6th September 2020

(Note: the newsletter can also be downloaded as a PDF.)

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

A vibrant inclusive worshipping community

Sunday 6th September 2020

Creation Sunday

Please bring a pen or two with you to the 10:30 Eucharist this morning!

Collect (Prayer of the week)

Almighty God, you search us and know us: may we rely on you in strength and rest on you in weakness, now and in all our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


Isaiah 55.6-11

Seek the Lord while he may be found,
   call upon him while he is near; 
let the wicked forsake their way,
   and the unrighteous their thoughts;
let them return to the Lord, that he may have mercy on them,
   and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon. 
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
   nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord. 
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
   so are my ways higher than your ways
   and my thoughts than your thoughts. 
For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven,
   and do not return there until they have watered the earth,
making it bring forth and sprout,
   giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, 
so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth;
   it shall not return to me empty,
but it shall accomplish that which I purpose,
   and succeed in the thing for which I sent it. 

This is the word of the Lord.   Thanks be to God.

Psalm 104

Bless the Lord, O my Soul!

All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.

You have made the moon to mark the seasons;  the sun knows its time for setting.  You make darkness, and it is night, when all the animals of the forest come creeping out.

All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.

The lions roar for their prey and seek their food from God; The sun rises, and they steal away; they return and lie down in their dens. Then people go out to their work, to their labor until evening.  

All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.

From your lofty abode you water the mountains; You make springs gush forth in the valleys; they flow between the hills, giving drink to every wild animal;

All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.

You cause the grass to grow for the cattle, and plants for people to use, to bring forth food from the Earth, wine to gladden the human heart, oil to make the face shine, and bread to strengthen the human heart.

All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.

The Earth is satisfied with the fruit of your work.

All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things.

1 Corinthians 9.6-14 

Or is it only Barnabas and I who have no right to refrain from working for a living? Who at any time pays the expenses for doing military service? Who plants a vineyard and does not eat any of its fruit? Or who tends a flock and does not get any of its milk?

Do I say this on human authority? Does not the law also say the same?For it is written in the law of Moses, ‘You shall not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain.’ Is it for oxen that God is concerned? Or does he not speak entirely for our sake? It was indeed written for our sake, for whoever ploughs should plough in hope and whoever threshes should thresh in hope of a share in the crop. If we have sown spiritual good among you, is it too much if we reap your material benefits? If others share this rightful claim on you, do not we still more?

Nevertheless, we have not made use of this right, but we endure anything rather than put an obstacle in the way of the gospel of Christ. Do you not know that those who are employed in the temple service get their food from the temple, and those who serve at the altar share in what is sacrificed on the altar? In the same way, the Lord commanded that those who proclaim the gospel should get their living by the gospel.

This is the word of the Lord.   Thanks be to God.

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, according to Matthew        (18.15-20)      Glory to you, O Lord.

‘If another member of the church sins against you, go and point out the fault when the two of you are alone. If the member listens to you, you have regained that one. But if you are not listened to, take one or two others along with you, so that every word may be confirmed by the evidence of two or three witnesses. If the member refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if the offender refuses to listen even to the church, let such a one be to you as a Gentile and a tax-collector. Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again, truly I tell you, if two of you agree on earth about anything you ask, it will be done for you by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them.’

This is the Gospel of the Lord.  Praise to you, O Christ

Reflection (from Rev Carol)

The text of Rev Carols reflection will be available on the website at  http://christchurchlancaster.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/09/Sermon_200906.pdf and in hard copy for those to whom the newsletter is delivered.

Prayers                                                (from Pat)

Lord, you are present with us whenever we gather in your name. Strengthen and bless all who meet to celebrate your sacraments and feed on your word. We pray for our diocese, our bishops Julian, Philip and Jill, and for our parish of Christ Church: for Rev Carol our vicar, Jacqueline and Paul our churchwardens, and all who worship and serve you here.

In our parish cycle of prayer we remember all who live and work in Mallside Close, Coleman Drive, all who visit and work at the auction mart. Today, we pray for Nathan Clissold and Miriam Parker as their Banns are published, and as they prepare for their wedding day. We pray too for Henry Buczynski, to be baptised here next Sunday, and for James Cowey, to be baptised on Sunday 27th. Come alongside us as we continue on our journey of faith.

Lord in your mercy: Hear our prayer

Lord, you are present with those who suffer at the hands of others. We pray for those parts of the world ravaged by war and conflict, remembering particularly the people of Syria and Yemen, and for all victims of oppression and injustice. We pray for a peaceful solution to the unrest in Belarus, one that gives a voice to all the people of that country.

