News items are listed with the most recent first. Don't forget, to find out about forthcoming events at St Andrew's just like us on Facebook (Click here) or check out our Diary details.
Sunday 5th June - Pentecost Sunday - Parade Service to celebrate the Jubilee.
This was held in the hall as the weather wasn't too good. A wonderful service led by Rev. Mark Bates with over 140 attending and enjoying an Afternoon Tea afterwards.
Saturday 4th June - Jubilee Festival Celebration with St John's Meols and St Catherine's.
What a wonderful day we all had and also managed to raise a fantastic £2056.00 for MIND.
Our flower arranging stall was busy, as were "Splat the rat" and the "Dexterity" game. Our Treasure Hunt was once again popular with families - see our Facebook page StAndrews.
Join in with the fun on The Green outside St John's 11am - 2pm.
THE CROWN JEWELS HAVE BEEN STOLEN!!!!
If you wish to take part in the hunt, please see the posters below
Prayer For Ukraine
Lord of all people and all nations, We lift before you the people of Ukraine and the people of Russia, Each girl and boy, each woman and man living in fear of what tomorrow might bring, We long for a time you spoke of through your prophet Isaiah, When weapons of war would be beaten into ploughshares, When nation will no longer lift up sword against nation, We cry out to you for peace, Protect those who only desire and deserve to live in security and safety, Comfort those who fear for their lives and the lives of their loved ones, Change the hearts of those set on violence and aggression, Fill earthly leaders with great wisdom to find paths to peace, Please Lord come and have your way in your world, May your will be done here, on earth as it is in heaven, May your peace reign. Now and always, We lift this prayer to you, our God who is able to do more than we can ever ask or imagine, In the name of Christ our saviour, Amen
A prayer for Ukraine by David Thomas, Ireland's Church and Community Manager www.christianaid.org.uk/pray/prayers-ukraine.
Sunday 27th February is the middle Sunday of Fairtrade fortnight and we will be looking at the role we can all play in levelling up and caring for our planet.
Service lead by our minister Rev’d Mark Bates
Service starts at 10.30 am and will last approximately 40 minutes.
Come and join us as we share chocolate and reflect on its journey.
Sunday 12th December at 4.00pm Carol Service led by Rev. Mark Bates
TRIP TO WILLIMASON TUNNELS LIVERPOOL
A few photos of our trip over to Liverpool to experience and see the Williamson Tunnels. It was a very interesting trip but lots of steps!
Our poppy cascade continues to grow in the garden of the church. We invite you to add a poppy of your own to mark 100 years since the start of the poppy appeal and formation of the British Legion. It was in September 1921 that Canadian Anna Guerin arrived in England and convinced the British Legion to adopt the poppy as a symbol of remembrance. The first Poppy Appeal in 1921 raised £106,000 (equates to 5.21m today) and numerous branches of the Legion were established across the country.
The weekend of 2nd & 3rd of October we welcomed artists to our church as part of Wirral Festival of Firsts Art Trail
Harvest 2021 with a selection of "bees"
Thank you to everyone who attended our service on the 26th and for all your very generous donations. We were able to send some wonderful fresh vegetables including squashes and pumpkins to The Wirral Ark whose chef was delighted to receive such good fresh produce. All tinned and bottled produce were split between the Foodbank and The Charles Thompson Mission who were equally delighted to receive such a large donation. The "bees" were a great success and most were "sold" with donations to the Afghanistan Refugee Appeal and some were dotted around the church garden to take part in our "bee trail".
"BEE" Trail September 2021
The Bees have arrived!!! Come and meet Buzz and try our Bee Trail! There are 9 bees hidden around our gardens for you to find and discover some amazing facts about these incredible creatures.
Everyone can take part, but the trail is particularly aimed at children aged 4 - 10.
Thanks go to sunhatsandwellieboots.com for sharing this fun activity.
2021 Giant Easter Egg Hunt
This event was a great success with over 50 families and 90+ children taking part, all hunting in and around Hoylake and Meols for the 30 eggs that were displayed in windows. Such positive feedback was received that we are hoping to do it all again next year!
