9th January 2022

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

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

A vibrant inclusive worshipping community

Sunday 9th January 2022

Feast of the Baptism of Christ

We welcome the Venerable David Picken, Archdeacon of Lancaster, as our preacher at the 1030 Eucharist. 


Eternal Father,

who at the baptism of Jesus revealed him to be your Son, anointing him with the Holy Spirit:

grant to us, who are born again by water and the Spirit, that we may be faithful to our calling as your adopted children;

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


Isaiah 43.1-7

But now thus says the Lord, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel:
Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overwhelm you; when you walk through fire you shall not be burned, and the flame shall not consume you.  For I am the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Saviour.

I give Egypt as your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in exchange for you. 

Because you are precious in my sight, and honoured, and I love you, I give people in return for you, nations in exchange for your life. 

Do not fear, for I am with you;
 I will bring your offspring from the east, and from the west I will gather you; I will say to the north, ‘Give them up’,
and to the south, ‘Do not withhold;
bring my sons from far away and my daughters from the end of the earth — everyone who is called by my name, whom I created for my glory, whom I formed and made.’ 

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

Psalm 29

Refrain: The Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace.

1    Ascribe to the Lord, you powers of heaven,  

ascribe to the Lord glory and strength.

2    Ascribe to the Lord the honour due to his name;  

worship the Lord in the beauty of holiness.

3    The voice of the Lord is upon the waters;

the God of glory thunders;  

the Lord is upon the mighty waters. 

The Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace.

4    The voice of the Lord is mighty in operation;  

the voice of the Lord is a glorious voice.

5    The voice of the Lord breaks the cedar trees;  

the Lord breaks the cedars of Lebanon;

6    He makes Lebanon skip like a calf  

and Sirion like a young wild ox.

The Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace.

7    The voice of the Lord splits the flash of lightning;

the voice of the Lord shakes the wilderness;  

the Lord shakes the wilderness of Kadesh.

8    The voice of the Lord makes the oak trees writhe

and strips the forests bare;  

in his temple all cry, ‘Glory!’

9    The Lord sits enthroned above the water flood;  

the Lord sits enthroned as king for evermore.

10  The Lord shall give strength to his people;  

the Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace.

The Lord shall give his people the blessing of peace.

Acts 8.14-17

Now when the apostles at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had accepted the word of God, they sent Peter and John to them. The two went down and prayed for them that they might receive the Holy Spirit (for as yet the Spirit had not come upon any of them; they had only been baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus). Then Peter and John laid their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit.

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

Alleluia, alleluia.
 This is my Son, the Beloved, with whom I am well pleased.  Alleluia.

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke (3.15-17,21,22).    Glory to you, O Lord.

As the people were filled with expectation, and all were questioning in their hearts concerning John, whether he might be the Messiah, John answered all of them by saying, ‘I baptize you with water; but one who is more powerful than I is coming; I am not worthy to untie the thong of his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. His winnowing-fork is in his hand, to clear his threshing-floor and to gather the wheat into his granary; but the chaff he will burn with unquenchable fire.’

Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was opened, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, ‘You are my Son, the Beloved; with you I am well pleased.’ 

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

Post Communion: 

Lord of all time and eternity,

you opened the heavens and revealed yourself as Father

in the baptism of Jesus your beloved Son:

by the power of your Spirit complete the heavenly work of our rebirth

through the waters of the new creation;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen.

Prayer and Worship this week: 

Sunday 9th January – Baptism of Christ 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

10.30 am Parish Eucharist (in church and then uploaded to YouTube) – Preacher: Archdeacon David (see note)

1:30 pm Baptism

6 pm Taizé Eucharist (Lady Chapel)


5:30 pm Meditation, followed by

6 pm Evening Prayer (Storey Chapel)


9:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

Sunday 16th January – Second Sunday of Epiphany 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

10.30 am All Together Eucharist (in church 

6 pm Evening Prayer (Lady Chapel)

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


Please remember in your prayers:

Those who are sick:  Olive Niccolls, Youngblood McCray, Ernie Wilson, Ivy Buckley, Stephen Gardner, Ann Gilbride, Thea Harris-Ellis, Thomas Platt, Janet Ball, Dorothy Eidsforth, Sitar Rose, Heather McFadden, Maddison Crompton, Irene Forrester, Bishop Julian Henderson

RIP:   Betty Hilton, Pat Barker, James Cleminson

And for Sebastian Reynolds ahead of his Christening today.

