6th February 2022

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

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

A vibrant inclusive worshipping community

Sunday 6th February 2022

Fourth Sunday before Lent


Lord of the hosts of heaven,

our salvation and our strength,

without you we are lost:

guard us from all that harms or hurts

and raise us when we fall;

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen


Isaiah 6.1-13

In the year that King Uzziah died, I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, high and lofty; and the hem of his robe filled the temple. Seraphs were in attendance above him; each had six wings: with two they covered their faces, and with two they covered their feet, and with two they flew. And one called to another and said:

‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;

the whole earth is full of his glory.’ 

The pivots on the thresholds shook at the voices of those who called, and the house filled with smoke. And I said: ‘Woe is me! I am lost, for I am a man of unclean lips, and I live among a people of unclean lips; yet my eyes have seen the King, the Lord of hosts!’

Then one of the seraphs flew to me, holding a live coal that had been taken from the altar with a pair of tongs. The seraph touched my mouth with it and said: ‘Now that this has touched your lips, your guilt has departed and your sin is blotted out.’ Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, ‘Whom shall I send, and who will go for us?’ And I said, ‘Here am I; send me!’ ’[ And he said, ‘Go and say to this people:
“Keep listening, but do not comprehend;
keep looking, but do not understand.” 
Make the mind of this people dull, and stop their ears, and shut their eyes,
so that they may not look with their eyes, and listen with their ears,
and comprehend with their minds, and turn and be healed.’ Then I said, ‘How long, O Lord?’ And he said:
‘Until cities lie waste without inhabitant,
and houses without people, and the land is utterly desolate; 
until the Lord sends everyone far away, and vast is the emptiness in the midst of the land. Even if a tenth part remains in it, it will be burned again,
like a terebinth or an oak
whose stump remains standing
when it is felled.’
The holy seed is its stump. 

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

Psalm 138

Refrain: Your loving-kindness, O Lord, endures for ever.

1  I will give thanks to you, O Lord, with my whole heart; before the gods will I sing praise to you.

 I will bow down towards your holy temple and praise your name, because of your love and faithfulness; 

for you have glorified your name and your word above all things.

3  In the day that I called to you, you answered me; 

you put new strength in my soul.

Your loving-kindness, O Lord, endures for ever.

4  All the kings of the earth shall praise you, O Lord, 

 for they have heard the words of your mouth.

5  They shall sing of the ways of the Lord, 

 that great is the glory of the Lord.

 Though the Lord be high, he watches over the lowly; 

 as for the proud, he regards them from afar.

Your loving-kindness, O Lord, endures for ever.

7  Though I walk in the midst of trouble, you will preserve me; 

you will stretch forth your hand against the fury of my enemies; your right hand will save me.

8  The Lord shall make good his purpose for me; 

 your loving-kindness, O Lord, endures for ever;

forsake not the work of your hands.

Your loving-kindness, O Lord, endures for ever.

1 Corinthians 15.1-11

Now I should remind you, brothers and sisters, of the good news that I proclaimed to you, which you in turn received, in which also you stand, through which also you are being saved, if you hold firmly to the message that I proclaimed to you—unless you have come to believe in vain.

For I handed on to you as of first importance what I in turn had received: that Christ died for our sins in accordance with the scriptures, and that he was buried, and that he was raised on the third day in accordance with the scriptures, and that he appeared to Cephas, then to the twelve. Then he appeared to more than five hundred brothers and sisters at one time, most of whom are still alive, though some have died. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles. Last of all, as to someone untimely born, he appeared also to me. For I am the least of the apostles, unfit to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace towards me has not been in vain. On the contrary, I worked harder than any of them—though it was not I, but the grace of God that is with me. Whether then it was I or they, so we proclaim and so you have come to believe.

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

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke (5: 1-11).    Glory to you, O Lord.

Once while Jesus was standing beside the lake of Gennesaret, and the crowd was pressing in on him to hear the word of God, he saw two boats there at the shore of the lake; the fishermen had gone out of them and were washing their nets. He got into one of the boats, the one belonging to Simon, and asked him to put out a little way from the shore. Then he sat down and taught the crowds from the boat. When he had finished speaking, he said to Simon, ‘Put out into the deep water and let down your nets for a catch.’ Simon answered, ‘Master, we have worked all night long but have caught nothing. Yet if you say so, I will let down the nets.’ When they had done this, they caught so many fish that their nets were beginning to break. So they signalled to their partners in the other boat to come and help them. And they came and filled both boats, so that they began to sink. But when Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, ‘Go away from me, Lord, for I am a sinful man!’ For he and all who were with him were amazed at the catch of fish that they had taken; and so also were James and John, sons of Zebedee, who were partners with Simon. Then Jesus said to Simon, ‘Do not be afraid; from now on you will be catching people.’ When they had brought their boats to shore, they left everything and followed him.

