19th March 2020
We are sorry to announce that, in response to coronavirus,
all church services are suspend until further notice.
We recognise this is a very difficult and worrying time for many people.
We are not writing so you will
panic or worry but to remind you that we have a God who loves us and who
has total power over all things.
When something as momentous as this happened it causes us to stop and
consider the things which are most
important. At this time perhaps the best things we can all do is to
turn to God, to ask his forgiveness and to
pray to Him. Please be assured of our thoughts and prayers. We
are trying to work through this but this is
unknown territory. Do please keep in touch and share your ideas with
us so we can learn how best to serve
and support the community.
The Archbishops have suggested that we open the church daily for
personal prayer. We have decided that
all three churches will be open this Sunday between 10am and 12
noon for personal prayer. During the
week, the following churches will be open for personal prayer:
Monday - St Philip's
Tuesday - St John and St James
Wednesday - St John and St James, St Paul's and St Philip's
Thursday - St John and St James
Friday - St John and St James
If you do attend, can we ask that you follow all the necessary hygiene
rules. Please wash your hands as
you arrive and leave the building. Please follow the social
distancing rules. If you are over 70 or have
any underlying health issues, you should not attend. The clergy will
continue to pray the Daily Office every
day. If you would like to follow this, you can download it
free to your smartphone or tablet. This can be
www.chpublishing.co.uk/apps/daily-prayer If you do download
it, bring your phone to church and
you may be able to say the Daily Office too.
We want to try and keep in touch with as many of you as possible
electronically if we can't meet with you
physically. We intend to do this by a few methods.
Phones - We are going to try and connect with as many of you as
possible through our mobile phones. If
you have a modern phone, how about downloading Whats App? We have
set up a Litherland and Orrell
Team Ministry page (L&OHTeam Ministry). Through this we will be able
to communicate to a lot of
people in all three churches very quickly. If you want to be part of
this group please text Andrew on
07510 222374 with your name and mobile number, The Whats App page
will be live from today. It may
also be possible for us to stream a Sunday service to you through Whats
Facebook - If you are on Facebook, we have a Team page Litherland
and Orrell Hey Team - St Philip's,
St Paul's, St John & St James. Look out for information on this page
E-mail - we will try and communicate via email too. For this
to work we need to know your email
addresses. Please can you ensure the clergy lead at your church has
your email address?
St John and St James contact Andrew at
St Paul's contact Ravi at
St Philip's contact Alan at
Websites - St John and St James
Sadly we will be unable to hold public acts of worship in our
churches for some time. However,
there are many resources that can help us continue to worship Jesus.
BBC Radio Merseyside have a worship service as part of their Sunday
Daybreak programme at 8.30am
BBC Radio 4 has a Prayer for the Day at 5.40am daily, and a service at
8.10am on Sunday.
BBC 1 on Sunday at 1.15pm Songs of Praise
There will also be live streaming of services from the churches below.
If you go through website
type in the church name, you should be able to find the link to their
All Hallows by the Tower
Buckingham Parish Church
St Nicholas Church, Canvey Island
St James' Church, Clitheroe
St Mary's Kent
We will try and notify you weekly of acts of worship on the radio and TV,
and any other suitable links.
There is a great concern economically that businesses could go out
of business due to a lack of cash flow.
As we write this letter, we have been given no advice or guidance from the
National Church as to how
we as a church manage our continued expenditure during the church service
suspension. Until we do,
can we encourage you to keep on giving to your local church through this
period? Please continue to
use the envelope system or the direct debit payment.
In these days of uncertainty and fear, we have the unique opportunity to
show Christ's love for each and
every person in action and by Christian compassion. We can do this
by caring for our neighbours either
through just knocking on a neighbour's door today and speaking through it,
to check they have all they need
while keeping ourselves at a safe distance, or giving people a call or
text. As one of our colleagues has
said, 'Fear breeds fear and eventually distrust and hate. Yet during
these times we can show Christ's
love to be stronger. Caring for those in self and enforced isolation
will not give you the virus, but
will care for Christ as he lies naked.' These people are people in
need. We as your clergy are here for
you too. If we can be of help at all please don't hesitate to call
us. Our phone numbers are at the
bottom of this letter.
And finally "Candle in the Window" - 7pm this coming
The Archbishops have called for this Sunday to be a day of prayer, and
they are encouraging us all to
light a candle and place it in our windows at 7pm on Sunday 22nd, "as a
sign of solidarity and hope
in the light of Christ that can never be extinguished". This has
caught the imagination of many people,
including many who are not yet Christians, and we encourage you all to do
it and to ensure that as many
possible from our community know to do it too. Please be careful
where you place your candle -
we don't want the net curtains of the nation to go up in smoke!
Remember the actions we do to protect people are actions
of love. Keep calm, keep praying, keep
your eyes focussed on God's light and the storm will eventually pass.
God bless each and everyone
of you. Stay safe. Stay in communication with each other and
keep calm. For fear breeds fear and
we have a God who has defeated it.
With every blessing on you all.
Rev Canon Andrew Stott - Tel: 0151 928 4817
Rev Ravi Sangra - Tel: 07958 783684
Rev Alan Finch - Tel: 0151 928 3919 Mobile: 07801 836498