News from the Flaming Chalice

 News from the Flaming Chalice

                         THE FLAMING CHALICE

June, July, August 2018

BUILT - 1697

Park Lane Unitarian Chapel,
629, Wigan Road, Bryn, Ashton-in-Makerfield.

(A Unitarian & Free Christian Church)
Sunday Services at 11am
                                 Children’s Group  at 11am
Weddings, Funerals, Child Dedication & Naming
by arrangement.

Our Object

We, the congregation of Park Lane Chapel
uniting in a spirit of co-operation,

and respect
and recognising the worth and dignity of all people
and their freedom to believe as their consciences dictate;
and believing that the truth is best served where the mind and conscience are free,

acknowledge      that      the      object       of        our
congregation     is     to     promote     a     free    and
inquiring  religion,  through   the  worship  of   God
and the celebration of life:

the service of humanity
and respect for all creation;
and the upholding of the liberal Christian tradition.

To this end,
we   encourage    each    other    and    unite    in    a
fellowship       which       upholds      the      religious
liberty of its members

unconstrained by the imposition of creeds:
and affirm the liberal religious heritage
and learn from the spiritual, cultural and intellectual
insights of all humanity.

Alan Jones
Funeral Directors Limited
Independent Family Business
Local People Caring for Local People.
24 Hours
Funeral Homes and Chapels of Rest
Ashland House, 87 Old Road,    Danesbrook House, 21 Ladies Lane,
Ashton-in-Makerfield,                Hindley,
01942 271824                             01942 525504

Dove Cottage, 51 Johns Ave.,    Millbrook House, 56 High Street,
Haydock,                                    Golborne,
01942 724777                             01942 272027

We also offer our own “Eternal Peace”
Pre Paid Funeral Plans for Peace of Mind
New Memorials and Inscriptions on Existing Memorials
Chapel and School Maintenance
 Have you noticed the amount of work that is always being done around the chapel grounds and buildings? It is a very busy time for our volunteers who turn up every Monday and usually Thursday too so that all the growth at this time of year is kept cut back and tidy.  The hedges are always nicely clipped and flowers have been planted along the side of the paths and the urns have been renewed for summer.  At the moment lots of hard work is being carried out clearing the long border overlooking the Memorial Garden which had become very overgrown.
Inside, too, the work carries on. Each week the Chapel is cleaned and fresh flowers bought and put in.  The Memorial Room is cleaned and tidied and the Children’s Room is usually having glue removed after Sunday’s sessions., as well as keeping the floor clear of all the bits and pieces that accrue.                                          
Raffles are prepared and tickets sold and refreshments provided all on a voluntary basis – so God Bless the volunteers!



Roofing & Property Repairs
UPVC Windows & Fascias
Plastering & Tiling

Tel:  01942 711848
Summer Pleasures
Sunshine beaming golden heat
For lots of fun outdoors
Holidays, for a sweet retreat
To mountains, plains and shores

Kids in constant summer motion,
Free from teacher’s rule
Head to toe in suntan lotion,
At the beach or pool.

Inflatable rafts on which to float
Camping and fishing gear
Rowing or sailing or waterski boat,
Tell us summer’s here

Things we can’t do the rest of the year
Are summer’s special treasures;
Oh summer, summer, linger long,
And give us all you pleasures

