28/11/2010

29/11/2010

St John the Evangelist

Email stjohntheevangelist@gmail.com

www.stjohnevang.co.uk

www.lpa24.org

0151 645 3314

Reg. Charity 234025

Fr Frank Rice

Rev Philip White

1st Sunday of Advent 2010 November 2010

FAITH IN FOCUS: THIS IS WHERE WE CAME IN

Cinemas used to show films continuously. You went in at any time and began to watch wherever the film was up to. You stayed when it was over and then watched it again up to the point where you originally started to view. “This is where we came in” was a phrase often heard as people got up in the middle of a film and left.

There’s a danger that we can do the same thing with the Church’s calendar and liturgy. We can think of it as a series of historic events that we simply commemorate on a twelve-monthly cycle. And so once more we’re back at the beginning, singing our Advent hymns and songs again.

But liturgy is not about the past unless that past links us to the present and readies us for our future destiny. Liturgy actuates the presence of Christ. In other words, by the power of the Holy Spirit, the Church’s worship makes Christ present here and now and makes his demands and challenges something that we have to respond to by a conscious decision to follow him or not. Liturgy is not history-gazing but history-making. And the history it makes is ours.

Although Jesus’s words were originally addressed to a first century audience, when they are proclaimed at today’s Eucharist they are aimed at us. For in the liturgy God continues to speak through the words of scripture, and when Jesus warns us to stay awake and ready for the coming of the Son of Man, he means now.

Advent offers us the chance to join the cycle again, but as if we have only just come in. There is nothing to re-enact, only commitment to undertake. Rather than watching the film once more, where we know what the ending is, we open ourselves to the newness of God’s daily call and we ratify our commitment to seek him in whatever circumstances his challenge will come to us during Advent and the coming year.

So celebrating Advent is not trawling through history. It’s yearning for our saviour’s coming among us so much that we want to be ready to greet him. Our prayers and music are just the outward expression of inner longing: Come, Lord Jesus, come!

WORD OF GOD

They will hammer their swords into ploughshares, their spears into sickles. Nation will not lift sword against nation, and there will be no more training for war. (Isaiah 2:4)

 

WORD FOR TODAY

At the start of the Church’s New Year we prepare to meet our saviour. This is not simply a re-enactment of some 2000 year-old drama, but an invitation to renew ourselves in mind and heart as we seek afresh to find God in the ups and downs of our daily lives.

 

On Saturday 11th December, Churches Together Christmas family will hold a torchlight procession at 4.30pm. This will start from the Lady Lever Art Gallery in Port Sunlight and will be over in time for Saturday evening Mass.

Whilst some of the participants will be wearing Biblical costume (adults and children) many will not be dressing up.

Please see the poster at the back of the church for ideas for costumes etc as well as some ‘props’ available to borrow and you can buy torches, haloes or wings from the pound shop. Why not spread YOUR wings and join in the fun? Here is a carol singing opportunity for you.

 

The white candle in the Advent wreath is a souvenir given to the parish from the Papal visit to Hyde Park. It will be carried in procession on Christmas Eve. Please have a look at it.

 

1st Sunday of Advent 28th 5.30

10am.

8pm.

Deceased R & F Bell Family

Parishioners

Prayer meeting

Mon 29th 9.15 Peter Mc Lean
Tues.

30th 9.15 Deceased R & F Sarson Family
Wed 1st. 9.15. November List
Thurs 2nd 7.15.

7pm

November List

Advent Scriptures with Philip

Fri 3rd 9.15 Colin Smith RIP
2ndof Advent 27th. 5.30

10am

8pm

Anastasia  Sweatman (anniv)

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Please pray for our sick and those who care for them

Jane Jackson, William Halpen, Philomena Moore, Margaret Randles, Michael Collins, Teresa McLean, Joan Lee, Ann Ferguson, Denis Welch, Josie Cohen, Peter Williamson, Kathy Smith, Marjorie Hoey, Mrs H McCormack, Esther Roche, Fay Challoner, Sheila Stockley, Joan & Charles Reynolds, Mollie Dowling, Kath Holland, Sheila Clayson, Mary Bryden, Owen & Josie Toohey,  Betty Kennedy,  Helen Worth, Christopher Hadfield, Ivan Gregory, Kath Bassett , Pat Ronan, Christopher & Raymond McNally , Mark Harrison & Genevieve Foster. Those in the parish who do not wish their illness to be made public but who also need our prayers

Money Matters-Thank you

Sunday Offering £743 61p

Boiler £3 32p

120 Club Winner No 15 G Owens   £20

Bernard Dillon would like to thank all those who supported the book sale at Mayer Hall last Sunday. He raised £675 for Parkinson’s UK. He intends to have about four such sales each year so look out for the next.

