leonard’s.


The Reverend Matt Simpkins, Priest-in-Charge, St Leonard’s Church
01206 577392,