20th March 2022

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

A warm welcome to 

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

on Sunday 20th March 2022 Third Sunday of Lent

Vicar: Revd Carol Backhouse 01524 942105 

revcarolbackhouse@gmail.com 1 East Road, Lancaster, LA1 3EE

www.christchurchlancaster.org.uk Facebook:@ChristChurchLancaster

Everyone is welcome to join in prayer and worship this week: 

Today – Sunday 20th March 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

10:30 am Parish Eucharist 

with Children’s Church 

(in church, then uploaded to YouTube)*

12 noon Lent Course (in the Hall)

6 pm Evening Prayer  (Lady Chapel)


5:30 pm Silent Meditation followed by 

6 pm Evening Prayer (Storey Chapel) 


9:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

Next Sunday – 27th March – Fourth Sunday of Lent 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

10:30 am Christ Church All Together  

for Mothering Sunday

12 noon Lent Course (in the Hall)

6 pm Evening Prayer  (Lady Chapel)

*Our YouTube channel is at: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPoAvGj4K9085RV8zo0ZS9Q

Prayer for the Week: 

Almighty God,

whose most dear Son went not up to joy but first he suffered pain,

and entered not into glory 

before he was crucified:

mercifully grant that we, 

walking in the way of the cross,

may find it none other 

than the way of life and peace;

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

A Prayer for Ukraine

God of peace and justice,
we pray for the people of Ukraine today.

We pray for peace and the laying down of weapons.
We pray for all those who fear for tomorrow, that your Spirit of comfort would draw near to them.
We pray for those with power over war or peace, for wisdom, discernment, and compassion to guide their decisions.
Above all, we pray for all your precious children, at risk and in fear,
that you would hold and protect them.
We pray in the name of Jesus, the Prince of Peace.  Amen.

Scripture Readings for our Worship today: 

Isaiah 55.1-9

Ho, everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; and you that have no money, come, buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without price. Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread, and your labour for that which does not satisfy?  Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good, and delight yourselves in rich food.  Incline your ear, and come to me; listen, so that you may live. I will make with you an everlasting covenant, my steadfast, sure love for David.   See, I made him a witness to the peoples, a leader and commander for the peoples.  See, you shall call nations that you do not know, and nations that do not know you shall run to you, because of the Lord your God, the Holy One of Israel, for he has glorified you.   

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.

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

Psalm 63.1-9

Refrain:    My soul is athirst for God, even for the living God.

1    O God, you are my God; eagerly I seek you; my soul is athirst for you.

2    My flesh also faints for you,  

as in a dry and thirsty land where there is no water.

3    So would I gaze upon you in your holy place, that I might behold your power and your glory.

4    Your loving-kindness is better than life itself and so my lips shall praise you.

5    I will bless you as long as I live  

and lift up my hands in your name. 

Refrain:    My soul is athirst for God, even for the living God.

6    My soul shall be satisfied, as with marrow and fatness,  

and my mouth shall praise you with joyful lips,

7    When I remember you upon my bed and meditate on you in the watches of the night.

8    For you have been my helper  

and under the shadow of your wings will I rejoice.

9    My soul clings to you;  

your right hand shall hold me fast. 

Refrain:    My soul is athirst for God, even for the living God.

1 Corinthians 10.1-13

I do not want you to be unaware, brothers and sisters, that our ancestors were all under the cloud, and all passed through the sea, and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea, and all ate the same spiritual food, and all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank from the spiritual rock that followed them, and the rock was Christ. Nevertheless, God was not pleased with most of them, and they were struck down in the wilderness.

Now these things occurred as examples for us, so that we might not desire evil as they did. Do not become idolaters as some of them did; as it is written, ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and they rose up to play.’ We must not indulge in sexual immorality as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in a single day. 

We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did, and were destroyed by serpents. And do not complain as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer.  These things happened to them to serve as an example, and they were written down to instruct us, on whom the ends of the ages have come. 

So if you think you are standing, watch out that you do not fall.  No testing has overtaken you that is not common to everyone. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tested beyond your strength, but with the testing he will also provide the way out so that you may be able to endure it.

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

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke (13.1-9).     Glory to you, O Lord.