Help and sustain all refugees; we pray that they may find places of safety. May we all strive for peace and justice.

Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer

Lord, you are present in all of your creation. Inspire the leaders of nations to work together to tackle the climate crisis, and to protect this beautiful and fragile planet.

Make us all willing to live more simply and sustainably, giving thanks for the beauty and diversity of life around us. Teach us to hear your voice in all the songs of the earth.

Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer

Lord, you are present with us in sickness and health. We pray for all who are sick, or suffering in body, mind or spirit, in hospitals and hospices, or at home, and ask you to bless and strengthen those who care for them. We pray especially for: Olive Niccolls, Youngblood McCray, Ernie Wilson, Pat Brooks, Bill and Ivy Buckley, Michael Greenhalgh, Angie Topham, Richard Impey, Stephen Gardner, Eddie Barandino, Ann Gilbride and Sitar Rose; and we name in our hearts those known to us who need your healing touch… Give peace and hope to all in need.

Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer

Lord you are present with us in life and death. Gather to yourself all who have died, and comfort those who mourn. We pray for the souls of Geofry Lowe and John Reeves (priest), and all our loved ones departed. Bring us at the last to the eternal glory of your kingdom.

Lord in your mercy, Hear our prayer

Therefore, rejoicing in the fellowship of the Blessed Virgin Mary and all the saints, we commend ourselves and all creation to Your unfailing love.

Merciful Father, accept these prayers for the sake of your Son, our Saviour, Jesus Christ.  Amen

Post Communion Prayer

God our creator, you feed your children with the true manna, the living bread from heaven: let this holy food sustain us through our earthly pilgrimage until we come to that place where hunger and thirst are no more; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Some suggested hymns you may like to follow at home:

Prayer and Worship this week:

Sunday 8:30am:  Eucharist

Sunday 10.30am:  Eucharist (then uploaded to YouTube)

Sunday 2-4pm:  Private Prayer in Church

Sunday 4.30pm Study course in the Hall (and via Zoom – see below)

Sunday 6pm: Evening Prayer – Book of Common Prayer (in the Hall)

Tuesday 4pm: Prayer4 – on Zoom (see below)

Wednesday 10-11am:  Private Prayer in Church

Wednesday 11am:  Eucharist (in the Hall)

Wednesday 5.30pm: Meditation

Wednesday 6pm:   Evening Prayer (in the Storey Chapel, then via YouTube)

Friday 8.30am:  Morning Prayer (YouTube)

Saturday 9pm:  Compline (YouTube)

If you are unable to join the service for whatever reason, you may wish to follow the Spiritual Communion service at home (the order of service, and a sermon, are on the website), using the day’s readings and prayers.

Our Diocese of Blackburn, and the national Church of England also have YouTube channels where worship is regularly offered.

Returning to Worship

We will be worshipping in the Hall in coming weeks, as we await investigation and repair works on the Church ceilings. Should you wish to come to a service, please note:

If you have Covid symptoms, or have been told to isolate because you’ve had contact with someone who has, or are feeling unwell, please let someone know and don’t come to church.

Unless you’re exempt, please wear a covering over your nose and mouth.

Please gel your hands before and after the service, and before receiving communion. 

You will be asked to record your name and contact number on the sheet for traceability – we’re required to do this by law. This will be kept confidentially for 6 weeks.

 If you come as a couple, family or household – you may move the seats to sit together. However, solo seats have a 2 metre distance around them.
Children are very welcome to attend the service, but we cannot offer Children’s Church for the time being.

Please continue to make your offering by Standing Order wherever possible. There will be an offertory box for cash or cheque donations, but no collection will be taken.
Communion (bread alone) will be received standing, with a non-touch blessing for those who prefer
There will be no refreshments after the service, and any conversations must happen outside from a sociable distance in small groups. The Hall, and all items that have been touched will be cleaned and disinfected between use.
As spaces at the Sunday Eucharists are limited, we ask you to “book” in advance. You can do this on Eventbrite via the links:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/christ-church-lancaster-eucharist-830-am-tickets-113963046540 for the 8:30 Eucharist and

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/christ-church-lancaster-1030-eucharist-tickets-113963080642 for the 10:30 Eucharist.

Please select the date(s) for the Sunday or Sundays you would like to come. Alternatively, just contact Jacqueline (64083, 07808 765364 or email as below) or Rev Carol, and we will add your name(s).

