Fifth Sunday of Lent, 18th March 2018. 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: 


Fifth Sunday of Lent, 18th March 2018. Cycle B




For the last month we’ve been making our way through Lent on a voyage towards Easter. It’s as if we’ve taken to the road with Christ on his journey up to Jerusalem where he (and we) will embrace death so as to rise above it to a life that never ends.

But as we’ve journeyed with Christ we’ve been listening to his words guiding us along our route to Easter. These words take on a different colour each year in a three-year cycle that the Church’s liturgy uses. But this year the theme of Jesus’ message has been unmistakable: you must embrace the wisdom of God that the world considers to be sheer foolishness.

Jesus could have tried to buy us off with some easy words, like politicians who promise everything in return for votes. He could have told us that we can get to heaven just by praying and paying. He could have offered us salvation by keeping the law and being seen in the right places. He could have suggested a quick fix but he chose to offer the tougher route. ;

We’ve listened to a series of paradoxes over the last few weeks and today Jesus tells us that just as a grain of wheat must be buried before it can sprout, so too we have to die if we are to enjoy life. His message is one of self-sacrifice, cross-bearing, total service and a love which counts no costs. And unlike other philosophies that underline the skills and talents of their adherents, Jesus tells us that we reach our perfection the more like a servant we become, and that we achieve our dignity by putting ourselves last rather that first.

This message isn’t for everyone. It’s not for people who like to be thought of as important but now find they must consider themselves last of all. Not for people who prize possessions, now being told to give to the poor. Not for those who invest everything in the here and now. Not for those with status who fear that they’ll lose their respectability. Not for wise people who see it as sheer foolishness. Is it for you?


Once more Jesus presents us with a paradox: if we want to live we must die; if we want to be alive for Christ and his kingdom then we must be dead to selfishness and sin. To have is to give away; to rule is to serve.


Caritas Shrewsbury is looking for an experienced and enthusiastic person to be their Volunteer Co-ordinator.  The post is for 28 hrs per week and will you will be expected to travel extensively across the Diocese.  For more information and an application pack please contact Claire Griffiths Tel 0151 652 1281;

Email  Application packs can also be downloaded from our website  Closing date for applications is the 4th April 2018



Celebrate North West 2018 will be held at All Hallows College, Brooklands Avenue, Macclesfield SK11 on 28-29th April.

Costs vary. Theme “See, I am doing a new thing” (Isaiah 43-19)

Contact Chris & Martina for booking details: email   Tel No. 01706 640359



Please continue to give generously to the Foodbank. The need is as great as ever. Please check the notice board at the back of Church for most needed items for the ADLENT APPEAL AND Easter Egg Donations. Items urgently needed tea, tinned spaghetti, shampoo, fruit squash and toothpaste.


Please take a copy of the Wednesday Word. It is a helpful reflection on next Sunday’s readings.



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.












Fifth Sunday of Lent

Cycle B

18th 5.00pm




St John’s Parishioners

Jamie Armstrong RIP

Stations of the Cross

Prayer Meeting

Monday 19th 9.15am John Blakeway RIP
Tuesday 20th 9.15am Intentions Tunna Family
Wednesday 21st 9.15am St John’ School Yr 5 & 6
Thursday 22nd 7.30am


Intentions Les Duff

Funeral Mass –

Margaret Proudfoot

Friday 23rd 9.15am In Thanksgiving for prayers answered
Saturday 24th 10.00am Intentions Fr Frank Rice
Palm Sunday of the Passion of the Lord

Cycle B

25th 5.00pm




St John’s Parishioners

New Ferry Community

Stations of the Cross

Prayer Meeting

Children’s liturgy Sundays during 9.30 Mass.
Confessions Saturday 4.15-4.45pm
Morning Prayer 15 minutes before daily masses


LENT 2018 at ST JOHN’S


Each Thursday in Lent Morning Mass at 7.30am
Each Saturday in Lent Exposition of the Blessed Sacrament & Confessions 11.00am until 12 Noon
Each Sunday in Lent Stations of the Cross at 3.00pm in Main Church


     LENT 2018 Churches Together Lenten Lunches


Wednesday , 21st March St John’s, New Ferry

Meeting at 10.30am for tea/coffee. Service begins at 11am and a soup lunch follows.


