March – April Newsletter


BIBLE STUDY led by Rev’d Hel en the Morning Bible Study Group has completed eight sessions studying a book by Philip Yancey, “The Bible Jesus Read”. The accompanying video, which was full of information and Philip Yancey’s comments, presented quite a challenge!

The course has given a brief but fascinating insight into the Old Testament and offered much food for thought.  The title itself – “The Bible Jesus Read” – reminds us that Jesus didn’t have Paul’s Epistles or the Gospels. So when He went away to spend time meditating on God’s word, He used the Psalms, the Prophets, and the books of Moses. That’s where Jesus believed his relationship with God the Father was formed and examined.”

LENT BIBLE STUDIES: For our Lent Bible Studies we have decided to make use of a another Philip Yancey book – Prayer: Does It Make Any Difference?

This course is being run in conjunction with our friends from Fulwood Methodist Church.  Rev’d Peter Sheasby is leading the afternoon course at 1.45 pm on Thursdays in the Goodwin Lounge continuing on March 4th, 11th, 18th & 25th and Rev’d Helen the evening course at 7.30pm on Wednesdays in the Garrett room continuing on March 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th & at 7.45pm on March 31st (to fit in with the Holy Week Reflections at 7.00pm)

Mac Dunsmore

Vision4Life – Year of Prayer

We have already received some short prayers for inclusion on the weekly notice sheet – others would be most welcome.  If you would like to write a prayer, or find one in a book that you think would be suitable, please pass it to Margery for inclusion on the notice sheet. Thank you.

Margery Pitcher

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Lectionary Readings March and April 2010


7th Isaiah 55: 1-9; Psalm 63: 1-8; 1Corinthians 10: 1-13; St Luke 13: 1-9

14th Joshua 5: 9-12; Psalm 32; 2 Corinthians 5: 16-21; St Luke 15: 1-3, 11b-32

21st Isaiah 43: 16-21; Psalm 126; Philippians 3: 4b-14; St John 12: 1-8

28th (Palm Sunday) St Luke 19: 28-40; Psalm 118: 1-2, 19-29;

(Passion) Isaiah 50: 4-9a; Psalm 31: 9-16; Philippians2: 5-11; St Luke 22: 14-23: 56 or St Luke 23: 1-49


Good Friday Isaiah 52: 13-53 : 12; Psalm 22; Hebrews 10:16-25 or Hebrews 4: 14-16, 5: 7-9; St John 1-19: 42

4th Easter Day Acts 10: 34-43 or Isaiah 65: 17-25; Psalm 118: 1-2, 14-24; 1 Corinthians 15: 19-26 or Acts 10: 34-43; St John 20: 1-28 or ST Luke 24: 1-12

11th Acts 5: 27-32; Psalm 118: 14-29 or Psalm 150 or 2 Kings 7: 1-16; Psalm 2; Revelation 1: 4-8; St John 20: 19-31

18th Acts 9: 1-6 (7-20); Psalm 30 or Isaiah 61: 1-3; Psalm 90: 13-17; Revelation 5: 11-14; St John 10: 1-19

25th Acts 9: 36-43; Psalm 23 or Isaiah 53: 1-6; Psalm 114; Revelation 7: 9-17; St John 10: 22-30


2nd Acts 11: 1-18; Psalm 148 or Leviticus 19: 8-18; Psalm 24: 1-6; Revelation 21: 1-6; St John 13: 31-35

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One evening an old Cherokee told his grandson about a battle that goes on inside people. He said, “My son, the battle is between the two “wolves” inside us all.

One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.

The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”

The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather: “Which wolf wins?”

The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.”

Love wasn’t put in our hearts to stay. Love isn’t Love until we give it away.

Love one another … as I have Loved you   [John 13:34]

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When I say –“I am a Christian”.

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I’m not shouting “I’m clean livin’”

I’m whispering “I was lost,

now I’m found and forgiven.”

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I don’t speak of this with pride.

I’m confessing that I stumble,

and need Christ to be my guide.

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I’m not trying to be strong..

I’m professing that I’m weak,

and need His Strength to carry on

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I’m not bragging of success,

I’m admitting I have failed,

and need God to clean my mess.

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I’m not claiming to be perfect.

My flaws are far too visible,

but God believes I’m worth it.