 

A parish Christmas party is proposed for 12th December after morning mass from 11am until 2pm.  Everyone is welcome. Bring a plate & own drinks and we will supply tea and coffee

The Pilgrim Troupe presentation here last week was quite well supported and visitors from other local Christian churches were very impressed. If you missed out this time, then the Troupe are to give four presentations for Advent in several different locations on the Wirral and Chester so you might be able to catch up with them there. Parts of the presentation are very funny though of course the message is a weighty one. The first of these is at St Joseph’s Upton (Fr Roger’s parish) on Friday 3rd December at 7.30pm See poster for details.

Advent is concerned with that very connection between memory and hope which is so necessary to man. Advent’s intention is to awaken the most profound and basic emotional memory within us, namely, the memory of the God who became a child. This is a healing memory; it brings hope. The purpose of the Church’s year is continually to rehearse her great history of memories, to awaken the heart’s memory so that it can discern the star of hope.… (Pope Benedict)

The supreme trick of Old Scratch is to have us so busy decorating, preparing food, practising music and cleaning in preparation for the feast of Christmas that we actually miss the coming of Christ. Hurt feelings, anger, impatience, injured egos—the list of clouds that busyness creates to blind us to the birth can be long, but it is familiar to us all. (Edward Hays)

You will be given a piece of paper this weekend to write your suggestions about how you think first Communions should be celebrated in the parish. There are lots of grumbles and I need to discuss your suggestions with Mr. Sharp as we plan for the future.

Tuesday 30th. Ann Gemmell

Vic Gemmell

Thursday 2nd. Bernard McGuigan

Eleanor McGuigan

Saturday 4th. W Humphrey

D Humphrey

ADVENT

The four weeks of Advent mark the start of the Church’s liturgical year. In this season there are two principal themes that we celebrate, both epitomised by the term “advent” which means coming.

The first coming took place 2000 years ago when Jesus was born in Bethlehem, so Advent is a time of preparation for Christmas and the Nativity of the Lord.

But there is second coming that we look forward to, when Christ will come at the end of time.

St Bernard reminds us of a third coming of Jesus that takes place every day when we meet him in the faces of those we come into contact with, and in the word of God and the sacraments.

During the season of Advent we remember the long years of waiting by the people of Israel for the Messiah, the messages of hope in the prophets, and how Mary and Joseph were faithful to God’s plan. Advent is not a penitential season, as Lent is. Advent is a time of joyful preparation and expectation. The Gloria is omitted on Sundays in Advent not as a sign of repentance, but to create a longing that will inspire people to sing it more joyfully on Christmas.

As each week of Advent goes by we light our candles on the Advent wreath, one each week until finally we are ready to celebrate Christ’s birth. The colours of purple and royal blue dominate in Advent, signs of the royal colours of the returning king. And as Christmas draws near, all our songs and prayers reflect the great longing of Christians to be reunited with our king as we proclaim: Come, Lord Jesus, come! These ideas were just some of those discussed last Thursday-

The scripture discussions facilitated by Philip got underway last Thursday and I have had very positive feedback. The next session will be on Thursday 2nd at 7pm with a break for tea and biscuits. There are no exams to pass but any contributions you make will be listened to. You will be most welcome to join us in the warmth of the side chapel.

 

Ten of our young people were confirmed last Thursday by Bishop Mark. It was a great day for them and I hope you will keep them in your prayers as they enter a new phase in their spiritual lives. I felt very proud of them and of their Catechists.

