A Playmobil scene depicting Jesus's triumphal entry into Jerusalem riding on a colt with people spreading their cloaks before him

Hello everyone,

Welcome to the latest issue of our church newsletter. Our newsletter is sent out regularly to share reflections from services, Bible readings and church news to our church family. You can find previous issues on our church website here. We would love to hear from you and are always looking for uplifting and encouraging content to share in future issues of this newsletter. If you have any ideas or content that we can share, please do email them to Louise (publicity@christchurchuxbridge.org.uk)



Opening Prayer

Lord, here I come, waving banners and shouting your name in praise.
Here I come Lord, joining in, feeling a little timid and scared and frightened after a difficult week, and with all the fear of the week to come.
Here I come Lord, experiencing all the range of human emotions, but present and open on this Palm Sunday to worship you.
Here I come Lord, seeking to know more of you, to receive the courage and forgiveness and hope and life I need for the week ahead.
Here I come, come here, by your Spirit, I pray.


Let your light shine through me Lord, this Palm Sunday.
Let your light shine, amongst the hosannas and the mocking voices,
Amongst the betrays and the denials,
Amongst the quiet meals with friends and the loud crowds with anger in their hearts.
At the foot of the cross, and in the garden of the empty tomb,
In all that this week will bring, let your light shine, Lord God, Easter God. Amen.

(Adapted from The Vine)







Reflection from 26 March – Putting it all back together

Reading: Ezekiel 37: 1-14 and John 11: 35-45


The great central theme of our Christian faith is that death is not the end of it all. We’ll play that out in the events of Holy Week, starting next Sunday, with its triumphant conclusion on Easter Day. We follow Jesus through the depths of human suffering – rejection, mockery, abandonment, physical torture, God’s absence, and finally death itself. All very real. And then, suddenly or slowly, we come to the realisation that there is a new life, that God has been present all along, that all the suffering has been worth it to come to this point of glorious fulfilment.


This Sunday’s readings introduce us to that theme. The old bones are reconnected and given life; the four-days-dead Lazarus walks out of his tomb.


An illustration of Jesus raising Lazarus from the tomb


Resurrection is God’s signature theme. What do we know about it in our own lives?


My own theme for this service is putting it all back together. I got it from that catchy gospel song: the foot bone’s connected to the shin bone, the shin bone’s connected to the thigh bone, and so on. That resonates because I see so many of the negative, life-destroying things in our lives as being about our disconnection from God, ourselves, and each other.


We could start with the internet. ‘I’ve got no connection!’ or ‘my connection’s rubbish!’ is the great lament of the modern world. Without that connection, we can’t communicate. But that seems to me to reflect disconnection in our relationships with each other, the way we live in smaller and smaller households, the decline generally, of community that in the past has flourished naturally through larger extended families, streets where neighbours knew each other well, trade unions where people were brothers and sisters, clubs where people met face to face and, of course, churches, where we are connected at a profound level by our shared faith. A society and a world motivated by material growth leads to competition rather than co-operation, alienation rather than connection.


And what of ourselves? Many of the things that diminish us are about lost connections. Relationships fail, friendships become soured or fizzle out, we have to face losing people we love dearly – something that happens more often as we age. In our inner being, we may suffer mild or serious depression and feel completely isolated. We may make poor choices and undermine our own integrity. We may have to deal with a sense of meaninglessness. We may, like Jesus on the cross, feel that even God has abandoned us.


If so, then today’s stories are for us. The dry, scattered, bones represent a very, very dead hope for the nation and for the self. How could they possibly live again? Yet they do. By the power of prophecy, they are reconnected, bone to bone. Then their flesh is restored. Then God has the prophet breathe life into them and there they are, alive and ready to go.  The story is a metaphor for what God does for us, of what God is in the habit of doing for us.


And Lazarus, Jesus’ own dear friend? The gospel writer, John, wants us to know that Lazarus is really, really dead. He has been in the tomb four days. Jesus has delayed coming to see him. Both of Lazarus’ sisters have come to Jesus to claim that Lazarus wouldn’t have died if Jesus had come sooner. Jesus himself weeps. It’s all over, for sure. But at his call, Lazarus comes out of the tomb and is restored to his sisters, reconnected to life and family and community. The story is a preview of what is going to happen with Jesus in the next two weeks. Our God is a God of resurrection.


Maybe that rings true with you. Not in the sense of seeing old bones reconnected and animated, not in the sense of someone who has died living again in the flesh, but in the sense of bringing new life where none is expected.


