What's Happening

Introducing the Big Church Read

posted 29 Aug 2020, 03:48 by CHS Info   [ updated 30 Aug 2020, 08:17 ]

The Big Church Read is a new national online Christian book club running a number of times a year, with the aim of encouraging Christians across the country to read and recommend good Christian books to one another.
And the first Big Church Read begins this September for six weeks
The book we will be reading is called: 
The Ruthless Elimination of Hurry 
John Mark Comer
It’s the perfect book for our time. 
Based on Dallas Willard’s philosophy that the hurried pace of 
our modern world inhibits a healthy spiritual and emotional life for us all, 
it sets out a plan for us to ruthlessly eliminate hurry from our lives.
You can find out more about the book, the author, and The Big Church Read itself by watching this short introductory video from the author:

John Mark Comer introduces The Big Church Read – 1 minute watch
How to take part
It is very simple. 
And completely free, once you have a copy of the book. 
This is all you need to do:
1. Sign up on the website, here: www.thebigchurchread.co.uk

2. Make sure everybody taking part has a copy of the book: 
(buy here for £9.99 and save £5, or buy direct from Andy for £9 - email below)

3. Decide when your group is going to meet.

You’ll be sent 
a free reading plan and discussion questions 
to aid your conversation. 
And every Monday night for six weeks, 
beginning on Monday 21 September, 7.00p.m., 
John Mark Comer will release a short exclusive teaching video on the themes of that week’s portion of the book to aid you in your reading. 
We really encourage you to join in.
You can do so either formally as a whole church or more informally as a group of friends. There is a flyer and social media assets available so you can spread the word online and join in with others taking part around the country.
Further questions?
Email andy.lyon@thebigchurchread.co.uk or 
The Big Church Read is a partnership between 
St Andrew’s Bookshop and Hodder Faith.

Visitor registration during Covid 19

posted 31 Jul 2020, 08:08 by CHS Info   [ updated 1 Aug 2020, 03:15 ]

NHS Test & Trace depends on places where people congregate having a record of who has been in the building. So by the front door of the church, you will find a poster like this one (right)

So here is another use for your mobile phone - each time you visit the church can you please register your visit. Point your phone camera at the QR code, or enter the link into its browser, and fill in the details.

Your details are securely held by the provider and will be deleted after 21 days. 

They will only be used if we get a call from NHS Test & Trace. If someone who has visited the church tests positive, then the NHS will ask for a list of visitors over a period of time. Then an encrypted file will be sent to them with the contact details so that the people listed can be alerted and tested.

Below is what you will see on your mobile phone.

You will need to do it each time you visit. If you forget your phone you can ask someone to enter your details for you, on their phone.

Oh, and by the way, you can practise pointing your phone's camera at the QR code (right). 

Thank you!

Here's what you will see on your mobile phone (below)

Great News!

posted 30 Jul 2020, 10:27 by Church Office

We are delighted to announce that from Sunday 2nd August, we will be resuming services in church!

To begin with we will have 8am Pram Service followed by 9am Said Mass both in church. The main 10:30am sung service will remain online for the time being. The zoom link to that is on our Virtual Church Page

Then starting the following week on Mondays Wednesdays and Fridays the church will be open for morning prayer. We will continue to host daily prayer on zoom. 

Please check our diary for all the specific dates and times. 

We cant wait to see you all very VERY SOON!

L'Arche London desperately and urgently need volunteers... Can you help?

posted 25 Jun 2020, 06:28 by Church Office   [ updated 27 Jun 2020, 03:45 by CHS Info ]


L’Arche celebrate people with learning disabilities and build circles of support around them. They go beyond supporting people's basic needs to attend to their emotional and spiritual lives, too.

The L’Arche London Community, based in West Norwood is facing a very challenging time with finding people. They have lost a number of colleagues due to many of them having to go back to their countries because of lockdown. Currently, the visa for Tier 5 applicants is on hold and 12 people are waiting to join us this year and cannot do that at the moment.

So they are reaching out to all the local churches and beyond to ask for our help. They need people who have values in line with L’Arche’s values to join and support one of the most vulnerable group in society at this time. 