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21/11/2010

21/11/2010

St John the Evangelist Email stjohntheevangelist@gmail.com

www.stjohnevang.co.uk

www.lpa24.org

0151 645 3314

Reg. Charity 234025

Fr Frank Rice

Rev Philip White

Feast of Christ the King 21st November 2010

FAITH IN FOCUS: STRANGE KINGDOM

The scene on Calvary seems at first an odd gospel to fit the feast of Christ the King. Christ is on the cross with two criminals, one on each side. What has this to do with his kingship? Surely it’s more a scene of defeat and humiliation?

Yet if we look more closely at what’s going on we begin to get an idea of the type of king Jesus is. The unrepentant criminal mocks Jesus and calls upon him to perform an escape act for all three of them. The repentant one simply accepts Jesus and asks, even in the midst of all his troubles, for a place in the kingdom.

St Luke emphasises Christ’s kingdom by drawing attention to his mercy. For it is by mercy that Jesus exercises his power. He preached that his kingdom was not of this world. But it is established in this world and its values are at odds with all the secular empires and kingdoms that we live with today.

Jesus is king because he is capable of breaking the power of evil, of snapping the grip of sin and death, and of restoring us to a former glory that God intended for us. As a result the “constitution” of this kingdom differs vastly from those of the world.

Only a person who really loves can show mercy. And the mercy of Jesus’s kingdom is seen in the type of society that he urges us to build: an eternal kingdom that aims to embrace and redeem the whole human race, and in which there are no strangers. Calling Christ our king means collaborating in building up this kingdom.

If today we are crowning Christ as king of our lives then we must do it by creating a society that respects truth and fosters life in all its forms. God’s unusual kingdom is one that tries to live by imitating his holiness and living by his grace. It is the community of those who have a thirst for justice rather than a hunger for profit, who extend the hand of love and care rather than the boot of competitiveness, and who seek not to cause conflict and division but always to promote peace.

And how do we enter this strange kingdom? Like the repentant criminal on the cross, by acknowledging our need for God’s mercy.

 

WORD OF GOD

You are the man who shall be shepherd of my people Israel; you shall be the leader of Israel. (II Samuel 5:2)

 

WORD FOR TODAY

If we accept Christ as our king, then we are qualified to join the procession of saints into his heavenly kingdom. Today’s feast invites us to allow him into our lives, to exercise his justice through us and to be united with all humankind in singing the anthem of his praise.

 

MUSICIANS’ PRAYER

St Cecilia, whose feast is on November 22nd, is the patron saint of musicians. This is because the story is told that as she gave her life in martyrdom for her faith in Christ, the sound of angels singing was heard.

The following is a prayer for those who serve the Church in the ministry of music:

O Lord, we thank you for the witness of your saint and martyr, Cecilia, our patroness. Look with kindness on this music that it might glorify your name. May the talent that you have bestowed upon us be used only to further your word. Let this music be a witness to your majesty and love, and remind us that you are always watching with care, and listening, from your throne above. May your presence and beauty be found in every note, and may the words that are sung reach the hearts of your people so that they may draw closer to you. May your Spirit guide us through every measure so that we may be the instruments of your peace, and proclaim your glory with glad voices. This we ask through Jesus Christ your Son, in the firm hope that one day we may be found worthy to sing your praises with the choirs of heaven, where you live and reign for ever and ever. Amen.

 

As Advent approaches, I hope you will take the season to your heart to make Christ really present to you this Christmas. As well as the card ‘candles’ (see overleaf,) we have a supply of prayer cards with an Advent litany on one side and on the other, the ancient cries to God which we make in the last week of advent which are known as the O antiphons. Besides these helps, we have our Advent meetings facilitated by Philip and also the Pilgrim Troupe presentations which (though they have some very humorous passages) tell the story afresh through words and music as well as images via the power point. All you have to do is to RESPOND

More suggestions for 1st Holy Communion please!! Pink box at back

 

Christ the King 21st 5.30

10am.

8pm.

Tony Yeardsley

Sr Mary McDonough

Prayer Meeting

Mon 22nd. 9.15 Parishioners
Tues.

