The Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth is our helper (Psalm 121:2).
As we gathered virtually via the livestream on Sunday morning, the Psalmist encouraged us to look to the Lord for help, assuring us that the Lord will take us to the heavenly Jerusalem.
I trust you were as uplifted as I was to keep putting one foot in front of other in what seems like an uphill struggle right now. Wonderfully we don’t need to go it alone. The Lord is our helper and we are here (virtually) to help each other keep going too.
The vulnerable and needy
Our first concern continues to be to care for those in the church family who have, in any way, been impacted by the virus. It’s been wonderful to hear of the way the church family are caring for each other practically, emotionally and spiritually. However if you need help or know of anyone who does, please contact us through the Pastoral Care Teams by filling in this form.
We held an emergency Vicars' Council meeting via Zoom on Monday, to discuss how we could help those affected financially. I am pleased to be able to announce that we are setting up a hardship fund to provide some means-tested assistance to any in the church family experiencing significant financial need over the coming months. If you would like to contribute to this fund, please follow this link to make an on-line gift of any amount using a credit/debit card (Gifts can be anonymous, Gift Aided, and no reference number is required). We’re using Stewardship to administer this to minimise the administrative burden on our office team. A sub-group of the PCC will consider any applications received. More information about how to apply will be issued soon (providing there is money given to this fund). If you are considering contributing, we think it’s important that you know that should there be any excess in this fund in due course, the PCC will use it to meet similar financial needs of Christians who are members of ReNew South Yorkshire partner churches.
While on the issue of money, the treasurer has requested that where possible, you avoid sending any cheques and paper correspondence to the church office – with us working remotely and following social distancing protocols, processing paperwork and visits to the bank are on hold for the foreseeable future.
Due to the current restrictions, the staff team are not permitted to visit anyone in hospital. If someone is gravely ill, a member of the clergy may be permitted to visit, provided the patient or their next of kin specifically requests a named member of the clergy. (Please note Chris Conn is not available due to him being in the vulnerable category. Paul Williams will also not be available until Thursday 9th April at the earliest, as his daughter has returned form South Korea leaving the household in social isolation).
Thank you for the many supportive and encouraging messages following the Sunday livestream last week. We had thousands of hits and I’ve heard many stories of people beyond the church family joining the livestream. Due to the latest restrictions we are no longer permitted to be in the church building or to get together with others to livestream a service this week. However, we will be pre-recording a service from different homes. Join us from 10.30am each Sunday morning at fulwoodchurch.co.uk/sundayservice. This week we’ll be looking at Psalm 48.
In the past, in times of national crisis, the Church of England has called the nation to pray. Can I call you all to join us for our Church Family Prayer Meeting on Wednesday 1st April? Prayer topics are available here. I call on the entire church family to be committed to pray from 8-8.45pm on Wednesday - on your own, in family groups or virtually in small groups (via Zoom or another social network medium).
Wonderfully, many in the church family invited friends and family to watch the livestream. Others have been putting helpful posts on social media. Please pray that many people would come to a saving faith in Jesus Christ through this time of crisis.
As a team we are considering how we can proclaim the gospel through social media. We’ll keep you informed of any resources we produce.
May each of you be assured that the Lord is not sleeping, that He is shading you, and that He will watch over your life, your coming and going both now and forever more (Psalm 121:3-8).
Posted: Friday 20th March 2020
Since the dramatic turn of events at the beginning of the week, we’ve been so encouraged to hear how small groups, youth groups, student groups, 20s & 30s groups, and individuals have been connecting with each other through the various social media platforms available to us is this digital age.
With the expertise and hard work of a number of people in the church family, this Sunday (22nd March) we are all geared up to livestream a Sunday service direct into your living rooms.
This is how it’s going to work (we trust!). Go to fulwoodchurch.co.uk/sundayservice where you will find the live stream video at the top of the page. The service will start at 10.30am. You’ll be able to connect to the livestream from 10.15am so that you’re ready to go in time for the start of the service.
You’ll also find a link below the video to download the service sheet so you can join in the songs and follow along with the service. The notice sheet, prayer diary and some small group discussion questions are also available for download.
Our first concern continues to be for the vulnerable. We are encouraging our small groups to look out for, and appropriately care for one another. Our pastoral care teams are similarly ready to respond in appropriate ways to offer any support we can reasonably give. If you need help or know of anyone who does, please contact us through the use of this form.
Posted: Tuesday 17th March 2020
Following the Prime Minister’s first daily update (Monday 16th March) instructing us to avoid all non-essential gatherings, we have taken the decision to suspend all church meetings (of every size, midweek and Sundays) with immediate effect and until further notice.
As this ever changing situation develops we will update this page regularly and keep in touch with the church family through emails and other social media.
Our first concern is for the vulnerable. We are encouraging our small groups to look out for, and appropriately care for one another. Our pastoral care teams are similarly ready to respond in appropriate ways to offer any support we can reasonably give. If you need help or know of anyone who does, please contact us through the use of this form.
If you feel well and able to help others, we would encourage you to responsibly contact your neighbours to offer help. You might consider putting a card like this through neighbours letter boxes. But if you decide to do this please keep yourself safe - physically and in every other way.
We also want to ensure that the church family will be encouraged and built up during this time of social isolation. We will be recording a weekly sermon and we are currently considering other ways we can build up one another. Links will be sent out and posted on this webpage.
The church office will be closed to physical visitors, but phone calls will be answered as normal between 9.30am – 12.30pm. We do want to answer your questions and queries, however, we would ask you to be mindful that the church office is being stretched at this time.
A letter from Paul Williams: First things first, and the impact of suspending all gatherings