4th February 2024

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

A warm welcome to 

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

for Sunday 4th January 2024 Second Sunday before 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 – 4th February 2024

8:30am Holy Communion

10:30am Parish Eucharist 

6pm Taizé Eucharist


4pm Prayer4 (via Zoom)

7:15pm Pilgrim Course (Vicarage)


5.30pm Meditation

6pm Evening Prayer (Storey Chapel)


9.30am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

Next Sunday – 11th February – Sunday next before Lent

8:30am Holy Communion

10:30am All Together Eucharist for Racial Justice Sunday – with guest preacher, Ruth Packwood, from the charity Hope at Home

6pm Ignatian Evening Prayer 

Prayer for this week

Almighty God, you have created the heavens and the earth and made us in your own image: teach us to discern your hand in all your works and your likeness in all your children; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who with you and the Holy Spirit reigns supreme over all things, now and for ever.  Amen.

Children and Youth

Children’s Church

Every Sunday of term time during the 10.30 service for KS1/2 children

Godly Play

Every 3rd Sunday of the month at 4pm in Church for KS1/2 children

Contact: Rev’d Carol for more information.

Gluten-free wafers available.  Please ask the Stewards for directions and assistance.

Please send items for inclusion in this newsletter to Jacqueline Stamper by Thursday lunchtime. Many thanks.

Scripture Readings for our Worship 

Proverbs 8.1, 22-31

Does not wisdom call, and does not understanding raise her voice?
The Lord created me at the beginning of his work, the first of his acts of long ago. 
Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth. 
When there were no depths I was brought forth, when there were no springs abounding with water. 
Before the mountains had been shaped, before the hills, I was brought forth – when he had not yet made earth and fields, or the world’s first bits of soil. 
When he established the heavens, I was there, when he drew a circle on the face of the deep, when he made firm the skies above, when he established the fountains of the deep, 
when he assigned to the sea its limit,  so that the waters might not transgress his command, when he marked out the foundations of the earth,  then I was beside him, like a master worker; and I was daily his delight, rejoicing before him always,  rejoicing in his inhabited world and delighting in the human race.

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

Psalm 104: 26-37

Refrain: I will sing to the Lord as long as I live.

26  O Lord, how manifold are your works! In wisdom you have made them all;

the earth is full of your creatures.

27  There is the sea, spread far and wide,  

and there move creatures beyond number, both small and great.

28  There go the ships, and there is that Leviathan which you have made to play in the deep.

29  All of these look to you  

to give them their food in due season.

30  When you give it them, they gather it;  you open your hand and they are filled with good.

31 When you hide your face they are troubled;when you take away their breath, they die and return again to the dust.

32  When you send forth your spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the earth. 

Refrain: I will sing to the Lord as long as I live.

33  May the glory of the Lord endure for ever; may the Lord rejoice in his works;

34  He looks on the earth and it trembles; he touches the mountains and they smoke.

35  I will sing to the Lord as long as I live;  

I will make music to my God while I have my being.

36  So shall my song please him  while I rejoice in the Lord.

37  Let sinners be consumed out of the earth and the wicked be no more.  

Bless the Lord, O my soul. Alleluia.

Refrain:    I will sing to the Lord as long as I live.

Colossians 1.15-20

He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation; for in him all things in heaven and on earth were created, things visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or powers—all things have been created through him and for him. He himself is before all things, and in him all things hold together. He is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, so that he might come to have first place in everything. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him God was pleased to reconcile to himself all things, whether on earth or in heaven, by making peace through the blood of his cross.

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

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to John.  (John 1.1-14)

Glory to you, O Lord

In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through him, and without him not one thing came into being. What has come into being in him was life, and the life was the light of all people. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not overcome it.

There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. He came as a witness to testify to the light, so that all might believe through him. He himself was not the light, but he came to testify to the light. The true light, which enlightens everyone, was coming into the world.

He was in the world, and the world came into being through him; yet the world did not know him. He came to what was his own, and his own people did not accept him. But to all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.

And the Word became flesh and lived among us, and we have seen his glory, the glory as of a father’s only son, full of grace and truth.