23rd. 9.15 Gladys & Tom Triggs
Wed 24th. 9.15. Deceased R & F John Corrigan
Thurs 25th. 7.15. Peggy Sherry
Fri 26th. 9.15 November List
First of Advent 27th. 5.30

10am

8pm

Deceased R & F Bell Family

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Please pray for our sick and those who care for them

Jane Jackson, William Halpen, Philomena Moore, Margaret Randles, Michael Collins, Teresa McLean, Joan Lee, Ann Ferguson, Denis Welch, Josie Cohen, Peter Williamson, Kathy Smith, Marjorie Hoey, Mrs H McCormack, Esther Roche, Fay Challoner, Sheila Stockley, Joan & Charles Reynolds, Mollie Dowling, Kath Holland, Sheila Clayson, Mary Bryden, Owen & Josie Toohey,  Betty Kennedy,  Helen Worth, Christopher Hadfield, Ivan Gregory, Kath Bassett , Pat Ronan, Christopher & Raymond McNally , Mark Harrison & Genevieve Foster. Those in the parish who do not wish their illness to be made public but who also need our prayers

Money Matters-Thank you

Sunday Offering 728 71p

Boiler £57

120 Club Winner No 96 M Brannon £20

Tom has just paid in the last part of the Red Box Collection and this amounted to £295.69.This year’s total is now £630.94, not counting private donations, which is good news during these mean times.

 

A parish Christmas party is proposed for 12th December after morning mass from 11am until 2pm.  Everyone is welcome. Bring a plate & own drinks and we will supply tea and coffee

.In the evening of life we shall be examined on love.

(St John of the Cross)

 

We have had some fascinating insights into the Mass during the 3 meetings at SJP and now Philip is to facilitate 4 Advent meetings when we will listen to and discuss the Sunday readings. The first of these will be next Thursday at 25th Nov at 7pm. and then on 2nd, 9th, and 16th Dec. I am looking forward to them and hope that they will be well attended. See posters for details. (NB Now to be held in Parish Centre)

THE LIGHT THAT LINGERS

I do not know how to pray and all I can say is that I do not have a lot of time to spare. So what do I do?

The light that I offer is a little of my goodwill bit of my time and a token of myself. I leave it in the presence of the Lord, before the Blessed Virgin or standing in front of a saint. This light that shines brightly is a symbol of my prayer that I continue to make even after I have gone…

(Adapted from prayer in French parish church)

 

PRISONERS (November 21st)

The third Sunday in November is a day of prayer for prisoners and their dependants. It is aimed at encouraging Christians to focus their thoughts and prayers, upon prisoners and their families, victims of offenders, prison staff and all those working for prisoners and their families.

Heavenly Father, we thank you for your mercy in sending us your Son, our Lord Jesus Christ. We ask for your blessingon all those in prison right now. Heal the hurt of sin and separation. Sustain the families of prisoners with your strength and your patience. Give peace and healing to the victims of crime and enable us all to forgive as we would be forgiven by you. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.

 

The Advent ‘candles’ which proved so popular last year are back again! Take one part from box A & 1 from Box B and if you have a £1 to spare you can make a contribution but don’t worry if you can’t.

Tuesday23rd Teresa Young

Colette Corkhill

Thursday 25th. Phil Topping

Gerry Topping

Saturday 27th. Anne Keogh

Chris Dougherty

Last calls for the Pilgrim Troupe presentation ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ at 5pm this Sunday. We will be joined by our Emeritus Bishop Brian who will address us about how his love of the Arts has helped his understanding of The Kingdom. I hope you will be here in strength. Please invite any friends from other churches in the area. It will be just an hour long and will be followed by refreshments. If you would like to come but need a lift on Sunday evening, please ask as we may be able to arrange one for you. No charge but a retiring collection for CAFOD. If you have never attended a Pilgrim Troupe presentation in the past, this is your chance to pass judgement and when you have enjoyed this one you will probably want to attend one of the 4 Advent presentations at other churches in the area! See poster for details.

Before you come to church on Sunday, why not trot along to Mayer Hall to see what Bernard Dillon has to offer on his bookstall. Proceeds to Parkinson’s UK 11am until 3pm.

Part time receptionist/ secretarial support required to work within the curial offices. See notice board for details.

