11th April 2021

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

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

A vibrant inclusive worshipping community

Sunday 11th April 2021

Second Sunday of Easter (Low Sunday)


Risen Christ,

for whom no door is locked, no entrance barred:

open the doors of our hearts,

that we may seek the good of others

and walk the joyful road of sacrifice and peace,

to the praise of God the Father. Amen. 

Acts 4.32-35

Now the whole group of those who believed were of one heart and soul, and no one claimed private ownership of any possessions, but everything they owned was held in common. With great power the apostles gave their testimony to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and great grace was upon them all. There was not a needy person among them, for as many as owned lands or houses sold them and brought the proceeds of what was sold. They laid it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to each as any had need.

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

Psalm 133

Refrain:    Mercy and truth are met together, 

righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

   Behold how good and pleasant it is  

to dwell together in unity.

   It is like the precious oil upon the head,  

running down upon the beard,

   Even on Aaron’s beard,  

running down upon the collar of his clothing.

   It is like the dew of Hermon  

running down upon the hills of Zion

   For there the Lord has promised his blessing:  

even life for evermore.

Refrain:    Mercy and truth are met together,

righteousness and peace have kissed each other.

1 John 1.1 – 2.2

We declare to you what was from the beginning, what we have heard, what we have seen with our eyes, what we have looked at and touched with our hands, concerning the word of life— this life was revealed, and we have seen it and testify to it, and declare to you the eternal life that was with the Father and was revealed to us— we declare to you what we have seen and heard so that you also may have fellowship with us; and truly our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ. We are writing these things so that our joy may be complete.

This is the message we have heard from him and proclaim to you, that God is light and in him there is no darkness at all. If we say that we have fellowship with him while we are walking in darkness, we lie and do not do what is true; but if we walk in the light as he himself is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he who is faithful and just will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. If we say that we have not sinned, we make him a liar, and his word is not in us.

My little children, I am writing these things to you so that you may not sin. But if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous; and he is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not for ours only but also for the sins of the whole world.

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

Alleluia, alleluia! Jesus said, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. 
Those who believe in me, even though they die, will live, and everyone who lives and believes in me will never die.’ Alleluia. 

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ, according to John (20. 19-end).    Glory to you, O Lord.

When it was evening on that day, the first day of the week, and the doors of the house where the disciples had met were locked for fear of the Jews, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ After he said this, he showed them his hands and his side. Then the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord. Jesus said to them again, ‘Peace be with you. As the Father has sent me, so I send you.’ When he had said this, he breathed on them and said to them, ‘Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.’

But Thomas (who was called the Twin), one of the twelve, was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples told him, ‘We have seen the Lord.’ But he said to them, ‘Unless I see the mark of the nails in his hands, and put my finger in the mark of the nails and my hand in his side, I will not believe.’

A week later his disciples were again in the house, and Thomas was with them. Although the doors were shut, Jesus came and stood among them and said, ‘Peace be with you.’ Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger here and see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it in my side. Do not doubt but believe.’ Thomas answered him, ‘My Lord and my God!’ Jesus said to him, ‘Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have come to believe.’

Now Jesus did many other signs in the presence of his disciples, which are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may come to believe that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and that through believing you may have life in his name. 

This is the Gospel of the LordPraise to you, O Christ. 

Post Communion

Lord God our Father, through our Saviour Jesus Christ

you have assured your children of eternal life

and in baptism have made us one with him:

deliver us from the death of sin

and raise us to new life in your love,

in the fellowship of the Holy Spirit,

by the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.


Please remember in your prayers:

Those who are sick:  Olive Niccolls, Youngblood McCray, Ernie Wilson, Pat Brooks, Ivy Buckley, Stephen Gardner, Ann Gilbride, Thea Harris-Ellis, Thomas Platt, Sophia Holden, Janet Ball, Stephen Taylor, Franke Joy Heise.

RIP:  Andrew Crompton, Wilf Barron, Judith Almond, HRH The Prince Philip.

Parish Cycle of Prayer:  

Those who live and work in Mardale Road, Bulk Road, and Grebe Wharf; gardeners and all who work to keep our streets and public places clean and beautiful.

And Georgia Nicholson, ahead of her Christening on 18th April. 

Some suggested hymns you may like to follow at home:

Prayer and Worship this week: 

Sunday 11th  8.30am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

Sunday 10.30am Parish Eucharist, (in church, then uploaded to YouTube*)

4pm Staying Alert to the Spirit Course (via Zoom)

Sunday 6pm: Evening Prayer (in the Lady Chapel)

Wednesday 5:30 pm Meditation and 6 pm Evening Prayer (in the Storey Chapel)

Friday 9:30 am Eucharist (in the Lady Chapel)

Sunday 18th .30am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

Sunday 10.30am Parish Eucharist, (in church, then uploaded to YouTube*)

Sunday 12:30pm Baptism Service

Sunday 4pm Staying Alert to the Spirit Course (via Zoom)

Sunday 6pm: Evening Prayer (in the Lady Chapel)

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

If you would like to book in for the Sunday Eucharists, please use these Eventbrite links:

Sundays: 8:30 am https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/144628127623

Sundays: 10:30 am


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Zoom Prayer

Tuesday 20th April 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)

Next Study Course starting today!

