Author Archives: angelweb

First they came, Time to Pray

“First they came . . .” by Martin Niemoller

Because I was not a Socialist.

Then they came for the Trade Unionists, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Trade Unionist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out—
Because I was not a Jew.

Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.

— Martin Niemöller, The author was a Lutheran pastor and theologian born in Germany in 1892.

Powerful words for the current situation I think.  On my knees.  Time to #Pray #Ukraine


Christmas Loss

We have been rocked by so much over the last year but in just the last few weeks, it’s been especially hard.  First storm Arwen knocked out power for more than a few days.  Then the Omicron variant lowered hopes and expectations for the second year.  But worse than that is the loss of friends, family and neighbours who have been shining lights to the world.  This is the hardest blow and we are suffering this Christmas.  Words cannot express the deep mourning that accompanies our loss.

Here is a message from Handel’s Messiah which is the only fitting response to our situation:

From Psalm 85: 10-13 we have hope for the future:

Love and faithfulness meet together;
    righteousness and peace kiss each other.
11 Faithfulness springs forth from the earth,
    and righteousness looks down from heaven.
12 The Lord will indeed give what is good,
    and our land will yield its harvest.
13 Righteousness goes before him
    and prepares the way for his steps.

The blessing of hope, love, joy and peace in Christ be with you all. Amen.


Walking for Burundi

How would you like to reach out and support a community in Africa without leaving your local area?

It will improve your fitness and benefit some beautiful souls who could really use your help.  You will experience the beauty of the natural world and probably make some new friends along the way.

The Kepplewray Trust established a Christian partnership with the Anglican Diocese in Muyinga, Burundi just over 10 years ago.  A 4 X 4 vehicle which they supplied, critical to their needs, has finally fallen apart.  

Can you help raise funds by Walking for Wheels in Burundi?  54 miles is the round trip distance from Muyinga where the Bethesda project is based to to Murama where health care to the community is provided.  Information on how you can help can be found below.  Please pray for this community and all the individuals who are helping them.  If you’d like to join in the walk, click the link  below.

Walk for Wheels


Journey Through Lent

After 11 months of C-19 disruption, our hearts aren’t really into denial.  We want to sing and run and hug and kiss our friends and get back into the world.  Can it be that there is still more for us to learn in these difficult times?

Fear not, there are many opportunities to engage.  Here are a few:

  • Vision Refresh , Mondays at 19:00 via zoom.   These materials are being used through out the Carlisle Diocese over Lent.  The mantra of Follow Daily, Speak Boldly, Care Deeply, and Tread Softly is helping us to recharge and focus on Christ in a positive way. 
  • Woven :  Thursdays at 15:30 via zoom.  Woven is a course being delivered by the Methodist Church thoughout the UK over Lent.  It looks at the actions of Jesus leading to the cross and examines what they mean for us today.  We’re doing this in Coniston as Christians Together.
  • Morning Prayer : Wednesdays at 9:30 via zoom.  This initiaive is led by the Coniston Crake Valley churches.  It lasts about half an hour and uses materials for Daily Prayer available on the Church of England web-site.  It’s always better to do this together.

The Vision Refresh and Woven studies last only an hour.  If you can find the time, do join us.  Links for all the events can be found at the following web-site:

Calendar | Coniston and Crake Churches



Christian Unity Week


Image result for christian unity

This week is Christian Unity Week and Kath Dodd has arranged daily half hour zoom prayer sessions from 10 a.m.  Come to as many as you are able.

Here is the info:

 UNITY WEEK (Jan 18 – 25)

Churches Together in Hawkshead, Churches Together in Ambleside, and Christians in Coniston are joining together to meet for half an hour (plus) each week day at 10am.

The Week of Prayer for Christian Unity in 2021 has been prepared by the Monastic Community of Grandchamp in Switzerland. The theme that was chosen, “Abide in my love and you shall bear much fruit”, is based on John 15:1-17 and expresses Grandchamp Community’s vocation to prayer, reconciliation and unity in the Church and the human family

 DAILY MEETINGS FOR PRAYER – drawing on the Unity week material

We are grateful to our various leaders:

Monday, 18 Jan: Beverley Lock (Anglican)

Tuesday, 19 Jan: Nick Hallam (Anglican)

Wednesday, 20 Jan: Maggie Patchett (Methodist)

Thursday, 21 Jan: John Whitley (Friends) Half hour of prayer, followed by optional discussion

Friday, 22 Jan: Andrew & Kath Dodd (Baptist)

Join Zoom Meeting hosted by Kath Dodd

Meeting ID: 899 2683 3953
Passcode: 212596



Comfort Ye, Comfort Ye my People

Prayer Service, Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Comfort ye, Comfort Ye My People

Greeting & Call to Prayer

The blessing of the good news of Jesus Christ be with us all!

Lift up your voice with strength,
O herald of good tidings.

1The wilderness and the dry land shall rejoice, 
the desert shall blossom and burst into song.

2They shall see the glory of the Lord, 
the majesty of our God.

