David's Update from 3rd  April:

Dear Friends

It is beginning to feel as if we are slowly beginning to adjust to the lockdown situation that we currently face.  I recognise that some people are finding the current situation really challenging while others are adapting to ‘the new norm’.  We are continuing to adapt to the new circumstances and explore how we can best serve the church family and the local community.  Enclosed in this email are a few updates and other bits of information that you will find helpful. 

If you know someone from St John’s or Crabtree who lives near you who doesn’t have email would you be able to print this update and put it through their letter box when you are taking your permitted exercise?

Praying blessings:

You may recall some time ago we attended a course to learn how to pray blessings on one another.  We learnt how blessing releases the presence of God. We prayed for five individuals, for five days in the week, for five weeks.

Instead of praying for individuals we are inviting those who wish to do so to pray blessings on specific groups of people

  1. Scientists – bless them with the ability to find a vaccine to prevent the spread of Covid19 and to cure people already infected.
  2. NHS and all care workers – pray blessings on them that they will remain healthy and strong, physically, mentally and emotionally.
  3. Our Community – bless them with patience, kindness, friendship and love.
  4. Leaders of the World – bless them with wisdom in their decision making.
  5. Financial Struggles – Pray blessings on all those who are facing financial hardship, those who have lost their jobs, their businesses.

Let us pray Blessings for these five situations, five days a week, for five weeks.

With God’s help we can make a difference! 

Funeral Services and Services of Thanksgiving:

You may be aware of the recent death of Joan Spencer a dear member of our Church family.  Unfortunately, we were not able to have her funeral service in church and there were limits to the number of people able to attend the service at the crematorium.  We hope that at a later date we will be able to have a memorial service of thanksgiving for Joan in church.  We are also informing other families who are having funeral services under the current regulations that it will be possible to arrange a memorial service at a later date. 

Online Worship

Do continue to access our online worship resources.  We are adding special material for Holy Week and Easter including some online conjuring!

www.stjohns-burscough.org/OnlineServices 

Online Bible Study

We had our first online Bible study using Zoom on 1st April at 7.30pm and we are planning to continue to meet weekly on a Wednesday evening at 7.30pm.  The Zoom ID number for the Wednesday evening Bible Study meeting is 976 878 2185.  For more info about online Bible study contact:

Revd Canon David Banbury:

Email:  david.banbury@stjohns-burscough.org         Phone:  01704 891640

 

Virtual Youth Work

All our youth work is now being down online and through social media - including youth groups being done through Zoom.  A worship time and catch up time is being organised for young people and those involved in Youth Ministry on Sunday evening at 7.30pm.  This gathering is focussed on youth ministry and is restricted to that grouping.  For more information, contact -

Joanna Marshall

Email:  joanna.marshall@stjohns-burscough.org

 

Families Worship Facebook Resources

A new Facebook Group has been set up to help families and children connect with Jesus. Click here to request to join the group:

https://www.facebook.com/groups/1113063842364499/

Or for more information contact:

Revd Elliott Ireton

Email:  elliott.ireton@stjohns-burscough.org          Phone:  07460 982621

 

Live Stream Worship

We had our first trials at live streaming worship through Zoom and they went really well.  We hope to offer this provision on a regular basis; details of the date and time of the next live worship will be posted on the Worship livestream WhatsApp group, along with song lyrics so you can join us. 

To join this WhatsApp group contact:

Pete Short - peterjshort@hotmail.co.uk              Text:  07917 046205

Jennie Shortjennie.short@stjohns-burscough.org         

 

Good News Stories

We know that these can be challenging and frustrating times, however we are also hearing lots of good news stories from people about a range of things happening in our families and community.  From prayers for healing being answered, to kind gestures being offered from children to the elderly, or simply"I was feeling very down when I received a phone call from a friend in a real time of need, and it really lifted my spirits". 
These are things that we all need to hear to encourage us that the world has not ground to a halt and that Jesus love is still shining through in this darkness.

We will soon be creating a 'Good News Page' on the website and so we would love to hear from you if you have an encouraging story to tell, no matter how small or insignificant you might think it is, we want to hear it!

Please send your good news stories to -

Stuart Ashcroft

Email: stuartashcroft1@sky.com


Church Chat

This is our support network for those who are self-isolating or who would value some additional support.  To use this service, volunteer or for more information contact-

Jeannie Holman:        

Email:  jeannie.holman@stjohns-burscough.org        Phone:  01704 892183

Details about Church Chat can be found at:
https://stjohnthebaptistburscough.churchsuite.co.uk/events/ev2cc0jh
or
www.stjohns-burscough.org/ChurchChat/

 

Church Calling Plan

We have put in place a plan for ringing the whole congregation registered on Church Suite every fortnight.  For more information, see Church Update #4 or contact:

Revd Canon David Banbury:

Email:  david.banbury@stjohns-burscough.org         Phone:  01704 891640

 

Postal Communication

Recognising that not everyone is able to access information online we have developed a plan for postal communication with church members.  For more information contact:

Jeannie Holman

Email: jeannie.holman@stjohns-burscough.org        Phone: 01704 892183

 

Serve the Community

Postcard: A number of people are already doing this but why not put a postcard through the letterbox of people in your area (perhaps ten doors either side offering help) A downloadable version of the postcard is available below

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1L_8GoI1zQ572fBZtElFfQZI9vNEwK7Rf/view

 

NHS Volunteer

Could you become part of the recently launched NHS volunteer scheme details. 

The volunteer application form is here.  There are developing plans for the nation to express its appreciation of Health Care workers on a weekly basis at 8.00pm on Thursdays.  When not go outside and clap, bang pots and pans and generally show your appreciation of the NHS and other health care workers!

 

Lockdown Playlist

Just for a bit of fun each week we will suggest music tracks that you might like to listen to.

This week a song for those getting used to using zoom as a video conferencing tool -

Who’s Zooming Who? - Aretha Franklin

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gi6yGuvKv_E


Also a social distancing song - 

Please don’t stand so close to me - The Police

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KNIZofPB8ZM

 

Please send your playlist suggestions to -

Revd Canon David Banbury:

Email:  david.banbury@stjohns-burscough.org

Let’s continue to pray for our nation and the rest of the world as we live through this pandemic.  We have been encouraged to stop and pray at 12.00 noon and at 7.00pm, but of course we can pray at other times too! 

With Love and prayers

David

Our verse for 2020: Love one another as I have loved you - John 13:34