Update on our Christingle Services 2013

During the Christmas period and especially through our Christingle Services we have been supporting the work of the Children's Society

We are thrilled to announce that this year a total of £1385.10 has been raised , with Gift Aid to be added to this by the Children's Society

Thank you to everybody who contributed to this magnificent effort


More about the 2013 Lent Appeal ……..


“Leprosy is a disease of poverty. Help to break the cycle”.


This is the challenge issued by The Leprosy Mission.  People affected by leprosy face a triple blow of disease, disability, and discrimination. The Leprosy Mission is able to provide a springboard to a new beginning for thousands of people each year. As well as providing opportunities for early diagnosis and treatment it offers the gift of healthcare, rehabilitation, vocational training, housing and a fresh water supply - everyday services which we probably take for granted.

The latest challenge lies in South Sudan. It is the newest member state of the United Nations, and is a new country in need of hope. The children there are part of a leprosy-affected community now living in tents, having been recently displaced from their lands. They had very little to begin with but now they are destitute, with their only goal being survival.  

The Leprosy Mission is working with the government of South Sudan to set up a programme to diagnose and treat leprosy before it leaves a person disabled or robs them of their eyesight. Wara, for instance, is 10 years old, and lives with his grandmother, mother and sister in a tent in the leprosy community on the edge of Juba, the capital of South Sudan. Angelica, his grandmother, can no longer work because of leprosy-caused disabilities, and his mother, Nainara, struggles to earn enough to feed the family. Education, Wara’s only hope of breaking free from the chains of poverty, seems an impossible dream. 

St. Peter’s has chosen to support The Leprosy Mission through our Lent Appeal this year. There is an envelope with each Church Magazine this month. We have the opportunity to make a life-changing gift to help Wara and others like him, by making a small sacrifice during Lent, which would make a big difference in South Sudan. 

We can give the gift of hope, and we can remember the work of The Leprosy Mission in our prayers.

Sheila Goodman, on behalf of the Faith, Mission in Action Committee of the PCC



The Children`s Society is committed to working with children and young people who are at risk of coming to harm. A simple statement, which underpins some frightening figures. Every five minutes another child in the UK runs away from home. 100,000 young people under the age of 16 run away in the UK each year. 20,000 of these under 16s will be at serious risk of harm while they are away.

Here is one story behind these grim statistics:

Lee says “I was 11 when I first ran away. Everyone in our house was always arguing and fighting, and after one really bad argument I ran away. It became a bit of a habit. I just kept running away. The police would find me and bring me back home.” But running away only made matters worse, and before long Lee was missing school and getting into trouble with the police. Lee was referred to one of The Children`s Society`s Local Projects by his social worker. He was helped with the emotional support and stability he longed for. The Project also helped Lee get back to school.

Lee says: “They have helped me a lot with my anger issues. They`ve given me a way to calm down, to stop being naughty, and everything I need to stop running away. Now if I`m upset or I need advice I can ring them up or send them an email.” Some immediate and practical solutions, with a longer term strategy for just one lad with problems now, and much better prospects for the future.

Every year The Children`s Society sends a letter of thanks to St. Peter`s for the cheque they receive from the collections at the two Christingle Services and from the envelopes and candles. Every year The Children`s Society asks: “How do you do it?” And every year, the response is; “People are very generous.” This year will be no exception, as, at the time of writing over £1,000 has been collected including Gift Aid. This will make a tremendous difference to the lives of some of the most vulnerable children.

Many thanks to all who contributed.

Sheila Goodman.




World Leprosy Day is celebrated in over 100 countries on the last Sunday in January, in 2012 on Sunday 29th January. This year The Leprosy Mission will focus attention on leprosy and the consequences it has for people living in the Cabo Delgado Province of Mozambique, which has one of the highest prevalences of leprosy in Africa.

The main message is that lives can be transformed, with multidrug therapy, with self-care, and with constant monitoring. The Leprosy Mission works with those who face social exclusion, and those for whom the loss of home, work, spouse or marriage prospects is a daily reality. Through its Life-Changing projects, The Leprosy Mission, through its work and projects, confirms that lives can be changed.


What can we do to support this life-changing work?

Well, we can collect all those used postage stamps from our Christmas card envelopes, and we can turn out any unused foreign coins left over from holidays. These can be turned into hard cash and used to support the work which The Leprosy Mission undertake on our behalf.