If you are interested please get in touch by visiting their website here: https://www.larchelondon.org.uk/join-us-as-an-assistant

Here is a message from Lucy Winter, L’Arche (West Norwood) community leader: ‘I can imagine there are some students who may no longer have the same options available to them for summer jobs. They just might like to do something a little different with their time that could really benefit their community, therefore, a support assistants’ role at L'Arche could just be the rewarding challenge they were looking for. Or perhaps there are people looking for a new challenge and want to get more involved with L'Arche.

Windrush Day- Monday 22nd June 2020

posted 18 Jun 2020, 07:03 by Church Office   [ updated 18 Jun 2020, 07:03 ]

The 22nd of June is a nationally marked celebration of all the contributions made by the Windrush Generation and their descendants.

Those arriving in the UK between 1948 and 1971 from Caribbean countries are known as the Windrush generation, they made a massive contribution towards rebuilding Britain after the Second World War.

At 10:27am on Monday 22 June we’re calling on YOU to join together as one to celebrate the Windrush Generation with a special version of a universally loved song in their honour. The song will be “You can get it if you really want” by Desmond Dekker and in the same style as Clap for carers we ask you to come to your front door and sing your hearts out.

The time of 10:27am represents the arrival of 1,027 people on the original Empire Windrush.

For more information please click the link here https://love.lambeth.gov.uk/windrush-day-2020/?medium=email&source=GovDelivery

Mask making with comedian Hugh Dennis

posted 12 Jun 2020, 08:42 by Church Office   [ updated 12 Jun 2020, 08:43 ]

As many of you know with face masks being mandatory for public transport and shops reopening, Mitzvah Day have partnered with us & we’ll be making masks together on Tuesday, June 16th, 7 – 7:45pm joined by comedian, actor & writer Hugh Dennis!  I’m excited by this event, as we can't all be heroes, but we can all do small acts of kindness for others.

People of all faiths and backgrounds will come together, from the safety of our homes, to make masks, for ourselves or to be gifted to someone in need of some love.

Please do encourage people in your network/faith group to join us & tell them not to worry if they aren’t very crafty, we promise this is very simple and anyone can make one.

What do you need?

• An old t-shirt

• Sharp Scissors

Registration is essential to receive the call information & you can register here:



posted 4 Jun 2020, 08:21 by Church Office   [ updated 6 Jun 2020, 02:54 by CHS Info ]

This week the protests across America have coincided with the publication of a report into the disproportionate number of covid deaths in our Black and Ethic Minority communities in the UK.

We oppose racism in any form. Injustice anywhere threatens justice everywhere.

Some of you have spoken to me about how racism is impacting your lives and the lives of those you love. Some have asked, rightly, what the church is doing.

In response I took the issue to Deanery Synod. As a deanery we decided on three actions:
  1. that we all needed to be making a statement about the real and continued impact of racism in our society, our community and in our churches.
  2. We also proposed a Black Lives Matter spoken voice evening.
  3. It was decided that clergy who were not vulnerable and were otherwise healthy would attend the Black Lives Matter demonstration in Parliament Square this Saturday. 
In relation to item 1. This statement has now been agreed and a banner has been ordered to be displayed outside Church of the Holy Spirit.

As to item 2. WE NEED YOU TO MAKE THIS HAPPEN. I am asking all those of you who have something to say about Black Lives Matter and the impact of racism here in London, particularly on your reactions to the report of covid deaths in Black community, to please consider speaking. There will be a strict time limit on contributions, so it won’t need to be an essay just a few words to describe your feelings. Please get in touch with me vicar@holyspirit-clapham.org.uk

Item 3 is the most controversial; some of you have asked me not to promote attendance at the demonstration as this would be a potential source of the spread of infection further into our community. I very much wanted to attend in solidarity with those who cannot protect themselves against the virus. However, I also understand that I work with many vulnerable people and groups in the community and that the health minister has just published a plea for protestors not to gather.

If any of you are going to attend the protest please do take the advice of the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan: Covid-19 is still a real threat to our city, so if you protest, please make every effort to stay 2 metres apart from others at all times.” Wear protective masks and gloves, and to bring food, water and hand sanitiser and stay home if you have symptoms of the virus.