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I still feel the sting of pain.

I have my share of heartaches,

so, I call upon His Name.

When I say… “I am a Christian”

I’m not holier than thou,

I’m just a simple sinner,

who received God’s Grace, somehow


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Reflecting on the recent CTFB week of prayer for Christian Unity I came to appreciate what a privilege we have in the opportunity to share in worship with fellow Christians from all our denominations in eight services over eight successive days.

Whilst many were only able to attend some of the services because of other commitments, there were a number who seemed to be at most of them. This year I was fortunate to be able to attend seven services at St Anthony’s, Our Lady & St Edwards, (Sorry St Cuthbert’s but your date clashed with our longstanding final Pastoral Review meeting!)   St Clare’s, St John Baptist, Christ Church, Fernyhalgh and here at Fulwood URC when a good number of our members attended the service led by Rev’d Peter Sheasby, assisted by Rev’d Helen and Sister Myrtle.  We have much to celebrate in that, not only can we share together in the worship of the same God, but also we can learn to appreciate more of the differences in our church buildings, our forms of worship, our liturgies and of our traditions and so seek to progress our Christian Unity without expecting uniformity.

This year, the Annual Songs of Praise Service and the Annual Signing of the C.T.F.B Covenant were combined at the Sunday afternoon service at Christ Church led by the vicar, Rev’d Brian McConkey.

Judging by the attendance and comments received, this appeared to be a great success and the collection realised the splendid sum of £558.42 for the Haiti Appeal.                                                                                  

Mac Dunsmore

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A man dies and goes to heaven. St. Peter meets him at the pearly gates.
St. Peter says, “Here’s how it works. You need 100 points to make it into heaven. You tell me all the good things you’ve done, and I give you a certain number of points for each item, depending on how good it was. When you reach 100 points, you get in.”

“Okay,” the man says, “I was married to the same woman for 50 years and never cheated on her, even in my heart.”
“That’s wonderful,” says St. Peter, “that’s worth three points!”
“Three points?” he says. “Well, I attended church all my life and supported its ministry with my tithe and service.”
“Terrific!” says St. Peter, “that’s certainly worth a point.”
“One point? Golly. How about this: I started a soup kitchen in my city and worked in a shelter for homeless veterans.”
“Fantastic, that’s good for two more points,” he says.
“TWO POINTS!!” the man cries,

“At this rate the only way I get into heaven is by the grace of God!”
“Come on in!”

Thanks to  Andover URC

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On Saturday 16th January, three members of our Worship Group, Margery, Vivien and Mac attended a URC Training event held here at Fulwo o d URC . It was arranged by Linda Rayner who is the new Learning and Development Officer (Elders and Congregations) and was led by John Campbell who is Principal of N o rthern College (URC) in Manchester. Linda had specially painted this picture to publicise the course. The weather had dictated that the event at Fulwood was the first of th e three planned, with the event at Carver URC cancelled and re-arranged at a later date.

The message was start planning for Holy Week and Easter as soon as possible to make the services special and memorable.

The especially interesting bit was the discussion about what each of the URC churches represented did or had done in their churches to mark all of the events of Holy Week in from Palm Sunday to Easter Day. We were amazed at the diversity of the ways in which our churches focussed on the events to cover each step of the way from Jesus’  Triumphal Entry into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday  to the Resurrection celebration. More details can be found on

This year there is something arranged in Church for every day of Holy Week. Fulwood Methodists have a Reflection planned each evening. A joint service is arranged for Maundy Thursday and Rev’d Peter Sheasby is leading Good Friday Worship at 10.00am.  We are invited to all of these events and we hope you will try to come.

Have a look in the Vision4Life section for a series of readings and prayers which we hope all will use, especially if you can’t attend events at Church:

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Our February meetings saw the group trying “Spirelli” which involves lacing thread around geometric designs to produce curving frames to produce attractive cards.  Two methods were used, one of which caused our Church Secretary’s wife great astonishment as she had never seen her husband wielding a needle before!

Our next meetings are:

Monday 8th March – 7:30pm

Tuesday 23rd March – 2:00pm

Monday 12th April – 7:30pm

Monday 26th April – 7:30pm

We are aiming to have a good selection of birthday cards and cards for special occasions for sale in the foyer in the near future.