3Strengthen the weary hands, 
and make firm the feeble knees.

4Say to the anxious, ‘Be strong, fear not,
your God is coming with judgement, 
coming with judgement to save you.’

5Then shall the eyes of the blind be opened, 
and the ears of the deaf unstopped;

6Then shall the lame leap like a hart, 
and the tongue of the dumb sing for joy.

7For waters shall break forth in the wilderness, 
and streams in the desert;

8The ransomed of the Lord shall return with singing, 
with everlasting joy upon their heads.

9Joy and gladness shall be theirs, 
and sorrow and sighing shall flee away.

 Glory to the Father and to the Son
and to the Holy Spirit;
as it was in the beginning is now
and shall be for ever. Amen.

 Lift up your voice with strength,
O herald of good tidings.

 Hymn Comfort ye, Every Valley, Gramophone Chorus w/ Ebenezer ANTWI

Isaiah 40:25-31

25 “To whom will you compare me?
Or who is my equal?” says the Holy One.
26 Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens:
Who created all these?
He who brings out the starry host one by one
and calls forth each of them by name.
Because of his great power and mighty strength,
not one of them is missing.

27 Why do you complain, Jacob?
Why do you say, Israel,
“My way is hidden from the Lord;
my cause is disregarded by my God”?
28 Do you not know?
Have you not heard?
The Lord is the everlasting God,
the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

Matthew 11:28-end

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Hymn: Wait for the Lord

Wait for the Lord, whose day is near.  Wait for the Lord.  Be strong, take heart. Taizé


The Lord’s Prayer


O Lord, raise up, we pray, your power
and come among us,
and with great might succour us;
that whereas, through our sins and wickedness
we are grievously hindered
in running the race that is set before us,
your bountiful grace and mercy
may speedily help and deliver us;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
to whom with you and the Holy Spirit,
be honour and glory, now and for ever.Amen.

Hymn 493 O Come O Come Emmanuel

Our Lord says, ‘I am coming soon.’

          Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.

May the Lord, when he comes,

find us watching and waiting.

          Amen. May it be so.

Go in peace to love and serve The Lord

In the name of Christ Amen.


Life’s most important questions

This is a special message from Fran Sciacca in the US 

“Black Friday” Without a Credit Card!

I hope your Thanksgiving was safe and still meaningful. Finding the balance between safety, sanity, and tradition is going to be a delicate dance for a while, I’m afraid.

One of the recently established traditions in America is the battleground commonly known as “Black Friday.” It’s a time when Americans have internal battles about whether or not they want to fight the external battles of shopping in an arena where helmets and elbow pads may very likely become recommended shopping attire! Personally, I’m not a fan of full-contact shopping.

So, I wanted to let you know that I’ve added some more resources to the website, but unlike most Black Friday items, you won’t need a credit card to access or obtain them. And you won’t have to leave home, or generate more cardboard with “Prime” inked on it. Seamless, digital delivery to your laptop or device. How’s that for something to be thankful for? 🙂 And…no cost!

Just a week or so ago, I delivered three messages to students at Yale University (via Zoom) on the topic, “Life’s Three Most Important Questions.” Those three videos are now available, if you’d like something to watch over the holidays besides Netflix.

I am also continuing my commitment to make the individual character studies I wrote over the years available to you for personal or group study. I’ve added five more, bringing the total available to 20. More will be coming in 2021. The new ones are:

  • Barnabas – The powerful ministry of encouragement
  • Paul – Dealing with our past
  • The Nation of Israel – The myth of nostalgia
  • Jeremiah – Longing to be successful
  • Jesus – Handling rejection

The videos may be accessed here, and the Bible studies are here.


Warmly in the Lamb,

Fran Sciacca


A prayer for peace

18 November 2020

Commemoration for Elizabeth of Hungary, 1231

Psalm 150

Praise the Lord.[a]

Praise God in his sanctuary;
    praise him in his mighty heavens.
Praise him for his acts of power;
praise him for his surpassing greatness.
Praise him with the sounding of the trumpet,
    praise him with the harp and lyre,
praise him with timbrel and dancing,
praise him with the strings and pipe,
praise him with the clash of cymbals,
praise him with resounding cymbals.

Let everything that has breath praise the Lord.

Praise the Lord.


Hymn: Praise to the Lord the Almighty

Revelation 4, The Throne in Heaven

After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.” At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and ruby. A rainbow that shone like an emerald encircled the throne. Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. In front of the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits[a] of God. Also in front of the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal.

In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back. The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:

“‘Holy, holy, holy

is the Lord God Almighty,’[b]

who was, and is, and is to come.”

Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, 10 the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say:

11 “You are worthy, our Lord and God,
to receive glory and honor and power,
for you created all things,
and by your will they were created
and have their being.”


Holy Holy Holy


Romans 8:37b-39

37b  We are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons,[a] neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, 39 neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Meditation:  As our eyes turn heavenward, our perspective changes.  Reality is not just what is before us today.  Speak out loud Paul’s words in Romans 8:38-39.  Say them again.  Memorise them.  Hold them in your heart.  Carry them with you into the world.