As a result of our deanery meeting the Archdeacon has called for an Area wide meeting which will take place next week. I will let you know what is decided if there is anything you would like me pass on please do get in touch. There are some hard conversations and challenging questions that we all need to be engaging in – please let’s keep the conversation happening

Pentecost is THIS Sunday!

posted 26 May 2020, 05:30 by Church Office   [ updated 26 May 2020, 05:30 ]

This Sunday is the Feast of Pentecost, a celebration of the gift of the holy Spirit and the birth of the


For this week’s service you will need:

A candle

Something to light it with*

Something red to wear or wave

Although we will be unable to light a sea of candles and send them out of the church, we want to make the service as celebratory of the life and energy of the Holy Spirit as possible.

*On the day of Pentecost, we light our candles in church from the Easter Candle symbolizing the spread of the light of Christ that we are called to carry out into the world by us.   I will have a votive candle lit from the Easter Candle on the vicarage porch all Saturday and I shall leave one in the church porch also.  If you would like to take this Easter light to light your own candle – pop by and spread the flame. Alternatively, light your own at home.

p.s take care, flames can set fire to stuff ….  

Pentecost Plans

posted 21 May 2020, 08:23 by Church Office   [ updated 24 May 2020, 06:54 by CHS Info ]

Next Sunday is PENTECOST: the feast of the Holy Spirit.

This is OUR day as the people of the Holy Spirit.

In previous years we have marked this day in a variety of ways: street parties, drag queens, pavement art competitions, the blessing of icons, bonfires, fire lanterns, BBQ and a live fire artist performance.

There is no way to compete this year.

My vision for our church community was always to be a living Pentecost: sending us out into the wider community to share the gifts God gave us; and, given my pyromaniacal proclivities, it is unsurprising that I have focused on the fiery outpouring of the spirit.  

Yet there is another side to Pentecost: before the coming of the Spirit, the people of God are found gathered together in prayer and support.  Here they are sharing together their doubts, questions, opinions, half-baked ideas, wonders, hopes and fears.  Comforting and challenging, teaching and learning, cajoling and consoling one another.

Which gave me the idea for a different way of celebrating Pentecost this year.   Several years ago, we made three vertical hangings which the children let down from the minstrels’ gallery.  My plan to make new banners which we unfurl in church when the whole community is able to meet again. 

Here’s what to do:

1.        Cut out a flame or a dove (the symbols of the Holy Spirit).  You can use the templates provided here (Powerpoint) or here (images) or make your own.

2.        Write or draw something to symbolize one (or more) of the following:

(a)   concerns and anxieties raised by this pandemic;

(b)  unexpected blessings and gifts experienced in lockdown;

(c)   hopes for the future. 

3.        When you’re done take a photo; AND

4.        Pop it into the vicarage or the church (or post it)


I will assemble them into hangings.

Please do invite children, friends, relatives, neighbours to take part so that the hangings give expression to the wider community.

p.s. the colours for Pentecost is RED of any fiery hue: HAVE FUN.  

Help and support for hospitality and gig economy workers in South London

posted 21 May 2020, 07:34 by Church Office   [ updated 23 May 2020, 01:58 by CHS Info ]

The charity Look Ahead has set up a new project to provide safe shelter to people who have recently become homeless, particularly those who worked in hospitality and the “gig economy” but have lost their jobs due to the pandemic.  

This new project was launched on 6th May, welcoming 20 people on that day.  They can accommodate up to 130 people in the Waterloo Hub Hotel & Suites at 54 Kennington Road, SE1 7BJ.  The Manager of the project, Kirsty Williams, has asked for our help.

They need donations any of the items listed below, or similar:

Razors;  Deodorant; Combs/hairbrushes

Sanitary products for women

Underwear; Clothes male and female all sizes

Books; Magazines; Jigsaws

Colouring pens, pencils and paper

Fruit; Juice; Snack bars; Popcorn/crisps

Tea bags; Coffee

They don’t need other food because Look Ahead has managed to secure a partnership for meal provision delivered to the hotel.

You, your neighbours and friends can drop off donations to Mother Ruth at the Vicarage or to St John's, Waterloo on wednesdays from 2-5pm (we are hoping to find a closer church soon). The donations will be delivered centrally on Wednesday afternoon. 

The project has been running for two weeks and hopes to continue at least until the end of July. 

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