Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, 5th February, 2017. Cycle A


St John the Evangelist

128 Bebington Road, New Ferry, CH62 5BJ

Diocese of Shrewsbury (reg. charity 234025)

Parish Priest: Fr Bernard Forshaw Deacon: Revd Michael Daly Phone: 0151 645 3314

Email: stjohntheevangelist Websites:

Fifth Sunday in Ordinary Time, 5th February, 2017. Cycle A


In Jesus’ day salt was very precious. Some people were even paid in it. (Our word “salary” is from the word for salt-payment.) Since there were no fridges or freezers people used it to preserve food as well as to flavour it. In fact, there is even today an Arabic expression of friendship that says, “There’s salt between us”. The obvious thing about salt is that it pervades everything it comes into contact with. You can’t just have part of your soup that is salty. The whole lot gets transformed. And today Jesus tells his disciples that they are the salt of the earth. They are to bring flavour and taste to the earth, to all the people and situations they find themselves in. So often Christians appear as killjoys whose message is one of a life of deprivation and self-denial that would appeal to no normal person. Yet Jesus is saying that our job is to bring good news to a society that is becoming increasingly fearful and feeling under threat. The message of the gospel is one that is intended to add the flavour to life, to give life some seasoning, to leave a nice taste in the mouth. And we are called to be that salt.

He also calls us the light of the world. The Jews he was speaking to had no electricity. They used oil wicks. Without matches it took an age to light these lamps and so, for safety reasons, when people went out of their homes for a while, they put the lamp under a container where it could burn without danger of catching fire. As soon as they came back in they took it from under the pot and put it on a stand. As our world comes under the grip of real or imagined terrorist threats, as conflicts break out here and there, and as once more we hear of countries suffering famine and disaster, where can we look to shed some light on the situation? The only true source of light is God since there is no darkness in God. Jesus today tells us that we are to be the light of the world. By living his life, by witnessing to him, to the power his gospel has to transform, we reflect not our own light but God’s.

You are the salt of the earth, but what happens if the salt loses its flavour? You are the light of the world, but what happens if the light grows dim? Pass the salt!

A local charity called Merseyaid is collecting clothing and household goods to send to Lebanon and for refugees coming to our area. Anything you want to donate will be put to good use. A box will be provided at the back of church and emptied weekly. As Christians we are called to look after those less fortunate than ourselves. Thank you for your generous support.


Thank you for your continued support .If anyone is free on Monday or Tuesday mornings and would like to go on the rota to take our collected goods down to the warehouse in Birkenhead, please let us know. Please see the list of urgently needed goods on the notice board at the back of Church.Urgently required goods include biscuits, sponge pudding, sugar, squash and deodorant.

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 and to look at the Book Stall and to buy your Catholic Paper.

Day of Reflection on Pope Francis’ Exhortation ‘The Joy of Love’:10.30am – 3pm, Wed 26 April at LACE, Croxteth Drive, Sefton Park, Liverpool, L17 1AA and led by Father Chris Thomas, the well-known retreat giver. Cost £20 including lunch.

A Prayer for National Marriage week 7-14 February 2017.

We thank you Oh God, for the love you have implanted in our hearts. May it always inspire us to be kind in our words, considerate of feeling, and concerned for each others needs and wishes. Help us to be understanding and forgiving of human weakness and failing. Increase our faith and trust in you and may your prudence guide our life and love. Bless our marriage Oh God, with peace and happiness, make our love fruitful for your glory and, our joy both here and in eternity. Amen.

If you have a notice for the bulletin please email it to the parish email address or put it through the presbytery letterbox by 12 noon on Thursdays. This will help Louise, Ann & I greatly. Many thanks.