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

Post Communion: 

Go before us, Lord, in all we do

with your most gracious favour,

and guide us with your continual help,

that in all our works

begun, continued and ended in you,

we may glorify your holy name,

and finally by your mercy receive everlasting life;

through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.


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, Jacqueline Stamper

Those who have died recently:  Reggie Collins, Elaine Fisher, Verity Barker, Richard Wicks, Stephen Mallon, Jean Briggs

Parish Cycle of Prayer:  

Those who live and work in our parish:  Honister Road, and Ambleside Road; for our local schools.

Also for Isaac Boufield, ahead of his Christening next week.

And for Stephen Middlehurst and Emily Winter as their Banns are read. 

Prayer and Worship this week: 

Sunday 6th  February – Fourth Sunday before Lent 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

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

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 13th  February – Third Sunday before Lent 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

10.30 am Christ Church All Together Service

12:30 pm Christening

6 pm Evening Prayer (Lady Chapel)

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

Zoom Prayer

Tuesday, 15th February 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)

God Calling…

In our gospel today, we hear of Jesus calling his first followers. All of us are called to follow Jesus, in many different ways, both in church and in the world. If you’re curious, or you have begun to notice the stirrings of a call, please have a chat with Rev’d Carol. In our church, we give thanks for the variety of vocations amongst us, including formal callings such as: 

Life as a Tertiary (someone living ordinary life but attached to a convent or monastery, and following a religious rule of life):

  • -Valerie Lawrence – the Order of the Holy Paraclete, Whitby
  • Mike Stocks – The Companions of the Community of the Resurrection, Mirfield

Life as a licensed/authorised lay minister: 

  • Dr Pat Allen – Reader/Licensed Lay Minister ‘LLM’
  • Julie Tinnion – in training as an Authorised Lay Minister ‘ALM’

Callings in other Christian communities;

  • Jenny Lowe – former Franciscan tertiary, and now a member of Kentigern.

Please do chat with them to find out more!

Valerie Lawrence writes this: 

The Tertiary Order of the Paraclete is a Benedictine Order,  and as such we try to live our lives according to the Rule of Benedict.  As tertiary brothers and sisters we are called to live lives of prayer and service,  this may sound onerous, but really each of us is called to  do this at their own level and ability,  making a pot of tea is a service to the group it is for. We make the same vows as our sisters in the communities at Whitby and in Africa,  but we have our own Rule, to live in poverty, chastely and obedience, but they carry different values. 

 For us POVERTY is to live lightly in the world and to husband our resources for future generations.

CHASTITY is to live faithfully either as a celibate, if that is what we choose or within a monogamous relationship, and OBEDIENCE is to the will of God,  St. Benedict tells us in the opening sentences of his Rule to “listen to the Master with the ear of our heart “.

Pandemic permitting the North West group meets four times a year, Ash Wednesday (which is mostly a silent day), the one day in Passion week, a third meeting in the season of Pentecost (Paraclete does translate as Holy Spirit) and in October.

For me the Order is an anchor, the framework of prayer and reading, however remiss I can sometimes be, a guide to help me develop and grow my faith and an encouragement to try harder to live more faithfully to my vows and the Rule. Although as Tertiaries we are a scattered community we have a fellowship even when apart supporting and encouraging each other through prayer and more practically over the last two years by staying in contact by phone. 

And from Mike Stocks:

The Community of the Resurrection (CR) was founded by Charles Gore in 1892. It began in Oxford, but has been based in Mirfield, West Yorkshire for decades. Currently there are 16 brethren, 8 of whom are priests; among them are two postulants and one novice. CR’s charism – its distinctive gift and call from God – is to live the baptismal vocation through a commitment to community life, maintained by common worship and works that are primarily of a public character. The brethren worship together five times daily – Morning Prayer, Midday Office, Mass, Evensong and Compline. There are approximately 250 Companions, of which I have been one for almost 20 years. Companions follow a rule of life that includes:

-weekly Sunday worship at the Eucharist (in the past also worship once a month at a weekday Eucharist with the intention of the Community, which I still follow).

-regular penitence

-daily prayer, if possible coinciding with some of the brethren’s daily offices

-an annual retreat of some kind (or the annual Companions’ pilgrimage to Walsingham)

-a rule of fasting 

-a commitment to regular study

-generous almsgiving

-serving the church in the area where you live

-involvement in society in the pursuit of justice and the coming of the kingdom.

Festival of Faith in Daily Life

There will be a Festival of Faith in Daily Life at Blackburn Cathedral on Saturday, March 19. Rev’d Carol is going – so if you’d like a lift, please let her know!
It will be a time to reflect on how we can all be confident disciples, witnesses and leaders for Jesus Christ in our homes, workplaces and communities. Bishop Philip will preside at a Eucharist sung by the Cathedral Youth Choir; there will be a keynote address from Lord David Alton of Liverpool about how faith has affected his working life of public service, and a variety of workshops with some practical ideas for faith at home, faith at work and living alongside people of other faiths.
There will also be an introduction to The Vine Community, which is a simple and flexible framework for living out a Christian life, sometimes called a ‘rule of life’.
The Festival is free, but places need to be booked in advance so that the Cathedral can manage workshop numbers.For more information and to book a place, please email Jean Duerden on  conference@blackburn.anglican.org

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 8th February 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 second Tuesday of the month at the same time. Contact Marion Cowan for further details.

