17th January 2021

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

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

A vibrant inclusive worshipping community

Sunday 17th January 2021

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity (Epiphany 2)

We welcome Fr Steven Pearson, Dean of Lancaster Cathedral, to preach at the 10:30 Eucharist today.

Collect (Prayer of the week)

Almighty God,in Christ you make all things new: transform the poverty of our nature by the riches of your grace, and in the renewal of our lives make known your heavenly glory; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever.   Amen.


1 Samuel 3.1-10

Now the boy Samuel was ministering to the Lord under Eli. The word of the Lord was rare in those days; visions were not widespread.

At that time Eli, whose eyesight had begun to grow dim so that he could not see, was lying down in his room; the lamp of God had not yet gone out, and Samuel was lying down in the temple of the Lord, where the ark of God was. Then the Lord called, ‘Samuel! Samuel!’ and he said, ‘Here I am!’ and ran to Eli, and said, ‘Here I am, for you called me.’ But he said, ‘I did not call; lie down again.’ So he went and lay down. The Lord called again, ‘Samuel!’ Samuel got up and went to Eli, and said, ‘Here I am, for you called me.’ But he said, ‘I did not call, my son; lie down again.’ Now Samuel did not yet know the Lord, and the word of the Lord had not yet been revealed to him. The Lord called Samuel again, a third time. And he got up and went to Eli, and said, ‘Here I am, for you called me.’ Then Eli perceived that the Lord was calling the boy. Therefore Eli said to Samuel, ‘Go, lie down; and if he calls you, you shall say, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.” ’ So Samuel went and lay down in his place.

Now the Lord came and stood there, calling as before, ‘Samuel! Samuel!’ And Samuel said, ‘Speak, for your servant is listening.’

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

Psalm 139.1-5,12-18*

Refrain:    Search me out, O God, and know my heart.

1    O Lord, you have searched me out and known me; you know my sitting down and my rising up; you discern my thoughts from afar.

   You mark out my journeys and my resting place and are acquainted with all my ways.

3    For there is not a word on my tongue, but you, O Lord, know it altogether.

4    You encompass me behind and before and lay your hand upon me.

   Such knowledge is too wonderful for me, so high that I cannot attain it.

Search me out, O God, and know my heart.

12  For you yourself created my inmost parts; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.

13  I thank you, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; marvellous are your works, my soul knows well.

14  My frame was not hidden from you, when I was made in secret and woven in the depths of the earth.

15  Your eyes beheld my form, as yet unfinished; already in your book were all my members written,

16  As day by day they were fashioned when as yet there was none of them.

17  How deep are your counsels to me, O God! How great is the sum of them!

18  If I count them, they are more in number than the sand,  and at the end, I am still in your presence.

Search me out, O God, and know my heart.

Revelation 5.1-10

Then I saw in the right hand of the one seated on the throne a scroll written on the inside and on the back, sealed with seven seals; and I saw a mighty angel proclaiming with a loud voice, ‘Who is worthy to open the scroll and break its seals?’ And no one in heaven or on earth or under the earth was able to open the scroll or to look into it. And I began to weep bitterly because no one was found worthy to open the scroll or to look into it. Then one of the elders said to me, ‘Do not weep. See, the Lion of the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has conquered, so that he can open the scroll and its seven seals.’

Then I saw between the throne and the four living creatures and among the elders a Lamb standing as if it had been slaughtered, having seven horns and seven eyes, which are the seven spirits of God sent out into all the earth. He went and took the scroll from the right hand of the one who was seated on the throne. When he had taken the scroll, the four living creatures and the twenty-four elders fell before the Lamb, each holding a harp and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints. They sing a new song:

‘You are worthy to take the scroll and to open its seals, for you were slaughtered and by your blood you ransomed for God saints from every tribe and language and people and nation; you have made them to be a kingdom and priests serving our God,    and they will reign on earth.’

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

When the Gospel is announced the reader says:

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, according to John      (1.43-51)    Glory to you, O Lord.