Open Prayer


The Lord’s Prayer is said


Lord God,
who taught Elizabeth of Hungary
to recognize and reverence Christ in the poor of this world:
by her example
strengthen us to love and serve the afflicted and the needy
and so to honour your Son, the servant king,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever. Amen.


Hymn, The Blessing


Iona Blessing

Deep peace of running wave to you.

Deep peace of the flowing air to you.

Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.

Deep peace of the shining stars to you.

Deep peace of the infinite peace to you.






The Law of Help

St Andrew’s Church, Prayer & Praise, Wednesday, 4 November 2020

What the world needs now on the day following the US election

Call to Worship


For the gift of His Spirit:

blessed be Christ.


For the catholic Church:
blessed be Christ.
For the means of grace:
blessed be Christ.
For the hope of glory:
blessed be Christ.
For the triumphs of his gospel:
blessed be Christ.
For the lives of his saints:
blessed be Christ.
In joy and in sorrow:
blessed be Christ.
In life and in death:
blessed be Christ.
Now and to the end of the ages:
blessed be Christ.

Hymn: Psalm 27, The Lord is my Light, Kirian Young Wimberly

Philipians 2:12-18

 Do Everything Without Grumbling

12 Therefore, my dear friends, as you have always obeyed—not only in my presence, but now much more in my absence—continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling, 13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

14 Do everything without grumbling or arguing, 15 so that you may become blameless and pure, “children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation.”[a] Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky 16 as you hold firmly to the word of life. And then I will be able to boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor in vain. 17 But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. 18 So you too should be glad and rejoice with me.

 Luke 14:27

Anyone who does not carry his cross and follow me cannot be my disciple.

 A reading from Ruskin’s Law of Help (attached)

 Question:  What happens when we are single mindedly focused and work together for a common purpose in Christ? 

 Hymn Open our eyes, Lord,

Open our eyes, Lord, we want to see Jesus,

to reach out and touch Him and say that we love Him.

Open our ears, Lord, and help us to listen:

Open our eyes, Lord, we want to see Jesus!



Pray for vision to see the beauty of Christ in everything we do, like the greatest porcelain fit for a King’s table, or the depth of an opal, the glow of a sapphire or a sparkling diamond. 

The Lord’s Prayer is said


Almighty and eternal God,
you have kindled the flame of love
in the hearts of the saints:
grant to us the same faith and power of love,
that, as we rejoice in their triumphs,
we may be sustained by their example and fellowship;
through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord,
who is alive and reigns with you,
in the unity of the Holy Spirit,
one God, now and for ever.  Amen.


Hymn, Will you come and follow me.


Iona Blessing

Deep peace of running wave to you.

Deep peace of the flowing air to you.

Deep peace of the quiet earth to you.

Deep peace of the shining stars to you.

Deep peace of the infinite peace to you.


Go in peace to love and serve the Lord

In the name of Christ, Amen.


Ch. I THE LAW OF HELP 207, John Ruskin

� 6. A pure or holy state of anything, therefore, is that in which all its parts are helpful or consistent.

� 8. That slime we shall find in most cases composed of clay (or brickdust, which is burnt clay) mixed with soot, a little sand, and water. All these elements are at helpless war with each other, and destroy reciprocally each other’s nature and power, competing and fighting for place at every tread of your foot.  Let us suppose that this ounce of mud is left in perfect rest, and that its elements gather together, like to like, so that their atoms may get into the closest relations possible.

� 9. Let the clay begin. Ridding itself of all foreign substance, it gradually becomes a white earth,2 already very beautiful; and fit, with help of congealing fire, to be made into finest porcelain, and painted on, and be kept in kings’ palaces. But such artificial consistence is not its best. Leave it still quiet to follow its own instinct of unity, and it becomes not only white, but clear; not only clear, but hard; nor only clear and hard, but so set that it can deal with light in a wonderful way, and gather out of it the loveliest blue rays only, refusing the rest. We call it then a sapphire.1

Such being the consummation of the clay, we give similar permission of quiet to the sand. It also becomes, first, a white earth, then proceeds to grow clear and hard, and at last arranges itself in mysterious, infinitely fine, parallel lines, which have the power of reflecting not merely the blue rays, but the blue, green, purple, and red rays in the greatest beauty in which they can be seen through any hard material whatsoever. We call it then an opal.2

In next order the soot sets to work; it cannot make itself white at first, but instead of being discouraged, tries harder and harder, and comes out clear at last, and the hardest thing in the world; and for the blackness that it had, obtains in exchange the power of reflecting all the rays of the sun at once in the vividest blaze that any solid thing can shoot. We call it then a diamond.

Last of all the water purifies or unites itself, contented enough if it only reach the form of a dew-drop;3 but if we insist on its proceeding to a more perfect consistence, it crystallizes into the shape of a star.

And for the ounce of slime which we had by political economy of competition, we have by political economy of co-operation, a sapphire, an opal, and a diamond, set in the midst of a star of snow.