Weekly Newsletter and Other News

This page contains a Weekly Newsletter, information about upcoming services and events and groups that we support, links to sources of help both spiritual and practical, requests for prayer and thoughts from church members.

Please contact clare@standrewspsalterlane.org.uk or garethjones11@googlemail.com if there is anything you would like to see or to add, or anyone you would particularly like us to pray for.


Weekly Newsletter during the suspension of public worship 

 16th August 2020

We hope you find the SAPLC streamed services inspiring at this time when we cannot join in worship together in church, and that by praying together and sharing these services and resources, we can all still feel connected to our worshipping community. The purpose of this Newsletter is to keep us all informed and connected, and as always it includes a message from Gareth as well as information about our streamed service on Sunday. There are Notices at the end of the newsletter.

All contributions, serious or light-hearted, would be very welcome!


Methodist Church Prayer for the day, Thursday 13th August 2020                                                                                               

Gracious God, whose loving kindness has no limits, teach us afresh the way of Christ.

Where we have felt discouraged, renew us through signs of hope;
where we have been tempted to give up, grant us strength and faith to face the day;
where we have grown anxious about the future, give us courage to plant the seeds of tomorrow in acts of radical love today.
Renew us by your Spirit and set us free to serve you so that the whole of creation may rejoice in your name. Amen.


Richard Andrew, Darlington District Chair (and yes, this is “our” Richard Andrew!)



Message from Gareth

We do not have a Message from Gareth this week or next, as he and Jean are having a well-deserved holiday – I am sure you all join me in hoping they have a wonderfully relaxing and refreshing time.

Here instead is a poem suggested by Josie Smith, who said “I have been re-ordering my bookshelves …, and got sidetracked into re-reading a book about R.S.Thomas, given to me by Jim Cotter who wrote it.”


‘Threshold’ by R.S.Thomas
I emerge from the mind’s
cave into the worse darkness
outside, where things pass and
the Lord is in none of them.

I have heard the still, small voice
and it was that of the bacteria
demolishing my cosmos. I
have lingered too long on

this threshold, but where can I go?
To look back is to lose the soul



I was leading upward towards
the light.  To look forward? Ah,

what balance is needed at
the edges of such an abyss.
I am alone on the surface
of a turning planet. What

to do but. like Michelangelo’s
Adam, put my hand
out into un known space,
hoping for the reciprocating touch.


(This was written in 1981 but could be for today…..)

Thank you, Josie!



Please remember all those who are in need of our prayers at the moment

This week we especially remember with love Peter Rothwell, his wife Cynthia and son John; and Phoebe Brock-Womack, who died at just 4 days old, and her parents Hannah and Annie, members of Nether Edge Quaker Meeting.




Sunday 16th August    10th Sunday after Trinity


We look forward to our online service at 10.30 am, led by Anthony Ashwell, with Barbara Shuker reading and Intercessions led by Jan Birch. Music by Simon Dumpleton and members of the choir

You are invited to have a piece of bread and a drop of juice or wine for Communion, and a candle to light for the prayers of intercession

The link to the service will be sent to you all by email on Saturday evening or Sunday morning, and will also be on the Home Page of the SAPLC website. We hope you will enjoy the service and feel connected to your St Andrew’s Psalter Lane friends as we join in worship on Sunday at 10.30 am.


Junior Church   This week's Junior Church activities are available here and here.

We'd love to see what you do, so please send a photo of your work to Clare at clare@standrewspsalterlane.org.uk - you might see your work on the website! 


Wednesday service

The Wednesday service has now stopped for the month of August. It will be back in September.





Re-Opening the Church  We look forward to welcoming you to private prayer in the church. From 7th August we will be open from 2.00 - 4.00 pm on Mondays and 10.00 am - 12.00 noon on Fridays.

We have carried out a thorough risk assessment to make sure we do this safely. A huge amount of work has been done to make this possible – we are extremely grateful to John Cripps and the others involved in doing this. Church will look a bit different but we are doing everything we can to make sure that visitors feel comfortable. Please do not visit if you have any symptoms or are feeling unwell. Visitors are asked to follow these rules.