The next day Jesus decided to go to Galilee. He found Philip and said to him, ‘Follow me.’ Now Philip was from Bethsaida, the city of Andrew and Peter. Philip found Nathanael and said to him, ‘We have found him about whom Moses in the law and also the prophets wrote, Jesus son of Joseph from Nazareth.’ Nathanael said to him, ‘Can anything good come out of Nazareth?’ Philip said to him, ‘Come and see.’ When Jesus saw Nathanael coming towards him, he said of him, ‘Here is truly an Israelite in whom there is no deceit!’ Nathanael asked him, ‘Where did you come to know me?’ Jesus answered, ‘I saw you under the fig tree before Philip called you.’ Nathanael replied, ‘Rabbi, you are the Son of God! You are the King of Israel!’ Jesus answered, ‘Do you believe because I told you that I saw you under the fig tree? You will see greater things than these.’ And he said to him, ‘Very truly, I tell you, you will see heaven opened and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.’

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

Post Communion Prayer

God of glory, you nourish us with your Word who is the bread of life: fill us with your Holy Spirit that through us the light of your glory may shine in all the world. We ask this in the name of Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Some suggested hymns you may like to follow at home:


Please remember in your prayers:

Those who are sick:  Olive Niccolls, Youngblood McCray, Ernie Wilson, Pat Brooks, Ivy Buckley, Michael Greenhalgh, Stephen Gardner, Ann Gilbride, Sitar Rose, Thea Harris-Ellis, Helen Rawlinson, Thomas Platt.

RIP:  Jessie Crawley, Jen Shepherd, Barrie Leck, Jean Moffatt, and Edward Thistlethwaite, Lis Dey.

Parish Cycle of Prayer: 

Those who live and work in:  Thirlmere Road, Buttermere Road, and for all working and volunteering with the Covid vaccination programme locally.

Prayer and Worship w/c 17th January

Sunday 10:30am Eucharist (on YouTube*) followed by Zoom “coffee”


Sunday 6:30 pm Livestreamed service for Christian Unity from Lancaster Priory on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/pg/lancasterpriorymusic/videos/

Monday 10:15 am Funeral for Barrie Leck in Church

Wednesday 6:00 pm Evening Prayer via Zoom https://zoom.us/j/99756144246?pwd=c3YxNVRlTFkrL251UHNpMjZFdFJSdz09 Meeting ID: 997 5614 4246 Passcode: 370844 (then uploaded to YouTube*)

Friday 9:30 am Morning Prayer (on Facebook **

Sunday 24th January 10:30am: Eucharist (on YouTube*) followed by Zoom “coffee” (as above)

Sunday 24th January 6:00 pm Eucharist for the Conversion of St Paul (on YouTube*)

Sunday 24th January 7:00 pm Churches Together – Week of Prayer for Christian Unity service via Zoom (see separate flyer)

*The Christ Church YouTube channel is at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPoAvGj4K9085RV8zo0ZS9Q

** The Christ Church Facebook page (you don’t need to sign in) is www.facebook.com/christchurchlancaster

Christ Church on Zoom

Evening Prayer will continue to be uploaded to YouTube as now, but you are also most welcome to join the services live via Zoom, at 6 pm: https://zoom.us/j/99756144246?pwd=c3YxNVRlTFkrL251UHNpMjZFdFJSdz09

Meeting ID: 997 5614 4246 Passcode: 370844

You’re equally welcome to join in the “virtual coffee” on Zoom at 11:30 am on Sundays:

https://zoom.us/j/92076612292?pwd=OGJzMFJiaVlsUklSNm5DcFZnakVFdz09 Meeting ID: 920 7661 2292

Passcode: 865469

And also to share in ….


Perhaps you’ve found yourself praying more during lockdown? Tuesday 19th January s 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)

Week of Prayer for Christian Unity 17-23 January

Fr Steven Pearson from Lancaster Cathedral  will be preaching at our 10:30 Eucharist today Sunday 17th, and we shall be joining the live-streamed service for Christian Unity from Lancaster Priory at 6:30 pm.

Lancashire Churches Together are hosting a service to mark the end of the Week of Prayer on Sunday 24th January at 7 pm on Zoom https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83311577014?pwd=cGN6TEF2clo2UnNYa1Q1c1VTMkJPdz09

Meeting ID: 833 1157 7014 Passcode: 831897. They ask you to let them know you’re coming via Eventbrite https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/134771831175

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +


If you, or someone you know would like to receive this newsletter, either electronically or a paper version – do let Jacqueline/Rev Carol know and we will endeavour to keep in contact with people.

The order for Spiritual Communion (to follow at home along with the Sunday service) is available on the church website – and if there are other prayer resources, books or websites which you would find helpful, please say. The Daily Hope phone line continues – 0800 808 8044

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.

