6th March 2022

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

The Parish of Christ Church, Lancaster

A vibrant inclusive worshipping community

Sunday 6th March 2022

First Sunday of Lent


Almighty God,

whose Son Jesus Christ fasted forty days in the wilderness,

and was tempted as we are, yet without sin:

give us grace to discipline ourselves in obedience to your Spirit;

and, as you know our weakness,

so may we know your power to save;

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.



Deuteronomy 26.1-11

When you have come into the land that the Lord your God is giving you as an inheritance to possess, and you possess it, and settle in it, you shall take some of the first of all the fruit of the ground, which you harvest from the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that the Lord your God will choose as a dwelling for his name. You shall go to the priest who is in office at that time, and say to him, ‘Today I declare to the Lord your God that I have come into the land that the Lord swore to our ancestors to give us.’ When the priest takes the basket from your hand and sets it down before the altar of the Lord your God, you shall make this response before the Lord your God: ‘A wandering Aramean was my ancestor; he went down into Egypt and lived there as an alien, few in number, and there he became a great nation, mighty and populous. When the Egyptians treated us harshly and afflicted us, by imposing hard labour on us, we cried to the Lord, the God of our ancestors; the Lord heard our voice and saw our affliction, our toil, and our oppression. The Lord brought us out of Egypt with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, with a terrifying display of power, and with signs and wonders; and he brought us into this place and gave us this land, a land flowing with milk and honey. So now I bring the first of the fruit of the ground that you, O Lord, have given me.’ You shall set it down before the Lord your God and bow down before the Lord your God. Then you, together with the Levites and the aliens who reside among you, shall celebrate with all the bounty that the Lord your God has given to you and to your house.

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

Psalm 91: 1, 2, 9-16

Refrain:    Keep me as the apple of your eye.

1    Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High 

and abides under the shadow of the Almighty,

   Shall say to the Lord, ‘My refuge and my stronghold,  

my God, in whom I put my trust.’

Keep me as the apple of your eye.

   Because you have made the Lord your refuge  

and the Most High your stronghold,

10  There shall no evil happen to you,  

neither shall any plague come near your tent.

11  For he shall give his angels charge over you,  

to keep you in all your ways.

12  They shall bear you in their hands,  

lest you dash your foot against a stone.

13  You shall tread upon the lion and adder;  

the young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

Keep me as the apple of your eye.

14  Because they have set their love upon me,

therefore will I deliver them;  

I will lift them up, because they know my name.

15  They will call upon me and I will answer them;  

I am with them in trouble,

I will deliver them and bring them to honour.

16  With long life will I satisfy them  

and show them my salvation.

Keep me as the apple of your eye.

Romans 10.8b-13

But what does it say?
‘The word is near you, on your lips and in your heart’
(that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For one believes with the heart and so is justified, and one confesses with the mouth and so is saved. The scripture says, ‘No one who believes in him will be put to shame.’ For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; the same Lord is Lord of all and is generous to all who call on him. For, ‘Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord shall be saved.’ 

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

Hear the Gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ according to Luke   (4.1-13).     Glory to you, O Lord.

Jesus, full of the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit in the wilderness, where for forty days he was tempted by the devil. He ate nothing at all during those days, and when they were over, he was famished. The devil said to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, command this stone to become a loaf of bread.’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is written, “One does not live by bread alone.” ’

Then the devil led him up and showed him in an instant all the kingdoms of the world. And the devil said to him, ‘To you I will give their glory and all this authority; for it has been given over to me, and I give it to anyone I please. If you, then, will worship me, it will all be yours.’ Jesus answered him, ‘It is written,
“Worship the Lord your God, and serve only him.” ’

Then the devil took him to Jerusalem, and placed him on the pinnacle of the temple, saying to him, ‘If you are the Son of God, throw yourself down from here, for it is written,
“He will command his angels concerning you, to protect you”, 
“On their hands they will bear you up, so that you will not dash your foot against a stone.” ’ 

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

Post Communion: 

Lord God,

you have renewed us with the living bread from heaven;

by it you nourish our faith,

increase our hope,

and strengthen our love:

teach us always to hunger for him who is the true and living bread,

and enable us to live by every word that proceeds from out of your mouth;

through Jesus Christ our Lord.



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, Jacqueline Stamper

Those who have died recently:  Mary McDermott

Parish Cycle of Prayer:  

Those who live and work in our parish: in Macdonald Way and Nightingale Hall Road; for the work of our local refuge.