We can also remember The Leprosy Mission in our prayers:
God our loving heavenly Father, we pray for your peace and blessing on people affected by Leprosy in Mozambique.

Thank you Lord for the growth seen in self-care groups there and bless the staff, as they seek to find more and more ways of sharing Jesus with people in need.

Lord, we pray for ALEMO (the Association for Leprosy Affected People in Mozambique.

We ask for inspiration as they seek to redefine their role and impact in the coming year.

Please guide and inspire The Leprosy Mission staff in their continuing work to help change negative attitudes towards people affected by leprosy.


              Sheila Goodman.




Spring Term Dates 7.00 - 9.00pm

Session 1 Monday 16th April Wesley Lounge

Session 2 Monday 23rd April Wesley Lounge

Session 3 Monday 30th April Wesley Lounge

Bank Holiday

Session 4 Monday 14th May Wesley Lounge

Session 5 Monday 21st May Wesley Lounge

Session 6 Monday 28th May Wesley Lounge

Bank Holiday

Session 7 Monday 11th June Wesley Lounge

Session 8 Monday 18th June Wesley Lounge

Session 9 Monday 25th June Wesley Lounge

Session 10 Monday 2nd July Wesley Lounge

All welcome; previous attendance not necessary.

For more details contact Janet Haworth or Clare Harding.

What is it? A 3-term course examining the Bible, the history of Christianity, and the challenges posed by modern life. We hope to run the course with members from other churches.

How is it run? 10 weekly 2-hour sessions per term, with refreshments, are run in informal small groups, with 2 facilitators. These will be Janet Haworth and Clare Harding of St. Peter’s Church.

Where will it be held? Wilpshire’s Wesley Lounge is planned as a venue, on Monday or Thursday nights, from 7-9pm

On what is it based? The Diocese has produced course materials, and offers supporting study days.

Why would I want to do it? It is a chance to look at our faith in a way we may not have had a chance to since confirmation! For those who may wish to consider greater involvement as a lay member of the church, accreditation is available through the Open College. However, there is no need to do this; the course is just as interesting as a ‘stand-alone’.

How do I find out more? Take a leaflet from church, or ask Janet Haworth or Clare Harding for further details.


Lent Appeal For ‘Boy George’ - another reminder !!!

The 2011 Lent Appeal is to support George Marashlian, a young man who lives at the Birds Nest Home in Byblos, about 20 miles North of Beirut in Lebanon.

During the First World War more than a million Armenian men, women and children were massacred by the Turks. Maria Jacobsen, a Danish missionary, gathered together many orphaned children into a safe hiding place while she cared for them and gave them medical help.

In 1928 she opened the Birds Nest Home which continues to care for 170 Armenian Christian children who are orphaned or unable to live with their families due to poverty, civil unrest or disability.

The children attend a local school and there are regular Sunday services and a Sunday School at the Home.


BibleLands is a charity whose vision is to improve the lives of vulnerable and disadvantaged people in the Middle East.

The charity works with Christian led organisations in Israel, Palestine, Lebanon and Egypt to assist people disadvantaged by poverty, civil unrest and disability.

BibleLands helps to support the work of the Birds Nest Home through Child Sponsor ships.

More about George

George is 12 years old and comes from a very needy Armenian Christian family living in cramped accommodation – the home consists of one room!

His father is unable to work as he is blind but his mother has a part-time job as a cleaner. However, the wage is very low and she finds it difficult to provide even the basic needs for her husband and four children.

George’s older brother, Anto and his younger brother, Vartan are also cared for at the Birds Nest Home.

George has good general health but has a deformed left foot. This foot is small and has only two toes.

George is a shy, quiet and polite boy who is making steady progress in school.

How can we help?

St Peter’s has supported the work of BibleLands, including Child Sponsorship, for some time. This year it is hoped through the Lent Appeal that we can ‘go that extra mile’ and provide additional support for George and the work of BibleLands.

Collection Boxes

These will be available in Sunday School from Sunday 6 March and should be returned to church by 24 April – Easter Day!

Receptacle in Church

This will be available from Sunday 13 March for individual donations. Please Gift Aid if possible – envelopes will be available by the receptacle.

More Information

There will be more information about George in church including a lovely photograph, a letter from him and his school report!