Money Matters: Offertory: £596.71p

Thank you for your continued generosity.


Gift Aid/Planned Giving. New Offertory Envelopes dated from 8th April 2018 are available for collection from the table at the back of Church. Please take yours. Any questions to Steve Bell please

Principal Services at St John’s For Holy Week.

Next Weekend- Palm Sunday; Masses at the Usual Times Sat 5pm, Sun 9.30am. Please assemble in the Parish Centre i.e. 4.45pm and 9.15am.

Holy Thursday 29th March; Mass of the Lord’s Supper at 7.30pm followed by Watching at the Altar of Repose until 10pm.

Good Friday 30th March; Celebration of the Lord’s Passion at 3.00pm.

Holy Saturday 31st March; Easter Vigil Mass at 7.30pm.

Easter Sunday 1st April; Easter Mass at 9.30am.

There will be plenty of other services at St John’s in Holy Week. A full list will appear in next week’s bulletin.


CAFOD Family Fast Day Envelopes can be returned in the Offertory bag any weekend up to and including next weekend Palm Sunday 24th/25th March

24 Hours for the Lord here at St John’s from 9.00am next Saturday

24th March until 9.00am on Palm Sunday

25th March. Masses, Adoration, Stations of the Cross, Rosary, Informal Prayer and Praise etc. Sign up lists are on the table at the back of church. We need to make sure that every hour is covered by at least three people. Please do support this important initiative which will provide a fitting preparation for our Holy Week Services.

Tea & Coffee after Sunday 9.30am Mass every week in the Parish Centre. Why not stay a while and meet up with friends old and new.


Eucharistic Congress: “Adoremus” The First National Eucharistic Congress in England and Wales for 110 years is being held in Liverpool 7th-9th September 2018. You are warmly invited to attend part of the 3 day event comprising of a Symposium Day          (7th Sept) specifically aimed at teachers, catechists, musicians and clergy. A six hour stage led event (8th Sept) with key note speakers:

Bishop Robert Barron and Cardinal Vincent Nichols as well as music and drama, presentations, prayer and adoration; and concluding Mass on Sunday

(9th Sept) celebrated at Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral followed by an outdoor procession. Further details can be accessed from the home page link on the diocesan website


A “Welcome Café” in association with FairShare is now being held every Tuesday from 11.00am to 1pm at St Anne’s Parish Centre,

Highfield Road, Rock Ferry. Free Tea,Coffee and food to eat in or take home. FairShare are the UK’s largest charity fighting hunger and food waste. It’s really quite simple. They redistribute fresh, in date and good to eat surplus food to the local community.Why not go along on Tuesday and see how FairShare can help/support you.



Fr Frank is not in good health as his memory continues to deteriorate but he is always glad to receive visitors- even though you might have to remind him of your name! Should you wish to visit him please contact Joan Hannon.

The photo above was taken by Joan at Speke Hall during one of the periods when Fr Dennis Xulu supplied for Fr Frank- they were great pals and shared several holidays including Rome and Assisi together as well as numerous days out. Fr Dennis recently presented at the University of Louvain in Belgium the final public defence of his PhD thesis (on how the canon law of the Church can benefit from the process and mechanisms of resolving problems in South Africa after the Truth and Reconciliation Commission).  He was successful and was awarded his doctorate.  At the end of the proceedings the new doctor responded to various addresses which had been made.  He concluded everything he had to say with a special thank you to the parish of St John the Evangelist in New Ferry and everyone there who had been so supportive and so kind to him when he found himself a stranger in a foreign land.  He has now gone back to South Africa to continue his work in the Church there.


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