Lent in a Bag
Lent Bags were distributed to all members for the period of Lent. They included a pamphlet with prayers and readings for the weeks of Lent with small items relating to each theme, including a knitted daffodil for Mothering Sunday. Many thanks to all those who took time to knit these for us. The bags proved popular as we were once more in a lockdown situation.
St Andrews United Reformed Church
We are unable to hold our usual Act of Remembrance we have created a garden to remember those who gave their lives in conflicts.
if you would like to add your own symbol – a painted pebble, a cross, a poppy –
we encourage you to share with us at this particularly difficult time
Rev. Mark, the Elders and
23rd February 2020 Looking forward to our Fair-trade Service at which we are being asked to bring rubbish - recyclable/non recyclable and Maltezers!!
Thank you Richard for an interesting and informative wine tasting evening.
Thanks to everyone who helped decorate the church this year - it all looks lovely 12/2019
Thank you to members of Bangor University Music Society for a brilliant evening of excellent entertainment. Everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves. A great concert in memory of Prof. Dave Burton, a former Elder of our Church, with all profits going to Wirral St John's Hospice.
Thank you once again. 23/11/19
Update - we were able to send a donation of £300 to Wirral Hospice St John's in memory of Dave Burton - so thank you all once again x 8/12/19
A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone for their kind generosity at our Toy/Parade service yesterday. 21 shoeboxes have gone to Teams4U for distribution to children in Romania and other countries who wouldn't otherwise have anything at Christmas (check out teams4u.com for more info) and all other gifts have gone to The Charles Thompson Mission in Birkenhead for families in the local area.
Thank you all again.
Update - a few more boxes have now been given to Teams4U - thank you. 19/11/2019
We have had a quiet time since our joint service celebration in July but have managed to celebrate Harvest, where we were joined by members of our Uniformed Groups. Lots of gifts were received and all fresh produce was taken to the Wirral Ark Project, with packaged goods going to the Wirral Foodbank. A BIG THANK YOU to everyone who attended the service and brought gifts to be distributed locally.
We are now concentrating on our TOY/GIFT service on the 17th November. Shoeboxes will be collected for Teams4U
and other gifts are to be given to The Charles Thompson Mission.
Please don't forget our Remembrance Day service on the 10th November.
Sunday 14th July. What a wonderful day we had welcoming our friends from Hoole URC to a joint service here at St Andrew's. It was lovely to see a full church and to say hello again to Rev. Peter Sharp who led the service and who was accompanied by his wife. Thanks to all at St Andrew's who provided a great lunch for everyone after the service.
1st July 2019 Andy McCluskey of OMD (Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark) unveiling a plaque on the church wall in honour of the band and the important telephone box on the corner of Greenwood Rd Meols
EASTER 2019 - Easter Sunday. Our 8.30am service in the garden.
Afternoon Guild - Nordic Scouse - a great afternoon of music, poetry and song.
Friday 1st - we all enjoyed a wonderful service for World Day of Prayer. Thanks to all who attended and took part. Everyone enjoyed the tea and cakes afterwards - again thanks to all who contributed such wonderful cakes and biscuits.
Saturday 2nd - another tremendous evening being entertained so royally by The Trelawnyd Male Voice Choir. Always a wonderful evening - good luck to you in your forthcoming competitions.
January 2019 - 40 of us enjoyed a Liverpool (Scouse) Dinner evening. Pea Soup, Scouse/Cheese and Onion pie, Apple Crumble/Rice Pudding - lovely!!
Carol Service 2018.
Our Carol service this year was led by Hazel Brown and Katherine Brown.
The service was followed by Mince Pies and Mulled wine which were
enjoyed by everyone.
Evening of Music 24th November 2018. In conjunction with our friends at St John The Baptist Church of England church in Meols we held a concert in aid of Children in Need. It was a great evening and thanks go to all involved. The evening resulted in us being able to send a cheque for £500 to the Children In Need Appeal.
Our annual "Toy Service" - no, not a service for toys, but a celebration of gift giving in the period leading up to Christmas, is always a great success.
We bring gifts of toys - often packed in shoeboxes - to the service and dedicate them in the name of the Lord to those less fortunate than ourselves.
The Shoeboxes this year are being distributed via Teams4U. We never know who gets the gifts but we contribute them in love and hope they bring pleasure and happiness.
