Lest we forget

Churches across the Diocese of Liverpool marked the 100 year anniversary of the start of the First World War with a number parish events and vigils.

• Garston, St Michael’s had a service on Sunday to commemorate those who died in 1914, and on the Monday we held a Vigil Service to commemorate the start of World War One.
Both services were well attended, and both congregations thanked us for helping them in their remembrance.

• St Stephens, Banks have been raising money to refurbish the Village War Memorial with West Lancashire Council agreeing to fund half the total cost. £1,000 has been raised so far. In September there will be a rededication service for the whole village to join us in the church yard along with a brass band. There was a short service of remembrance in which we remembered the 19 men from the village who gave their lives to King & Country. There is a display of all 19 men in the church that will be up for the summer that people can look at and reflect.

• More than 60 parishioners from St Bartholomews, Roby remembered the outbreak of WW1 by getting together to enjoy fish and chips followed by a short vigil service which included prayers, poems, bible readings and lighting and extinguishing of candles. There were also songs performed by the choir. Following the service conducted by lay readers, the lights in church were extinguished and a procession was led to the churchyard to the newly erected memorial cross, where a lantern was placed and final prayers and words of Laurence Binyon were read, "...we will remember them". Earlier in the evening a rose was placed on each of the six First World War graves in the church graveyard.

• Christ Church Walton Breck held a community event on 4th Aug to commemorate the start of W.W.1. Local schools were invited to make up poppies and contribute artwork, Representatives from the Army, Air Force, Merchant Navy, P.A.L.S. association, British Legion, Veterans association and others all kindly sent standards, memorabilia, and people. Doors opened at 9.30 pm and we had an hour in church during which we enjoyed all the displays, refreshments and the pipes and drums of Liverpool Clan Wallace Pipe Band before we all retired to the car park for a candlelit vigil, act of remembrance and short service of worship, after which we all laid a huge cross of poppies on the patio and then everyone received a reproduction copy of St. Johns Gospel and silence booklet from C.P.O.before they left for home at about 11.20 pm.

• Warrington Parish Church St. Elphin's held a Vigil Service at 6.30pm on Sunday 3rd August 2014. The church was left open for two hours on the morning of Monday 5th August 2014. On Weds 6th of August 2014 there was an Afternoon Tea and WW1 Sing- a-long in church, everyone was given a bookmark with the name, Regiment and date of death of one of our Parish fallen and asked to pray for that person.
There is an exhibition in the Regimental Chapel remembering the many men and boys from our Church and its associated Mission Churches. It is open to the public on Weds. 2.00-4.00pm and Saturdays 9.30am-3.00pm until late September.

In our monthly magazine we intend commemorating by name those who died in that month over the next five years and they will be remembered by name in our weekly prayers for the departed.

• St Thomas and St Luke's Ashton in Makerfield held a short service of commemoration in the church yard around the Cenotaph. The British Legion attended with a cadet as Standard Bearer and a buglar played the Last post and Reveille. The names of all the casualties we're read out...their name liveth forever.

A member of the Boys Brigade and aScout layed wreaths on behalf of the young people and the local communities from whence the WW 1 casualties came. The Legion also layed a wreath. Sir Ian McCartney of Makerfield read the lesson Candles were lit by the people who attended the vigil.

• To mark the 100th anniversary of the first world war, Frank Dickin and James Ashton researched the glass war memorial at St.James' Church, West Derby, which features the doomed liner RMS., lusitania. There are eighteen names on the list who gave their lives for justice and freedom. They include 9 Kings Regiment (3 Liverpool Pals) plus 4 Infantry, 1 Royal Air Force, 2 Royal Navy and 2 Mercantile Marine, one of which was a young man aged 19 lost on the Lusitania.