Parish Cycle of Prayer:  

Those who live and work in our parish:  Firbank Road and Derwent Road;  for our Queen and government.

Today – 9th January 

We look forward to welcoming Archdeacon David Picken as our preacher at the 10:30 Eucharist on Sunday 9thJanuary – the Feast of the Baptism of Christ.  As we begin the New Year, Archdeacon David will be sharing some thoughts with us about how we grow spiritually (as individuals, and as a church). As it is a special festival day, the service may be slightly longer than usual. 

Zoom Prayer

Tuesday 18th January 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)

New Course!

Starting on Sunday 16th January in the Hall after the 1030 Eucharist. It’s called ‘Everybody Welcome’ and looks at how we welcome people to Christ Church, and build a church that people want to return to. It lasts about an hour, for 5 weeks – everyone welcome for all or some of the course!

Youth Activities for January at Christ Church

Tiddlers Group – birth to school age
Fridays 10.30 am – 12 pm in the Church Hall
Children’s Church – all welcome, under school age to be accompanied – as part of Sunday 10.30 am service.
Youth Group – Key Stage Three
21st and 28th January 4 pm – 6 pm, then fortnightly thereafter (snacks on sale)
Messy Church 30th January 4 pm – 6 pm
A form of Church for children and adults alike, which involves creativity, celebration and hospitality. So we’ll be getting crafty, celebrating God in prayer/song and eating a meal/snack together. (For families who are new to church or looking for a more informal gathering.)

Tiddlers Group

The Tiddlers group runs each Friday,  All pre-school-age children and their carers (parents/grandparents, etc.) are very welcome to come for activities, a chat, etc., at 10:30 am in the Hall.  Please contact Julie Tinnion for more details.

Next PCC Meeting

.. will be on Wednesday 26th January – if there are issues you’d like raising, or ideas to suggest, please have a word with Rev’d Carol or Julie Buckley. 

Christ Church: 70 trees for the Treebilee

The Eco-Group are encouraging each of us to sponsor or plant a tree as part of the Platinum Jubilee celebrations. You can either arrange your own sponsorship, through organisations such as the National Trust or Woodland Trust: for £5 per tree  https://www.nationaltrust.org.uk/features/plant-a-tree; or £6 https://www.treesforcities.org/get-involved/donate.  Or become a member of the Woodland Trust, which will count as five trees or buy membership as gifts.  For those who just want to put their donation in the box next to the tree, add a leaf, and the church will buy a tree from the National Trust for every £5 donated.  There will be a display at the back of church to show how many trees have been planted in the name of Christ Church – so if you make your own arrangements, please add your name to it!

Christ Church Crafting: 

… will meet next this Tuesday 11th January at 11:30am in the Hall – all welcome! Bring your own craft project, or make a pennant for the community bunting.  Future meetings will be on the 2nd Tuesday of the month at the same time. Contact Marion Cowan for further details.

Church Giving

In the course of a year, Christ Church supports many different charities, working abroad and in the UK – for many of which our help has been longstanding. Last year, these included Christian Aid, the Children’s Society, Water Aid, the Olive Branch, Refugee Advocacy Information and Support, and our local Refuge. If you would like to suggest a local or international charity which you’d like the church to support this coming year (whether through fundraising, an awareness campaign, or practical help) please pop your suggestion in the box at the back of church, or have a word with Rev Carol. By the 30th January please. 

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Epiphany Gifts

As usual at this time of year, we ask you to consider making a donation towards the cost of the supplies we use at our services in church all year round.   The wise men brought gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh; it would be great if you could contribute towards the cost of the incense, candles, votive lights, Communion wafers, etc., which are all part of our worship.  Please sign up on the list at the back of church, and put your gift in an envelope labelled “Epiphany”, or contact Jacqueline if you have any questions.

The Olive Branch Foodbank 

… is in particular need of tins – including meat, fish, vegetables and pies., as well as donations of rice (not pasta or baked beans).  All other items, including toiletries, are also gratefully received! 

Or you can give money for them to buy what is needed: https://www.the-olivebranch.org.uk/donate/

Supporting Christ Church 

If you would like to support Christ Church’s work and worship regularly, or you already do – please consider giving by Direct Debit. Christ Church is now taking part in the Parish Giving Scheme, which allows us to offer direct debit as an option. This national Scheme takes a lot of hassle out of claiming gift aid, and ensures that any donation is covered by guarantees. It also allows you to easily review how much you give depending on circumstances. There are no costs or overheads to the parish. For more information, the QR code takes you to our page on the scheme:

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Online at www.parishgiving.org.uk

By telephone 0333 002 1271 Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.  Postal forms available on request.  For any of these methods our PGS code 030603240 ensures that your gift goes to our church.

