This week’s Worship

7th November 2021 – 3rd Sunday before Advent (1st Sun.)
            8:00 am      BCP Holy Communion, Mawdesley
9:00 am      Family Worship, Bretherton
9:15 am      Holy Communion, Croston
11:00 am      Holy Communion, Mawdesley

Wednesday 10 am   Holy Communion Croston
Friday 9am Morning Prayer at Mawdesley

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ
Today’s Gospel reading tells us two brothers, Simon and Andrew, who were fishing, had their lives changed forever following their encounter with Jesus.   It began as a very ordinary day – they were fishing because they were fishermen, then Jesus saw them casting their nets. Jesus saw the potential within these two men who, with him, would change the world.  And when he spoke to them, his words must have had such an authority and attraction that Andrew and Peter didn’t think twice about leaving their nets and going with him.  Then the same thing happened again with two other brothers, James and John.
When Jesus called them, they too dropped everything to follow him.  It seems that the presence of Jesus at the lakeside made everything else pale into insignificance, as these brothers were captivated by this man whose voice perhaps they had heard, a little earlier, proclaiming that “the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news”.  To repent is to turn away from one way of life and towards another, which is exactly what Andrew, Simon, James and John did that day as they take their first steps into the kingdom of God.   The ordinary day was suddenly no longer an ordinary day at all.
This was the beginning of Jesus’ life with the disciples, they could have had no idea what was ahead as he was calling them to a life of relationship and love and miracle.  But he was also calling them to sacrifice, pain and death.  This day of calling was a day that took their lives into a whole new dimension, and they were ordinary people, just like us. The call was very simple for them as it is for us: follow me.
Following Jesus is about stepping into the kingdom of God.
It is a call to each one of us to put our hand into his.  We do this together, but we each need to make our own choice.  We are all called to live the ordinariness of our lives in the company of Jesus.
Most of us are not called to do anything extraordinary, but simply to be faithful to God in the ordinary things of everyday life.  That may well mean looking carefully at our lives and leaving behind anything that distracts us from God.
As we continue our walk with Jesus we will find ourselves part of the extraordinary kingdom of God, drawing people into it by the genuineness of our love for Jesus and one another.  Jesus draws us by his love, to share our lives with him and others, and to be part of an amazing journey not just in this earthly life and death but also to share in the glory of his resurrection.
Jesus calls each one of us to live our life with him, forever, and as we follow him, we will find that we too are part of the kingdom of God. May God give you grace to hear his voice, wisdom to discern God’s call, and joy to fill your heart as you follow him.

With love & prayers.         Michael (Rector)
Tel: 01772 600548, email: revmwoods@gmail.com

Next Sunday – Remembrance Sunday (2nd Sun.)
Croston
9:15 am        Remembrance Family Worship
12 noon         Community centre opens – items from the last 100 years
12:45           unveiling of commemorative quilt
1pm              Parade to War memorial for Act of Remembrance,
return to Church for Worship

Bretherton
10:00 am      Remembrance Worship, followed by walk to the
War memorial for the Act of Remembrance at 11 am
Mawdesley
10:45 am      Remembrance Worship
2:30 pm        Parade begins from 4 Lane Ends, next to the Methodist
Church, parade through village
3 pm            Act of Remembrance at the War memorial

 

 

 

 

 

 

Facebook & YouTube Online Worship
An Act of Worship from Blackburn Cathedral will be available every Sunday from 9am.  You can view this on the Cathedral YouTube channel here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4GsctW6SLc or on their facebook page https://www.facebook.com/BlackburnCathedral
This week’s Church of England online worship exploring the theme of calling is Led by Rev Canon Douglas Machiridza.
You can watch the service from 9am Sunday.
https://www.facebook.com/thechurchofengland

Thank you for your support of the Food Bank
As more families are beginning to struggle these donations are so important.  If you are able, please continue to support this worthy enterprise. Donations can be left at all our churches.

Covid Guidance in church – please do remember:

  • Do not come to church if you are feeling unwell or have experienced any COVID-19 symptoms in the past seven days
  • Be mindful of those who may be less confident, especially those choosing to wear a mask
  • Don’t forget Hands, Face Space guidance

Sunday 7th November – 10-4 pm Preloved Toy and Clothing Sale at Croston Community Centre

 

Messy Church Croston Methodist Church
Tuesday 9th November 4:30 – 6 pm.

 

 

 

The One Voice Community Choir with Bretherton School Choir
Concert in St. Michaels Church on Saturday 20th November 6pm
Tickets are just £5 for adults – children free.
There will be a raffle and refreshments available.
Tickets available from Kathryn 01772600768 or
email carversbrow@aol.com.  Also available on the door.
This promises to be a joyful music event to celebrate interfaith week.

Croston Church Tapestry Pew Cushions
There are a number of tapestry pew cushions that have not been in use since the reordering of church which is such a shame that they are not being displayed.  After consultation with a number of people we are planning to remove the stuffing, sew them back up and use them on the back of some pews, where they will be available for all to enjoy.  We hope to start work shortly if you would like any further information or could help please contact Juliet Taylor or Liz Brown.


The Collect
Heavenly Lord, you long for the world’s salvation: stir us from apathy, restrain us from excess and revive in us new hope that all creation will one day be healed in Jesus Christ our Lord.        Amen

First Reading
In this story of second chances, having refused God’s first command, Jonah the reluctant prophet obediently prophesies to the city of Nineveh. The people repent and calamity is averted.
Jonah 3:1-5.10
The word of the Lord came to Jonah a second time, saying, ‘Get up, go to Nineveh, that great city, and proclaim to it the message that I tell you.’  So Jonah set out and went to Nineveh, according to the word of the Lord. Now Nineveh was an exceedingly large city, a three days’ walk across.   Jonah began to go into the city, going a day’s walk.
And he cried out, ‘Forty days more, and Nineveh shall be overthrown!’ 
And the people of Nineveh believed God; they proclaimed a fast, and everyone, great and small, put on sackcloth.
When God saw what they did, how they turned from their evil ways, God changed his mind about the calamity that he had said he would bring upon them; and he did not do it.

Second Reading
Jesus’ death dealt with the problem of sin once and for all. The second coming is not for punishment but for salvation.
Hebrews 9:24-end
For Christ did not enter a sanctuary made by human hands, a mere copy of the true one, but he entered into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of God on our behalf. 
Nor was it to offer himself again and again, as the high priest enters the Holy Place year after year with blood that is not his own;  for then he would have had to suffer again and again since the foundation of the world.
But as it is, he has appeared once for all at the end of the age to remove sin by the sacrifice of himself. 
And just as it is appointed for mortals to die once, and after that the judgement, so Christ, having been offered once to bear the sins of many, will appear a second time, not to deal with sin, but to save those who are eagerly waiting for him.

The Gospel
This tells the story of the beginning of discipleship. It is so simple, yet so demanding: Jesus calls, and people leave everything to follow him.

Mark 1:14-20
Now after John was arrested, Jesus came to Galilee, proclaiming the good news of God, and saying, ‘The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God has come near; repent, and believe in the good news.’
As Jesus passed along the Sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and his brother Andrew casting a net into the lake – for they were fishermen.
And Jesus said to them, ‘Follow me and I will make you fish for people.’  And immediately they left their nets and followed him. 
As he went a little farther, he saw James son of Zebedee and his brother John, who were in their boat mending the nets. 
Immediately he called them; and they left their father Zebedee in the boat with the hired men, and followed him.

Prayer after Communion
Gracious Lord, in this holy sacrament you give substance to our hope: bring us at the last to that fullness of life for which we long; through Jesus Christ our Saviour.    Amen

 

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