We will be praying daily for all who are suffering in the current crisis. 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.

Prayer and Support

We will be praying daily for all who are suffering in the current crisis.  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.

Pastoral Support

I’m still able to offer pastoral support, especially in times of emergency.  Please contact me by phone or email in the first instance.  Rev Carol.

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.   Or ask Jacqueline (in confidence) if you’d like a Standing Order and/or Gift Aid declaration form.

Children’s Corner

Have you ever received an invitation to something very special or an invitation to something you really didn’t want to go to?

If you had been there with Nathanael when Philip said, “come and see”, how would you have responded?

RSVP Talk together about how we reply to invitations. Sometimes when we reply to an invitation, we have lots of questions. What should I wear? What time will it finish? Do I need to bring anything special? Nathanael was invited to follow Jesus but before he did, he had a questions for Jesus. Ask the children to think about some of the questions they would like to ask Jesus? Give everyone a piece of paper and write RSVP at the top. Then ask the children to write all their questions on their RSVP.

Family Prayer: Lord help us to recognise that you invite each of us to follow you. In the quiet may we each hear you calling our name and saying, ‘follow me’. Amen

Craft Bags

There are still a couple of craft bags up for grabs – please let Rev Carol know if you’d like one.

Giggle (or Groan) of the weeksuggestions welcome!

Did you hear the rumour about butter? Well, I’m not going to spread it!

Prayers for our new appointment!

Thanks to the generous funds provided by the Nile Street Trust, the Gregson Institute, and our own diocese, we are advertising for a Children, Youth and Families Co-ordinator, who will work for 20 hours a week in the parish, beginning after Easter. We hope they will help us reach out and welcome more children and their families into the church, and will work with Rev Carol to nurture their spiritual growth. Please pray for the right person to come and join us, for all those involved in the appointment process, and for yourself – whether you might be able to help out in some way.  

If you’d like to apply, or know someone who should: https://pathways.churchofengland.org/search/category-blackburn/page-1

Confirmation: preparation

If you, or someone in your family, would be interested in being confirmed this year, please let Rev. Carol know by this Monday (18th January) along with your preference for day and time for classes via Zoom.  By all means have a chat with Rev Carol. Children need to be in Y6 or above.  Confirmation is a special service – of receiving God’s affirming Spirit, of declaring your own faith and desire to follow Jesus, and, for some, preparing to receive Holy Communion for the first time.

If you’d be interested in helping with Confirmation preparation, either as a one off or for the whole course, Rev Carol would love to hear from you! 

Routes of Faith

This course, for lay people who want to learn more about their Christian faith, restarts in January. The module ‘Following Jesus through the New Testament’ starts on Tuesday, January 12, via Zoom, and will run for five weeks.  More details of the course and the programme leaflet are on the Diocesan website at


and you can book at https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/routes-of-faith-following-jesus-through-the-new-testament-tickets-131895592267

Looking ahead to the New Year

What a winter season it has been! But after winter comes the spring, when we begin to see things grow again. The same is true for Christ Church – please have a think and pray about what you would like to see grow in coming months and years here, whether in your own Christian life, or in what Christ Church does, and how we share community together. The PCC will send out a questionnaire in coming weeks, so that we can share ideas and begin to plan for the future.

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +


Bonus Ball

Julie Tinnion is organising a this to help raise funds for the church. The idea is that you pick and pay for a number, and if your number is picked each week in the National Lottery bonus ball, you win £30. Other funds go to church funds. email julie.christchurch@googlemail.com

 or phone Julie T on 07854 844394

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +


The Olive Branch Foodbank

During daylight hours, there’s a collection box outside the Vicarage door for donations to the Olive Branch, please leave tins, toiletries, and packets and these will be passed on to their distribution centre on the Lansil estate.  Or you can give money for them to buy what is needed: https://www.the-olivebranch.org.uk/donate/

Christian CND

You may be aware that later this month the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons, which was agreed by the United Nations in 2017, will enter into legal force following the 50th state joining in October 2020.

To mark the occasion, Christian CND is joining other Christian Peace Groups to hold a couple of events:

On Tuesday 12th January at 12 noon we are hosting a briefing on Zoom where you can find out more about the Treaty and what it will mean for the UK. 