Other gifts are donated to The Charles Thompson Mission in Birkenhead who distribute them to local families in the run up to Christmas.
Why not come along? Everyone welcome - with, or without, a gift!
Our next "Toy Service" (normally in November) will be announced later in the year - watch out for the date in our diary.
A Remembrance Evening of Music.
'We enjoyed an excellent evening of music and song themed around the idea of remembering those who have fought for our freedom as well as all those who made their contribution 'on the home front'. This was a noteworthy event as it was very much a joint effort by St Andrews and our friends from the nearby CofE church, St Johns and a very successful collaboration it proved to be.
Despite what might seem to be a rather sombre theme, the reality is that the evening cleverly combined respectful remembrance for the suffering and loss of all those involved in conflict with a joyous celebration of the great spirit and verve of those generations that have been tested by war.
The centre piece of the evening was the joint churches' choir who did two sets; the first involving popular songs from the first world war such as Pack Up Your Troubles, Daisy Bell and, of course, It's a Long Way to Tipperary! The second set by the choir involved hit songs associated with the second world war such as: A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square, We'll Meet Again and The White Cliffs of Dover. These performances by the Choir were interspersed with solo performances from: Susie Chappell on clarinet and piano (not at the same time!), Eunice Moss on violin, Lauren Rosborough on xylophone, Owen Burton on Piano and Hephzi Leafe on clarinet. There was also a excellent solo performance on the viola by our own minister Peter - showing he is a man of many talents!
The evening financially supported the charity Combat Stress which does vital work to help and support those mentally affected by the trauma and stress of war. As a result of the generosity of all those who gave their talents and time to create the event and, of course, those who came to listen and support, we were able to send Combat Stress a cheque for over £1,000!
Harvest Festival is always a happy day of celebration at St Andrew's and this year was no exception!
As well as the main congregation we were joined by both the Scouts, Cubs, Beavers, Guides and Brownies who played a major part in the celebration of God's gifts to us. We also joined in celebrating St Andrew's Scout Groups 25th Anniversary - there was lots of cake!!
As you can see there was a splendid display of produce and that was further supplemented by gifts of food and other 'goodies' from everyone present. In case you're wondering, all of that food does not just go to waste after the service, instead it is immediately transported by church members to local charities who make good use of it to help those most in need in our local community.
'Weddings are always joyous occasions of course, but when the bride is the daughter of one of our Elders, then that's an extra special event. So it was when Beth Brown's daughter Hester was married recently at St Andrew's.
The church was beautifully decorated for the ceremony and this was one wedding Hazel, our registrar, was particularly happy to do the formalities for!
A Pastorate Joint Service.
St Andrew's is in a Pastorate with Hoole URC in Chester. Both churches thought it would be a great idea to have a joint service, with each church hosting the other. And a great thing it turned out to be in practice as well.
In the summer, on a gorgeous Sunday morning, we hosted Hoole at our church. Our friends arrived en-masse in a large coach! The service, taken by Peter of course, was most enjoyable and with such a large congregation the singing was excellent and full of life.
After the service we arranged for our visitors to have a short trip to the sea side and then we all joined in a "bring and share" lunch al-fresco! A smashing day and great fun.
It was in March this year that we went to join our friends at Hoole for a joint service, which was followed by lunch. An excellent day shared with friends.
Fair Trade Event
We recently held a Fair Trade event after the morning service was led by Ralph Dransfield which "set the scene" nicely! At the event there was a stall selling chocolate (always a popular item, I wonder why?), biscuits and all manner of Fair Trade goodies.
There was the usual after service coffee, Fair Trade as usual of course!
Check out our diary for next years event.
Bangor University Music Society at St Andrews
Bangor University Music Society recently performed to a full house at St Andrew's. The Society brought with them a wide range of performers including: the Choir, the Flute Choir, Trumpet Duet and a Folk Band. Solo performers included: Elle Leighton on flute, vocalist Bradley Thornborough-Barlow and violinist Maddy Chitty.
The evening presented a wide selection of music ranging from classical pieces to modern "classics" such as the Choir's splendid rendition of "Bohemian Rhapsody" - truly something for everyone!
