February 2021

Worship the Lord your God and serve Him only (Matt 4 v 10)

As we approach the season of Lent (Ash Wednesday 17th February – Easter Sunday 4th April) we are reminded of Jesus’ 40 days in the wilderness and how he was tempted by the devil. The wilderness, like Lent is also a time for reflection, fasting and spending time in prayer as we prepare for what God is going to do in us and through us.

If you click on the link below it is a version of The Blessing arranged by Southport and Ormskirk Churches, it’s a good production and you might see some familiar faces :                                        The Blessing + – Google Drive

The local Helping Hands group who distributed hampers at Christmas to local families are planning to provide bags of food for the February half term holiday to families in 6 of our local Schools.  We understand that free government school meal provision will NOT be available for pupils over this half term holiday week. They are hoping to put 140 bags of food together and the drive thru and drop off will be at Hesketh Bank Christian Centre on Thursday 4th February  between 3.30pm – 6.30pm and Saturday 6th February between 12.30 – 3.30pm.  If you can help there is a list of the food needed at the end of this letter.

Hesketh Bank and Tarleton Helpers, a local  Covid-19 Support Group co-ordinated by the Rev. David Dickinson of All Saints’ Church,  01772 814458  are happy to assist any local resident who need help with shopping, collecting prescriptions etc or who would like regular friendly telephone calls. They are able to signpost to national or local charities etc who can offer specialised support  Contact details are:- Vivien Mumford (Volunteer); 01772 812503.

Graham writes:-

As you may be aware, Wilfred and Doris will be leaving the Circuit at the end of August to take up an appointment in the Leigh & Hindley Circuit near Wigan.  As a Circuit we have been trying to secure the appointment of a replacement Minister through the Stationing process of the Methodist Church.  However, throughout the two stages of Stationing we have been unable to engage a resident Minister for the Banks & Hesketh Bank Circuit.  As a result the Circuit Stewards and members of the Circuit Meeting have been in discussion with Rev Paul Davis, Chair of the Lancashire District of the Methodist Church, to explore what options may be available.  These include the possibility of joining together with the Preston Ribble Circuit, who oversee Much Hoole Chapel.  A further consultation meeting is to be held on Wednesday February 3rd at 7.30pm with Rev Davis via the Zoom internet platform or through your landline. All church members are invited to take part in this important meeting. Graham will be sending out the joining details.  If you want any further details or help please contact him on 07956 737929.

Our Church Council Meeting is on Wednesday 10th February @ 7.30pm, all are invited to attend by zoom.

The World Day of Prayer is on Friday 5th March.  Sadly we will not be able to meet this year but service booklets will be distributed nearer the time for you to use in your own homes.

Lancashire District Preachers and Worship Leaders Study Day on zoom. Saturday 6th February from 9.30am – 1.00pm. Led by the Vice Chairman of Conference Mrs Carolyn Lawrence. Book via the District Office. Deadline for bookings is lancsmethodist@btinternet.com12noon on 3rd February.

Geraldine writes:-

Well another day in the Gallimore household. Logging onto laptop 8.45am ready for first lesson of the day at 9am. Class starts, Microsoft Teams and breakout rooms is now becoming the ‘norm’. Messages fly backwards and forwards “my internet is not working properly”, “your computer keeps glitching and I can’t hear you properly”, “it’s lagging”, “Teams has kicked me off” are the responses from the pupils. Well let’s get down to the lessons, after explaining the task to the pupils who are all muted at this time so you don’t get interrupted.  A message pops up from the pupils “what are we doing? I don’t understand”. After explaining again and talking pupils through the work you ask, “does everyone know what is expected of them?” typed messages come through slowly “yeh”. Explaining things to pupils and getting no response is really hard as you are unsure if the pupils   1. Are still there 2. Not fully understanding 3. Playing on their x-box, play station etc. 

Well then it comes to break time or lunchtime and you are then logging onto a different system to find out pupils home telephone numbers to give parents a call to see why their child hasn’t accessed any schoolwork that day.  A free lesson for me may mean a ‘home visit’ but only to their doorstep to check up on vulnerable pupils or those not accessing the schoolwork then writing a report on the outcome. Roll on 3pm for me but just think of the teachers who have to plan work, set work, then on a rota to be in school as well as answering e mails, phone calls etc and sat in front of a screen all day.

Added to our day also is grandparent duties starting at 6am until 6.30pm so we are definitely kept busy. Gerald does the weekly food shop to keep him out of mischief.  Regards Geraldine xx

 Irene writes:-

The last 12 months of our lives have been, like most people, a case of just muddling through each day.  We consider ourselves fortunate in that we’re retired and therefore don’t have the worry of furloughing or keeping a job and for that we are extremely grateful.

We’ve exchanged our weekly swim for walks around the village having mastered the ‘avoidance waltz’. I’ve never seen so many people on the moss!  We’ve been more aware of the change in the seasons, something that was just a backdrop to life in ‘ordinary times’. We’ve zoomed our family a couple of times which was a hoot.  There were about 10 ‘little boxes’ and what with the slight delay in transmission and wondering who was going to speak and when it made for a couple of hours of joyful mayhem!

Zoom has also been my way of attending chapel on Sunday evenings with the Preston Ribble circuit.  Some of our circuit also join but most of the 50 or so people who tune in I didn’t know, but over the weeks I feel as though I’ve got to know them a little bit even if it is only recognition. There have been a few glitches here and there but everyone was so patient and good humoured that it mattered not a jot.  When I really think about it we ordinary folks have come a long way in a short time when it comes to technology!   

We continue with our church zoom prayer meetings Tuesday @ 7.30am and Wednesday 7.30pm. Janet will guide and assist you if you would like to join.   Please pray for the homeless,  flooding affecting peoples  lives. All who are ill in hospital or at home. For those who have lost their jobs. Healthcare workers, nurses and doctors, essential service workers, teachers and police. For children whose education has been so badly affected, and parents who are juggling time constraints. For all who are grieving the loss of loved ones. For Church leaders. For those working on the Vaccine rollout, scientists, government leaders, economists, and medical aid associations.

We send Birthday greetings to Mary who celebrates a special Birthday this month and Alf who will be 4.

Pearl & Bob for the adults and Matilda for the child won the most unusual Christmas present.

Come near to God and He will come near to you. (James 4 v 8)