A Prayer for the Ukraine

Almighty God, seated above all the affairs of humankind and sovereign over nations and leaders, hear our prayer for Ukraine at this time of war, that lives may be spared,

that national boundaries be respected and that forces

of aggression be restrained.

Grant, Lord God, peace in your world in our time.

Through Jesus Christ our Lord.  Amen

Prayer and Worship this week: 

Sunday 6th  March–  First Sunday of  Lent 

8:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

10:30 am Parish Eucharist (in church, then uploaded to YouTube)*

12 noon Lent Course (in the Hall)

6 pm Taizé Eucharist (Lady Chapel)


4 pm Prayer4 (on Zoom)


5:30 pm Silent Meditation followed by 

6 pm Evening Prayer (in the Storey Chapel) 


9:30 am Holy Communion (Lady Chapel)

4 pm Youth Group (in the Hall)

Sunday 13th  March–  Second Sunday of  Lent 

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)

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

Lent Course

Today, 6th March, after the 10:30 Eucharist, we will begin a Lent Course, ‘Glimpses of God’ to which everyone is welcome. The course started in 2020, then lockdown intervened! It promises to be a thought-provoking series in 5 sessions. If you were in the group prior to lockdown, please bring your booklet, and spares will be available. 


The next Taizé Eucharist is today at 6pm. If you’ve not been to one before, Taize is a a very peaceful, contemplative way of praying and worshipping, inspired by the international community in France. Simple songs, stillness and reflection (plus beautiful music offered by our own orchestra!) offer a lovely, prayerful end to the day. 

Zoom Prayer

Tuesday, 8th 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 booklets

The season of Lent began last Wednesday, a time of walking with Christ for 40 days, in prayer, study, charity and preparation for Holy Week and Easter. Whilst it is traditional to give up harmful and bad habits during Lent (smoking, drinking, eating junk food, and/or swearing are all examples) so as to focus better on God – you may also wish to ‘take up’ something for Lent – for example reading a spiritual book, a month-long creative project, giving to charity, or volunteering. There is a short leaflet available at the back of church to inspire you. 

Copies of the Live Lent: Embracing Justice and the Diocesan Signs of Life daily devotional booklet are also available (in adult and children’s versions) for you to follow at home. 

Mothering Sunday

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.

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

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!

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 – but if you have ideas (e.g. cake sale, sponsored walk, inviting a speaker) please let Rev’d Carol know.

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 – 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

70 trees for the Treebilee – Platinum Jubilee update!

On 6th February it was 70 years since Queen Elizabeth’s accession to the throne. Christ Church has been sponsoring or planting trees to contribute to the Platinum Jubilee celebrations and Her Majesty’s Green Canopy initiative. 

If anyone still wants to plant a tree, sponsor a charity, or put £5 in the box for the church to do so on your behalf please do it this month if possible.  Don’t forget to add a leaf to the tree so your gift can be counted.  A big thank you to everyone who has already contributed to our Jubilee Tree. Our 70-tree target is in sight. 

Christ Church Crafting: 

… will meet next on Tuesday 8th March 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

A Fairtrade Easter Egg, (in dark, milk or white chocolate) with the story of Easter included. Please sign up on the sheet at the back so that eggs can be ordered by the 14th March. Suggested donation to church funds: £6 – please label your donation ‘Eggs’

Fairtrade Fortnight – stall today

As part of Fairtrade Fortnight (which raises awareness about the importance of fairly-traded products, and their effect on small farms and businesses that would otherwise struggle in the face of large free-trade corporations), there will be a stall of Fairtrade goods after the 10:30 Eucharist today. Thanks to Jenny and the Eco-Church group for arranging this.

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.

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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.

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/

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

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. 

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:

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.

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

Did you hear about the two guys who stole a calendar?
They each got six months.

Thought for the week

Bad [people] need nothing more to compass their ends, than that good [people] should look on and do nothing.                        John Stuart Mill

Eco-Group Thought/Action for the Week 

The CoP26 UN Climate summit accepted that use of fossil fuels had to be urgently and drastically reduced. Despite this, HMG is considering licences for new oil and gas fields in the North Sea. Do what you can to ensure that the Government honours its carbon net zero targets. Support petitions by organisations such as Greenpeace https://act.gp/3sRw6zj  or Friends of the earth  https://foe.uk/fvuzr

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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, 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.