We are now asking for non-vulnerable volunteers to assist with welcoming for 2 x 3 hour sessions on Monday afternoons (say 1:30-4:30 pm) and Friday mornings (say 9:30 am -12:30 pm) including preparation time, plus the Wedding on Saturday 1st August, time to be arranged. Please contact Janet Loughridge if you can help (0114 2584164, j.loughridge@sheffield.ac.uk)

Sadly, we do not anticipate being open for public worship in the immediate future.  In the meantime, you are welcome to join our online services on Sunday and Wednesday mornings.

The church garden is open to the public and you are welcome to use it for prayer and meditation, but please observe social distancing and wash your hands after visiting, as the seats are not sanitised.



Keeping in touch with the church and with each other 

As the church building remains closed and virtual means of communication become 'the new normal', I just wanted to remind people of some of the ways SAPLC is still 'open':

You can follow us on Facebook and join the SAPLC Facebook Group

We are also on Twitter 

This website is regularly updated with news about SAPLC and links to helpful resources.

And of course, we have our online services on Sunday and Wednesday - if you can't join these 'live', they are available in the 'Streamed Services Archive'.


Online giving

First of all, a massive 'Thank you' to everyone who has donated through our online donations page - we have raised over £3000 already! Don't forget that if you normally donate to the vital work of the church by putting money in the plate before a service, you can now do this online using the big red button below!

Our income has fallen massively during the last few months and although our outgoings have gone down too, we are facing a huge deficit - please help us to continue our important work.




All We Can Update

Sadly the All We Can events have had to be put on hold until it is safe to go ahead. Many thanks to the people who have offered help with the organisation.

We know that all of you will have had requests from charities and other calls on your finances but climate change continue and food shortages have worsened.

Please can you consider making small gifts to All We Can or thinking of small sponsored events that you can do safely at home.

The All We Can website have updates about their work and information on giving. They are also sharing positive and uplifting content each lunchtime at 1.17 pm.

Janet has recently received this letter of thanks from All We Can, with some news of their activities and concerns. 

Many thanks, Janet (Clarke) and Judith (Loveman)



Working Party – message from John Cripps Thank you to everybody who came and helped at the Working Party on Saturday 1st August when we worked outside while maintaining our 2m separations. The next Working Party will be on Saturday 5th September.   Everyone is welcome to carry out gardening tasks at other times convenient to them.  I will send out an email about the mowing rota.   The compound and the tool box have combination padlocks. Please ask me if you want to know the combination and if you open either lock, please take care the combination is set correctly before closing it. The tool box contains the mower, strimmer and some tools and there are additional tools in the cellar. The usual tidying and weeding will be required in the coming weeks, remembering that the beds to the front of Shirley House also need to be kept weeded and tidy. 

Many thanks, John Cripps (01142 588932, 07914 290016, cripps@uwclub.net).



Foodbank and Baby Basics

Firvale Foodbank and Baby Basics are still desperately in need of help, so that they can help the most vulnerable members of society. If you are able to give anything, donations can be dropped off at the following addresses – why not combine donating with your legal daily exercise? 

Food Bank  

Donations can be left at the rear of 16 Edgehill Road, S7 1SP. Fir Vale continue to take referrals and just under 100 people are being supported. Food and cash donations are welcome. Food is especially welcome. The Food Bank particularly need pasta, rice, UHT milk, toiletries and toilet rolls, but are ever grateful for canned goods.

If you would like to give cash, you can donate here.


Baby Basics   

Our Royal visit, August 4, 2020

Baby Basics had such an incredibly privileged and exciting day, hosting The Duchess of Cambridge at our UK headquarters in Sheffield! We are honoured to announce The Duchess of Cambridge is supporting baby banks and vulnerable families across the UK by launching a new initiative with us today.

Baby banks aim to support and empower families by ensuring every child has the essential items they need to thrive. In the UK, they are powered primarily by volunteers and typically run on professional referral from services such as health visitors, midwives and social workers.

Inspired by the work of these charities, The Duchess of Cambridge has brought together nineteen British Brands to donate items to Baby Banks across the UK.

Three baby banks – Baby Basics UK, Little Village and AberNecessities are honoured to have been chosen to be part of this amazing initiative.