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When things in your lives seem almost too much to handle, when 24 hours in a day are not enough, remember the mayonnaise jar and the two cups of coffee.

A professor stood before his philosophy class and had some items in front of him. When the class began, he wordlessly picked up a very large and empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with golf balls. He then asked the students if the jar was full. They agreed that it was.

The professor then picked up a box of pebbles and poured them into the jar. He shook the jar lightly. The pebbles rolled into the open areas between the golf balls. He then asked the students again if the jar was full. They agreed it was.

The professor next picked up a box of sand and poured it into the jar. Of course, the sand filled up everything else. He asked once more if the jar was full. The students responded with a unanimous  “yes”.

The professor then produced two cups of coffee from under the table and poured the entire contents into the jar effectively filling the empty space between the sand. The students laughed.

“Now”, said the professor as the laughter subsided, “I want you to recognise that this jar represents your life. The golf balls are the important things – your family, your children and grandchildren, your health, your friends and your favourite passions – and if everything else was lost and only they remained, your life would still be full.  The pebbles are the other things that matter like your job, your house and your car.

The sand is everything else – the small stuff. If you put the sand into the jar first there is no room for the pebbles or golf balls. The same goes for life. If you spend all your time and energy on the small stuff you will never have room for the things that are important to you.

Pay attention to the things that are critical to your happiness. Play with your grandchildren. Take time to get medical checkups. Take your spouse out to dinner. Play another round of golf. There will always be time to clean the house and fix the fence. Take care of the golf balls first – the things that really matter. Set your priorities. The rest is sand.”

One of the students raised her hand and enquired what the coffee represented. The professor smiled. “I’m glad you asked. It just goes to show you that no matter how full your life may seem, there’s always room for a couple of cups of coffee with a friend.”

Thanks to Rush Hill URC Bath

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I picked up a copy of your excellent Church newsletter and wondered if the following could be included in a future publication :  Wanted


Close by Fulwood United Reformed Church

If you can spare an evening a month or fortnight you could help families in crisis in Preston and surrounding areas by volunteering as a receptionist for our relationship counsellors.  You will be trained to carry out reception duties such as booking a next appointment for an ongoing Relate client, receive an enhanced CRB check and sign up to our Confidentiality policy.

Each year Relate supports around 850 families in Preston alone with 800 children by offering 2500 hours of counselling support.   The services provided by our Relate counsellors are a gold-standard relationship counselling, advice, information and guidance; sex therapy, family counselling, young people and teenage counselling; and education programmes for example to prisons.  “

Relate can give talks to interested groups in church halls about the work of the charity, could provide a feature article in your newsletter and is open to donations.

I noticed in the copy I read that there was a report from Cumbria concerning the floods.  It will take many years for the area to recover and one of our counsellors is involved in working with other local organisations in the Cockermouth region to provide services to the community for the coming years.  Our organisation counsels to many people in need in the region for example to Blackpool where there is the largest divorce rate in the UK, to the people of Skelmersdale where there is a high teenage pregnancy rate, to East Lancashire where there is long-term poverty, to rural areas in Cumbria with the history of the Foot and Mouth outbreak.  We see a lot of people as individuals and couples where a poor financial situation has put a strain on a relationship.

Sorry for the long email. I seemed to get carried away a bit.  If you are wondering, I am a volunteer evening receptionist with Relate.

Many Thanks in anticipation of your help.

Yours sincerely

William Cragg “

Please contact our Volunteer Co-ordinator on 01772 717597

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The Robin Hood Tax

The United Reformed Church is in full support of the ‘Robin Hood Tax’ campaign launched on 10 February by a broad coalition of domestic charities, aid agencies, unions, faith organisations and green groups.

The campaign is calling on the leaders of the UK’s main political parties to support a global financial transaction tax on banks – of around 0.05% – to help repair damage caused by the global economic crisis, to protect public services at home, fight poverty abroad and help foot the bill for climate change environmental measures.

Commenting on the moral imperative for such a tax, the Revd John Marsh, Moderator of the General Assembly of the United Reformed Church said: “The human suffering caused by the global financial crisis has been immense and the impact on vulnerable households in the UK and abroad devastating. Whilst it cannot restore lost jobs and livelihoods, this global financial transaction tax will go a long way to restoring public trust in financial institutions by raising up to £250 billion a year to fund critical development programmes here and abroad.”

