St Paul's Church, Low Moor

Reaching out and growing together in God's love

Vision 2026 Journey

Update from our Vision Champion, Wendy: 

Easter 2024: 

Diocesan Chrism Eucharist -  from our Vision Champion, Wendy 

So what kind of Easter did you have? In a recent sermon, Reverend Catherine mentioned that many people had expressed the fact that they had had a wonderful Easter. I too had a great time celebrating this most important season in the Christian calendar.

I could mention many things that contributed to this magnificent time including our Maundy Thursday service at St. Paul's, the Good Friday service at Trinity Methodist and the Easter Day Sunrise Service up the Castle (despite the fact that the clocks had gone forward and this 6am service felt even earlier!) However, I have chosen to focus on a very special event at Blackburn Cathedral on Maundy Thursday, where we all had an open invitation to attend the "Diocesan Chrism Eucharist with the Renewal of Commitment to Ministry and Blessing of Oils".

Blackburn cathedral in   It all sounds very posh, solemn and interesting - well it was all that and so much more. I won't go into all the specific details, but if anyone is interested in knowing more, I have a copy of the order of service.

The whole service was led by Bishop Philip and one of the highlights for me was his inspirational sermon. He started with a reflection on the television series"The Apprentice"; imagining that we were all up for scrutiny in the boardroom of Sir Alan Sugar. How would we all do? Probably not very well in that unrealistic, detached and false environment. However, Bishop Philip went on to explain that in reality, irrespective of our shortcomings, we are already selected by Jesus to be used in Christian discipleship.

We are therefore, the A Team, the chosen ones, there is no Plan B. Essentially the service was an opportunity for all the clergy of the Diocese to renew their personal commitment to their Ministry.The priests and deacons were reminded of their ordination vows and encouraged to renew them with the response "By the help of God, I will."Actively involving the participation of schoolchildren from St. Wilfred's School, by the same response, the Bishops too renewed their commitment.

The next part of the programme involved the Blessing of the Oils. As I went on to learn, there are three types of oil used by our priests:

One for the anointing of the sick and the dying

•       One for the signing of the cross at baptism

•       One known as the oil of chrism, which is for general use


As you can imagine, the whole event was supported by music of the highest quality, including delightful inputs from the Cathedral Choir and the rousing accompaniment to a selection of glorious hymns.

This special occasion culminated in the celebration of the Eucharist, which was superbly orchestrated serving all members of the congregation at multiple stations around the Cathedral. Following on, a lovely lunch of soup and sandwiches was served in the crypt of the Cathedral allowing all the attendees to participate in Christian fellowship.

What a fabulous start to an excellent Easter!

                                                                                                                                                      Wendy Walker


On Sunday 14th January at our All Age Worship, on the second Sunday of Epiphany, Reverend Catherine encouraged us to respond to God’s Call. Beautifully read by Florence, we heard the story of God calling Samuel. I don’t know about you, but I have always learned better if something is acted out in a story or painted in a picture. They say that “demonstration is worth a thousand words”. I’m sure that’s why Jesus always spoke in parables to help us to understand his teachings.

Well, we were treated a BAFTA standard performance of Ash (acting as Eli) encouraging Florence (acting as Samuel) to listen to the voice of God that was calling in the night. The voice of God was professionally played out by Geoff who was hiding in the pulpit. It was obvious that Geoff was taking his role very seriously and it should be noted that he is desperate to play his part in future performances.

During her sermon, Catherine asked us all to consider personally what God is calling us to do. After the service we continued the conversation and shared our thinking, documenting our answers in response to the question: “What is God calling YOU to do?” I was very impressed with the depth of engagement and the honesty of individual responses. I am sure that you will recognise your various contributions, including:

To lift up each member of the church by name, daily, in prayer

To do my best to help other people

I’m waiting to be called and will follow what I am asked to do

To listen

To be kind

To help others

No call as yet but will try to do when asked

To find the good in all

We are already aware of the many talents possessed by our congregation, since we have explored them before at St. Paul’s, and some were expressed here:

To carry on volunteering

To carry on mending

To wash up

Other poignant and personal additions included:

To forgive

Not to be judgemental

Since taking on the role of Vision Champion, I have often asked God, Catherine, myself and yourselves what it is I am being called to do. I am always open to further feedback, direction and guidance.

Thank you all for your contributions,                                                                                  Wendy Walker