St John the Evangelist
Email stjohntheevangelist@gmail.com
0151 645 3314
Reg. Charity 234025
Fr. Frank Rice
Rev Philip White
4th. Sunday of Lent 3rd April 2011
The internet’s a fascinating thing. Just connect to it, type in a word or phrase and suddenly you have access to hundreds of thousands of sites all vying for your attention and offering the solution to your questions.
Of course, it’s not quite as simple as that, is it? You want to find out about the queen who ruled in 19th century Britain and so you type in “Victoria”. However, all you get is page after page of tourist guides to Canada, or Australian Chamber of Commerce web sites.
Information is a wonderful thing but it needs a certain ability to see through it and sift the evidence before it becomes really useful. And too much information simply blinds us; we don’t know which avenue to go down to find our answer.
Today’s long gospel passage from St John presents us with the man who has been blind since his birth. He has always had to rely on others to describe the physical world to him, always had to ask directions from strangers, always lived off second hand accounts of what people and places were like. Today he would carry a white stick. When Jesus gives him his sight back it transforms his world. Not only do his eyes work correctly but his vision of reality is transformed. So sure is he of the power of Jesus that he even begins to argue and taunt the religious leaders. These same leaders had previously blamed him and his parents for his blindness.
As we move towards Easter and the renewal of our baptismal promises, the Church gives us this gospel passage to remind us that our faith in Christ has opened our eyes to see clearly what we must do to live the life God wants of us. We no longer are blindly searching for meaning and fulfilment. We need feel no fear when faced with so many shallow and pale imitations of what life is about, so many people who pretend to have the secret of happiness, so much junk information that offers us the world. When Jesus calls us out of darkness into light he offers us the gift of faith, the ability to discern, to see clearly, to journey without stumbling. Throw away your white stick, he says, and see how wonderful the world can be!

He put a paste on my eyes, I washed, and I can see.
(John 9:15)

When faced with difficulties and problems, how do we try to solve them? Do we bring the light of our faith to bear on our decisions? Do we seek the enlightenment that our belief in Jesus can bring? Does prayer ever enter into the equation, or do we just muddle through?

For 51 years Bob Edens was blind. He couldn’t see a thing. His world was a black hall of sounds and smells. He felt his way through five decades of darkness. And then, he could see. A skilled surgeon performed a complicated operation and, for the first time, Bob Edens had sight. He found it overwhelming. “I never would have dreamed that yellow is so…yellow,” he exclaimed. “I don’t have the words. I am amazed by yellow. But red is my favourite colour. I just can’t believe red. I can see the shape of the moon—and I like nothing better than seeing a jet plane flying across the sky leaving a vapour trail. And of course, sunrises and sunsets. And at night I look at the stars in the sky and the flashing light. You could never know how wonderful everything is.” Christ does for our faith what the surgeon did for Bob’s eyes.
(Christine Welbers)

On Palm Sunday (17th April) you have an opportunity to view the Millennium quilt at Lower Bebington Methodist church. This has taken 11 years to complete and is well worth inspection.
Sad news from Ireland is the death of an old and dear friend of mine whom some of you will remember from his time in Birkenhead. Canon Joe Cahill who whose last appointment was to Knutsford but who went back to Ireland in retirement. His funeral was last Friday but there will be a memorial mass for him in the diocese at a date to be announced. RIP.

Fr David Roberts father has also died and we offer our prayers for David and his family in their grief.

4th Sunday of Lent
Benefactors SSCF
Prayer Meeting
Jane’s Ints

Funeral Mass Joan Lee
Eileen Carty
Lenten Meeting at St Luke’s. A heart of Love

John Joseph Kelly
Joan Bell
4th. Sunday of Lent
Private Int.
Prayer Meeting
Please pray for our sick and those who care for them
Frances Heslin, Liam Halpen, Philomena Moore, Margaret Randles, Michael Collins, Teresa McLean, 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, Mary Bryden, Owen & Josie Toohey, Betty Kennedy, Helen Worth, Christopher Hadfield, Ivan Gregory, Kath Bassett , Christopher & Raymond McNally , Mark Harrison, Genevieve Foster & Aileen McGuigan. Vic Gemmell. Those in the parish who do not wish their illness to be made public but who also need our prayers
Money Matters-many thanks.
Sunday Offering £676 93p
2nd Collection £240 12p
Boiler £0
120 Club Winner No 37 T McLean £20
No 51 C Sabino £10
Carmel Smyth would like to thanks all those who donated clothes etc. to the sale which raised £430 towards the cost of resurfacing the playground.

SJP annual plant sale will take place on Saturday 7th May with sales starting at 9am. You can pre-order from a comprehensive list. Pre ordered plants need to be collected by 11am. Cheques should be made payable to SJP PTA. Instead of swelling the profits of B&Q why not grab a bargain or two and help the school?
Sometimes our light goes out but is blown into flame by another human being. Each of us owes deepest thanks to those who have rekindled this light.
(Albert Schweitzer)

You will be very poor until you realise that it is not with your eyes open that you see the clearest. (Helder Camara)

I have had a very quick response to my appeal for a new gardener. Many thanks to Kath Markey for agreeing to take up the hoe and the secateurs-if anyone is desperate to help her I’m sure she wouldn’t turn them down. The rest of the grounds are also in need of a good tidying again. It doesn’t take much skill to pick up refuse or handle a brush so again I appeal to you if you are able and have the odd hour to spare, I would be most grateful.

Joan Lee died last week and she had asked that her body be brought into church the day before her funeral and so this will happen on 4th April at 4pm and her funeral will be held at 12md on 5th. Please pray for her family who are grief-stricken. She is at rest with the Lord.

The Pilgrim Troupe is on tour again with its latest offering. The title is ‘Cross-carrying Jesus’ and is a rich mix of song and drama as well as images. They will be at SJP on 14th April and 15th at St Anne’s.

There will be a concert featuring the Rhos Orpheus male Choir at All saints church Thornton Hough on Saturday 14th May. Proceeds are in aid of Claire House Hospice. See poster for further details.

Road to Calvary- a passion play which will have one of its 12 Lenten performances at Our Lady’s Birkenhead on 2nd April at 7.30pm. This is a powerful drama enacted by a group of 12 actors from wales and is highly acclaimed as one of the most talked about events outside the professional theatre. Tickets are £5 or £12.50 for a family group.

Canon Anne Samuels has had a fall and sustained a fractured ar. We wish her a speedy recovery.

The APF red boxes will collected and emptied during April. Please bring yours as soon as possible.
50 years of marriage was celebrated on 25th March by Chris & Sheila Jones Many congratulations to them and many more happy years to come we hope!