‘Staying Alert to the Spirit’ begins this afternoon (11th).  What is God saying to the churches as we emerge from lockdown?  In the light of Jesus’ death and resurrection – how should we live? What does this good news mean for us?  It will run for seven weeks as we journey towards Pentecost. All are welcome!

 Please see attached flyer for more information.

https://zoom.us/j/98903615188?pwd=a01QRFR1LzczM1JHSnZTdWt1WkJ0dz09   Meeting ID: 989 0361 5188

Passcode: 218739

Living in Love and Faith update

Some of you may be aware that the national Church of England is looking at the changing social attitudes towardsidentity, sexuality, relationships and marriage – and how the Church can learn how these questions fit within the bigger picture of humanity that reflects the image of our creator God. Resources have been developed for individual churches to discuss, which aim to build greater understanding of the spectrum of views held by different Christians. The hope is that these discussions become part of a national church discernment of the way the Church of England is called to serve in future, and how to heal past wounds. For the full text, see https://www.churchofengland.org/resources/living-love-and-faith/living-love-and-faith-book

We aim to run the Living in Love and Faith course at Christ Church after Pentecost, and it will also be run at other churches around the deanery. In the meantime if you have any reflections or reactions, please do let Rev Carol know. 

Children’s Corner

Begin by showing a ‘What Happened Next?’ series of clips. There is one here 

Alternatively, search for ‘What Happened Next?’ on YouTube and choose a video suitable for your context. Show one clip at a time and then ask people to suggest what they think happened next. Take a poll, by asking people to raise their hands, to see who believed what happened before seeing it and who needed to see it to believe it. Sometimes what really happens can be unexpected! 

Have there been things you wouldn’t believe until you saw then for yourself? 

How do you think Thomas felt when he was the only one who wasn’t sure Jesus was alive?


We thank you, Jesus, that although we have not seen and touched you as the first disciples did, we have come to believe. Today, like Thomas did, we praise you as our Lord and our God. Amen 

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

Q: What day does a real Easter egg hate the most? 

A: Fry-day

Meeting up

Now that lockdown rules are slowly lifting, I’m able to meet more people in the parish again, and get to know folks. If you’d like to go for a walk, or arrange a garden visit – it would be lovely to meet and chat, please let me know when’s convenient!

Annual Parochial Church Meeting 

The APCM is on 25th April 2021 at 11:45 in Church.

Everyone who lives in the parish is invited as we elect our Churchwardens for the year ahead, and all who are on the Electoral Roll are invited to elect our Parish Church Council and Deanery Synod representatives. This meeting is for the whole church to review the year past, and to prepare for the year ahead. Please do hold those standing for election in your prayers, and consider who you would like to nominate for the roles of Churchwarden, Deanery Synod Rep, and PCC members. The meeting will also be held on zoom for those wishing to join from home. Annual Reports will be available shortly. 

Postal Voting for the APCM

If you wish to vote in this year’s APCM for the election of Churchwardens, PCC members and Deanery Representatives (for many of which you’ll need to be on the Electoral Roll), but won’t be able to attend the meeting for any reason – it is now possible to have a postal vote. (This was approved at last year’s meeting). Please let Rev Carol know if you’re interested in voting by post. 

Annual Review

Not all of us are called to formal, official roles in church – there are many ways in which we give of our time and talents in service of the community, and grow and flourish ourselves. We want to help each other to be active in our church and Christian lives – in ways which value the different gifts and skills each of us is blessed with. Some of this is about how our church community practically works and grows, and it is healthy to review this regularly as this will change over the years. The most important thing is being part of the congregation and family, as we pray, worship, serve, and care for each other and the parish.  There is now a green box at the back of church to collect the green ‘Gifts and Talents’ review forms ahead of 25th April – whether you’re a baker, sewer, reader, welcomer, pray-er, we’d love to hear from you! If you’d prefer to fill it in online, you can do so at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/THZ5GWH


Our Church Council next meets on 21st April.  If you have any items for the agenda, or other issues or questions you’d like to raise, please contact Julie Buckley, our PCC Secretary buckleys@live.co.uk

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Prayers & our Newsletter

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. 

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. 

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Holy Week and Easter Preparations

With thanks to everyone who has helped make the church ready for Easter – to Audrey, Julian and Val for all the work in the sacristy, to Andrew, Ron, Jacqueline and the Choir for our music, and everyone who supported the worship whether online or in church! 

Easter Raffle

Thanks to everyone who supported the Easter Raffle – £150 raised for church funds! 

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Help needed

Audrey Davies is retiring from her role as Sacristan – and we are grateful for all the hard work and care she has given over the years in ensuring our worship goes smoothly. If you can help in the preparation for worship and tidying after services, whether on a weekly or on a more occasional basis, please let Rev Carol know. If you’d like to know more about what’s involved, please ask Audrey.