.                                                  3
Ministers Column: Getting Better All The Time?
Thomas A Kempis, in his late medieval classic The Imitation of Christ, wrote:
If we were to uproot only one vice each year, we should soon become perfect. The contrary, however, is often the case.”
How true. And in some ways – how discouraging. Those of you who know me, have probably learned that I’m not perfect. Honestly, I’m not even that close. But it’s not like I have that many vices. At least, I don’t think I do (a lack of adequate self-criticism could well be one of my flaws, come to think of it). Really, if I just focussed on getting rid of one glaring imperfection each year, I’d be clear of them in no time. Isn’t the same true for you?
I like to think I’m headed in the right direction. Not twenty minutes ago, I spotted fifteen pounds fly out of someone’s pocket. A tenner and a fiver – but without a moment’s hesitation I rushed up to the unfortunate woman and returned them to their rightful, and grateful owner. Was I tempted to keep the notes? Not really – but when I was twenty-one, and skint, maybe I would have been tempted. Which goes to show you, we can – and sometimes do – improve with age.
Then again, maybe I just gave the money back because I’m full of pride, and wanted to be recognised as altruistic, the all-conquering hero of generosity. I don’t remember being particularly prideful as a young lad – so perhaps it’s a new vice I’ve picked up along the way. Well, I’m not going to let it worry me too much. I’ll probably never be perfect. “No one is good, except God,” said Jesus – presumably including even himself in the equation. He went on to say we should do our best to follow the moral teachings we already know – and let go of holding things too tightly.
Sounds like fine advice to me. Being perfect would be nice, I imagine. I’ll never really know. What I do know is doing the right thing, even imperfectly, is well worth the effort
Pub Theology returns
On Thursday, the 26th of July I plan to be at the Park Hotel, next to the chapel, for a discussion of theology and/or life, the universe, and everything. Time is 6 pm – 8 p.m. – stop by for five minutes or come hang out for the whole time, whichever you fancy. I expect we we’ll
be talking about England’s recent repeat win of the World Cup, but
if we’re stuck for a topic, I propose a possible subject of ‘Gratitude: what difference does it make, and how do you practice gratitude in your life.’ But happy to talk about whatever is on your mind or heart. Ask at the bar for Rev. Bob if you don’t know what I look like – or you can text, call or e-mail me at 07986 826601, Thanks!
Rev. Bob

Fund Raising March, April & May

Thursday Café                        385.79
Sunday Refreshments             125.00
Loose Change                           79.00
Books                                        13.00
Sales                                          29.00
Raffle                                      110.00
Attic Sale                              1015.00

Donations including funerals and in memory of:

                        Annie Beckett                (       
                        George Harrison             (
                        Neil Snowden                (
                        Bill Catterall                  (        £827.00
                        Jessie Derbyshire           (
                        George Harrison             (
                        Vince & Doreen Glover (
14th                  Georgia Phair
13th                  Amelia Kenny
18th                  Toby Kennedy


8th                    11 am              Children’s Group Anniversary – this                                                 will be our 205th Anniversary which                                                        makes us all very proud to have                                                         such history behind us. Please come                                                  and support the children who really                                                     look forward to taking part in these                                                    special services
5th                                            Hospice Sunday when we raise funds                                                for Wigan & Leigh Hospice – a place                                             close to everyone’s heart.
Thurs. 9th                                 Committee Meeting following Coffee                                               Morning at 12        noon.



So the shorts can come with me on my next holiday as well as the rarely opened puzzle book and I can take as many escapist novels as I want.  I have to say that Susan enjoys the quiet times as well but that like most women (and I envy them for this) she is far more gregarious than I am and I rely on her to make me even vaguely sociable.
Having said this I can recognise that social interaction is very important and that loneliness and isolation are two of the greatest problems of modern living.  That is why organisations such as Park Lane, which bring people together, are so vital.  People need to meet other people since we are social animals.  We need to enjoy each other’s company and we at the chapel, united by a common philosophy which is very inclusive, provide a meeting place.  We all need social organisations as well as our quiet times.

Dates for your Diary
24th                  11 am              Mencap Sunday when we are visited                                     by members of the Mencap Society                                              and their families. A service much                                         enjoyed by everyone, so welcome                                          back.


22nd April.                  Natalie Birchall
                                    Toby Terry Lythgoe
                                    Lauren Bradley
13th May                      Ryan David Ward

21st June          Shaun John Ashton to Joanna Whalley,
                          Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon officiating

23rd Jan            Funeral of Annie Beckett Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon                               officiating
22nd April        Interment of Ashes of Annie Beckett Rev. Bob Janis-                       Dillon officiating
26th April         Funeral of Christine Kreiner Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon                          officiating

3rd May            Interment of Ashes of Neil Snowden Rev. Bob Janis-                       Dillon officiating
14th May          Funeral of Jean Silcock Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon                                  officiating