On Friday 22nd January we will be gathering to celebrate the entry into force of the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons with a short Thanksgiving Service hosted by the Network of Christian Peace Organisations. It will take place on Zoom at 11:30 am and we hope to finish with bells ringing in celebration of nuclear weapons being banned. Please see the website, or email for the Zoom details.  Russell Whiting, Development Manager, Christian Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament  Email: ccnddevelopment@cnduk.org Web: http://christiancnd.org.uk/

Learn to Listen 18th January

Lancaster Samaritans is running a “Learn to Listen” event via Zoom next Monday, 18th Jan. We’ll be talking all about how we can become better listeners and the amazing work our volunteers do to support those who are struggling.  When?:  Monday 18th Jan, 12:30 and 19:00 – please say which session you would like to attend.  The event will last about 45 mins. Please email lancaster.outreach@samaritans.org to book a place.

Smalls for All

If you’re planning a spring clear out, please consider www.smallsforall.org, who collect good quality, clean second-hand bras, and new pants (all sizes) to send out to countries in Africa, where women and girls are at higher risk of rape if they are not wearing such items. They will also take donations of men’s pants (new packets only). I’m not planning a church collection (!) But if you’d like to donate, please post your smalls to Smalls for All, Five Sisters Business Park, Westwood, West Calder, EH55 8PN

Knitting for Syria

The Eco-Group are planning to use the pandemic restrictions creatively and are going to make a woollen quilt to send to Syria where many refugees are living in tents and are exposed to the winter cold . The aim is to use any spare wool to knit 6-inch squares which will be crocheted together to form a blanket or blankets. The squares can be any colour, stitch type or thickness of wool as long as they are roughly 6 inches square. Help from anyone in the congregation would be much appreciated Do contact Margaret Lyth on 60387 to help or to offer donations.

The Evening Drop In (Shelter Update!)

Our Evening Drop-in reopened on Monday following the Christmas break, for anyone who is homeless or vulnerably housed, to come for a hot drink, hot meal, supplies of food and clothing, and a warm welcome, every evening 8:30 – 9:30 pm.  Edward Street continues to offer daytime support 10am-1pm

Lancaster City Council assure us that they will accommodate anyone who is homeless over the winter months (01524 582257 (9-5 M-F) /67099 (out of hours). 

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +


Let’s BeFriends – Befrienders 

Let’s BeFriends is a new project to create and nurture relationships between individuals who are or have been homeless or in recovery, and those who have a good understanding and/ or lived experience of these pressures and constraints. You need to be 18 years and over, live in easy access to Lancaster and Morecambe area, can offer a minimum of 3 hours a week, able to plan and attend social outings, and understand and agree the non-negotiable boundaries.

For more information, contact Julie directly by email atjulieannridgway@gmail.com, or call her on 07515 480280. Alternatively, you can contact Mark or Louise at Lancaster CVS (markwaddington@lancastercvs.org.uk or louisemunro@lancastercvs.org.uk). 

Lancaster District Support Line – Vaccination Drivers 

Lancaster District Support Line, working in partnership with the NHS, has been recruiting volunteer drivers to help people get to their vaccination appointments. These roles are stand-by roles as volunteers will only be called upon if needed, but people do need to be available and will also need a DBS check. Anyone who is interested should contact Mark or Louise at Lancaster CVS as above.

LVP – Vaccination Centre Marshals 

Lancashire Volunteer Partnership (LVP) and the NHS are looking for volunteer marshals to assist at Covid-19 Vaccination Centres across Lancashire and South Cumbria in GP practices, health centres and larger public buildings in more central locations.  New Vaccination Centres will also be added as the vaccine becomes more readily available.  A broad range of volunteer time slots will be offered.  For more information and to apply, https://lancsvp.org.uk/opportunities/covid-vaccination-internal-marshall-3/

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +

Thought for the week

“Christian love comes from the understanding that there is a unity of divine origins in oneself and in other people, and not only in people, but in all living things.”             Leo Tolstoy

Eco Group Action for the Week:

Try to go at least one day a week without meat by substituting meaty vegetables such as mushrooms and aubergine or making completely new vegetarian recipes.

+ + + + + + + + + + + + + +

Key contacts:

Vicar: Revd Carol Backhouse 942105 revcarolbackhouse@gmail.com

1 East Road, Lancaster, LA1 3EE

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

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

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.