Vaccinaid – Give the world a shot!

Our church leaders are encouraging us to play our part in helping UNICEF deliver 2 billion vaccines around the world by the end of this year, to bring this world-wide epidemic to an end.  Keeping one another safe from COVID is part of living out Christ’s call to love our neighbour.  By contributing to crowdfunding this project on  https://www.vaccinaid.org  we can help the whole world get the protection many of us already have through our easy access to healthcare.

House/flat/room to rent?

Please let Jacqueline or Pat know if you can offer, or know of anyone who has a house or flat to rent that would be suitable for one or two reliable young men.  Marius (our excellent Hall cleaner) and another refugee have each been given notice to leave their present accommodation, and RAIS (Refugee Advocacy and Information Service) is trying to help find them somewhere to live (either together or separately) as a matter of urgency. 

The Olive Branch Foodbank

Donations of tinned pies, curry, meatballs and hotpot especially needed. Thank you for all the donations in recent weeks  –  they gave out 300 parcels last month alone!   Or you can give money for them to buy what is needed: https://www.the-olivebranch.org.uk/donate/

Squares for Syria

Thanks to everyone who has so far knitted 6” squares for the Eco-Group project. Sami has sewn them to make beautiful blankets which have been very well received.  Donations to Margaret Lyth please  (60387).

Food Futures

An interesting website for Lancaster residents, especially gardeners and allotment holders, is www.foodfutures.org.ukwhich is a local award-winning sustainable food network. It carries a directory of local food, news and research, but above all an invitation to join in a conversation on shaping our food suppoly in 2030. This is important as coping with climate change will probably mean reducing our dependence on food coming from afar with all the transport pollution, costs, etc. Well worth a look!

Adullam Budgeting and Money Management Course

Hope Church are starting a Budgeting & Money Management course beginning Monday 12th April for 3 weeks (19th & 26th) in partnership with LM Debt Centre.  The course is free of charge, please emailadullam.programme@hotmail.com for more information or to book.

Visions of 2020 Banner

The first contributions to the banner have come in: boats in the COVID-19 storm, gardens, family, bubbles, walks, church and of course Zoom. If there are pictures, memory, words or music that got you through 2020, please keep the ideas coming; everyone can contribute through any medium.

Please send your ideas, thoughts to Marion Cowan:  marion_cowan@hotmail.com  

Christ Church Creatives Group

Christ Church Craft group, initially by Zoom, is for anyone who would like to join to share crafts and ideas, where we can support each other and put together ideas for projects such as the Visions of 2020 banner. Anyone interested who would like to start crafting, please contact Marion. marion_cowan@hotmail.com

Eco-Group on Youtube! 

Our Eco-Group have been contributing to the Diocese’s ‘Looking out in Lent’ series on YouTube reflecting on caring for creation: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-qmAXhgBdcs. With thanks to Joyce Lynch for co-ordinating it! 

The Evening Drop In (Shelter Update!)

The Evening Drop-In has now finished for the winter. With thanks to Jan, Clive and Gill for successfully leading the team through a very different season! Thanks also to all our volunteers and donors who have supported our guests this year. LDHAS on Edward Street remains the first point of call for anyone experiencing homelessness, and is also the base for the Council Floating Support Service, who are seeking to accommodate all who are street-homeless during the pandemic. 

The Christ Church Cookbook: contributions invited

The Eco Church Group has been promoting the message that in order to reduce our carbon footprint, we need to eat less meat. in 2019 a special report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) described plant-based diets as a major opportunity for mitigating and adapting to climate change. The Eco Group are not all vegetarian or vegan, but we believe that reducing meat consumption, especially from intensive farming, has benefits for both the climate and for animal welfare. 

In order to encourage people to try meatless recipes, we are putting together a cookbook of our favourite vegetarian and vegan dishes that could tempt even carnivores, and we would like to invite you to contribute your favourite, tried and tested, veggie and vegan recipes. We will sell the cookbook to raise money for Christ Church.

We can’t guarantee to include all recipes we receive; we need to balance starters, mains and puddings, and also vegan/non-vegan recipes, and we are limited in the size of the booklet we can afford to produce. However, we will be grateful for all contributions. Please include metric measurements for ingredients.

Send your recipes to reader@christchurchlancaster.org.uk.

Watch Party

In case you’ve not seen them, there are two really good items on BBC IPlayer at present: 

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (Film) – as recommended by the Eco Group

Brotherhood (Documentary) – about life in a Trappist Monastery in Leicestershire.

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Thought for the week

Doubt isn’t the opposite of faith; it is an element of faith.                                               Paul Tillich

Eco-Group Action for the Week:  

The UK is one of the most nature-depleted countries in the world. You can make a difference by planting for nature and supporting new life in your garden this spring. 

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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

The national prayer for the COVID-19 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.


A prayer on the death of HRH The Prince Philip 

God of our lives,  

we give thanks for the life of Prince Philip,  

for the love he shared among us,  

and for his devotion to duty.  

We entrust him now to your love and mercy,  

through our Redeemer, Jesus Christ. Amen.