Fr Tim

RECONCILIATION:

There will be plenty of opportunity to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation before the Easter Triduum, which begins on Maundy Thursday.

There will be a Pastoral Area Reconciliation Service on Wednesday 21 March at 6.30pm in Hope University Chapel.

We will also have Reconciliation Services as usual in our two parishes at the beginning of Holy Week: Monday 26 March at 7.30pm in St Mary’s and Tuesday 27 March at 7.30pm in Bishop Eton.

Priests will be available after all the weekday Masses during the last two weeks of Lent and of course you may always call at the monastery and ask for a priest at any reasonable time on any  given day.

Also please pray for our children in Year Four who will be making their First Reconciliation next Sunday afternoon.

LENT: In spite of the freezing conditions, it has been very edifying to see how many of you still managed to attend even weekday Masses during the past week. Thank you for your good example.

We are now well into Lent, so may I remind you that as always we will offer many opportunities for those of you who wish to celebrate the Sacrament of Reconciliation before the Easter Triduum, which begins on Maundy Thursday.

There will be a Pastoral Area Reconciliation Service on Wednesday 21 March at 6.30pm in Hope University Chapel.

We will also have Reconciliation Services as usual in our two parishes at the beginning of Holy Week:

Monday 26 March at 7.30pm in St Mary’s and Tuesday 27 March at 7.30pm in Bishop Eton.

Priests will be available after all the weekday Masses during the last two weeks of Lent and of course you may always call at the monastery and ask for a priest at any reasonable time on any given day.

ARCHBISHOP MALCOLM will make an official visit to the parish on Sunday, 18 of March. This should be a wonderful occasion for the parish. I hope we will have a good team of servers at each Mass, including a couple to help with the crozier and mitre. Also, please do take the opportunity to welcome the Archbishop after Mass over a cup of tea or coffee.

ARCHBISHOP MALCOLM will make an official visit to the parish on Sunday 18 March. It would be good if we could organise a cup of tea or coffee and a biscuit in the Fisher-More Hall after each Mass so that he is able to meet as many parishioners as possible. Cath Line is looking for help to ensure that this is possible. If you are able to help, please let Hayley or Kris know and they will duly inform Cath.

CONTINUING CHALLENGES: Unfortunately Fr Jimmy Smale fell last Wednesday and has damaged his shoulder. He has already been struggling with a damaged leg and therefore will be out of action for a while. We had already agreed to cover three Masses this weekend in Aintree and now have the Cenacle and Christopher Grange to look after as well. Please be patient with us as we try to be as helpful as possible to the wider needs of the Church. If we need further reminders, these events reinforce all that I wrote about in my Open Letter a few months ago.

Lent: Dare I mention that Ash Wednesday is in ten days’ time? In BE Alive I have made a few suggestions about how we might approach Lent this year, including the hope that we will be able to reintroduce Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament on Wednesdays. There is a sheet in the porch for those able to cover the various half hourly slots to sign up. For an electronic copy of BE Alive click here

Redemptorist Lay Associates: Fr Maurice O’Mahony C.Ss.R. will speak at all the Masses this weekend to present the idea of Lay Associates. Those who are interested to learn more, please come to the Fisher More Hall at Bishop Eton at 3.00pm this Sunday (28 January).

The past week has been busy.

Our Provincial Council visited the Redemptorist community at the beginning of the week and I attended sundry meetings in both parishes about a variety of things, but did manage to get a couple of days away, returning in time for the Parish Social Evening at St Mary’s on Friday.

It has also been a difficult week for many. There was the distressing news that Kevin Fay  RIP (careers’ master) at SFX  College died at the school on Monday morning. We pray for the repose of his soul and offer his wife, Kathy (deputy head), and the family our condolences and an assurance of our  prayers for them.

Likewise, we pray for the repose of the soul of Anthony, Fr Tony Hunt’s nephew, who had struggled all his life with health problems, and who died later that same day; and may his family be consoled and comforted.

THE BEST MADE PLANS! I have returned from Perth at peace after a good meeting, brilliantly facilitated by one of our North American confrères. But life is never that simple. As I try to prepare the bulletin notes and   prepare myself for a funeral at midday, I am faced with the dilemma of whether our Parish  Social should go ahead this evening, since the boiler in the  Fisher-More Hall has packed up. On balance, the logistics of trying to cancel at this short notice seem more complicated than trying to find a few heaters to take the chill off and hope that everyone turns up ready for an outward bound course. By the time you read this, should you have ventured out on Friday evening, you will know the outcome. Hopefully, the boiler will be repaired soon, but all those who use the hall, please take note of the situation.

A NEW PROJECT: This weekend you will be informed of a new project which the members of the Parish Core Team are enthusiastically embracing. It will involve caring for a Syrian refugee family and all that this will entail. In our troubled world, the more we can reach out in loving response to the call of the Gospel – “whatever you do to the least of my brothers and sisters, you do to you” – the deeper our coming together as a community of faith. Not everyone will be able to be involved practically, but I think it is important that we all own the project and surround those who become involved with our prayerful support.

OCTAVE OF PRAYER FOR CHRISTIAN UNITY: In spite of the fact that this year there will be no special Unity Service in our area, nor any exchange of pulpits, I think it is important that we continue to pray fervently for Christian unity. We will offer a special bidding prayer during the Octave leading up to the Feast of the Conversion of St Paul on the 25 January.

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