Please give generously to this very worthy cause



  August 2010

Letters of thanks

From our donations from our 'Parable of the Talents'

From the Alzheimer`s Society

“Your donation is very much appreciated and helps to provide better care. Dementia affects over 750,000 people in the U.K. alone. The Alzheimer`s Society provides information and support for those with any form of dementia and for their families and carers. It advises professionals working in the fields, funds research, runs quality care services, and campaigns for improved health and social care, and for greater public understanding of dementia”.

From Derian House

“On behalf of the children, their parents and the staff at Derian House, thank you indeed for your most generous donation. I can assure each and everyone concerned that this money will be put to very good use”.

From WaterAid

Thank you for your kind donation which will bring safe water, sanitation and improved hygiene to some of the poorest people in the world. Your Talent Sharing idea is so original! Your donation could contribute to the intallation of a handpump and the training of local members of the community to repair and maintain it. Ram Kanthi, from the Mahobi Region of India, is one of the many women WaterAid has helped to train, transforming her livelihood and the health of her community. “We learn to repair the pumps, so that when they break down we can fix them as quickly as possible. Sadly, many women and children are forced to spend up to 6 hours a day walking for water. Tragically, the water is often unsafe, leading to diseases such as diarrhoea, dysentery, and cholera, causing the deaths of 4,000 children every day.”


Thanks are due to anyone and everyone who supported the Talent Challenge, there was much interest and support from work colleagues, friends and families in the wider community. Please pass on thanks to them.

Sheila Goodman


June 2010

It seems an age ago since we were offered a £5 Talent, with the exhortation to increase its value creatively, to support three specific charities: Derian Hoise Children`s Hospice, WaterAid, and the Alzheimer`s Society, one local, one national and one international. The timescale took us from Lent to Pentecost, and during this period the Parish, and beyond, was a hive of activity. Many cunning schemes were concocted to put our God-Given talents to good use. Some folk combined their Talents to plan activities and events, others did their own thing, but the result has been a resounding success., with a whole spectrum of bright ideas that have been both enjoyable and profitable.

There was much baking and making: bacon butties, buns and cakes, chocolate peppermint creams , marmalade. There`s been singing and dancing, to prove that Brownies Have Talent.. There`s been growing and selling, tomato plants and geraniums. Lucky Bran Tubs provided something for the little ones at St. Stephens and Salesbury Schools. There`s been some ironing and some odd-jobbing, some quizzing, some prose and some poetry, and lots of chatting over coffee and cakes, tea and scones, wine and cheese.. Not to mention making and selling cushions, marmalade, taking photographs, sponsored walking.. The challenge was always to do nothing that might be deemed illegal or immoral.. and as for fattening, well, a certain amount of eating and drinking took place, but all in a very good cause, as there were far too many opportunities to tempt our taste buds, and who said anything about resisting temptation?

As with every game of football, (or rugby), there was a result! Not, win, lose, or draw, but a Win-Win. Not only did the Talent Challenge raise an amazing amount of money, (see below) but the social impact proved valuable too, within and beyond the Church family. Anyone at the highly successful Bacon Butty event at Showley Court, instigated initially by two of our `senior` Church members, attracted a great number of people of all ages, who came, and stayed, and had a second cup of coffee, and proved that we can, and do, have fun at St Peters. If your response to the Talent Challenge hasn't been mentioned above, then please let us know. This particular Project has caught the attention of many people, and we`d like to share, and publicise, examples of the different activities and events that took place. This feel good factor was replicated over and over again.

Our three chosen charities have been amazed at an indication of the cheques they are due to receive. WaterAid, Derian House, and the Alzheimer`s Scoiety have all be invited to send representatives to the family Service on Sunday 11th July. Don`t miss the opportunity to give each other a `pat on the back`, and say Thank You to God for giving us our Talents and Skills in the first place. Whose up for another Challenge in 10 years` time?

As for the Grand Total, it stands £5121, this includes £519 reclaimed Income Tax fro Gift Aid, and £1025, the original £5 Talents that were issued.

Sheila Goodman

On behalf of the Education, Mission and Unity Committee.