Church Repair Fund

Our Church Repair Fund helps keep our buildings in good condition so that they can continue to be used for ministry and outreach in the years to come. There are several big projects on the Porch, East Wall, and Hall, which are in need of urgent work.  If you’d like more details about what is going on, please pick up a leaflet – and if you are able to make a donation, there are envelopes available. If you’re able to give of your time and talents to plan or help with some fundraising events – please keep an eye on the notices for more details!

You can also contribute online via the Give a Little website: https://givealittle.co/campaigns/1c7889a9-7ef8-4730-a84a-2d434726c909

Legacies at Christ Church. 

Gifts in Wills are an important part of Christian stewardship, and dedicating a gift is one way to thank God for blessings received. If you’re considering writing a Will and leaving a gift to the church, there is a lilac leaflet available near the offertory box which explains more. The PCC have recently passed a Legacy Policy to ensure that gifts are used well to support Christ Church’s mission and ministry, whilst taking into account a donor’s wishes. If you wish to speak to Rev’d Carol or Jacqueline Stamper in confidence, or for further details, please see www.churchlegacy.org.uk.

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

A friend dug a hole in my garden and filled it with water. I think he meant well.

Thought for the week

Self-rejection is the greatest enemy of the spiritual life because it contradicts the sacred voice that calls us the “Beloved.”  Being the Beloved constitutes the core truth of our existence.             Henri Nouwen

Eco-Group Thought/Action for the Week 

The climate conference may be over but the journey has just begun. Keep the pressure on the government to honour its promises and do whatever you can to reduce your own carbon emissions. 

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Meeting up

The clergy are available for pastoral support and spiritual direction, please don’t hesitate to be in in contact.  If you or someone you know is going through a difficult time or is seriously ill, please let us know as soon as possible, to arrange prayers, home communion, a hospital visit, or anointing of the sick. 

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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COVID-19 – latest update from Rev’d Carol

Now that regulations on Covid precautions have changed, much advice has been issued by the government, national church and local health authorities, with each Vicar being responsible for plans and arrangements in each church building. Christ Church asks that everyone continues to: 

  • Wear a face covering within the building, unless medically exempt
  • Keep a safe distance – with some pews remaining closed to help this  
  • Use the Track and Trace code, or the paper sign-in sheet for each service
  • Use hand gel on arriving in the building, and before receiving communion

In addition: 

At the 1030 service, communion will be received from the rail; please kneel or stand to receive. Afterwards, please return to your seat via the Lady Chapel.

The common cup (chalice) may be shared *if desired*. In present circumstances, you may prefer not to do so, confident in the knowledge that to receive the sacrament of communion in one kind is to receive it in full.  

If you do wish to receive from the chalice, please remain at the rail after receiving the bread. The person administering will wear a face covering, and please *do not* touch the chalice with your hands, and *do not* intinct your wafer (dip it into the wine). The chalice will be wiped with an alcohol sanitiser between use.

As a church community, we are called to act for the benefit of all, and especially the most vulnerable. We wish our church community to be safe, accepting and welcoming for all, regardless of health, or vaccine-status. 

As regulations start to tighten again, I strongly encourage everyone to continue to take precautions and continue the good habits we have got into over the months. 

All of us will feel differently about this.   I’m more than happy to listen and hear your own views on this, and talk through what will help you feel safe and continue to be part of the church in coming weeks.

There is a range of quieter and busier services at Christ Church, so you may wish to consider something different to your usual pattern if it helps you to feel safer.  

Key contacts:

Vicar: Revd Carol Backhouse 942105 revcarolbackhouse@gmail.com

1 East Road, Lancaster, LA1 3EE

Lay Reader:  Dr Pat Allen 39552 reader@christchurchlancaster.org.uk.

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

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

Children, Youth & Families Coordinator: Mrs Julie Tinnion 07749 489623 children@christchurchlancaster.org.uk 

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

Parish Secretary: Mrs Julie Buckley buckleys@live.co.uk 01524 37229

Hall Bookings: hall@christchurchlancaster.org.uk

07890 351855

Christ Church School  Ms Emma Simpson 60955