Flower Rota
10th                  Ian & Jim Lowe (in memory of parents)
17th                  Norma Leigh (in memory of Brian)
24th                  Edward & Christine Painter (in memory of loved ones)
1st                   Wendy Heaton (in memory of Harriet)
8th                    Ros Connolly (in memory of Dave)
15th                  Sheila Halliwell (in memory of granddaughter)
22nd                 Harry (in memory of Julie and his mother)
29th                  Margaret Griffiths (in memory of loved ones)
5th                    Marian (in memory of Graham)
12th                  Christina Bradshaw (in memory of loved ones)
19th                  Brenda & Amy (in memory of Tony & John)
26th                  David Lucas (in memory of his mother)

Pulpit Supply
3rd                    11 am              Rev. Lynne Readett
10th                  11 am              Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon
17th                  11 am              Jean Longworth
24th                  11 am              Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon
1st                    11 am              Rev. Tony McNeile
8th                    11 am              Rev. Bob Janis-Dillon
15th                  11 am              Jean Longworth
22nd                 11 am              Vince McCully
29th                  11 am              Jean Clements
5th                    11 am              Rev. Tony McNeile
12th                  11 am              Rev. Bob Janis-Dilllon
19th                  11 am              Rev. Chris Goacher
26th                  11 am              Ray Beecham

Thursday Café
March 2018                 April 2018                  May 2018
1st           25.80             5th           24.30           3rd        23.30
8th           24.90             12th         34.52           10th      33.80
15th         38.60             19th         32.32           17th      28.40
22nd        26.30             26th         33.50           24th      23.70
29th         28.40                         £124.64          31st      36.35
           £144.00                                                        £145.55



Coming Together

The things which I always take on holiday are my swim shorts.  If we’re going to the seaside I think that perhaps I might have a swim in open water; if we’re going to a hotel these often have swimming pools and fitness suites.  Now I’m obviously never going to use the latter but I dream that I’ll take myself off for a swim in the pool – perhaps even before breakfast to wake me up.  It never happens of course and my shorts are as good now as on the day when I bought them.  The thing is that although I’m not particularly good at it I like to swim but I don’t like the idea of having to get changed or of having people look at me – I’m hardly Charles Atlas (if you can remember him) . I will, though, still take the shorts with me next time.  On our lst holiday there was a pool and as usual we took the trouble to look at it but then decided that we had better things to do.
So if I don’t swim I have to do something with my time.  To occupy some of this I always take a puzzle book and a couple of works of fiction – nothing too demanding and usually escapist, stuff where I don’t need to think too hard.  The puzzle book rarely gets opened (it’s there because I think that it’s good for my brain to have some exercise) but the fiction is a different matter entirely.  I quickly become absorbed and forget that there’s anyone or anything around me.
Now that might seem selfish – and probably it is – but I was really pleased this morning when I opened my copy of the magazine “The Oldie” to read on the problems page that there are other people – a lot of them in fact – who are just like me.  A man had written in to say that he loves reading far more than he likes mixing with people and he wonders if he should be worried.  To my delight the agony aunt wrote that this is perfectly normal in men and that it should not concern him.  I no longer need to feel guilty about disappearing for ages when I am engrossed in a book since this has been identified as normal male behaviour.

The centrefold was devoted to a picture of a football pitch divided into numbered squares and the commentator would include the square number in his commentary so his listeners would know in what part of the pitch the action was taking place. I am told that is how we got the expression “back to square one”. Dot recalled the time in her childhood when listening to the commentary of the Grand National with her dad, brothers and sisters following the race and jumps on a plan of the race course that was also in the centre fold of the magazine. She would listen excitedly as her dad would point to each fence as the race progressed hoping that the horse she had chosen would not fall.
Today’s radio is probably just a background medium with people listening to mostly pop music while driving or going about their daily routines. We sit and watch TV without having to charge our imagination as it is all there to be seen happening in front of us. Although programmes like detective “who done it” series like Morse and George Gently allow us to ponder on who the villain might be.
At home our normal radio listening is usually restricted to the Today programme in the mornings and Classic FM at lunch time but I shall start tuning into stations like Radio 4 Extra that specialise in drama and comedy.
I cannot say that the sermons from Rev. Bob, Tony McNeil or the Two Jeans have had me on my feet and punching the air but they have often stirred my imagination with their thought provoking and inspiring subjects. With Ian’s humorous and entertaining style we at Park Lane are lucky to have such speakers to call on and long may they continue to inspire us and charge our imaginations without us jumping from our pews and causing injury.
                                                                Ken Webster

Best Wishes
We would like to send best wishes to any of our members and friends who are ill or in hospital or grieving. We would like you all to know that our thoughts and prayers are with you.