At that very time there were some present who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. He asked them, ‘Do you think that because these Galileans suffered in this way they were worse sinners than all other Galileans? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish as they did. Or those eighteen who were killed when the tower of Siloam fell on them—do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others living in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all perish just as they did.’

Then he told this parable: ‘A man had a fig tree planted in his vineyard; and he came looking for fruit on it and found none. So he said to the gardener, “See here! For three years I have come looking for fruit on this fig tree, and still I find none. Cut it down! Why should it be wasting the soil?” He replied, “Sir, let it alone for one more year, until I dig round it and put manure on it. If it bears fruit next year, well and good; but if not, you can cut it down.” ’

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

Prayer after Communion: 

Merciful Lord, grant your people grace to withstand the temptations of the world, the flesh and the devil, and with pure hearts and minds to follow you, the only God; 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, Thomas Platt, Janet Ball, Dorothy Eidsforth, Sitar Rose, Heather McFadden, Jacqueline Stamper

Those who have died recently:  Dorothy Stanborough, Mary McDermott

Parish Cycle of Prayer:  Those who live and work in our parish: Dennison Close, and Woodlands Close.        

For all families in the parish, and all with caring responsibilities.

For PCC meeting this week.

Zoom Prayer:

Tuesday 22nd March 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.)

Lent Course

Our Lent course, ‘Glimpses of God’, continues after the 10:30 Eucharist today in he Hall. Everyone very welcome!

Thought for the week

Where our strength runs out, God’s strength begins.                  Unknown

Eco-Group Thought/Action for the Week 

Recent extreme weather events keep climate change at the forefront of our minds. Take direct action to reduce your own use of fossil fuels by using less, switching to renewable suppliers and investigating alternative energy sources. For more ideas follow the Climate Coalition https://www.theclimatecoalition.org

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. 

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. 

In other news …

Bishop Julian is retiring

On Monday, Bishop Julian (our Diocesan Bishop of Blackburn) announced that he will be retiring in August this year, laying down his pastoral staff (the symbol of a bishop’s duty to care) on the 16th July. Bishop Philip will be interim bishop, until a new bishop is appointed – so please keep Bishop Julian, and the whole process in your prayers. 

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  

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/

Homes for Ukrainian Refugees

From Lizzy Hare at RAIS – ‘Please apply here https://www.gov.uk/government/news/homes-for-ukraine-scheme-launches  or by Googling ‘home for Ukraine UK’ to register for the scheme. This link will lead you to a registration form. Then email Fariha (our co-ordinator) at coordinator@rais.org.uk   and she will put you in touch with a charity who are pairing hosts with Ukrainian guests. Once your guests have arrived at your house then please get in touch or visit us if you need any help.’  (See separate attachment for more information.)

Update on the Night Shelter. 

Since the Night Shelter was suspended in December, conversations have been continuing about how best to offer support to those in greatest need in our parish and also respond to the safety concerns raised by Lancaster City Council.  

Following conversations with other churches who run communal shelters, and also the Department for Levelling Up, it has become apparent how much would need to be done to meet the standards now expected of shelters – an ongoing commitment of resources, governance, health and safety, oversight, risk assessment and staffing ratios, beyond what we feel able to sustain at Christ Church. 

This is in a climate where our local council has promised to accommodate every street-homeless person for the foreseeable future. PCC have therefore decided to end overnight accommodation. We have been invited to continue to serve the homeless through befriending and providing community support to enable guests to adapt to life off the streets, and there is ongoing work about what this would look like. If you would like to be part of this planning, or have ideas about what how to best serve the needs in our parish, please see Rev’d Carol. 

There will be a meeting with all the churches and with people with lived experience of homelessness in Lancaster on Monday 21st March at 2 pm in church – all welcome.

Community at Christ Church:

Mothering Sunday – Ukraine Appeal

As part of our Mothering Sunday services (27th March), there will be a collection for Shelterbox (www.shelterbox.org), who provide emergency supplies to refugees, including in the Ukraine crisis.  Please give either online via their website or put your donation in an envelope with ‘Shelterbox’ written on it.  The collection on Mothering Sunday will also go towards their work.  Thanks to Jean McCafferty for suggesting the charity.

