Thanks to everyone who took time to complete a skills audit last November; what a great range of talents and skills we are blessed with among our church community. Now we want to share with you how the audit is being used.
The audit has enabled us to identify who has the skills and willingness to advise us on key issues or to take on roles within the church. It is through the audit we were able to identify a potential Church Treasurer and as a result we are delighted that Linda Bracewell agreed to take on the challenge and is embracing it whole heartedly. We have also been able to identify one two others who we may, on occasion, ask to deal with other money related matters.
Likewise, the audit highlighted members of the congregation who we could approach to advise us or help with some of the ‘mechanics’ of staging the ‘Christmas Tree Festival’; and with the next children’s activities day coning up in August, we have already consulted the audit summary to see who may be willing and able to support the event and we are in the process of approaching those people.
At the first PCC meeting after the AGM in April, the PCC agreed on the list formal committees and some smaller, sometimes short – term, working groups. It is hoped that the working groups will consist of PCC members & non- members, as this help to enrich discussion and to become a more inclusive church. Again, in the next few months, the audit will be used to identify people who have expressed an interest in particular areas covered by the working groups, who we may approach.
So thanks once again for your support – the more involved we all become the greater things we will be able to achieve together in our attempt to ‘bring God’s love into the heart of the community’.
If there is any member of the congregation who did not complete the audit, but wants to do so or who wants to contribute in some way please speak to one of the wardens. Thank you.

On the 3rd of July at 7:30pm the Mothers’ Union  ended their term by  hosting their ‘Summer of Hope’ Strawberry supper in All Saints’ Church.

It was a lovely occasion and was open to all and very well attended… even though England were playing!

The  short service  thanked God for all that we receive and highlighted what the ‘Summer of Hope’ campaign hoped to achieve.

This was followed by shortbread, strawberry and cream and a glass of wine plus a good ‘natter’ and ‘friendship’. There will also be a raffle and a book sale. All proceeds are going to the worthy ‘Summer of Hope’ fund.

Thanks to all those who helped to organise it.

Please sign the list at the back of the church if you wish to attend so the Mothers’ Union know how many they are catering for.
Thank you.

Dear friends
As I write the royal wedding is fresh in people’s minds. A wedding with a great deal more informality than previous royal weddings – and a very different style of sermon. People’s responses to Bishop Curry’s address have been mixed, but there is no doubt that it made an impact.

Naturally, it took the theme of love. What was important from a Christian standpoint was that it pointed us from the human love of a couple, and their friends, to God who is love and the source of all true love. He said,
“Oh there’s power – power in love. Not just in its romantic forms, but any form, any shape of love…And there’s a reason for it. The reason has to do with the source. We were made by a power of love, and our lives were meant – and are meant – to be lived in that love. That’s why we are here. Ultimately the source of love is God himself: the source of all of our lives.”

We have just celebrated the season of Easter. First came the solemnity of Good Friday – when we drew close to the greatest mystery of God’s love poured out for a fallen and broken humanity as Jesus died for us on the cross. Easter Day showed the first fruits of the redeeming power of love as Jesus rose from the dead. That love began to ripple out as Jesus re-gathered his disciples, forgave them, restored them in faith, and finally at Pentecost put the very source of love, God the Holy Spirit, into their hearts that they might bear that love to the ends of the earth.

We are Jesus’ disciples today, and he has given us his Spirit, which is the Spirit of truth and the Spirit of love. It is the Spirit who alone can set us ‘on fire’ with true love, and give us the endurance to keep on loving in every circumstance of life. That is both in our own personal lives, in our families, relationship and local church. And also in the wider love that we are called to bear – the love that should make us reach out to others, and indeed to seek to change the world.

So don’t leave the Holy Spirit behind with the Day of Pentecost. Open your heart every day to be filled again with God’s own presence, his goodness, his grace, his strength and his love. And so may the fruit of the Spirit be grown in us, in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control. The greatest of which is love.
Yours in God’s love, Father, Son and Holy Spirit
Toby

Did you realise that your giving to church allows us to support other causes?
We encourage every member of our churches to give to God’s work, proportionally to their income. Echoing this, both PCCs have a policy of giving 10% of their general giving (whether on the plate, by envelope or standing order) to support the work of other causes.
All Saints’ PCC has just made its gifts out of the income for 2017 which total £5071. This year we decided that it would be best to support just three charities each year – one working in mission worldwide, one in mission in the UK and one local charity. This time we are supporting Church Mission Society, Gideons and the Lancashire Women’s Centre (Accrington) in each of these charities. If you would like to suggest future beneficiaries in one of these categories, please let Linda Bracewell, our treasurer, know and the PCC will consider it for a coming year.

Special Saturdays in June
On the 9th June, All Saints’ School PTFA are holding a summer fete in the school grounds from 11am-3pm. All are most welcome to come and enjoy the activities, stalls and refreshments (including the tea and cake stall run by our very own Mothers’ Union).
On the morning of 16th June why not get down to the Walton Arms Car Park in Altham and pick up a bargain at the Car Boot Sale? Refreshments available.
On the weekend of 23rd June do pray for some of our young people (from both churches) attending the Diocesan Youth Camp at Hothersall Lodge, near Longridge.
On the 30th June, Clayton-le-Moors is hosting Armed Forces Day for the borough of Hyndburn. There will be a procession from Barnes Square (moving off at 11:30), and a short observance at the War Memorial (but to remember not the dead but serving soldiers).