 

Catholic Singles is an organisation which helps single, widowed, separated and divorced Catholics of all ages (over 18 years) meet, either one to one or through social events. All members receive a monthly bulletin, called Catholic Networking. For more information please tel. 0161 941 3498, visit the website www.catholicsingles.org.uk or email info@catholicsingles.org.uk

14/11/2010

14/11/2010

St John the Evangelist

Email stjohntheevangelist@gmail.com

www.stjohnevang.co.uk

www.lpa24.org

0151 645 3314

Reg. Charity 234025

Fr Frank Rice

Rev Philip White

33rd.Sunday 14th November 2010

FAITH IN FOCUS: DAILY SIGNS

We don’t need to look to the future to find signs of the end of our world. It’s happening every day before our very eyes.

When Jerusalem was destroyed, the Jews’ world was destroyed along with it. We have the same sort of experiences in our lives. We experience the end of many things and the loss of many people in a lifetime. The physical world as we know it can be destroyed by flood, hurricane, fire or earthquake. The whole earth does not need to be destroyed, just our little part of it, for us to know what Jesus is talking about.

Our social world can be destroyed by final arguments ending in divorce, being disowned by family, shunned or treated as an outcast. Our political world can be destroyed by war. Our economic world can collapse due to depression, recession, or unemployment, not to mention famine, hunger, disease and epidemics. We live in many worlds or spheres of meaning, and any of them can collapse at any moment.

What Jesus is giving in today’s gospel is not a script for what will happen in some future era. It is a symbolic account of how all created things will come to a climax under the judgement of God. We’ve already seen stars falling from the sky, persecutions, famines, revolutions etc. They happen each day. The important thing is how each generation views these normal things and how we learn from them.

 

WORD OF GOD

But for you who fear my name, the sun of righteousness will shine out with healing in its rays. (Malachi 3:20)

 

WORD FOR TODAY

As the Church’s year draws close to its end, we are reminded that the fruits of faith cannot be stored in the bank and drawn out in instalments. Faith is something that has to be lived day in and day out. The promises which it makes to Christians are for those who endure.

REALLY GREAT?

On November 15th we celebrate the feast of a man whose greatness was recognised in his own lifetime: Albert the Great. He was one of the Church’s finest intellects. He studied at the University of Padua and later taught at Hildesheim, Freiburg-im-Breisgau, Regensburg, and Strasbourg. He then lectured at the University of Paris, where he received his doctorate in 1245. He was among the first and greatest of the natural scientists, gaining a reputation for expertise in biology, chemistry, physics, astronomy, geography, metaphysics, and mathematics. People ranked him only second to the famous Francis Bacon. He was also very learned in biblical studies and theology.

UNIVERSAL CHILDREN’S DAY

November 20th is Universal Children’s Day. First proclaimed by the UN General Assembly in 1954, it was established to encourage all countries to institute a day, firstly to promote mutual exchange and understanding among children and secondly to initiate action to benefit and promote the welfare of the world’s children.

Arise, cry out in the night as the watches of the night begin: pour out your heart like water in the presence of the Lord. Lift up your hands to him for the lives of your children, who faint from hunger at the head of every street Lamentations 2:19

 

 

It is possible to become so wrapped up in transient things (like the people admiring the beauty of the Temple) that we forget the purpose of our existence and we lose sight of the daily signs. We are here to serve God by serving each other. This is what we will be judged on. Will we stop living, loving, caring and giving when the end of our own little world comes upon us? Will we see the wars, famines, earthquakes etc as a wake-up call for Christian action or just something to watch on our TV screens and then talk about the next day?

Disasters, whether personal or global, are opportunities for growth. They summon us to ask the deeper questions about why we are here and how God intends us to respond. We can join the doom-mongers and the armchair commentators, or we can show that our faith has endurance and can bring good out of evil.

 

33rd.Sun 7th 5.30

10am.

8pm.

Late Rels & friends McSweeneys

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Mon 8th. 9.15 Deceased of McGree Family
Tues.