We continue to pray for all those affected by this outbreak – and for the church as we begin to grow again, giving thanks for all who have sustained the prayer and community at Christ Church in recent months.

Opening for Private Prayer

Christ Church will also be open for private prayer, and the opportunity to light a candle this, and forthcoming Sundays from 2pm-4pm, and Wednesdays 10-11am. Thank you to all the volunteers who are making this happen! If you are able to help ‘church sit’ in coming weeks, please let Rev Carol know.

The national prayer for this outbreak:

Keep us, good Lord, under the shadow of your mercy.

Sustain and support the anxious, be with those who care for the sick, and lift up all who are brought low; that we may find comfort knowing that nothing can separate us from your love in Christ Jesus our Lord. Amen.

Prayer and Support

If you would like us to pray for you, or for someone you know, for any reason, please email your request to prayer@christchurchlancaster.org.uk or text the Prayer Chain on 07980 351855. Please ask the person’s permission if you’d like them included in the weekly notices.

Zoom Prayer

Perhaps you’ve found yourself praying more during lockdown? Tuesday 15th September  is the next meeting of Prayer4 – 30 minutes of prayer, at 4pm every fortnight. There’ll be a short Bible reading, some music, some stillness, and space to pray for the people and places on your heart – all from the comfort of your own sofa. Zoom details: https://zoom.us/j/8069459310?pwd=TlV6QUQ5UVdiK0p1M0Q0cE0vRXIvUT09

Meeting ID: 806 945 9310 Password: ChristChch

Dial in: 0208 080 6591  Meeting ID: 806 945 9310 Password: 310771 (any queries see Rev Carol)

Children’s Corner:

Are there any rules you have in your home? What happens when someone breaks them?

How does it feel to know that God is patient and kind when we make mistakes?

Family Prayer

Make a list of new family ‘rules’ such as ‘Be patient when… ‘Be kind when….’ ‘Forgive when….’ (add in some specific things that happen in your household for example ‘Be patient when Dad asks you the same thing three times’; ‘Forgive when your brother knocks over your Lego tower’). Say the following prayer together:
Father God, thank you that are fair and kind to us all. Help us to be the same.

(There’s also a YouTube story for this week on Christ Church’s Channel – and colouring and activity sheets at the back of the hall.)

Giggle (or Groan) of the week – suggestions welcome!

If you forget the rules of Chess, don’t worry. You’re allowed to check.

Children’s Church meetup

While we’re unable to physically run Children’s Church in current circumstances, if you’d be interested in a Zoom meet-up for families, please let Rev Carol know which days/times you would prefer.

Craft, Story and Prayer

On Monday 21st September at 3.30pm, there’ll be an hour of family craft, storytelling and prayer in the Hall. A carton of juice and a wrapped snack will be provided. All welcome, but please pre-book on Eventbrite at https://www.eventbrite.com/manage/events/119611905429/tickets  so we can plan and prepare. Parents and guardians need to stay with their child(ren), and please bring a face covering. Helpers needed too – please see Rev Carol for more details.

Our Offering.

The pandemic has affected us all in different ways. The work of the church looks very different now to three months ago, not just at Christ Church but also across the church family, to which we offer our prayers, time, skills, and also our money. Support is still needed – both in the upkeep of Christ Church, and to help churches in poorer areas of our diocese continue God’s mission. You may need to give a little less to the church because of current money pressures – that is fine. You may be able to give a little more – even for a short time – to help with ongoing costs and to weather the absence of groups using our buildings. Whatever is given is gratefully received with thanks, please have a word (in confidence) about what may be possible for you.

Should you wish to give via online banking, the bank account is: Lancaster Christ Church PCC, Sort Code 01-54-90, Account No. 06309941.  Please ask Jacqueline (in confidence) if you’d like a Standing Order and/or Gift Aid declaration form. (Gift Aid allows the church to claim 25p for every £1 given by a UK taxpayer.)

Starting tonight – 6th September!

‘Who are my mother and my brothers?’ says Jesus. Every Sunday evening at 4.30pm, we’ll be looking at some of the people of the New Testament, to see what Jesus’ friends, family and disciples can teach us about what it’s like to live with Jesus. All welcome – to one or all 4 sessions, starting on 6th September, meeting in the Hall and on Zoom:  https://zoom.us/j/92836746237?pwd=MUI1UkZXLzRiN2dqYzZ1STB3OFVwUT09
Meeting ID: 928 3674 6237
Passcode: 196686

Pastoral Visiting

Now that restrictions have lifted to allow sociably-distanced meetings outside, it’d be lovely to meet more of you and get to know you better, although I appreciate that shielding rules are still in place for many. If you’d like to talk, and if there’s a convenient time and place, please let me know.