Special Sundays in July
During July we always celebrate the life of our church primary schools, and in particular our Year 6 children as they prepare to leave, through anniversary services. St James’ will be on 1st July and All Saints’ on 8th July.
On the 1st July at All Saints’ in place of the usual sermon, Dr David Woodcock will give a short talk helping us all to be more aware of dementia and how to act in a way that is supportive of those living with dementia and their carers. DO make a special effort to be there.
On the afternoon of 15th July, we invite you once again to the vicarage garden for tea and cake and ‘songs of praise’.
Finally, on 22nd July everyone is invited to Altham for the patronal festival at 9:30am, followed by ‘brunch’ at Simply Classic. This was much enjoyed last year so look out for booking sheets!

Fairtrade Stall
All Saints’ PCC has decided to cease running the fairtrade stall. Turnover has been falling over recent years and the stall is now making a loss. The good news is that fairtrade products are now far more accessible in the supermarkets – so do please keep buying food that is produced at a fair price for the farmers, including the fairtrade premium that allows for development. And for a full range of fairly traded goods, why not visit the ‘One Planet’ co-op on Abbey Street in Accrington? Thank you to Adele Helm for running the stall over the past years. The PCC will consider how best to fulfil our commitment to being a fair trade church in other ways.

Scargill update
I’m delighted that we have 41 adults and 24 children booked in for the weekend at Scargill House in September, as well as a few others who have indicated that they would like to go. End of June is the deadline for signing up and paying so if anyone else would like to come, please shout! We can only allocate you a single room, as the doubles and twins have long since been snapped up. The theme for the input (mostly on the Saturday morning) will be themed around the story of the Emmaus road, when the risen Lord comes alongside two friends, grieving and confused, and gradually unfolds the scriptures to them before making himself known in the breaking of bread. We will also be able to enjoy the wonderful scenery, the yummy meals, the play equipment, art room, etc, etc. Do pray for those who will be going that it will be a joyful and meaningful time for everyone.

Confirmation
Confirmation sessions for those in the current Year 6 will be starting shortly, Thursday evenings at 6pm. If your child is at All Saints’ or Altham St James’ Schools they will get information automatically. If not, please do ask – or look out on the weekly sheets or Facebook. Adult confirmation preparation will begin in September. The confirmation will be held on 8th November.

Thy Kingdom Come
Thank you to everyone who joined in focussed prayer during the period between Ascension and Pentecost. I hope you found the ‘novena’ booklets useful – any feedback would be appreciated to help us decide whether to invest in them again. A big thank you to Jane Lee and Julie Blysniuk for arranging our prayer stations. I was disappointed that very few adults came to church to use them, but the great thing was that all the children from All Saints’ came over to use them, class by class and really enjoyed the experience.

There will be a short observation at 11am on Monday 25th June at the War Memorial in Mercer Park, when the flag will be raised.

On Saturday 30th June there will be a fun afternoon at the Forts Arms with BBQ, music etc.

A short talk will be given by Dr Woodcock on 1st July during 11am Service.

There will be a more in- depth talk  from Brian Topping of Dementia Friends Rossendale on the 5th July at 7:30. Numbers are restricted so please let Dr Woodcock know if you would like to attend.

Super heroes day 2018

It was great to see so many children at our ‘Super Heroes’ activities day, having fun and joining in.

The day started with a  ‘ wake up to music’ session, this was followed by a range of activities including crafts, where they decorated their ‘super heroes’ t- shirt and made a mosaic; drama, where they acted there scenes of two ‘super heroes’ from the Bible; took part in sports activities and  went on a  treasure hunt, which was also based around our theme.

We all came together towards the end of the day to watch  the group dramas, sing songs and see a drama  put on by some of the adults and older children about the greatest super hero of all  for Christians – ‘Jesus’.

Some of the children’s  work will be on display this Sunday in church during the 11am Family Service – every one is welcome.

 

 

Thanks to all those who helped the day run smoothly, we could not have hosted the day without!

Why not view more photos of the event by visiting our Facebook page – the link is at the top of this page?

 

A huge congratulations to Sarah McMinn & Linda Vine who have just been admitted to office to serve as our Church Wardens for 2018 – 2019. On behalf of the congregation, we thank you for standing as Wardens and we give you our support and our prayers and best wishes in the year ahead.

A wonderful evening was had by all who went on the canal trip. We set off from Hoghton boat arena and gently cruised towards Wheelton for about an hours. The sun was on the water, the canal banks were full of bluebells and the cows were grazing in the fields, which they shared on occasion with Canada geese, – all of which helped to create an idyllic setting for our cruise.

 

Inside the canal boat the tables were covered with blue damask linen cloths and adorned with vases of flowers. A delicious potato pie with mushy peas and red cabbage was served by the young efficient waiting staff as we cruised in the opposite direction – towards Feniscowles. Drinks from the bar, great company, conversation & laughter all went to making the evening a success.

Thank you to the MU members  who organised the trip & the transport to and from Hoghton, and for inviting ‘us non – members’. It was a lovely evening.

The Church relies on volunteers to help keep it clean and tidy. Although  volunteers do cleaning tasks weekly, we are aiming to give the church a good ‘spring’ clean about every six weeks.  There are a variety of tasks to do – from sweeping to mopping; dusting & polishing and of course the more volunteers there are the quicker the jobs get done.

Please you can give an hour of your time to help. The Church is open for cleaning at 10:00am.

Thank you.

 

A date for the diary! 9th June between 11:00am – 3:00pm. In School.

There will be a variety of stalls, crafts and food – including a cake store with cakes made by Mothers’ Union members. Something for everyone.