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

Prayer after Communion: 

God our creator, by your gift the tree of life was set at the heart of the earthly paradise, and the bread of life at the heart of your Church: may we who have been nourished at your table on earth be transformed by the glory of the Saviour’s cross and enjoy the delights of eternity;   through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen

Please remember in your prayers:

Those who are sick:   Youngblood McCray, Ernie Wilson, Stephen Gardner, Thomas Platt, Yan Connell, David Foster, Susanna Michaelis, Juliann Dougherty, Lucas Calvert, Ron Holmes, Ella Patterson – that God’s healing, wholeness and peace are with them

Those who have died recently:  Anne Young. May they rest in peace and rise in glory.

In our parish, we ask God to bless and provide for:

Those who live and work on Lyth Road, Cartmel Road

For the work of our sides team and welcomers.

For those attending Mingle on Mondays, the Pilgrim Course, and Godly Play – that God’s loving kindness is found and shared.

Zoom Prayer: 

Tuesday 6th 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://us06web.zoom.us/j/8069459310?pwd=cVJ1ZDlnNXF2dDVFWThVa0Z0VWE5dz09

 Meeting ID: 806 945 9310     Passcode 942105

Taizé Eucharist

On the first Sunday of every month at 6pm, there is a beautiful service of prayer, music and stillness in the style of the Taizé Community.  The next will be this Sunday, 4th February- everyone welcome! If you’d like to join the music group (singing or instrumental), the rehearsal starts at 4.30pm.  Do see Julian if you’d be interested.  

Thought for the Week  

Christ waits for people who will not compromise the light with darkness, neither in themselves nor in anything else, but who are moved by the serious need for the light of Christ and who are aware of whence the help comes.                   Karl Barth

Pete Tomkinson

Following Pete’s powerful sermon last Sunday, if you’d be interested in joining the M:Power course (or would like to know more) please have a chat with Rev’d Carol, or pick up a leaflet.. 

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…

Mingle on Mondays this autumn/winter

This space for warmth, welcome, food and fellowship started up in November.  We’re open from 11:30 am – 2 pm each Monday.  If you’re able to help set up and host, even occasionally,  or if you can make soup or cake, or shop for bread and other supplies and bring them along on a Sunday,  please sign up on the rota at the back of church.  Please claim expenses – no-one should be out of pocket.  Please pray for all who will come and all who will host, and do please encourage people to come along and enjoy a warm welcome!  Thank you.

The Olive Branch Foodbank

The foodbank continues to be in great need of tins of curry, chilli con carne, pies, meatballs, hotdogs, stewed steak, tuna, salmon, pork, corned beef, ham, fruit, rice pudding, custard, tomatoes, sweetcorn, carrots, peas, kidney beans, chickpeas; biscuits, crisps, multipacks of cake, cereal, jam, pasta sauce; packs of hot chocolate, coffee, tea, sugar, cordial, longlife juice, and many types of toiletries (shampoo, shower gel, toilet rolls, etc.) Or you can give money for them to buy what is needed: https://www.the-olivebranch.org.uk/donate/

Eco-Group Thought/Action for the Week 

The way you live your life has an impact on the resources of God’s earth. To make informed choices the first thing to do is to calculate your carbon footprint.  https://www.climatestewards.org/offset/

Donations for Refugees and Asylum Seekers

Donations of washing powder, laundry liquid, men’s toiletries, men’s hats and gloves needed. Please leave donations in the box at the back of church for RAIS.

Changes to recycling at Christ Church – from the Eco Group

Our monthly recycling has been part of the Terracycle scheme. Owing to sponsorship changes, crisp packets and toothpaste tubes can no longer be collected. Crisp packets can be recycled with soft plastics at most supermarkets. We can still collect toothbrushes (manual and electric brush heads), interdental brushes, dental tape containers, plastic medical bottle tops/lids.  The huge number of blister packs being collected at church is difficult to recycle at Superdrug, as the container can only accept a small quantity at a time, so please take your own blister packs to Superdrug if you can. If any of these changes pose difficulties, please speak to a member of the Eco team at church and we will do our best to help you with recycling. Thank you for your continued support with recycling.  The next collection will be next Sunday, 4th February.

Recycling at Christ Church 2

If you are able to take home the recycling which accumulates in the Hall and Vestry recycling bins on occasion – this would be much appreciated. The church doesn’t have a dedicated recycling waste collection (although we are looking into options). 

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

I’m reading a book about anti-gravity.  It’s impossible to put down.

Pilgrim Course

On Tuesdays at 7.15pm in the Vicarage, everyone welcome as we begin Pilgrim – A Course for the Christian Journey. Whether you’re new to church, or wanting to go deeper, this 6-week course will help us think about what it means to turn to Christ. Please ask Rev’d Carol if you’d like more info – why not invite a friend?. 

