16th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 19th July, 2015. Cycle B

18/07/2015

St John the Evangelist

New Ferry, in the Diocese of Shrewsbury (reg. charity 234025)

Parish priest: Fr Bernard Forshaw (also parish priest of the parish of St Anne, Rock Ferry)

Deacons: Revd Philip White; Revd Michael Daly

Phone: 0151 645 3314

Email: stjohntheevangelist

Websites:

16th Sunday in Ordinary Time, 19th July, 2015. Cycle B

FAITH IN FOCUS: BLACK SHEEP

A wise man once said that anyone can be kind to a poor person who deserves it. But what marks out a great person is how they react to the undeserving poor. In other words, most of us have an instinctive response when we read a newspaper story of some innocent person who has been left homeless. But our reaction is usually different when we read of someone who has made themselves homeless through drink or drugs. We say it’s their own fault, it’s self-inflicted and they should have thought about the consequences before embarking on this course of action.

If you ever spend a holiday in the countryside and get the chance to watch a sheep-farmer at work, you’ll notice that most of his time is spent with those sheep who have got themselves into some sort of mess. The common or garden sheep does not claim so much of his time. So it’s the lamb who won’t suckle properly at the ewe, the ram that’s got his horns stuck in a boundary fence and the yearling that’s wandered off to the edge of the mountain quarry that get all the attention.

When God looks at his people he loves all the sheep of his flock. But he has a particular concern for those who have got themselves into difficulty. Today through Jeremiah he berates the shepherds that have allowed the sheep to be scattered, and Jesus looks out on the crowd and sees sheep without any shepherd at all.

If God is going to be able to pasture his flock in our day, then it must be through the Church taking seriously its shepherding role. How do we react to those in our flock who have got themselves into a mess? Do we join the tabloid chorus and denounce the unfashionable of our society, the beggars, the homeless, those addicted to drugs or alcohol, those who are refugees or asylum seekers? Or do we see it as part of our calling to rehabilitate those who have wandered onto a barren track? And if so, how do we go about it without throwing in the towel and blaming it all on the social services or the lack of government funds?

How we react to the “undeserving” is the acid test of our shepherding skills. For God there is no such thing as a black sheep of the family; only a lost sheep that needs bringing back into the fold.

WORD OF GOD

I will raise up shepherds to look after them and pasture them; no fear, no terror for them any more; not one shall be lost. (Jeremiah 23:4)

WORD FOR TODAY

Sometimes we can try so hard to practise our religion that we fail to enjoy the view en route. Today God reminds us that his overarching love for us will never fail. We form part of a flock that he will provide for always. Although we can’t afford to rest on our laurels, we can take a bit of a break on Christ’s.

Ways of Prayer: St Teresa Speaks. Prayer is an act of love; words are not needed. Even if sick or distracted, all that is needed is the will to love.

Please take a copy of the Wednesday Word. It is a helpfulreflection on next Sunday’s readings and do not forget to take a look at the Church Notice Boards giving details of other events and happenings.

Foreign Coins:If you have any coins left over from your globetrotting, please put them in the jar at the back of church. St Anne’s are collecting the coins for charity.

Saturday 18th 5pm Jim

Sweatman RIP

16th

Sunday Ord Time B

19th 9.30am

7.30pm

Parishioners

Prayer

Meeting

Monday 20th 9.15am Mass in St John’s Juniors
Tuesday 21st 1.30pm Mass in St John’s Juniors
Wednesday 22nd 9.15am Service

of Word & Communion

Thursday 23rd 9.15am Elizabeth Robinson RIP
Friday 24th 9.15am Service

of Word & Communion

Saturday 25th 5.00pm Hannah

O’Neill Annv.

17th

Sunday

Ord Time B

26th 9.30am

7.30pm

Ann

Mulheirn RIP

Prayer

Meeting

Thursday, 23rd July is a Special Day of Prayer for Europe

PLEASE NOTE: This Sunday, 19th July, is the last Children’s Liturgy as it closes during the Summer holidays. We look forward to starting again on Sunday 13th September.

Confessions Saturday 4.00 – 4.45 pm
Morning Prayer of the Church 15 minutes before weekday masses

We have received the sad news of the death of

Margaret Callaghan (sister of Vera Brockway). Margaret died on the 6th July and her Funeral Mass will be held here at St Johns on Monday, 27th July at 10am. Please keep her family in your prayers at this sad time.

Money Matters:Offertory £604.45p Thank you

SVP £269.50 in memory of Marie McGhee

Rite of Christian Initiation of Adults (RCIA)is the Church’s way of welcoming new members. If you, or someone you know, would like to find out more about joining the Catholic Church please contact Fr Bernard. Meetings will start in September.

CAFOD Shrewsbury would be delighted if you can join us to celebrate and to give t hanks for our abundant blessing at:

A Mass of Thanksgiving on Friday 24th July at 7.00pm at St Clare’s, Downsfield Road, Chester CH4 8HH. For further details please contact Sue or Liz

01244 677594, email: shrewsbury

Please come to the Scout’s Spectacular Carwash on Sunday 26th July. We will wash your car during Mass and all we ask is that you donate whatever you consider appropriate for the quality of the job. All proceeds will be split 50:50 between the Scouts and the Church. Thank you. The Carwash will be in the Church Car Park.

You have no doubt heard in the media about the increasing use of food banks. We need to keep this in mind as we do our weekly shop and if you are able to afford to add just one item to your basket for the Foodbank collection you may be confident that you are helping those people who are struggling at this time. There is a list on the notice board of the items which are particularly needed at the moment.

Our schools are finishing for their summer break at this time. Mass on Monday and Tuesday is in St John’s Junior School. We wish our students a great holiday and good weather, coming back refreshed and enthusiastic for the start of a new school term in September.

We also think of those anxiously awaiting their exam results in August.

National Grandparents Pilgrimage will be held at the National Shrine of Our Lady, Walsingham next Sunday,

26th July. Please see poster at back of church for full programme. Further details contact

Diocesan pilgrimage to Lourdes The annual Diocesan Pilgrimage to Lourdes takes place this year from July 28th – August 5th overland & July 29th – August 4th by air.

Youth 2000 Prayer Festival,

27th-31st August, 2015, held at the National Shrine of Our Lady, Walsingham. This is a 5 day Prayer Festival, aimed at 16-35 year olds, packed with dynamic talks,

live-band worship, powerful prayer times, fun social activities, creative workshops, in-depth discussions, evening entertainment and lots more. See poster at back of church for full details.

On Friday 11thSeptember the House of Commons will debate and vote on a Bill to legalise assisted suicide. This will put the most vulnerable people in our society at risk. Please contact your MP, urging them to attend the debate and vote against the Bill. You can send an e-mail to your MP via the Catholic Bishops’ Conference website (www.catholicnews.org.uk/assisted-suicide) or send a letter by post, a draft of which can be found at the back of the Church.

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