The Duchess of Cambridge said:

“Over recent months, I have heard from families who have been supported by baby banks through the most difficult of times and I have been deeply moved by their stories. Having somewhere to turn to for support is important for all families, and baby banks work every day, up and down the country, to provide immediate, tangible and practical help for parents and carers when they are most in need. Baby banks are driven by incredible volunteers, demonstrating the power of community spirit in supporting families and coming together to raise the next generation. Thanks to the generosity of the companies taking part in this initiative, baby banks across the UK will be able to support even more families through this particularly challenging time.”

This engagement followed on from The Duchess’ previous visits to Baby Basics West Norfolk, based in Dersingham, where she packed up Moses baskets with supplies and spoke to families who had received support from the charity.

The Duchess of Cambridge helped with the delivery of supplies to Baby Basics UK before talking to families about how baby banks have provided them with invaluable support when they needed it most.

Baby Basics are closing their office for 3 weeks in the summer and will not reopen until the week of 17th August but we can still give donations to Pat; if Pat is away she will remove the basket from her front door step and she asks that items aren’t left at her door if the basket is not there. If you have something you can put through the letter box, that would be alright. The Facebook page also has information about donating via their Amazon wishlist. Donations can be left in the box at 51 Barkers Road, S7 1SD; cash donations should be put through the letter box. Pat would be able to collect donations if you cannot get them to her – telephone her on 2014881 if you would like to donate this way. Or donations can also be left at 45 Osberton Place, S11 8XL. You can also now donate online.

We are grateful to all the very kind people who are taking these donations to where they are so desperately needed.                                                                                                           



A message from the Convener of the Circuit's Justice and Peace Action Group:

Business as Usual is not the answer - please back our divestment campaign

Do you live in the South Yorkshire area? Or are you a member of the South Yorkshire Pension Fund or know someone who is? South Yorkshire Fossil Free! is asking you to take part in our recently launched letter writing campaign. A small task, which should take no more than 10 minutes of your time but which could have a big impact on future generations? Please use our template letter or draft your own.

The South Yorkshire Pension Fund currently has approximately £485 million out of the £9 billion fund invested in fossil fuel companies including fossil fuel giants BP and Shell, despite concerns about their growing climate risk. These investments are in direct conflict with the fact that all four South Yorkshire councils and the Combined Mayoral Authority for South Yorkshire have declared a Climate Emergency, acknowledging the catastrophic consequences of climate change.

By writing to your MP, Councillor or the pension authority you will help them to realise how important these issues are to the people of South Yorkshire.

Thank you in anticipation - South Yorkshire Fossil Free!



Bread for Sheffield

Having trouble finding flour? Why not buy top quality bread flour from St Mary’s and help provide emergency food boxes for families across Sheffield. They will provide top quality bread flour from Hukins in 2.5kg bags at cost price and you make a donation to fund the provision of emergency food.  50% of the donation goes to St Mary’s food delivery scheme, and 50% to support local food banks. Flour can be collected from St Mary's Church Bramall Lane (open 9-5pm Tuesday to Thursday), 11 Greystones Avenue (open 2-4pm Thursday), or Hammer & Pincers, Bents Green (open 2-4pm Thursday). Visit the website to find out more and to order your flour.


And just for fun!

How well do you know your Hymn Book?

Last week you were asked to match random lines from hymns in Hymns and Psalms, with the first line of the first verse of the hymn.


Here are the answers:-

Line from hymn

1st line of 1st verse

H&P no.

1 Slow to chide, and swift to bless.

Praise, my soul, the King of heaven;


2 Like the first dewfall

Morning has broken


3 Our faith shall never yield to fear.

God is the refuge of his saints,


4 Your living likeness still we bear,

Lord God, your love has called us here


5 The voice of prayer is never silent,

The day thou gavest, Lord, is ended,


6 Where the bruised and lonely dwell,

Lord, thy church on earth is seeking


7 A royal diadem adorns

The head that once was crowned with thorns


8 Night’s sparkling host, all seem to say

Yes, God is good – in earth and sky,


9 This gospel-message we proclaim

We have a gospel to proclaim,


10 It is the sacrament of care;

Now let us from this table rise



Paul Freemont


There will another hymn challenge next week, thanks to Paul. But for this week you can rest your brains and have a chuckle at this cartoon!


And remember - You’re not stuck at home - You’re safe at home.



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