 

9th. 9.15 Deceased R & F Ryan Family
Wed 10th. 9.15. November List
Thurs 11th. 7.15. November List
Fri 12th. 9.15 Joe Moore
Christ the King

 

14th. 5.30

10am

8pm

Tony Yeardsley

Sr Mary McDonough

Prayer Meeting

Please pray for our sick and those who care for them

Jane Jackson, William Halpen, Philomena Moore, Margaret Randles, Michael Collins, Teresa McLean, Joan Lee, Ann Ferguson, Denis Welch, Josie Cohen, Peter Williamson, Kathy Smith, Marjorie Hoey, Mrs H McCormack, Esther Roche, Fay Challoner, Sheila Stockley, Joan & Charles Reynolds, Mollie Dowling, Kath Holland, Sheila Clayson, Mary Bryden, Owen & Josie Toohey, Betty Kennedy, Helen Worth, Christopher Hadfield, Ivan Gregory, Kath Bassett , Pat Ronan, Christopher & Raymond McNally , Mark Harrison & Genevieve Foster. Those in the parish who do not wish their illness to be made public but who also need our prayers

Money Matters-Thank you

Sunday Offering £620 14p

£5,532.09 has been added to our central fund thanks to Gift Aid donations- special thanks to all who donate in this way.

Dance Class £101

120 Club £1500 annual offering

120 Club Winner No 111 F Archbold £20

Many thanks to Vera and Peter for their continued support of parish funds via 120 club and dance class.

There is to be a second hand book sale in Mayer Hall next Sunday from 11am until 3pm. Entrance is free and all proceeds will go to Parkinson’s UK. You have time to attend this prior to joining Emeritus Bishop Brian and the Pilgrim Troupe for 5pm as they present, Thy Kingdom Come! (See opposite)

Joanne Swindell’s husband Peter took some great photos at the blessing of the animals service. They are on view at the back of the church and if you have a favourite one of your pooch or pussycat (or snake) then you are welcome to help yourself.

As well as the bargainiferous books that we have had on sale for several weeks now, I would like to recommend that you have a look at the Catholic Life. This is a beautifully produced magazine with excellent material but in particular, this month’s edition focuses on our own diocese of Shrewsbury. It does cost £3.50p but perhaps you could share the cost with another parishioner and share the reading too?

Tuesday 16th Teresa Young

Colette Corkhill

Thursday 18th. Noelene Evans

Rosemary Larkin

Saturday 20th. D Humphrey

W Humphrey

 

Next Sunday is the feast of Christ the King – the culmination of the church’s year when the Pilgrim Troupe present ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ at 5pm. We will be joined by our emeritus Bishop Brian who will address us about how his love of the Arts has helped his understanding of The Kingdom. I hope you will be here in strength. Please invite any friends from other churches in the area. It will be just an hour long and will be followed by refreshments. If you would like to come but need a lift on Sunday evening, please ask as we may be able to arrange one for you. No charge but a retiring collection for CAFOD. If you have never attended a pilgrim Troupe presentation in the past, this is your chance to pass judgement!

Pastoral Team is due to meet at 7.30pm on Wednesday 17th– Members please try to attend.

 

As the school once again starts to prepare the children for First Communions, I have heard one or two dissenting voices from among you about the way we conduct it here. I would like to canvas your written opinions/suggestions please. Paper and box provided at back of church.

 

The courage of life is often a less dramatic spectacle than the courage of the final moment; but it is no less a magnificent mixture of triumph and tragedy. A man does what he must in spite of personal consequences; in spite of obstacles and dangers and pressures-and that is the basis of all morality.(John Fitzgerald Kennedy)

 

The terrible thing about terrorism is that ultimately it destroys those who practise it. Slowly but surely, as they try to extinguish life in others, the light within them dies.

(Terry Waite)

 

For us there is only the trying; the rest is not our business.

(T S Elliot)

This is the first of weekly reminders that we are to have a pre-Christmas party on December 12th after the 10am Mass on Sunday. It will be a shared table and if you are fussy about food make sure you bring something you do like to eat/drink. The purpose is to celebrate together and have some fun (to quote Anne Widdeconbe!)

VACANCY for County Ecumenical Development Officer Churches Together in Cheshire (see notice board for details)

Vincent Sarson died recently and his funeral will be held at Christ the King on Thursday 18th at 10am. We commend him toAlmighty God and ask condolence for his family and friends.

