St John the Evangelist

New Ferry, in the Diocese of Shrewsbury, Reg. Charity 234025

Fr. Frank Rice;

Revd. Philip White; Revd. Michael Daly (also in residence: Fr. Dennis Xulu)

phone

: 0151 645 3314email: stjohntheevangelist

websites: www.stjohnevang.co.uk

22nd.Sunday of Year August 28th.Year A

FAITH IN FOCUS: CHEAP GRACE?

Dietrich Bonhoeffer was a German theologian and pastor who was imprisoned during the Second World War and executed by the Nazis in 1945 for opposing their ideology and their war-mongering activity. He is probably most famous for the quote, “Salvation without discipleship is cheap grace”.

What he was saying is that there are no season tickets for Christianity. You have to sign on each day and you have to prove that you are still a Christian by discipleship, by the way you face the daily challenges of life. You can’t simply “join” Christianity and then sit back as if your subscription is being paid by direct debit.

There are no quick fixes that come with faith in Christ. Today Christ tells us that following him means taking up our cross. And it’s not as if we have to look very far to see what our crosses are; they stare us in the face daily. Perhaps it’s a sickness that weighs us down, a betrayal by someone we trusted, a tragedy from our past or present, an unfulfilled dream or a frustrated career.

Suffering for suffering’s sake is nothing more than masochism. What makes suffering Christian is that we redeem it, we make sense of it and find some purpose in it, some greater good that can come out of it. The grandparent who bravely struggles to bring up her abandoned grandchild does so because she can see beyond the troubles of the moment. The cancer sufferer does not rejoice in the pain but sees that such pain offers him the chance of a deeper understanding of the mystery of God. The person who has been publicly humiliated learns to value the dignity of others who might suffer the same fate.

We can’t avoid our cross but it’s the way we carry it that’s going to be crucial. The fact that the God of the universe hung on a tree for three hours until his heart gave out has to give meaning to suffering, even if we are too jaded to grasp its significance.

The self-giving that we bring to our suffering can in turn bring others to know the grace of God. And God’s grace does not come cheap.

22nd. Sunday of the Year A 28th. 5.30

10 am

8 pm

Revd. J Cahill

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Mon 29th. 9.15 Richard Duggan
Tues 30th. 9.15 Rev John Murphy
Wed 31st. 9.15 Rev John Bentley
Thu 1st. 9.15 Donald O’Brien
Fri 2nd. 9.15 Private Int.
23rd. Sun Yr. A 4th. 5.30

10 am

8 pm

Private Int.

Parishioners

Prayer Meeting

Please pray for our sick and those who care for them

Stacey Usher, Frances Heslin, Liam Halpen, Philomena Moore, Margaret Randles, Michael Collins, TeresaMcLean, Denis Welch, Josie Cohen, Peter Williamson, Kathy Smith, Marjorie Hoey, Mrs H McCormack, Esther Roche, Fay Challoner, Sheila Stockley, Joan & Charles Reynolds, 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.Remember also those in the parish who do not wish their illness to be made public but who also need our prayers.

Money

Offertory last week: £719 86p (many thanks);

120 Club winner No 81 E Wall £20

Great Sutton Male Voice Choir will be performing in the parish centre on Wednesday 21st September at 7.30pm. Proceeds in aid of the Wirral prostate cancer support group. Tickets are £6 which includes an interval glass of wine. Tickets are available from Bernard McGuigan 645 7929 or add your name to the list at the back of the church. We hope that this will be the first of a series of events in the centre with some of them raising funds for its upkeep. ‘Use is or lose it’

Fr. Frank thanks everyone for making last Sunday so enjoyable- for cards, cakes, gifts & greetings, many thanks!

Normal service will be resumed next week on his return but we do have the bonus of having Fr. Dennis with us for another couple of weeks.

Music for the new translation of the Missal: Spend a morning looking at new and revised settings….. Holy Name, Oxton, on Sat 3 Sep 2011 (10 am to 1 pm). Cost £3. The parish will pay for you to attend Phone 0161 6832359 or email pad.st.mary’s@btinternet.com

ALL ARE WELCOME-it is not restricted to choirs or musicians- we are all part of a learning process!!!!

Parish meetings on new words at Mass: The words we use (said and sung) at Mass will be changing from next month. We have an opportunity to look again at the way the Church prays the Mass. These meetings will take place on Wed 21 and Wed 28 September (7.00 to 9.30 pm). We should all start getting used to the new translation from 1 October 2011. So in our meetings we will be considering how and why the prayers and responses at Mass will be different. Everyone, particularly readers and ministers, should try and come.

New Abbot of Pluscarden – You may have read that the former Abbot of Pluscarden Abbey (near Elgin in Scotland) was recently installed as bishop of Aberdeen. The monks had to choose a successor. They elected Dom Anselm Atkinson as third Abbot. He has been a monk since 1976 and recently resident in Massachusetts in a daughter house of the Abbey. We pray for God’s blessing on Abbot Anselm and the important work he has to do in the Church. And we give thanks for him and for his mother, Mrs Audrey Atkinson, a parishioner here at St John’s: The real religion of the world comes from women much more than from men — from mothers most of all, who carry the key of our souls in their bosoms.

Liverpool fans weep! Fr. Dennis shows partisan tendencies by standing at the feet of Dixie Dean. Let’s hope the balance will be redressed at some stage……(they won as well!!!!)Happy birthday btw Fr. D. (Friday 26th)

Congratulations to all our young people who have received GCSE results this week. No laurel rests for you!-Onward and upwards!

Congratulations to Maria & Simon who will be married in our church this weekend. We wish them much happiness and many years of married life together.

WORD OF GOD

The word of the Lord has meant for me insult and derision all day long.

(Jeremiah 20: 8)

WORD FOR TODAY

If you want a comfortable life then Christianity is not for you since suffering is at the heart of following Jesus. Yet it is a positive force: dying to our own selfishness and loving as God loves brings true purpose to our lives.

The key to faith is what we are willing to sacrifice to obtain it. (Elder Cloward)

To live is to suffer; to survive is to find some meaning in the suffering. (Roberta Flack)

Without sacrifice we cannot grow up or discover who we are. (James Baldwin)

On Tuesday we celebrate the feast of three women saints, Margaret Ward, Margaret Clitherow and Anne Line who were martyred for their faith.

Margaret Ward was born quite locally in Congleton but entered the service of a family in London and was arrested after assisting a priest to escape from prison. Despite being tortured she refused to reveal where he was hidden or to renounce her faith. She was tried at the Old Bailey and executed on this date in 1588.

All 3 women are remembered for their resourcefulness, their loyalty, their outstanding courage and for the service they rendered the Church during dangerous times in aiding the ministry of priests.