Trelawnyd Male Voice Choir
The visit of the Trelawnyd male voice choir has become a much anticipated and "looked forward to" annual event at St Andrew's. This year was no different. The Choir, always excellent, was on particularly good form. They sang a collection of pieces which catered for a wide range of tastes; there were of course the Welsh classics such as "Myfanwy", but also modern music from the shows including a beautiful rendition of "Bring Him Home" from Les Misérables.
The Choir's guest was Elle Leighton from Bangor University School of Music who provided a wonderful contrast by performing two pieces for flute.
Once again this was an excellent evening's entertainment and we look forward to welcoming the Choir again next year.
Poppies, Not Just for Remembrance.
We are all familiar with the idea of wearing a red poppy in November in remembrance of all those who have died or were injured in conflict. But what about white poppies? Never heard of them? Well they do exist and they are increasingly being used to symbolise the hope for peace.
We thought it would be nice to join in a national initiative to sow a mixture of white and red poppy seeds which, with any luck, will have germinated and be in flower during August as a symbol of both remembrance and our hopes and prayers for peace in the world.
We thought it a particularly nice touch that the young lady doing the sowing is called - Poppy!
Easter with a Difference!
'Easter morning - 8.30am! Members of St Andrew's were up with the lark to celebrate the resurrection of Our Lord Jesus Christ - the happiest day of the year! We met in the garden for the first part of a short service to mark Easter morning.
Moving into the hall and breaking bread was followed by taking breakfast together.
This was a joyous event with everyone animated and joining in the over breakfast conversation. Oh,...did I mention? Breakfast was bacon butties and coffee - lovely!
Our Vision Day.
May saw the third of our annual "Vision Morning" meetings. These are designed to give us some time to step back from the day-to-day business of the church and to take a more strategic look at what we are doing, what we might do and how we might do it.
All members of the church are invited to an open forum and brainstorming session where new ideas can be thrown into the mix to challenge us with difficult questions! A particularly difficult challenge this time was to consider "what do we most value about St Andrew's that makes us come here and conversely of course what do we not like so much about our church and want to change?"
As always the discussion was lively, fun and exciting with lots of good ideas for taking St Andrew's forward whilst keeping it the warm friendly Christian community it is.
The Cream Tea!
'It's like the Tweet we sent out says,..."You like cream? You like tea? Yes? So why not come along to the Cream Tea at St Andrews" Well going by the turn out a lot of St Andrew's members and friends from round about do indeed like cream and tea!
The Cream Tea is fast becoming a popular annual event and why not, what is there not to like? About thirty partakers joined the feast and sampled home made scones and jam - OK so we bought the cream in!
We all know it's not exactly "health food" - but they do say that a little of what you fancy does you good and as a little treat it's not too naughty. To go with the excellent cuisine of course there was the usual opportunity to have a good chat and enjoy some smashing fellowship. If you missed it this year, then next year don't be square - be there!
The Poetry Evening.
The Poetry Evening organised by Dave Hornby was a great success. In recognition of the 100th anniversary of the outset of WW1 - perhaps the war most associated with poetry - the theme of the evening was "War & Peace". An invitation had been sent out beforehand asking people to nominate their favourite poems addressing the theme.
It goes without saying that many of the contributions were sad and there were some very moving moments. But to contrast the darkness there was also light, with uplifting and life-affirming poems playing their part in answer to the second element of the theme.
The evening included refreshments and a chance to catch up with old friends and make some new ones too! All in all a very pleasant evening and an event we're sure to run again. Thanks go to Dave Hornby and team for the excellent organisation.
A Musical Evening.
October saw one of the popular "Music Evenings" organised by Dave Hornby. Popular as ever the event was a sell out with not an empty seat available! This year the choir's theme was songs of the two world wars. All the well known favourites were there and the audience had an opportunity to join in with some of these well loved songs.
As usual there were performances by many of the local musicians. Its always quite amazing to realise just how much musical talent there is among us. Suzy Chappell did two lovely duets with her son Tommy, clearly a musical family. Owen Burton accompanied his girlfriend Hephzibah Leaf in a English premier of Owain Lloyd's piece for clarinet "Laugharne" written in memory of Dylan Thomas, 2014 marks the centenary of the Welsh poet's birth.