Second Sunday in Advent, 10th December, 2017, Cycle B


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: Websites: 


Second Sunday in Advent, 10th December, 2017, Cycle B



As we look around the world today we can sometimes be forced to the conclusion that things are not as God intended them to be. We are living through a period when terrorism has grabbed the headlines with stories of daily bloodshed. And we are caught up in a seemingly intractable situation of war in Iraq.

The Jewish people were deported to Iraq about 2,600 years ago. They were forced out of Israel to Babylon, not very far from Baghdad. Even second and third generations longed for their homeland, for their God and for their Temple in Jerusalem.

Today we hear Isaiah trying to bring comfort to these desperate people. He tells them that God will not abandon them in exile forever. A leader will come and take them back home. He quotes God promising them that their time of slavery is over. But they must take action themselves and prepare a straight road for God to travel through as he helps them. They must have a change of heart and mind.

And the same message is repeated to us during this Advent. Isaiah tells us that, whatever our troubles and woes, God will never let us wallow permanently in a cheerless condition. God is not absent even when it is hard to see his presence. And the main thing that God wants us to receive is forgiveness, that collective pardon for our sins as a nation and our faults as individuals.

Advent proclaims the power of God. For those who accept the promises of Jesus it is not a lone uphill struggle. For those who genuinely acknowledge their shortcomings, and do their best to change, God’s Spirit can make all things possible. Advent is an encouragement: our God is with us and comes each day in such a way that we can overcome whatever is thrown in our path.

So the challenge of Advent is twofold. It’s a challenge for us to examine our lives, to make God’s paths straight. And it’s also a challenge to see the presence of God in all the situations of our life and world, both good and bad. John the Baptist was able to see this presence in Jesus, the Lamb of God. Can we see God’s Advent presence? And where are we looking?


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….

Cafod: World Gift Catalogue is available at the back of Church. If you are looking for something a bit different as a Christmas present this year then please take a look and see the life-changing gifts on offer.


Please give generously (as you usually do) to the Foodbank during the run up to Christmas. The need is as great as ever. Please check the notice board at the back of Church for most needed items. Thank you very much for your generous giving to the Foodbank throughout 2017



Missio (APF/Mill Hill) 2018 calendars are now available on the table at the back of Church.


Traidcraft Stall will be available at the back of church this weekend Saturday 9th & Sunday 10th December. Please take time to browse and see if you can pick up any gifts and cards for Christmas.

Christmas Flower Collection over the weekend Saturday/Sunday 16th and 17th December.


Please take a copy of the Wednesday Word. It is a helpful reflection 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 locally and further afield.




If you have a notice for the bulletin please email it to the parish email address or put it through the presbytery letter box by

12 noon on Thursdays. Many thanks.








Second Sunday

in Advent

Cycle B

10th 5.00pm




John Ward RIP


Holy Hour

Prayer Meeting

Monday 11th 9.15am Frank Brady RIP
Tuesday 12th 9.15am Ints Eamon & Margo Sarson
Wednesday 13th 9.15am Pat McCloskey RIP
Thursday 14th 9.15am Rels/Frnds Gillespie Family
Friday 15th 9.15am


Ints New Ferry Community

Funeral Service –

Joseph McKeown

Saturday 16th 10.00am Carmel Mass
Third Sunday

in Advent

Cycle B

17th 5.00pm




Mary Haigh Annv RIP

Lynn Merity B.Day Annv

Holy Hour

Prayer Meeting

There is no Children’s Liturgy during Advent. Crib Service on

Christmas Eve is at 3pm. More helpers are needed for Children’s

Liturgy. If you would be willing to offer some help with this

important ministry in 2018, please have a word with Fr Bernard.

Confessions Saturday 4.15-4.45pm
Morning Prayer 15 minutes before daily masses

Lately Dead: Your prayers are requested for the repose of the soul of Fr Peter Phillips’ mother, Mary, who has recently died.  There will be a Vigil Mass at Nazareth House at 5pm on Wednesday 13th December with her Funeral Mass at 12 noon at Holy Angels, Hale Barns on Thursday 14th December.    Your prayers are also asked for the repose of the soul of Joseph McKeown whose Funeral Service is at St John’s on Friday at 1.30pm.

May they rest in peace.


Sick Visits: Fr Bernard, Deacon Mike and our Eucharistic Ministers will be out visiting our sick & housebound parishioners in the run up to Christmas. If you know of anyone in the parish who is in need of Holy Communion /a visit, please do let us know or Tel 0151 645 3314


On the Sundays of Advent, in the day chapel, between 3-4 pm, there will be an opportunity to spend time before the Blessed Sacrament to reflect and contemplate on the true meaning of Christmas.


Money Matters: Offertory £769.52p

Thank you for your continued generosity.


Tea and Coffee in the Parish Centre Sunday after 9.30am Mass.



READERS  Please check the list in the Sacristy for Christmas Readings. For those reading on Christmas Eve, please collect your list.


First Holy Communion. If there are any children attending Non Catholic schools who are in Year 3 or above and so eligible to make their First Holy Communion in this school year please contact us on

tel no 0151 645 3114 asap.


Advent at St John’s

Each Sunday during Advent – Holy Hour in Church 3-4pm

LPA24 Advent Reconciliation Service with individual confession will be held at

St John’s on Wednesday 20th December 7pm. All welcome.Fr Bernard will be in Church each Saturday during Advent from

11am-12 noon … opportunity for Confession, for prayer, for a chat.


Christmas Services at St John’s

Christmas Eve

Crib Service for Children at 3.00pm in Church,

Mass of the Nativity begins at 7.30pm

Christmas Day

Mass 9.30am

Christmas Week Mass Times

26th-29th will be at 10am

Feast of St Stephen: 26th December.

Mass at 10am will be offered for our Altar Servers.

Feast of St John the Evangelist: Patron Saint of our Parish. Mass will be held at

Sat/Sun 30th/31st Dec: Feast of the Holy Family

Masses at the usual times Sat 5.00pm and

Sun 9.30am

Mon 1st Jan 2018 Feast of Mary the Mother of God

Mass at 10.00am

Sat/Sun 6th/7th Jan: Feast of the Epiphany

Masses at the usual times Sat 5.00pm and Sun 9.30am.

THE BIG CARD is now at the back of church. Please write your Christmas message at a suggested minimum donation of £1. All proceeds will go

towards the work of The Ark. Please support this very good cause and thank you for your support over the years.


A Musical Celebration of Christmas …. fabulous evening of festive music performed by the soloists and chorus of the Birkenhead Operatic Society in St Anne’s Church on Wednesday

13th December at 7.30pm Mulled wine and mince pies from 7pm. Tickets £8 on sale after weekend Masses or from St Anne’s Parish Office

Tel 645 3996


The next meeting for Catechists will be an opportunity for 

Sharing Best Practice. Miss Caroline Farey (Maryvale Institute & the School of the Annunciation) will listen to your exchanges, and offer practical advice for the situations you are facing.

Venue: Our Lady’s, Ellesmere Port; Saturday,

13th January 2018, (9:30) 10:00-11:50. See poster with relevant information. Enquiries: Barbara Davies (07730 526821); Registration: Helen Jones (




Carol Singing – 22nd December, 3.30pm outside Co-op, Higher Bebington.


Churches Together Christmas Day Lunch to be held at Christ Church Community Centre, Higher Bebington. If you know anyone locally who is alone and who would welcome extra company on Christmas Day please contact Jill 334 6077 or the office

608 4429. Transport can be arranged. See poster on notice board for full details.

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