Mr Marsh concluded: “Implementation of the global financial transaction tax would also serve to shift the public discourse from blame and retribution to hope: a governmental commitment to the common good is desperately needed in these stark times.”

In November 2009 the United Reformed Church adopted a motion in support of the financial transaction levy (the forerunner of the proposed global financial transaction tax). The adopted motion highlighted the United Reformed Church’s concern over the impact of the economic recession on the poor and vulnerable; the possibility of cuts to social benefits and public services being advocated by political parties in the lead-up to the General Election; and the likely impact the enormous deficit in public finances will have on the UK’s commitments to international development and climate change adaptation and mitigation.

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ON THE LIGHTER SIDE   (for the Computer buffs!)
Computer games with the devil

Jesus and Satan were having an on-going argument about who was better on his computer. They had been going at it for days, and Peter was tired of hearing all of the bickering. Finally Peter said, “Cool it. I am going to set up a test that will run two hours and I will judge who does the better job.”

So down Satan and Jesus sat at the keyboards and typed away. They moused. They did spreadsheets. They wrote reports. They sent faxes. They opened e-mail. They sent out-mail with attachments. They downloaded. They did some genealogy reports. They made cards. They did every known job.

About ten minutes before their time was up, lightning flashed across the sky, thunder rolled, the rain poured and, of course, the electricity went off. Satan stared at his blank screen and screamed every curse word known in the underworld. Jesus just sighed. The electricity finally flickered back on, and each of them rebooted their computers.

Satan started searching frantically, screaming “It’s gone! Meanwhile, Jesus quietly started printing out all of his files from the past two hours. Satan observed this and became very irate: “Wait! He must have cheated. How did He do that?

” Peter shrugged and said, “Jesus saves.”

A woman was posting an old family bible to her brother.

“Is there anything breakable in the parcel?” asked the postal worker.

“Only the Ten Commandments,” she answered.

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Fulwood URC and Fulwood Methodist Church are holding a Christian Aid Super Soup Lunch at 12.30pm on 26th March in the church. By coming to lunch and making a donation you will be helping Christian Aid fight global poverty and injustice in some of the world’s poorest communities. It is hoped to have a Traidcraft stall at the lunch. So come and join us everyone welcome!

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Dates for March & April 2010


Sun 7th 10:30am          Morning Worship    Mrs Ann Oakden

Mon 8th 7:30pm    Craft Group

Wed 10th 7:30pm    Bible Study

Thu 11th 1:45pm    Bible Study

Fri 12th 7:00pm Hymn Practice

Sun 14th 10:30am               Holy Communion       Rev Helen Higgin-Botham

Wed 17th 7:30pm    Bible Study

Thu 18th 1:45pm    Bible Study

Thu 18th 7:30pm Elders Meeting

Fri 19th 7:00pm Hymn Practice

Sun 21st 10:30am          Morning Worship    Rev Glyn Eatock

Tue 23rd 2:00pm    Craft Group

Wed 24th 7:30pm    Bible Study

Thu 25th 1:45pm    Bible Study

Fri 26th 10.00am   Christian Aid Soup Lunch

Fri 26th 7:00pm Hymn Practice

Sun 28th 10:00am  Palm Sunday Worship    Rev John Hopkins

Wed 31st 7:45pm    Bible Study


Thu 1st 7:00pm          Maundy Thursday Communion Service

Fri 2nd 10:00am   Good Friday Service

Sun 4th 10:30am     Easter Day Communion       Rev Helen Higgin-Botham

Thu 8th 7:30pm           Church Fellowship

Fri 9th 7:00pm Hymn Practice

Sun 11th 10:30am               Holy Communion       Rev Helen Higgin-Botham

Mon 12th 7:30pm    Craft Group

Thu 15th 7:30pm      Finance & Property Committee

Fri 16th 7:00pm Hymn Practice

Sun 18th 10:30am          Morning Worship    Mrs Cynthia Longden

Fri 23rd 7:00pm Hymn Practice

Sun 25th 10:30am          Morning Worship    Rev Helen Higgin-Botham

Mon 26th 7:30pm    Craft Group

Fri 30th 7:00pm Hymn Practice


Sun 2nd 10:30am          Morning Worship    Rev Shirley Farrier

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