Vestry Hour

In September, we’ll restart welcoming families and couples for Christenings and Weddings. If you’re free and able to offer an occasional Sunday morning 9.30am-10am to help welcome our visitors and to take bookings at Vestry Hour, please speak to Rev Carol or Jacqueline Stamper. Full training will be given.


The PCC meets next on 23rd September and the Standing Committee on 7th September – if you have suggestions for the agenda, please let Revd Carol or Julie Buckley know. Please pray for its deliberations.

Rambling the Boundary

On Saturday 12th September, Rev Carol (and Bonnie) will be walking the parish boundaries – 7.5 miles around and along river, canal, country lanes and local estates. If you’d like to join them for all (or part) of the way, meet at Church at 11am, and bring a packed lunch, waterproofs and sturdy shoes. Sponsorship donations welcome for church funds – see the sign-up sheet at the back.

Learn the recorder or piano

Now is the perfect time to learn a new instrument. Marlene has offered to give individual lessons via Skype or Zoom in recorder or piano in exchange for a donation to church funds. Please contact her on marlenephillipsmusic@gmail.com

Applications for church schools 2021

If you have a child who will be going into Reception/Year 7 in 2021, and you are considering applying on faith grounds to a church school (Christ Church, or Ripley St Thomas), please discuss this with Rev Carol, as the admissions criteria have recently changed following the Covid disruption.

Pleas of the week:

The Olive Branch and Morecambe Bay Foodbanks continue to be desperate for donations to meet the extra demand during school holidays: please help if you can, either by putting food and toiletries in the collection boxes, or by giving money for them to buy what is needed: https://www.the-olivebranch.org.uk/donate/ or https://morecambebay.foodbank.org.uk/give-help/donate-money/

Lifts to church services?

Might you be willing to offer someone a lift to church? This may be occasionally, or weekly – and subject to restrictions lifting. Please speak to Jacqueline Stamper if you’re interested. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/coronavirus-covid-19-safer-travel-guidance-for-passengers

Drivers needed to deliver meals

During Lockdown ‘The Ark’ at St Tees, ‘The Mustard Seed’ at The Priory and ‘The Breakfast Shelter’ at New Life, have joined forces with Eggcup to prepare and deliver meals on Tuesdays and Fridays to the formerly homeless. The Council did a great job in finding temporary accommodation for homeless people in the area at the start of the Lockdown and many of these people have now been moved on to more permanent homes – which is excellent! The food is collected from LDHAS on Edward Street at 5pm and deliveries take 45minutes to 1 hour, depending on the traffic and how talkative the clients are. 

Church Cleaning:

The next cleaning morning is likely to be on 8th September – all welcome.

Bottles and bottle tops needed

Our Scouts are collecting plastic bottle tops for a local project: www.preciousplasticlancaster.co.uk. Milk bottles, shampoo bottles, washing up bottles – anything! If you can donate, please wash the tops and put them in an envelope. Northern Yarn (6 Kings Arcade) are also accepting donations.

And if you have any 330ml or 500ml clear plastic bottles *with* lids (eg Tropicana-type juice bottles, water bottles) – please pass them on to Rev Carol, by the 20th September please.

Thought for the week

The climate crisis has already been solved. We already have the facts and solutions. All we have to do is wake up and change.                                Greta Thunberg

Eco Group Action for the Week

Covid-19 has revealed how closely we are connected with the natural world. During the season of creation go outside, stop, listen and engage with nature more often

Key contacts:

Vicar: Revd Carol Backhouse 942105 revcarolbackhouse@gmail.com

Lay Reader:  Dr Pat Allen 39552.

Churchwarden: Dr Paul Thompson 34949

Churchwarden: Mrs Jacqueline Stamper 64083 churchwarden@christchurchlancaster.org.uk

Parish Safeguarding Officer:  Ms Jane Lippitt 07930 979503 safeguarding@christchurchlancaster.org.uk

Children’s Church: Mrs Liz Mills 67005

Nightshelter Co-ordinator: Ms Jan Norbury 07547 717 060   coordinator.nightshelter@gmail.com

Hall Bookings: hallchristchurch@btinternet.com 07890 351855

Christ Church School  Ms Emma Simpson 60955 head@christchurch-lancaster.lancs.sch.uk