5th Sunday in Ordinary Time 5th 5.00pm




Ints of Martin & McCaffrey Fams

Prayer Meeting

Monday 6th 9.15am John Joseph Kelly Anniv RIP
Tuesday 7th 9.15am Margaret Silcock RIP
Wednesday 8th 9.15am Victims of Trafficking
Thursday 9th 9.15am Kennedy +McCormick Fams RIP
Friday 10th 9.15am Marie Rooney RIP
Saturday 11th
6th Sunday in Ordinary Time 12th 5.00pm



Eleanor McGuigan Anniv RIP


Prayer Meeting

Confessions Saturday 4.15 – 4.45pm
Morning Prayer of the Church 15 minutes before daily masses

Baptisms and Weddings in 2017…… please contact us as soon as possible.

First Forgivenessfor children at St John’s School will be celebrated in Church on Thursday 16th February at 6.30pm.

First Communion Masses: Saturday 13th May and Saturday 20th May at 11am.

Money Matters

Offertory: £644.51p

Retired Priests Fund: £451.23p

Thank you for your generosity#

This weekend: (at St John’s and St Anne’s). We welcome Sister Michela of the Comboni Missionary Sisters who will give the Annual Mission Appeal.

The Parish Pastoral Team meets on Thursday at 7.30pm in the Presbytery.

Grandparents Association Meeting on Thursday at 6.30pm in the Day Chapel. All grandparents welcome to this first local meeting of this newly formed association.

“Our Mission Together”

Thanks to your continuing generosity and prayers the work on the sanctuary re-ordering and the re-siting of the tabernacle and the baptismal font is now underway. Apologies for any inconvenience caused. The redecorating of the Church and the Day Chapel will follow mid July/August. If you have not already contributed to “Our Mission Together” and would like to do so or, if you have any questions about this Diocesan Initiative which is now bearing so much fruit around the Diocese, please contact

Fr Bernard or Anthony Doyle.

Tel No 0151 652 9855/07833209713

The next Love Birkenhead Prayer Event will be held at Charing Cross Methodist Church on Friday

10th February 2017 at 7.30pm. We have Frank Field and Bishop Keith Sinclair joining us to help us focus our prayer for our area. See Poster at back of church for details

Diocesan Annual Mass for the Celebration of Marriage. This annual Mass has grown as a Diocesan event and is greatly appreciated by the couples and their families who take part. This year’s Mass will be celebrated at our Lady’s Church in Stockport on Saturday 11th February at 12 noon. If you are celebrating a significant anniversary in 2017 (i.e. 25th, 40th, 50th, 60th) and wish to attend please let Fr Bernard know.

Children’s Liturgy and ConfirmationSaturday

25th February 10.00am-1.00pm (registration from 9.30pm) at Ellesmere Port Catholic High School

CH65 7AQ. Speakers: Teresa Kehoe and Hannah Vaughn-Spruce. Open to everyone interested in how to share the faith with children and adolescents. Enquiries: barbara.davies


See Poster at back of church for details.

Shrewsbury Catholic Charismatic Renewal will be holding a weekend at Pantasaph Friary on 24th-26th February. Theme: “Hungry for God”. Speaker: Fr Chris Thomas. Cost £105. See poster at back of church for details. Contact: Ann Murray 0151 645 5514 for booking information.

OnFriday March 3rd at 2pmit is the Women’s World Day of Prayer. The service comes from the Philippines this year and is being held in our church. As we are praying for Filipino women, we are hoping that some of our Filipino parishioners will kindly help and be a part of this service. Please see Maria Fryer or

Claire McGree.

Healing Mass: Saturday 25th March at 3pm, St Werburgh’s, Grosvenor Park Road, Chester, CH1 1QJ is for all families that are affected by mental illness and those that work with them. There will be an Anointing of the Sick during Mass and an opportunity for socialising and meeting members of the Diocesan Mental Health Action Group afterwards.

Traidcraft Stall will be open next weekend after Saturday and Sunday Masses. Please continue to support this worthwhile cause.

Enclosed with this bulletin please find a copy of Bishop Mark’s Pastoral Letter “On our Social Mission- Caritas Diocese of Shrewsbury.”

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