These smiling children posed happily for the Oxford Mail photographer, but it was a sad occasion.
Sunday School teacher Dora Davis as stepping down after serving for 20 years at St Andrew’s Church at Headington, Oxford.
She was presented with a specially made canvas figure of a woman reading to three children, as a constant reminder of the work she had done for so long at the church.
She was also given a cake baked by Jean Cheeseman, who had been taught by Mrs Davis 20 years earlier and was by then a Sunday School teacher herself.
Mrs Davis, who was 69 and lived in North Way, Headington, was happy to stand at the back for the photograph.
She is in the middle holding a child – and let the youngsters take centre stage.
She had, in fact, been a Sunday School teacher for 30 years, serving the first 10 years at a church in Bolton, Lancashire.
At St Andrew’s, she spent many hours a week teaching children, ranging from infants to 10 and 11-year-olds preparing for confirmation.
Mothers of some of the children, pictured at the back, joined in the farewell gathering to thank Mrs Davis for her loyal service.
St Andrew’s Church has a long and distinguished history, with archaeological evidence suggesting that the site first became a place of worship more than 1,700 years ago.
Although parts of the church are ancient, many additions and adaptations have been made to structure over the centuries.
The church website says: “There has been a place of worship on this site for over a thousand years, so we are a very ancient church.
“But more importantly we are a living community here to serve the needs of our parish and local area now.”
For more visit standrewsheadington.co.uk.
This story was written by Andy Ffrench, he joined the team more than 20 years ago and now covers community news across Oxfordshire.
Get in touch with him by emailing: [email protected]
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