Richard's Summary Reflection on last year, given at the Annual Parochial Meeting on April 7th

Posted by Phil Marshall on 26/04/2011 10:00

St John's Hoscar Mission Crabtree Mission






PathwaysAs we continue to follow the strategy of Pathways – going out to connect with people where they are to invite them to begin a journey to faith and then grow in faith as the Holy Spirit enables – I’m pleased to present this summary paper outlining developments in the last twelve months.  This is not an exhaustive list.

We have much to thank the Lord for as we continue to seek to grow and serve as a community of disciples.

Thank you for participation in our shared ministry.




  • Encouraged by continuing deepening and growth of services.  We seek to offer a “menu” to accommodate different expressions of worship & engage people where they are.  Richness in the variety.  (Note: success of Easter & Christmas programmes.)
  • Success of the new Sunday morning services (Sep)
  • Successful launch of Cafe church (every 6-7 weeks)
  • Re-decoration of Crabtree & refurbishment
  • Meet desire for a deeper and wider spirituality e.g. Inaugural “Quiet Day”; Easter Labyrinth; Meditations etc.  One of the reasons for the new Sunday services.
  • Monthly service of Prayer for Healing continues to build & connects with pastoral work
  • Extended Home Communion ministry.  Monthly visits to 4 residential care homes and increasing number of home communion visits.
  • Appointment of Tom Cooper as Hon. Church Organist
  • Development of adult and youth worship bands.  Time has been given to training in contemporary music.
  • Improved audio-visual team to support worship. Adopted new software & initiated new processes.



  • Observed the calendar of the Christian year using the richness and variety of liturgy
  • Sermon Series:

To Calvary & Beyond (Luke); Living The Gospel (Stewardship); The Spreading Flame (Acts); The “I Am Sayings” (John); All at Sea (Jonah); A Time For... (Family, Friends, God); The Call (Servanthood); Follow The Star (Christmas); Thirsty? – Prayer; God’s New Society (Ephesians)

  • 3 new housegroups formed. Total of 16 housegroups.
  • Re-modelled housegroup notes & use of appropriate published resources (e.g. Prayer) to complement preaching series.
  • Clergy Q&A visits to housegroups throughout the year
  • Success of Cafe church
  • Ministry in schools and mid-week young people’s groups
  • Continuing with training evenings for Teaching team and Housegroup Leaders



  • Building on the Monday night prayer meeting, we continue to seek to deepen our commitment to prayer.  Launched @ Pentecost, “Engage” & Thursday 7am prayer meetings. Note: Staff prayers on Monday and Wednesday mornings.
  • Continuing to develop Prayer area in church
  • 2011 Teaching series “Thirsty?” and STWG Prayer Mugs
  • Importance of the Prayer Chains



  • Encouraged by increasing participation & emergence of new ministries
  • Completed volunteer role descriptions for all opportunities 
  • Hosted Ministry Fair (Sep)
  • Held inaugural Thank You Service for Volunteers (Feb) 
  • Encouraged the ongoing development of teams across all areas of ministry



  • In difficult economic times, honouring our discipleship responsibilities in this area continues to be stretching. The PCC have made a commitment to step out in faith through prayerfully using reserves to fund the work of God as we discern the leading of the Holy Spirit (e.g. appointment of full time Youth & Children’s Worker).  This is not sustainable long term. Note: increasing parish share paid in full.
  • Disappointing “Living The Gospel” stewardship appeal
  • Honoured our commitment to give away 10% of our annual income to support mission outside the parish
  • Humbled by response to extraordinary appeals i.e Haiti; Japan




  • Tremendous success of new website. Average 185 unique visitors each week. Average time spent viewing the site has increased to 6 minutes per visit. Visitors tend to view 7 pages per visit. The top 3 most popular pages are the Vicar’s blog; Upcoming Events and Sermon Downloads. Note: 75% of bookings for the forthcoming “Easter Eggstravaganza” have been made on-line!
  • Increasing demand for “The Bridge” (400 copies each month)
  • Proactive Press releases generating coverage
  • Twitter feeds
  • New Parish Directory