Sunday Refreshments
March                          April                            May
4th        10.00               1st        17.00               6th          4.00
11th      14.00               8th          9.00               13th      11.00
18th      11.00               15th        ------ *           20th        9.00
25th      13.72               22nd      5.00               27th      14.00
                                    29th      10.00                           _____
          £48.72                         £41.00                         £38.00

* District Service at Wallasey – no Morning Service

March                                                  April
4th        117.00   29 Adults                  1st        137.00   45 Adults
                            6 Children                                           9 Children
11th      162.00   41 Adults                  8th        140.00   36 Adults
                            8 Children                                           5 Children
18th        70.00   22 Adults                  15th      DISTRICT SERVICE
                            5 Children              
25th      109.00   38 Adults                  22nd       93.00   24 Adults
                            6 Children                                          -   Children
                                                            29th        88.00   31 Adults
                                                                                        5 Children
6th          84.00   26 Adults
                            6 Children
13th      134.00   35 Adults
                            5 Children
20th        81.00   28 Adults
                            4 Children
27th      123.00   36 Adults
                            2 Children


I am sorry that the magazine is so late this time, but you get an extra month for your money!
Unfortunately I have been very handicapped by having calcifying tendonitis in my shoulder and for three or four weeks I couldn’t move my left arm at all.  So, I can’t drive, I can’t comfortably use my computer for any length of time and to list all the things I haven’t been able to do for myself would be ‘too much information’.  I have done my best to bring the magazine to you as soon as I possibly could.
Next week I have an injection under ultrasound in my shoulder which I am not looking forward to, but which will, hopefully, alleviate the pain and lack of movement, but if not I might just have to commit hari-kari!

Children’s Anniversary
Due to circumstances beyond my control, the date of the Children’s Anniversary has had to be cancelled twice.  However, it is now definitely going ahead on Sunday, 8th July – our 205th Anniversary – and we look forward to seeing as many of you as possible to celebrate the day.  As usual the Children’s Group will be taking part in the service and are already practising their readings.

Spring Fayre
This was held on the 19th May and was its usual success – many old friends visiting and new ones made. We raised the fantastic sum of £1015 and thanks are due to everyone who helped out, donated or visited.  We look forward to seeing you all again on Heritage Day in September.

Advance Notices
On Saturday, 8th September, we will be holding our Heritage Open Day and Attic Sale from 10 am – 1 pm. More details later.


On Sunday, 14th October, we will be again hosting the Pemberton Youth Band to help us celebrate the life of Harry Latham who was our organist for 58 years.  This will be the third occasion the band has performed at Park Lane and it has been more successful on each occasion.  It will be an afternoon concert and details will be given nearer the date.

As you are probably aware I have been a Liverpool Football supporter since my boyhood, although nowadays I am just an armchair fan. We do not have the BT Sports Channel on our telly so decided to listen to the Champions League Semi-Final on the radio and wow!, what a delight.
The skilful commentary from Alan Green and the stereo sound from our modern DAB radio turned my armchair into the best seat in the stadium.
Green, vividly describing the action and his voice (with just a hint of a Northern Ireland accent) rising in excitement “now Firmino collects the ball deep inside the Roma half threads a pass through to Salah, Salah rushes into the penalty area, left foot shot Goooal” I found myself on my feet punching the air as if I was there in the stadium.
Later that evening, while sipping on my whisky I reflected on how powerfully the radio can charge our imagination even in these days of multi channel high definition television. I recalled the bygone times when Raymond Glendenning was the sports commentator and I was an avid listener to the wireless and my hero’s Dick Barton, Jet Morgan and Paul Temple. My imagination would flow with the plot and I would be there battling with the baddies or sitting in Jet Morgan’s space ship which happened to be the arm of my dad’s chair as that was nearest to the wireless
I was reading an article in the Radio Times on the early days of outside broadcasting of sport events and that for football: listeners were advised to consult the centre pages of the magazine while listening to the commentary..