I think, in my own life, of how as a teenager in a slightly depressed state I experienced a moment of glory out of nothing – and was able to climb back to health and faith. I think that’s not unusual.


I think of a strong sense I had, late into a major bereavement, of the comforting presence of God behind my shoulder followed by a start on the path back to a more normal life.  Unexpected, and wonderful, but not unusual.


And I think of moments of resurrection in the everyday – listening to music, being close to nature, being with a beloved grandchild, sharing communion with a community that suddenly seems incredibly special, moments of deep peace that sometimes come in prayer time. I don’t think any of that is unusual.


And springtime! Of course, we expect it, but each year I am somehow surprised as the days turn gentle and the daffs bloom and the cherry tree outside my house turns pink with blossom. Not unusual, but a reflection of the work of God renewing the earth, renewing our lives, putting hope in place of despair.


Cherry trees in blossom on a spring day


So, if we long for renewal in our lives, I think we can be sure that this is exactly what God wants to give to us, though the time and the place and the manner of God’s gifting isn’t usually what we have imagined. And it usually takes us deeper into ourselves than we are accustomed to going. The story of the dry bones and the story of Lazarus invite us to open up the sad, dead, horribl,e disconnected corners of our being to God, today and as the days go by, for God’s healing. Forgiveness, too, where that’s needed. Definitely vitality. Definitely a sense of connectedness with and love for the people around us. We can ask for new life. God is so pleased to hear that, and to give.


Of course, we who have been faithful to the church for many years, or even all our lives, long for renewal here, too, as we see our numbers in the West declining and simply aren’t able to do what was done in the past. There is a disconnect between the church and  the non-believing majority. I think we should pray for renewal! But not in the traditional sense. Whatever God does with us, it won’t look like what God did in the past. Maybe putting it back together will come in the sense that our faith and our life together will become deeper, and more integrated, giving us the confidence to recognise God in many different ways of being among us.


We can look for and work for renewal in our poor disconnected discombobulated world, too.  It’s the world Jesus came to save. It’s the world God is reconciling to Godself. We are in despair, perhaps, at the way the drive for growth in the West has disconnected us from our brothers and sisters worldwide; at the extinction of a growing number of species; at the rise of demagogues who threaten our hard-won democracy and disconnect us from what’s best in the past; at the way we separate ourselves from desperate people seeking refuge, as though they weren’t human. And, yes, God is at work in all of this and will bring change; and we, who know the truth of resurrection in our own lives, will contribute greatly to that, if we continue to turn outwards as Jesus did and get involved in the work of repair and healing and rebuilding.


Only connect – a well-known phrase from EM Forster. We might borrow it for ourselves as we celebrate Communion together in a bit, and continue our journey into Holy Week, following Jesus into all the broken places of the world and through to the joyful reunion we will celebrate at Easter.
Revd Maggie Hindley






Readings for 2 April

Matthew 21: 1-11 (NIV)

Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King
As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”


This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet:


“Say to Daughter Zion,
‘See, your king comes to you,
gentle and riding on a donkey,
and on a colt, the foal of a donkey.’”


The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted,


A Playmobil scene depicting Jesus' triumphal entry into Jerusalem


“Hosanna to the Son of David!”


“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”


“Hosanna in the highest heaven!”

10 When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?”


11 The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.”



Further readings from the lectionary this week are as follows:

  • Psalm 118: 1-2, 19-29
  • Isaiah 50: 4-9a
  • Philippians 2: 5-11






Our worship

We meet at 11am for our Sunday services, which are also live-streamed on our Facebook page.  If you wish to view our services online, you can find them at www.facebook.com/christchurchuxbridge. You do not have to be a Facebook user to watch them – our services are publicly viewable. You can also view a recent service on our church website. Our service this week for Palm Sunday will be led by Christ Church member, Neil Mackin. You can find the order of service here.


If you are unable to join us in person or online for our Sunday services, but would like to receive a recording of them on a memory stick to watch at home, please let us know.



Forthcoming services

2 April – Neil Mackin (Christ Church member) – Palm Sunday

6 April – Christ Church worship group – Maundy Thursday, 7pm

9 April – Joanne Mackin & Louise George (Christ Church members) – Easter Sunday communion, 9.30am

9 April – Richard Reid (Methodist local preacher) – Easter Sunday, 11am

16 April – Revd Andrew Pottage (Methodist minister) – Holy Communion

23 April – Christ Church worship group






Holy Week

Sunday 2 April

Palm Sunday service, 11am
Our Palm Sunday service will be led by Christ Church member, Neil Mackin.