  • Importance of every member ministry through our day to day living & engagement through our “pathways strategy”
  • Baptism Prep ( Families of 29 children completed the 3 session preparation course)
  • Weekly Parent & Toddler & twice termly “Little Stars” ministry. 60 families!
  • Ministry to young people throughout the week
  • “The Treat” (Alternative to Halloween)
  • CAP course in association with The Grove.  Disappointing so re-working for 2011/2
  • Inquiry courses “Explore” after Easter, which had a poor response; success of Alpha in the Hop Vine (Sep-Dec)
  • Developing Men’s Ministry “Fellaship”.  Desire to expand to over 40s?
  • Launch of “Fragrance”
  • Commitment to ministry in schools.  2 assemblies every other week and termly services.  Lessons taken in St. John’s and Lordsgate.  New mid week after school club supported by the church in Lordsgate.  “Moving On” service.
  • Importance of pastoral ministry particularly Bereavement (51 funerals) and Weddings (5). Note: 5 other enquiries.
  • Importance of the wonderful appearance of church premises
  • Supported mission trips to Belarus; Paraguay and visits of children from Chernobyl
  • Christmas programme e.g. POSADA; Carol Singing in the village etc.
  • Actively investigating “Messy Church”


  • Active pastoral visitation
  • Maundy Thursday Meal; Easter breakfast; Mothers Union & Women’s Fellowship trips; Families Residential Weekend (Bala); MU Residential; Summer socials; Harvest Meal; Church Houseparty (Grange over Sands); PUSH & JCs weekend away (Hawes); Trips to concerts & activities (e.g. Rock & River)
  • Parishioners serving as School Governors; with uniform organisations & other groups
  • Mid-week coffee bar in church
  • Coffee before, between & after services
  • Deepening relationships with uniform organisations
  • Women’s Fellowship & Mother’s Union
  • Christian Aid week
  • Jean & Pauline handle 2-3 genealogical requests per week
  • Commitment to Fair Trade
  • Begun building viral community through social media (e.g. Facebook; Twitter etc.)
  • Richard served as Chaplain to the Mayor & Council of West Lancashire


Children & Youth

  • Increasing numbers especially mid-week.  Majority unchurched & do not attend on Sundays.  Following Christine’s appointment, FROG now meets weekly & other areas are developing with Joanna.


All Stars           32 children on the register

JC’s                  30        “

FROG               14        “

PUSH               21        “

Youth Band      11        “

Puppets           5          “ 


  • Appointment of Christine Spencer as Full Time Youth & Children’s worker.
  • Re-launch of Puppet Ministry
  • Success of Youth Alpha
  • Encouragement of Youth Band
  • Encouragement of rota of volunteers to staff crèche on Sunday @ 11am
  • Shortage of volunteers to meet the needs and opportunities that we have.


Pastoral Care:

  • Ever increasing demands. Innumerable visits.
  • Expanding & committed team
  • Increasingly proactive visitation as well as response visitation
  • Bereavement care and visitation including monthly Horizon drop in which has been reviewed and changed due to lack of interest
  • Annual bereavement service
  • Meals ministry
  • Home communion to 4 residential care homes monthly (added Beaufort this year) plus individual visits



I’m very grateful to the large team who continue to care for all the premises in the parish.  The Church Wardens will report on this aspect of our shared ministry.  But, I would like to express my sincere thanks for the CHARP Committee who have worked tirelessly to complete the review and proposal for the redevelopment of the church hall.  I will speak about this during my address at the APCM meeting.


There are currently no comments on this post.

Add a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment. Please click here to login or if you do not have an account you can register here.