Church Giving

Thank you to everyone who nominated local and national causes for Christ Church to support in the coming year – 14 in all! How we respond will be discussed at the Fundraising meeting (see below) – but if you have ideas (e.g. cake sale, sponsored walk, inviting a speaker) please let Rev’d Carol know.

Thank you!

…. to everyone who helped and supported the Christmas Tree Festival in early December.  Over the period of the Festival over £1,000 was donated, with some Gift Aid to be reclaimed.  The proceeds will be split between the Shelter and church funds.  This is an excellent result financially, as well as a wonderful local community event.  Special thanks to Julie Buckley for all her impeccable organisation – and to Rev’d Carol and Clive Shaw for inspiring us to have the courage to put on a tree festival in the first place!

Thank you from the Olive Branch Food Bank!

… who have sent us a card to say ‘ Thank you so much for your continued support, particularly of our Christmas appeal – your donations helped us give out 199 Christmas hampers to those in need!’

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Fun and fundraising – today 6th February

If you have some ideas for fun events to share as a church community, and/or would like to help in organising  – please come along after the 10:30 Eucharist today (6th) or contact Julie Buckley for more details.

Tenants and Community Union 

Eleanor Levin writes: I’m part of a new tenants and community union (TACU) that’s being set up in Lancaster and Morecambe at the moment and we’re organising a demonstration against the rise in fuel prices and other household costs.  It’s in Market Square on 12th Feb 1pm – all welcome, for more info please ring 0758536361

BAY VOLUNTEERS are recruiting!

Bay Volunteers is a project run by Hope Church which seeks to provide help and support for the vulnerable and/or those in need across the Lancaster District. We work with many partners, including Lancaster City Council, Lancaster District CVS, the NHS, Lancaster University Student Union, and many others to seek to bring help to those in our community who need it.

We offer a Support Line where volunteers can sign up and pick which requests they are able to do, whether going shopping for someone, collecting and delivering post/parcels, collecting and delivering prescriptions, transporting someone to an appointment or befriending someone over the phone.

Anyone can ask for help and you can sign up to volunteer if you are 18+.

You can sign up to volunteer here: https://www.hopelancaster.co.uk/coronavirus-support/volunteer-sign-up/?fbclid=IwAR0wv-XwmuI2KqoooS5eohZkdTmKuxxP3cUzTqItxrBOjetvq_96xrXtll0

The Olive Branch needs volunteers!

In particular, if you are over 18, available between 11am and 4pm on a weekday, and would be interested in volunteering as a packer on a Thursday, or in the office on a Friday, please get in touch by going to their website:  https://the-olivebranch.org.uk

then ‘Support us’ and ‘Register interest with us’. 

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 – One-off Gifts

If you would like to make a one-off donation to the church as an offering, to pay a fee, or as a gift to regular funds, you can give through our ‘Give a little’ page:  https://givealittle.co/campaigns/f63a0655-b270-4d05-bf35-3994747785d0   

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This will also give you the option to Gift Aid your donation (if you pay tax in the UK), enabling the church to get an extra 25p back from the taxman for every £1 you give.  

Supporting Christ Church – Regularly

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   Or 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!

Q:  What did the fisherman say to the magician?

A:  “Pick a cod, any cod.”

Thought for the week

God doesn’t call the equipped. He equips the called.                                                      Rick Yancey

Eco-Group Thought/Action for the Week 

It’s not too late to add a leaf to our Jubilee Tree if you would like to do so. Plant a tree this month or sponsor a charity that will. 

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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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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 

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

Hall Bookings: hall@christchurchlancaster.org.uk

07890 351855

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

Christ Church School  Ms Emma Simpson 60955

COVID-19 – latest update from Rev’d Carol, 27 Jan.

Now that national covid rules have changed, the guidance for churches has been amended. It is the discretion of each Vicar how each church responds, so if you have any queries or concerns please contact Rev’d Carol. Given that case rates are still high locally, I ask that people still consider wearing a face covering (especially for sung services) and remain at a sociable distance apart. I also ask that people don’t return to the practice of intincting their wafer – if you prefer not to receive the common cup that is fine. I continue to encourage people to use hand gel on arrival and before receiving communion, and to sign in – just in case we need to trace an outbreak.  As a church, we seek to be a safe place for all, especially those who feel vulnerable for any reason. We’re called to be one body united by diverse opinions and experiences, and so we respect that some will feel comfortable with more and others with fewer personal precautions in place. There are a range of quieter and busier services for those who wish. We continue to pray for healing for the effects off covid on individuals, communities and our world, and lift up those who are grieving, exhausted or lonely at this time.