Thursday 6 April

Maundy Thursday service at Christ Church, 7pm
Meeting to worship together over a simple supper of soup, bread and cheese. All are welcome. Please let Louise know if you are considering attending so we have an indication of numbers for food.


Friday 7 April

Good Friday Walk of Witness, 10am
This year’s Good Friday walk of witness will start with a short service at St Andrew’s church, followed by a procession through the town centre towards St Margaret’s church where the walk will conclude with a short Passion play. All are welcome.


Sunday 9 April

Easter Sunday Holy Communion, 9.30am
Our Easter Sunday communion service will be a short service led by Joanne Mackin and Louise George. This will be followed by hot cross buns in the meeting area.


Easter Sunday service, 11am
Our 11am Easter Sunday service will be led by Methodist local preacher, Richard Reid.






Good Friday Walk of Witness

This year’s Walk of Witness will take place on Good Friday (7th April) at 10am, starting at St Andrew’s Church, Hillingdon Road, Uxbridge UB10 0AE and making its way through the town centre, finishing at St Margaret’s Church where a short Passion play will be performed. All are welcome to join us for the walk and for hot cross buns afterwards at St Margaret’s.


Actors playing Jesus, Pilate and Roman guards at the Walk of Witness


Appeal for Stewards
The Walk of Witness will run more safely and smoothly with the assistance of volunteer stewards. We are looking for a couple of stewards from each church if possible, please. Stewards will need to arrive at St Andrew’s by 9.45am on Good Friday to allow time for a briefing before the walk. Their role will be to help encourage walkers along the route to follow general instructions given to all, provide assistance with crossing the road at Vine Street and to help ensure that the walk proceeds as safely as possibly. They will be provided with hi-vis tabards to wear on the day.


If anyone would be willing to volunteer to steward on the walk, please let me know.
Louise George



A cartoon showing people in a wine-filled hot tub with Jesus looking on from behind a bush. The caption reads "The water into wine miracle also made for an excellent April Fool's Day prank'
(Copyright Gospel Communications International, Inc – www.reverendfun.com)

Lent Reflections 2023

Our Church’s Lent Reflections series, on Tuesdays during Lent, was well attended, with the joy of welcoming Anglican, Quaker, Roman Catholic and Zoom friends – a real church family together.


We used material from the 2019 Churches Together in Britain and Ireland Lent Course, with Bible passages, brief discussions and reading hymns, and concluded each week with a Worship in Stillness time, from the books in our vestibule. The final moment of the final session was spontaneous singing of, “O thou who camest from above…”. I think I detected “parts”!


The next opportunity for you to participate is a series looking at Paul’s letter to the Phillipians, 1.15-2.15 pm on Tuesdays April 18th to June 6th, at the Quaker Meeting House on the corner of York and Belmont Roads.


If you are able, and haven’t already, why not give it a try, for one, some, or all of the weeks?


Have a blessed Holy Week and a happy Easter.

Graham Hinton




Boys’ Brigade News

On Saturday 25th March our Company and Senior boys took part in the London District Single Line Drill and 3-person Colour party competition. This competition is open to all companies across the London area.


Our boys have been working hard to prepare for this event over the last 5 months, each week improving, and on Saturday all their hard work paid off. They achieved 1st place in the Single line drill and were runners-up in the 3- person Colour party competition. All 7 of our boys were a credit to themselves and the company. They gained maximum marks in both competitions for their inspection and performed their competition pieces to the very best of their ability. We are thankful to Mr Paul Hotton, former 2nd Uxbridge Captain, for coming down each week and putting the boys through their paces to prepare them for the competition. The boys are already up for taking part in next year’s competition. This time aiming to win both.



The Boys' Brigade drill team during their competition


Our winning shield is now taking pride of place in our trophy cabinet in the vestibule of the Church.

Paul Edgeworth






Children’s Corner

A puzzle to match the image of a leaf with the one in another picture
(Taken from the Roots activity sheet © ROOTS for Churches Ltd (www.rootsontheweb.com) 2002-2023. Reproduced with permission.)




Praying for other churches

This week we hold the following churches in our prayers:


  • Yiewsley Methodist
  • Ickenham URC



Closing prayer

Go with us, good Lord, on our journey to the cross and beyond.
Help us to pass on our enthusiasm to others.
Keep us faithful to Jesus, our saviour and friend.
Stir up our praise as we look forward to Easter Day.
(Taken from Roots)




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‘Look-In’ – 26 March 2023
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