 

It was very gratifying to see so many of you join Marian Tolley for the meeting at SJP on Thursday. I hope you found her insights on the scriptures illuminating. Philip has proposed that we meet together in Advent to listen to and discuss the Advent readings on Thursdays 25th Nov and 2nd, 9th, and 16th Dec from 7 to 9pm.

 

07/11/2010

07/11/2010

St John the Evangelist

Email stjohntheevangelist@gmail.com

www.stjohnevang.co.uk

www.lpa24.org

0151 645 3314

Reg. Charity 234025

Fr Frank Rice

Rev Philip White

32nd Sunday 7th November 2010

FAITH IN FOCUS: DEAD OR ALIVE

Because the Sadducees believed that this world was all there is, they tried to make a fool of Jesus by asking a question about the afterlife: if a woman had been married seven times, which man would be her husband in heaven?. They didn’t believe there was a hereafter or a final reckoning. Jesus cleverly answers them by calling the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob a God of the living not the dead. Since these patriarchs had died, they must have been raised from the dead to be still living.

There is no marriage in heaven, says Jesus, because things there are not the same as here on earth. We find this hard to understand. In fact, St Paul tells us that no eye has seen and no ear heard what awaits us after death. What we do know is that on one level it will be a continuation of what we have experienced here on earth, yet on another level it will be completely different.

The resurrection will perfect us. It will take all the goodness of God in us and magnify it in a glorious body. At death the human ties that bind us here on earth do not simply unravel. We will not only see God face to face, but all our loved ones who have gone before us and now form the company and the communion of saints.

Lucy was a healthy bounding woman until she was reduced to a vegetative state by a car accident. When I see her again in heaven it will be with the same body in which she died. And I’ll recognise her at once, but everything will now be perfected. She will have a glorious body, now in its eternal potential. Her personality will be at its fullest, and so will her wit, her charm, her tenacity and her love. She will be noble, beautiful, and even regal, because she will be like the risen Jesus.

God did not make us just to destroy us after our short spell on earth. God made us to have a relationship with him for eternity. That’s why we were baptised: for eternal life. And that’s why the thought of death does not paralyse the Christian, for it brings with it the promise and hope of a resurrection to glory with God. For when we are dead, we will be really alive!

WORD OF GOD

We shall be raised up by him; whereas for you there can be no resurrection. (II Maccabees 7:14)

 

WORD FOR TODAY

Resurrection sustains our faith. Its promise is that there is a meaning and purpose to all we undergo on earth. If Christ did not rise from the dead then our faith is in vain. Because he did rise, our future is eternal.

 

FEAST OF A CHURCH

It can seem odd to have a feast for a building rather than a person. But the feast of the Dedication of the Lateran Basilica (November 9th) is about more than bricks and mortar.

The Lateran Basilica is the Pope’s cathedral in Rome, although most people wrongly suppose that St Peter’s must be his See. And this feast is an invitation to us to recognise that we ourselves make up the Church of Christ united under its shepherd on earth, the Pope. We are the living stones that form the dwelling of God through the Holy Spirit.

An ancient blessing recalls what this feast is about:

God the Father wills that all his children scattered throughout the world become one family in his Son. May he make you his temple, the dwelling-place of his Holy Spirit. May he free you from every bond of sin, dwell within you and give you joy. May you live with him for ever in the company of his saints.

 

I do not believe in an afterlife, although I am bringing a change of underwear.

(Woody Allen)

 

If that vital spark that we find in a grain of wheat can pass unchanged through countless deaths and resurrections, will the spirit of man be unable to pass from this body to another? (William Jennings Bryan)

 

The great Easter truth is not that we are to live newly after death. That is not the great thing, but that…we are to, and may, live nobly now because we are to live forever. (Phillips Brooks)

 

As the school once again starts to prepare the children for First Communions, I have heard one or two dissenting voices from among you about the way we conduct it here. I would like to canvas your opinions/suggestions please.

 

32nd.Sun 7th 5.30

10am.

8pm.