Godly Play!  4pm on the third Sunday of each month

In January, we began Godly Play. This is a way of sharing Scripture stories, and helping children wonder about their faith, using a Montessori approach, with crafts and a snack to share too. It’s free, and especially suitable for primary age children (accompanied by an adult please). The next gathering is on the 18th February at 4 pm.  If you can help, or would like to come along, please pick up a flyer, and ask Rev’d Carol if you’re curious.


…. next meets on the 12th February. Please let Rev’d Carol or Julie Buckley have your ideas and suggestions for discussion. We ask you to pray this prayer ‘this time tomorrow’ after a Sunday service – wherever you are. (Why not put a reminder in your phone?)

Lord God, Together with you by our side, we can bring growth to our Church. Send your Holy Spirit to give us good planning, wise actions, joy in worship and our welcome, the right words when we speak to others. Help our Church grow in numbers, in Spiritual commitment to you, and in service to our local community, through Christ our Lord. Amen 

Community at Christ Church:

The Bishop of Blackburn’s Young People’s Holiday

Every year, with a team of experienced volunteers, Bishop Philip leads a residential holiday for young people in Year 6 and above. The holiday combines outdoor activities and games with worship and faith formation and it ends with a big celebration of the Eucharist to which families are invited.

This year’s holiday will run from May 28th to 30th and will take place at Borwick Hall in the north of the Diocese. The cost will be just £50 per young person including all meals and accommodation in bedrooms. For more details and information on how to book a place, please email Esther on bhadmin@bishopofblackburn.org.uk

Save the date – Soup and a Sweet! 

Lent starts early this year – so on Shrove Tuesday (13th February), there will be a ‘Soup and Sweet’ party in the Hall from 6.30pm – everyone welcome! Homemade soup provided, but please bring a plate of your favourite sweet pudding to share – . before we start Lent!

Hall for Hire – Don’t forget that the Hall is available for hire, especially at weekends and during the day. £24/first hour and £12 for each subsequent hour/part-hour. Please contact Pat hall@christchurchlancaster.org.uk  07980 351855 for more info.

Book Group

The church book group meets on the first Friday of each month at 4 pm in the church hall.  Books are provided by Lancashire Libraries, in addition to those shared by members.  The date of the next meeting is 1st March.  Anyone who enjoys reading and discussion books is very welcome to join us.  You can just turn up on the day, speak to Joyce, or send an email to joycelynch1946@gmail.com

Craft Group

Meets on the second Tuesday of each month at 11.30am in the Hall. Everyone welcome – bring your own project, or share in one of the others on the go! No prior experience needed. The group next meets on the 13th February. 


If you can spare some time to help weed and tidy the church garden, our gardening group meet on the first Friday of the month, between 12 and 2pm. Please bring gloves and secateurs if you have them – and contact Liz Mills if you’d like to know more. 

Special Appeal – Doorways and Windows

You may be aware that the stonework around the porch is deteriorating, and has been shedding pieces of masonry.  We urgently need to re-mortar the porch to make it safe and weathertight for decades to come. There are also several of our unique and historic windows which currently do not have protection from stones, pellets, weather, etc – and need a polycarbonate shield fixing. This combined work will cost around £8000.  Whilst we can apply for a grant towards some of the work – please will you help by making a donation to the Church Repair Fund? Thank you!

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

Christian Aid News

Ukraine Event – Thursday 22nd February 7pm at Lancaster Friends’ Meeting House. Ruth Platt speaks about Christian Aid’s work in Ukraine, including vigil to mark the anniversary of the conflict starting. Everyone welcome. 

Changemakers Conference – Saturday March 2nd 10.30-1pm online, or in person at the Outset building, Sankey Street, Warrington, WA1 1NN. Getting ready for Christian Aid Week (which will be the 12-18th May this year). 

Rev’d Carol needs some help! 

Could you spare some time on a regular basis to help with the behind the scenes life of our church? Invitations, social media, orders, invoices, counting and software upgrades – use your skills to serve the Lord! See notice, and / or have a chat.

Refreshments today!

All are welcome for refreshments after the service.

Receiving the notices by email

If you would like to receive these notices by email, please contact Jacqueline Stamper on the above address. 

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

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.

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: …Sue Taylor  safeguarding@christchurchlancaster.org.uk  07547 717060

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   07980 351855

Christ Church School …Miss Emma Simpson   01524 60955