Mothering Sunday – help needed

At 10:30 am next Saturday (26th March), help is needed to make posies of flowers for distribution on Mothering Sunday. Come for 30 mins, or longer if you can! Please bring scissors/secateurs if you have some. Donations of greenery and other flowers gratefully received – please bring these to the Vestry.

Christ Church Choir

….. sings at the 10.30 service about once a month, plus other special occasions, and practises in church on Thursdays at 7.15pm for an hour. New members always welcome; if you’re not sure, come along and give it a try for a few weeks! Have a word with Clive or contact him via cliveshaw54@gmail.com

Christ Church Crafting 

… will meet next on Tuesday 12th April 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.

The Real Easter Egg – available to collect!

If you have pre-ordered a Fairtrade Easter Egg, (in dark, milk or white chocolate) these are now available to collect from the back of church. There are some spare eggs available for purchase too. Suggested donation to church funds: £6 – please label your donation ‘Eggs’

Spring Raffle

£3 per ticket, or 4 tickets for £10 – choose your number from the list in church.  A hamper and a L’Occitane gift set are among the prizes! The draw will be made on 27th March.  Please contact Julie Buckley if you’d like a ticket.

Giggle (or Groan) of the week  suggestions welcome!

He said his non-alcoholic wine was delicious;

I said he had no proof.

Save the Dates: Please pick up a flyer!

27th March  Mothering Sunday Service, including drawing the raffle.

15th April – 12 noon  Walk of Witness from Dalton Square with Churches Together

6th May – 7pm Ladies’ Night at the Vicarage

21st May  Pilgrimage to the Shepherd’s Church, Abbeystead, for a picnic lunch

29th May – 4pm  Choral Evensong and Cream Tea to begin the Jubilee Weekend

24th July – 3pm  Pet Blessing Service 

31st July – 3pm Pimms and Hymns Service celebrating our favourite hymns

14th August 10.30am Feast of the Assumption, followed by Barbecue in the Church grounds. 

9-18th September  Heritage Open Days

24th September – 2-4pm  Community Apple Festival

8th October   Parish Bounds Walk

2nd October Harvest Festival

1-4th December Christmas Tree Festival

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

Sponsored Sundays

If you would like to Sponsor a Sunday hymn (perhaps in memory of a loved one), please fill in one of the blue forms from the noticeboard at the back of church, and give it to Rev’d Carol with at least a month’s notice before the Sunday you’d like to sponsor. You can nominate a hymn if you wish. Please place your donation in an envelope labelled ‘Sponsored Sundays’, and place it in the offertory box. It is up to you how much you wish to give!

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    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.  

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Supporting Christ Church – Regularly

Christ Church is now taking part in the Parish Giving Scheme, which enables you to give regularly by Direct Debit, and to to easily review how much you give depending on circumstances. Online at www.parishgiving.org.uk   Or by telephone 0333 002 1271 Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm.  For any of these methods our PGS code 030603240 ensures that your gift goes to our church.

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Key contacts:

Churchwarden:  …Ms Jacqueline Stamper churchwarden@christchurchlancaster.org.uk 01524 64083

Priest with PTO and Choir Contact: ……Rev’d Clive Shaw.   cliveshaw54@gmail.com

Lay Reader:………………… …………………Dr Pat Allen  reader@christchurchlancaster.org.uk  01524 39552

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

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

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 coordinator.nightshelter@gmail.com 07547 717 060

Christ Church School ……………………Ms Emma Simpson   01524 60955

COVID-19 – latest update from Rev’d Carol, 25th  Feb.

National covid rules have changed again, and there is now no longer a requirement to sign/zap in on arrival. It is the discretion of each Vicar how each church responds, so if you have any queries or concerns please contact Rev’d Carol. I ask that people still consider wearing a face covering (especially for sung services) and remain at a sociable distance apart until local case rates drop further.

I also ask that people don’t return to the practice of intincting their wafer – if you prefer not to receive the common cup, it is fine to receive the bread only. I continue to encourage people to use hand gel on arrival and before receiving communion. 

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 of covid on individuals, communities, and our world, and lift up those who are grieving, exhausted or lonely at this time.