Leo Shore

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Mon 8th. 9.15 Frida Owens
Tues.

 

9th. 9.15 Francis Fryer
Wed 10th. 9.15. Frank Gurney
Thurs 11th. 7.15. Arthur Evans
Fri 12th. 9.15 Ann & Peter Fitzpatrick
33rd.Sun

 

14th. 5.30

10am

8pm

Late Rels & friends McSweeneys

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Please pray for our sick and those who care for them

Jane Jackson, William Halpen, Philomena Moore, Margaret Randles, Michael Collins, Teresa McLean, Joan Lee, Ann Ferguson, Denis Welch, Josie Cohen, Peter Williamson, Kathy Smith, Marjorie Hoey, Mrs H McCormack, Esther Roche, Fay Challoner, Sheila Stockley, Joan & Charles Reynolds, Mollie Dowling, Kath Holland, Sheila Clayson, Mary Bryden, Owen & Josie Toohey, Betty Kennedy, Helen Worth, Christopher Hadfield, Ivan Gregory, Vincent Sarson, Kath Bassett , Pat Ronan, Christopher & Raymond McNally , Mark Harrison & Genevieve Foster. Those in the parish who do not wish their illness to be made public but who also need our prayers

Money Matters-Thank you

Sunday Offering £725 74p

Boiler £10

120 Club Winner No 14 A Murray £20

The Bereavement support group will be holding their 3rd coffee morning from 10-12md on Monday 8th in the parish hall. Please feel free to come along for a chat over a cuppa. It may be some time since you have been bereaved but time is irrelevant where grief is concerned.

Tuesday 9th Colette Sarson

Margaret Brannock

Thursday11th Kevin Fitzpatrick

Nora McCormick

Saturday 13th. Anne Keogh

Chris Dougherty

 

 

On the feast of Christ the King (November 21st) at 5pm when the Pilgrim Troupe present ‘Thy Kingdom Come’ we will be joined by our emeritus Bishop Brian who will address us about how his love of the Arts has helped his understanding of The Kingdom. I hope we will have a full church. Please invite any friends from other churches in the area. It will be just an hour long and will be followed by refreshments. If you would like to come but need a lift on Sunday evening, please ask as we may be able to arrange one for you. No charge but a retiring collection for CAFOD.

The books are moving steadily and yet more have been added this week so keep your eyes peeled! Think of perhaps buying one for a housebound person. Any money raised will go to defray boiler expenses but more importantly they may bring fresh insights on our faith.

The Bread of Life Community Project is looking for people to give up an hour or so per week/month to help distribute free bread cakes and produce from surplus food from 2 Sainsbury stores. The recipients include hostels, individuals and families in need. Phone 07963 460 538 or Email office.breadoflife@googlemail.com

Forward Planning!

Shrewsbury Catholic Charismatic Renewal

Pantasaph Friary Holywell Friday 25th March to Sunday 27th March. Speaker Fr Chris Thomas

Contact Pat McNeil 01928 722670 or Ann Murray 0151 645 5514

 

Gather Us In’

The first of the three meeting at St Mary’s and SJP have been very well attended and Fr Nick and his team provided us with some fascinating insights into the Mass. I hope you managed to get there but there are still 2 more meetings to come and if you haven’t put your name down- don’t worry, I’m sure the organizers will squeeze you in somehow. Next week we have Marian Tolley coming to talk about the scriptures. I suggest that ALL our readers do their utmost to attend but anyone who listens to Marian is in for a treat.

 

There are several bunches of church keys which are missing and for the sake of security and insurance, these need to be returned. People may have borrowed them while I was away but I ask that you please search your pockets and handbags if you have had recent access to them.

 

The Mass for All Souls was much appreciated, as those bereaved relatives of parishioners can attest. If you couldn’t make it on Tuesday but have a relative whose funeral took place here then you may take one of the hearts from the front of the altar and also one of the candles lit in their memory at that Mass. The memorial books will remain in front of the altar throughout November and please feel free to come and have a look. Remember that only the names of those buried/cremated from the parish will be present there

 

MARANATHA GATHERING is here at St John’s for the first time on 13th November from 10-30 until 3.30. See notice board for details.