News Archive

APCM Voting Results

Belarus Update - Day 3

Belarus Update - Days 2 & 3

Belarus 2019

Elevation Dance Group at Ormskirk Dance Festival

5 Year Plan


Help Needed - Friday 23rd November

Steve Legg - Christian conjurer and illusionist

Faith Under Fire

Burscough Remembrance Events


International Needs Visit

Church Open for Prayer

Let the wedding commence, Scarecrow style

Summer at St Johns

Vision Study Course

Parish Directory

Elevation Dance Workshops

Home Front - Front Line

Davids Licencing

Our New Vicar

Alpha 2018

Christmas at St Johns

Elevation Dance Workshops

Thank you from Clare

Next Sunday mornings services

Christine's first service:

Pearl of Africa Children's Choir

Martha's events

Guest Service - 10th September 2017

Tomorrows 10am Service

Belarus - Welcome Home

Belarus Update - Friday

Belarus update - Thursday

Belarus Update - Wednesday

Belarus Update - Tuesday

Belarus - Monday update

Belarus - And they're off


Tomorrow's services

Simon's Funeral

Simon Glynn

Simon - Update 18th July - Evening

Simon - 18 July

Simon - 17 July

Simon - Update 17th July

Simon - 16 July

Simon - Operation update

Simon - Update 15 July

Simon - Update 15 July

Simon - Update 14th July

Simon - Update 13th July

Simon - Update 9th July

Simon - Update 8th July

Simon in Hospital

Sundays Service and Bleasdale

Summer Services

Church open for prayer

Response to Manchester bombings- Church open 5-7pm Wednesday today

Easter at St Johns

Esther Ministry Gifting Day

New Curate

Verses to Memorise

When Faith Gets Shaken

Leg it for Lucy

Welcome @ The Wharf

New appointment

Station Café filled with Christmas cheer

Reminder: No Evening Service - 29th November

New Worship Blog

Letter from the wardens about the interregnum

Roof repairs update letter

Women's World Day Of Prayer

Roof repairs letter

Toy Service

An Announcement from our Wardens

Congregational letter 21/09/14

Quiet Day

Congregational letter from our Treasurer regarding church finances

Table Top Sale

Congegational Letter February 2014

Women's World Day of Prayer

Congregational Letter - January 2014

Firm Roots in St Johns

Congregational Letter - June 2013

Congregational Letter

Karen Simpson

January Congregational Letter

Congregational Letter - 11th November 2012

World Record Breaking Carol Singing

Fairtrade Fortnight! - (27 Feb - 11 March)

Could a chart single change the World and end slavery?

Women's World Day of Prayer

Vision Sunday Report

Brian Donnelly’s report on his visit to Burkina Faso with International Needs

Women's World Day of Prayer

World Record Breaking Carol Singing - Ormskirk Advertiser article

Update from Richard - 18 December 2011

Listen Online now includes the 9am service

The Christmas Story comes to Burscough Wharf

Update from Richard

Hesketh Bank Silver Band

Richard Writes...

Church harvest sows seeds of hope in Ethiopia

Ladies Activity Day

Praise Party

Autumn Fun Morning

Money management advice is a blessing

Praying for our cities

Belarus 2011

Burscough Beach Fun Day

Come Dine with Me-Fragrance Group

Changes Coming Soon!

Family Walk & Scavenger Hunt

Confirmation Service

Richard on the radio and in the papers

Easter Eggstravaganza

Easter Pathway

Women's World Day of Prayer

Cafe Church

Haydock Male Voice Choir

The Digital Story of the Nativity

Eileen set to join the team

All Age Nativity


He's on his way

Sing and be merry by lantern light

'Boxing' Day comes early to Burscough?

Easter - Christian Fair Trade Easter Eggs


Operation Christmas Child

Remembrance Day

The Treat

Quiet Day


There are a few easy ways to keep up to date with St John's.

RSS For each blog click on the icon on the left to get the address for the RSS newsfeed. For more information on RSS Newsfeeds please click here.

Email The second way is to click on the Email icon on the left and subscribe so that you receive an email each time the blog is updated.
Facebook The third way is to become a fan of us on Facebook.
Twitter The final way is to follow us on Twitter