St. Peter's - Mission in Action


June 2010


No, not and advert from B and Q, or Homebase, but for indication of the number of families who could be helped to install a bathroom and toilet in India, and provide a clean water supply to their homes, tthereby relieving the mothers from the drudgery of daily water collection. And where will the money come from, you may well ask; the recent Christian Aid co9llection by the `Team` from St. Peter`s, from our allocation of homes around the parish, generated a record £692.85, which, with Income Tax to be reclaimed via Gift Aid, amounted to £743.81, a significant increase on 2009.

We`ve yet to receive the total for Blackburn with Darwen house to house collections for this year. However the Charity Shop, where some of us spent a very jolly Monday morning, raised £1700, slightly more than last year. So, thanks to everyone who contributed in any way to Christian Aid 2010. It will be a challenge to beat those totals next year!

I leave you with a couple of sums.

£8 could buy more than 80 fruit treesaplings in Ethiopia, providing food for families and preventing soil erosion around vital water supplies.

How many fruit trees would £743.81 buy?

£16 could buy the materials needed to build 5 meteres of new drainage in Kenya. This would prevent flooding in the streets and houses, and protect families from diseases.

How many metres of drainage would £743.81 buy? Answers on a postcard, please!

Sheila Goodman.

St. Peter's - Mission in Action


Amnesty International


There are a number of our parishioners actively involved in work with this organisation

If you require further information or would like to help then contact Sheila Goodman at Church or via this web-site

Sheila Goodman



HAMDI MOHAMMED SHAHADEH AL-TA`MARI is a Palestinian student who was arrested as a boy, as held by the Israeli military without charge in prison from July to November 2008 and again between December 2008 and December 2009. At the time of his first arrest he was not yet sixteen years old. His detention was in clear violation of the Convention of the Rights of the Child. Hamdi was beaten and kicked during his first arrest. After his second arrest he was brought before a military judge without the presence of a lawyer or family member. He was issued with a four month `administrative order` which was renewed twice. Such a detention order could be prolonged indefinitely without charge or trial. The Israeli Security forces claim, without evidence, that Hamdi `poses a security threat to the region`.

Hamdi is just one example of the people selected by Amnesty International for their annual Greetings Card Campaign. He received over 100 cards, including one signed by many of us at St. Peter`s. The cards remind the recipients, and their families, that they have not been forgotten. The cards also send clear messages to the `powers that be` in each case that the world is aware of the illegal detention, torture, and denial of basic human rights that take place in far too many countries.

In Hamdi`s case, a happier ending, in that he was released earlier this year. We must believe that 100 cards, each bearing many signatures and messages of support, made an impression on the authorities. We don`t always receive such direct feedback, despite the best efforts of Amnesty Intenational to follow through each case.

The pressure doesn`t stop at the end of January. It continues all through the year with letters sent to Governments, British Ambassadors, Presidents, asking that human rights should be respected and the rules of justice obeyed. It couldn`t be simpler. Each case is well-researched, and the letters are prepared for us. All we need to do is read the accompanying notes, sign the letters, and address the envelopes, and post them. Please ask me if you`d like more information about the Letter Writing campaign..

There`s one more thing step that we all can take, and that`s to remember in our prayers all who are victims of injustice and are now in prison, having committed no crime other than following their conscience and their faith.

Sheila Goodman



Do you remember the Make Poverty History Campaign, a few years ago, when people wore white wrist bands, and tried very hard to keep the issue of World Poverty on the political agenda, with some, but not enough, success. We`ve had Bob Geldorf and Feed the World, and we have Christian Aid, and many, many other individuals and groups who try to redress the balance between the ‘Haves’ and the ‘Have Nots.’

This year, Blackburn Diocese will be led by Bishop Nicholas in joining a national initiative to StandUp Against Poverty. The background? - each autumn sees the follow-on to Make Poverty History – 50 days of Global Action Against Poverty. The 50 days are steered by the United Nations Millennium Campaign and the Global Call to Action Against Poverty. An impressive team at the top! The climax is in mid-October, around October 17th, which is the United Nations Day for the Eradication of Poverty. Perhaps it is no coincidence that this is also around the time of Harvest Festivals, when we give thanks to God for “all good gifts around us”, and remind ourselves that many people do not yet have their fair share of the fruits of the Harvest.

Last year over 116 million people took part, in over 130 countries.

This year at St. Peter`s we too will StandUp Against Poverty in Church on Sunday 18th October, and share some simple promises to the poor. Our opportunity to stand up and be counted.

Will YOU come and join us

For more information speak to Sheila Goodman